28 April 2011

Philippine Wonders - Destination Bohol

Chocolate Hills are one of the attractions that you don't miss to see when you are in Bohol and it is one of the amazing wonders only seen in the small island of Bohol. 

There are more than a thousand of it that is covered in green grass that turns brown during dry season or summer, thus getting its name. So don't expect to see them during rainy days.

Philippine Tarsier - one of the smallest inhabitant primates that, just like all other tarsiers, their eyes are fixed in the skull and uses their neck to rotate 180 degrees. It measures about 3-6 inches in height.

27 April 2011

Messi Beats 10-man Real Madrid

Real Madrid’s chance for a treble has farther lost its grip as the Los Blancos succumb to the pressure during its first leg semifinals Champions League game at the Bernabeu, losing 0-2 in the third El Clasico. Although they have taken already the Copa del Rey but they are also 8 points behind Barca in La Liga with only 5 more games left to play. And going to Nou Camp, on 3 May for the second leg, down by 2 goals is hard to imagine if Real still has hope of advancing to the finals at Wembley. What disturbs me is Real finished the match again with 10 men on the pitch and eventually was beaten black and blue by Barca.

It seems that Iker is not Paul eventually. He slipped for the first time in his predictions or was it caused by other factors such as the referee, who have given Pepe a straight red card. That also triggers the sending of Mourinho to the stands. Would the game be the same if Real Madrid is not short handed? I doubt but not very certain also because Champions League competition is a different level. But we have seen Real Madrid fought back with a 1-1 draw last 16 April and eventually diffuses Barca’s resilience in the Copa del Rey finals, three days back and claim Mourinho’s first silverware in Real Madrid. Aside from it is the third Clasico, what is common amongst the three is Real finished the game again with 10-man for the fourth time. There have been several reactions about game officials officiating, favoring Barcelona’s way and mainly the reason why Mourinho was sent off.

I wonder if Barca will be able to score those two goals if it was against 11 men on the pitch. Barcelona is the best team right now but many would refute for they might just be good actors in acting diving. Those were just hypothetical but nonetheless were shared by many others. The return leg next week on 3 May is a difficult stride for Real Madrid to overcome since they will be playing without Ramos and Pepe and a tactician who can’t be on the bench.

26 April 2011

Champions League Semifinals - Third El Clasico

The Champions League finalist are starting to shape up with ManU’s 2-0 win away at Schalke gives them the upper hand in the return leg on 4 May at Old Trafford. While tomorrow’s third El Clasico has been predicted by Iker (the Octopus) for Real Madrid to win the first leg at the Bernabeu. So far, with Iker’s predictions in the recent Clasicos came out with good outcome and is a perfect 2 out of 2 correct results. He may have predicted correctly the previous two games but tomorrow’s game is a different story.

Barcelona would slug it out again after losing in the Copa del Rey finals at the Mestalla but they struggled in beating Osasuna in their La Liga game last Saturday. While archrival Real Madrid hammered Valencia 6-3 at their own turf when they came back in the Mestalla after winning the Copa del Rey three days earlier.

The Copa del Rey win was the first silverware for Madrid under Mourinho. It is also their first win against Barcelona in seven attempts. Losing to Barcelona came to a halt after a 1-1 draw at the Bernabeu for the first of four El Clasicos. And they are hoping that tomorrow’s third Clasico will roll on the winning ways against their archrival. I want to see the Merengues in the Champions League finals at Wembley Stadium but the Blaugranas are trying to do the same. Or I would say, take revenge for they were eliminated by Mourinho (with Inter) in the same stage last season.

