Today saw a blistering start to the Wes Cup's first new format since the global downsize of the World Elite Soccer franchise. Crowds flocked to see the super matchups in what has become the premium sporting competition in the world.
And the games did not dissapoint!! Today was a goal feast. However, the excitement for the second round of matches may be a little more tempered with three of the four QF games potentially already decided.
Houston vs Birmingham
Arguably the tie of the round, it was expected to be a close affair. The dramatic element was added to the tie by the trade made between the two teams in off season. Birmingham traded star striker Popchev for one of the hottest youth GKs in Wes, the 7-million valued Ilic. However, incredibly, manager Rook dropped the GK for this tie due to poor form (kinda meh at .670). He might have regretted that decision -- the Birmingham replacement gk conceded 4 goals in 6sogs, with Popchev scoring two goals to seal a comfortable 4-1 win for Houston. Tie over? Probably.
Pristina vs Sydney
Not much to say here. Sydney played youths against one of the greatest teams Wes has ever seen. No surprise, it was a completely one-sided affair, with Pristina running out 6-1 winners. Manager Ivo has been getting angry by suggestions from the management community about his tactics for attracting top talent and he'd love nothing more than to win another Wes Cup to shut down his accusers.
Lille vs Salerno
Manager Walt has often posted on the message boards about his dismay in qualification ties and the bad luck that often comes with it. Well, he won't be pleased with this result. His team shot better and played better but had their 5sogs saved, while Lille scored two quick goals on the break to seal an unconvincing but effective 2-0 victory. Lille manager Wan was seen buying drinks for star mid Paterson in the local pub after the game.
Tuscon vs Leverkusen
Tuscon has been improving as a Wes Cup contender in recent years, but the Americas club was truly lucky today. Star gk Hartl saved 7sogs to keep out Leverkusen strikers and recent signing Ogaga in particular. Leverkusen may not have a better game in the Wes Cup for a long time, yet no goals and no guarantees can be offered. They will go into the second leg with great confidence, but must be annoyed by the missed chance today.