24 April 2011

Real Madrid Ripped Off Valencia at the Mestalla

With the Copa del Rey celebration may now be over but the excitement probably is not finished yet. I’m sure you know already who won and brought the Super King’s Cup trophy home. The game is one of the arch-rivals fantastic games and in fact it needs an extra time to decide who should be raising the silverware. I believe Real Madrid deserves to grab its first silverware under Mourinho and it’s their first after a long 18 years of drought.
And it really seems that the Los Blancos is not over yet in their quest for more silverware as they return to the Mestalla Stadium for their La Liga game with Valencia. The goal scores showed how they needed to win more games in order to catch up with Barcelona in the leaderboard and possibly grab one more trophy. But the hope of a treble starts to fade after Barcelona won its game at home against Osasuna with 5 more games left yet 3 of it are against lower half teams.

Real displayed another thrashing game by scoring 6 goals against Valencia’s 3 when they visit the Mestalla again despite playing with mostly second tier players. And Valencia was torn apart with the explosive pace of the Merengues counter attacks.

While another game to watch is on 27 April when they meet each other again for the Champions League semifinal first leg at the Bernabeu and the return game will be on 3 May at the Nou Camp for the last of four Clasico.

21 April 2011

Copa del Rey - Real Madrid beat Barcelona

Iker, the successor of Paul (I'm sure you know who Paul is) proved that his first prediction in last Saturday's match between fierce rival Real Madrid and Barcelona is not a fluke and not just a onetime success. The other day, he predicted Real Madrid to emerge as winners in the finals of the Copa del Rey at the Mestalla and it proved to be right. And at the moment he is already two out of two correct predictions when Real Madrid beat Barcelona to win Copa del Rey.
Iker was named after Real Madrid's goalkeeper Iker Casillas, Spain's captain during the World Cup in Africa. Paul on the other hand became so famous when he predicted correctly all eight important games, in as many match, in the 2010 World Cup in Africa, including Spain's first World Cup trophy.

The match did not produce any winner, not until in the added extra-time when Ronaldo superbly executed a perfect header following a pinpoint cross from Di Maria and beat Barca’s keeper in the net. It was all enough to give Mourinho his first silverware since joining Real Madrid and it is also Real’s first Spanish Cup in 18 years. And as usual, the Los Blancos finished the game again with 10 men after Di Maria brings down Messi and once again failed to finish a game in 11 men.

Nonetheless, the dramatic finale of Copa del Rey brought glory to the Merengues again and is more special considering that it was their archrivals Barcelona that they have defeated. But it’s not the end of it as they still have remaining two matches to fight in the Champions League semifinals which will start of 27 April. It is again another interesting match to watch and if Iker will continue his prefect predictions.

19 April 2011

Copa del Rey - Second El Clasico

Tomorrow is another special and important day for Real Madrid and Barcelona football history and it is also the second El Clasico of four games in less than a month. It is much important to Real than with Barcelona since it would be their first silverware since 2007. With the 1-1 draw result of their La Liga game last Saturday, it is more evident that Barca will go on and win the championship trophy unless they will falter in as many games left in the season.

Both teams will see action at the Mestalla Stadium in Valencia for the Copa del Rey finals for the first time in 21 years although they have met each other five times already before and Barca has the upper hand, winning three. The result of the game last Saturday could affect the strategies that both Pep and Jose will design whether to have an attacking and defensive tactics.

The Copa del Rey finals in another game to watch and hope it will produce a spectacular results. So, don't ever miss to watch the game for it is not the result that I am interested but the prediction of Iker the Octopus.

Iker, by the way, is the successor of the well known Paul who correctly predicted all the results in the World Cup Africa last year. While Iker correctly predicted the 1-1 draw result in last Saturday's La Liga game at the Bernabeu and now he is going to prove that his first prediction is not a fluke.

18 April 2011

Quatro El Clasico Had Just Started

With the first of the four Clasico between bitter rival Barcelona and Real Madrid ended in 1-1 draw, it would still be difficult to gauge who will emerge winners in the next three important games in two different competitions. Both teams will see action again at mid-week in the finals of the Copa del Rey and the remaining two games, for the Champions League semifinals.  Although Barca had an upper hand in last Saturday’s game but Real fought back relentlessly in the second half with just only 10 men and salvage a draw.

The draw put Barca closer in winning a third straight La Liga title and preserved their 8 points lead with only 6 games remained. Although, mathematically, there are still 18 points for grab but the remaining 4 games of Barcelona are against those from the lower half of the table. While Real Madrid has 3 games against top five teams and on top of it, the Blaugrana’s has been defeated only once this season and have drawn 4 times. So, the Los Blancos should win all of their remaining games and hoping Barca will slip up and at least get a draw in five games. Which I believe is less likely to happen.

I believe at the moment Jose Mourinho is concentrating on winning his first silverware with Madrid in the upcoming Copa del Rey finals on Wednesday and also in their Champions League semifinals showdown in the next two weeks. Perhaps, Real Madrid had boosted their confidence with their 1-1 draw in the second Clasico despite playing with only 10 men in the second half. And Barca was unable to capitalized and beat 10-man Real Madrid. But the next three games were in a different level of competition and I believe, of greater magnitude as well.

See you on 20 April (Copa del Rey) and 27 April / 3 May (Champions League semifinals).

17 April 2011

Hamilton Snatched Chinese Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton made a superb performance from start to finish and snatched the Chinese Grand Prix from Vettel with 5 more laps remaining in the race. The McLaren driver had a late crisis before the race even started when his car did not start while still in the garage and all of the cars are already on the grid. Fortunately, he managed to get out with only a few seconds to spare before the pit lane closed.

The McLarens made a good start and was able to pass Vettel but Button made a blunder in his first pit stop, which he stops at a wrong pit lane and was eventually left behind by Vettel. It surely caused him a good amount of time as Vettel slowly regain the lead and Hamilton is trailing behind. Then Hamilton finally caught up with Vettel in lap 52 and surge to the finish line. It’s Lewis first win of the season and denied Vettel of a hat trick.

16 April 2011

Chinese GP - Vettel Storms to Shanghai Pole

It's been five straight days that I've been posting about football not just because I am an avid fan and follower and I don't want to miss the games of my favorite teams but the month of April is just full of good and great games from its local league to the European competition, the Champions League. And what made this a fantastic month is the classic El Clasico. It is not just the second clasico but it’s “Quatro Clasico”.

Yes… You read it right, it is four El Clasico in just less than a month and the first encounter will start in 30 minutes from now but I will not be writing about it today and I will save it tomorrow as a post-game write ups. Instead, I will write a quick and fast post as quick and fast as the racing cars in Formula One for we (Formula 1 enthusiast) all know that tomorrow is race day in Shanghai.

image source

With the concluded qualifying race, it’s not unusual to see the defending champion Vettel grabbing another pole position. What’s interesting is that it is his third pole in a row in this season and if ever he wins tomorrow then Vettel will achieve the season’s first hat trick wins. Both the McLarens (button and Hamilton) are behind him in second and third, respectively. The only difference is that the RBR has built a commanding margin of seven tenths of a second from Button. It’s big enough that challenging for pole position is futile and no hope of surpassing Vettel’s blistering pace.

I want to see both the McLarens outclassing Vettel in the race day tomorrow, at least they would show some hope of challenging the RBR for the championship.

15 April 2011

Second El Clasico - The Classic Derby

Tomorrow's second Clasico is not just an ordinary El Clasico for there are so many at stake whoever emerges victorious in the derby. More so for Real Madrid who has been demolished by Barcelona in their first Clasico last 20 Nov 2010 at Camp Nou. The second Clasico will be a barometer in their next three encounters and El Clasico will no longer be just a local engagement but was brought to a higher level in the European competition.

Real Madrid will not just seek revenge from their 0-5 demolition, they will also have a psychological edge going to the Copa del Rey finals four days later. Then there are more things to prepare for another classic matchup in the Champions League semifinals. The pride of the Merengues is at stake in the four El Clasico. If ever Real Madrid won on 16 April, they will cut the lead of Barcelona in the Primera Liga in 5 points and there are 6 more games left to go. If Barcelona won the second Clasico, it will further bury Real Madrid and extend the gap for 11 more points. And if that’s the case may be then the Los Blancos and Jose Mourinho are less likely to achieve the treble that they are much longing to have.

Whoever is your bet for tomorrow’s second Clasico, I want to see the Los Blancos in the finals of the Champions League. But what hampers on their way is the hard fact that Real Madrid haven’t won the El Clasico for 2 years now.

14 April 2011

El Clasico Extends to Champions League

The line for the Champions League semis has been drawn already and it is confirmed that Los Blancos and the Blaugrana are going to face each other not just in the local league. They are going to test each other in the European competition as well and they will meet four times in less than a month. They're going to start it with the second Clasico this coming weekend and will be followed by the finals in Copa del Rey then the first leg of the Champions League semis will start in the Bernabeu on the 27th of April. Comes 3rd May, is the second semis leg and this time will be at the Camp Nou.

The El Clasico derby is no longer confined in Spain and it have been extended outside of its boundaries, the Champions League. This is very interesting to watch since Real Madrid has been demolished by Barca at Nou Camp but that was in the first Clasico yet. I believe what will be the outcome of the second Clasico matters in the outcome on the succeeding games ahead. One of them will face ManU or Schalke, who are also trying to out-clash each other in the other semifinals slot which will start on 26 April at Veltins-Arena and will be finished at Old Trafford on the 4th of May.

Although I want to see Real Madrid to advance in the finals but it is quite difficult to just dispatch Barca that easily. It is possible for ManU and Barca for a two-peat.

13 April 2011

Deciding Day for Champions League Second Semifinalist

The second string of semifinalist to be had just started and upon writing this post it's already half way in the first half and nothing happened yet. In Real and Hotspur's side, it seems the latter is doing good in their game of trying to over come a 4-0 deficit even though it's a difficult but they are trying and not losing any hope. One bad thing though is that, so far in the history of European competition, no teams has overturn a 4-0 deficit. So it's a challenge for Tottenham to defy the odds and beat Real Madrid and face Barcelona in the semis (which I doubt).

On the other game between Schalke and Inter, the latter needs to produce at least 4 goals to keep up with its own deficit. They were defeated in the San Siro, 5-2, in the first leg. It is indeed a lot to make and before I finished this post, Raul had just made a GOALLL...! And the hope of advancing to the semis is fading slowly for Inter. They now need 5 goals to survive and perhaps upset Schalke but it is unlikely to happen at the moment. The relentless attacking of Schalke is producing some juice while Inter is a different team right now after Mourinho relinquish his post, leaving the treble last year behind. Inter was never been the same since the departure of Mourinho.

So you hang in there and let's watch the second half for its starting already.

12 April 2011

Deciding Day for Champions League First Semifinalist

ManU versus Chelsea and Barca versus Shakhtar, four teams are vying for the first two slots for Champions League semifinals. They are playing later tonight in their second leg quarterfinals. Chelsea was humbled by ManU in the first leg right in their own turf and they will go to the Old Trafford to try to overturn the 1-0 deficit. While Barca will visit Shakhtar with high hopes of going through without any trouble after a 5-1 demolition of Shakhtar in Camp Nou. After Barca’s win last week, many believe that and think that they are just waiting for the results of Real Madrid’s game with the Hotspur tomorrow and that they are already assured to reach the semifinals.

On the other hand, Madrid will visit the White Hart Lane tomorrow to try to secure and wrap up the game after thrashing the latter at the Bernabeu, 4-0 and it’s almost certain that they are already out of the competition. Tottenham needs a miracle to upend their big deficit in Madrid to reach the semis while many reports suggest that Madrid can remain complacent ahead of their second Clasico meeting three days later. Then they will meet again at the finals of the Copa del Rey four days later. While it is a stiff uphill climb for Tottenham to upset the Los Blancos and history is not in their side either. No team has overturned a 4-0 first leg defeat in European competition. It seems that both Real and Barca are certain to face each other again in the Champions League semis. And if that’s the case may be then Barca and Madrid will be facing each other four times within a month starting from its second Clasico this weekend.

I want to see Chelsea in the semis but it’s hard to beat ManU at Old Trafford. And I think Shakhtar’s day in the Champions League have been decided already.

11 April 2011

Serie A - The Race for the Scudetto Goes on

In the past five years when Inter brought home the Scudetto and dominated all opponents, there are only 2 teams competing for the top position. And with six more games left to play, (statistically) there are six teams competing for this season’s Scudetto and the point’s difference is very close. Any single mistake could be a big thing and possibly not claiming the silverware. There are still 18 points left to grab and with this game so tight, every team is aiming for a win each time they play and every single game is so important.

Despite Roma being at the bottom of the six, it is still possible for them to take home the Scudetto although a very slight chance. While the top three teams only holding a slight advantage too with a single game slip up could cause them to lose the lead. At the moment Milan is on a three point lead from Napoli, who took advantage of Inter’s loss last week at the hands of city rival Milan.

In the next two games of AC Milan is crucial since they will be playing the lower tier teams and that would mean additional 6 points. And for the next four games Milan will be playing without the suspended (again) Ibra. And I think it will go down the wire at the very last game of the season before a champion could be decided.

Go Rossoneri…!

10 April 2011

Malaysia : Vettel Wins Again

It seems 2011 is still the year of RBR though it’s still very early to tell but the way Vettel is showing off the form of a champion, it won’t be a surprise to see him more often in the podium. The second race of the season in Sepang was supposed to be a thrilling competition between Vettel and Hamilton considering the slim time gap between the two drivers. In fact, Vettel just snatched the pole position from Lewis in the late qualifying with a slim advantage.

In fairness to Vettel, he drove a faultless race from pole to chequered flag and during pit stops. While Hamilton keeps on pushing at his back throughout the race, but a late blunder near the end of the race when Alonso bumped into the back of his car caused him the most disappointment in the result of the race. It eventually landed Hamilton at the far 8th place after receiving a driving infringement.

See you on 17 April in Shanghai and hope the McLarens will keep their composed driving.

09 April 2011

16 April 2011 : Not Just Second Clasico

For the El Clasico fans and followers, mark your calendar as 16 April 2011 is the date that everyone should not miss. It is not just the second Clasico but it could be the deciding factor if Real can still catch up the chase with Barca in the championship race. If Real wins, statistically, the race is still on but judging with the way Barcelona have been playing and the 8 points gap is doubtful and near impossible to overcome.

What’s more interesting is that four days later they will face each other again in the finals of the Copa del Rey. So, who ever get the three points on 16 April will have a psychological edge going into the next big games.
And you think the thrill and excitement just ends right there?

With both teams thrashing their respective opponents in the Champions League first leg quarters by a considerable big margin then there’s a big possibility that both teams will face each other again for the third time in just one month. It could be the fourth Clasico then. It will be decided and wrap up midweek next week whether they will meet each other again in the semis.

If Madrid lost again this weekend’s second Clasico, it is virtually impossible for the Los Blancos to overtake the Blaugrana even if they are going to fight for it until the end. There are only six more games left and the road for the treble is not in Real Madrid’s side for they still have games against top five teams.

07 April 2011

Triple Barca - Real Derby Imminent

With Barca's thrashing over Shakhtar Donetsk in their own Champions League quarterfinals first leg, it is now imminent that the Blaugranas and Los Blancos will be meeting each other for at least three times this month. They will face separate opponents first later this week on Saturday (9 April) before the second El Clasico will happen at the Bernabeu. Real was demolished by Barca when they have visited them at Nou Camp for the first Clasico. At the moment, Real is trailing Barca by 8 points after an upset at their own turf by a lowly team Sporting while there are already 8 more games left.
The result of the second Clasico will have a possible impact in the coming games that they're going to have. Four days after the second Clasico, they will meet again for the Copa del Rey finals. Who will win on 16 April will have a psychological edge in bringing home The King's Cup silverware. Then on 26-27 April is the Champions League semifinals game and possibly both teams will meet again based on the recent results by demolishing their own opponents. Real hammered Tottenham with a 4-0 score while Barca had demolished Shakhtar by a 5-1 score.

I cannot wait to see all those games happened and I am already excited in this situation. And the triple Barca - Real derby can no longer be stopped anymore.

06 April 2011

El Clasico Derby Extended...

Later tonight Barcelona will see action against Shakhtar Donetsk at Camp Nou in their first leg Champions League quarterfinals. A win by the Blaugranas will give them a boost for a possible semifinal showdown with the Los Blancos. If that would be the case then their 2010 rivalry will let them face each other for at least three times in the weeks to come.

Two of them will happen in the next two weeks. The first one will be the on 17 April for the second El Clasico and this time will be held at the Bernabeu and you know what happened in the first Clasico. Next encounter will be 4 days later for the final of the Copa del Rey (The King's Cup). And late this month for the first leg of their (possible) Champions League semi-final clash.

05 April 2011

Real Madrid hammered Tottenham Hotspur

The Los Blancos may have lost it's Primera Division game last Saturday at the Bernabeu through an upset by a lower team Sporting which also ended Mourinho's unbeaten home game. This happened when some of Real's key players are not playing due to injuries and suspension. On the other hand, Barca continues to dominate their opponents with a win over Villarreal stretching its lead from Real Madrid to 8 points. With this kind of game that Barcelona is playing, it seems impossible for Real to overtake and snatch the championship. It is more intriguing because they are going to meet each other again for the second clasico on 17 April at the Bernabeu. We all know what happened in the 2011 El Clasico. It was a thrashing 5-0 win by the Blaugranas.

It could be the end of Real's ambition to accomplish a treble with The One though statistically it is not over but seems very impossible to achieve. But it's not the end of Real's ambition when they demolished the Hotspur in the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinals at the Bernabeu. Real Madrid through Adebayor score an early go ahead goal in four minutes from kick off time. It's a good start for the Los Blancos in their Champions League dream of winning again with a 4-0 demolition of the Tottenham Hotspur.

04 April 2011

Google Analytics

Recently, I have experienced one thing that a blogger don't want to happen in the traffic in their blogs. What I am trying to point out is the number of visits that shows in my Google Analytics which is the driving force for the number of visitors you have had in your blog. The graph below shows how tragedy struck my two blogs without me knowing it until just recently. And in this circumstances it also affects my Alexa ranking that plummets back to more than 1 million in just several weeks. 

The spike at the far left of the graph is used to be the number of visits I got in my blog. And the flat line you see is when I made the changes in the template of my blogs.

This is a good example of the traffic or visits not captured by Google Analytics after I made the change of my template. So, to all of you there who are not that techy when it comes to this part, always remember to check the meta tags if it is still there and if not put it back and verify again. Take note how the number of visits dropped.

This is now the number of visits in my blog after I have restored the meta tags and the html codes. It starts to move up again and it may not that significant for now but at least I can see some spike coming off from the flat line.

02 April 2011

Milan Surge Clear of Inter

The derby in Serie A between city rivals Inter and AC Milan was thought to be a match to see considering that Inter needed a win to finally catch up with the league leader but it was eventually a lopsided victory by the Rossoneri. What should be a close fight between bitter rivals became a demolition with a 3-0 win by AC Milan in the Derby della Madonnina.

Pato, the Brazilian striker, made it easy for the Rossoneris to claim the full 3 points by netting two goals and extended their lead to five with 7 more games left in the season. It could be the deciding factor of who will bring the Scudetto home or should I say who will raise the Scudetto since both teams are sharing the same stadium at San Siro. With the masterful win by AC Milan, they are opening the gap and possibly opening the way for the Scudetto after 7 years of drought without any domestic silverware.

Could this be the end of Inter’s domination in Serie A and the chance for The Red and Blacks to hold the Scudetto again?