Following a week in which:
- Bayern Munich LOST a game of football.
- Chelsea fans LOST all faith in Frank Lampard.
- Fulham LOST all hope for their Premier League future.
We at 90min's Definitive European Power Rankings HQ have decided to go on a bit of a 1990s nostalgia trip. And to do so, we've loaded up some early Britpop classics, whipped out our dusty old Gameboys, and are going to nab some quotes from one of - if not the - best year in modern cinema to rank some European football teams.
The year in question is, of course, 1994.
15. Dundalk (New Entry)
"My mother, God bless her, she's always said in America you can make something of your life." (Hoop Dreams)
The tournament may be seen as more of nuisance than anything else by clubs in the top five European leagues, but for Irish teams the Europa League is somewhere you can make something of yourself.
On Thursday night, Dundalk made something of themselves.
Their astonishing 3-1 win over Ki at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin (their actual stadium in Dundalk isn't up to UEFA's scratch) sealed their qualification for the group stages, and a boatload of cash money.
Big props guys.
Also, big shoutout to Derry native Patrick McEleney who played a blinder in the qualifier. Fun fact: he tried to teach me how to free kicks when I was eight...no of course it didn't work, but at least he tried.
14. Tottenham Hotspur (New Entry)
"Boss Tanaka! What is the meaning of this outburst? This is a time for celebration."
"And what exactly are we celebrating? The perversion of our illustrious council?" (Pulp Fiction)
What exactly were Tottenham Hotspur fans celebrating on Tuesday?
The furore of their celebrations suggested Spurs had won the Champions League or the Premier League title or something, but it turns out that it was just qualification for the Carabao Cup quarter finals.
13. Hoffenheim (New Entry)
"Sh*t, man. I'm a natural born killer." (Natural Born Killers)
Games played: Two.
Goals scored: Five.
YES, FIVE. AND TWO WERE IN A 4-1 WIN OVER BAYERN MUNICH.
Sh*t, man, Andrej Kramaric is a natural born killer.
12. Juventus (Down 7)
"I like these quiet little moments before the storm. It reminds me of Beethoven." (Leon)
Juventus' performance in their 2-2 draw with AS Roma was, well, concerning.
La Vecchia Signora's defence was cut open at will by Edin Dzeko and co., who would've comfortably won the game at Stadio Olimpico had it not been for the exceptional Wojciech Szczesny.
With the red hot frontline of SSC Napoli up next, this week may just be the calm before the storm for Andrea Pirlo and his new look Juve team.
11. Stade Rennais (Up 1)
"Somehow everything comes with an expiry date. Swordfish expires. Meat sauce expires. Even cling-film expires. Is there anything in the world which doesn't?" (Chungking Express)
Somehow everything comes with an expiry date. Swordfish expires. Meat sauce expires. Even cling-film expires.
So what makes you think that Stade Rennais' time are the top of the Ligue 1 table doesn't have an expiry date too?
It does...but, you know...enjoy your time at the top while lasts Stade Rennais fans.
10. Leeds United (Up 5)
“My mama always said, ‘Life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.'" (Forrest Gump)
Leeds United games are like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.
One week they'll lose 4-3, the next they'll win 4-3, and then out of absolutely nowhere they'll keep a clean sheet and win 1-0.
9. AC Milan (Up 1)
"Is the TV on? I said is the TV on?" (Crooklyn)
You've seen the AC Milan's Europa League penalty shootout win, right?
Wait a second - you haven't seen it?!!!!
'No. Should I have?'
Yes! Go and watch it right now!
RIGHT NOW! I'll wait here for you.
Great, you're back. HOW AMAZING WAS THAT?!!!!
'OH. MY. GOD.'
8. SSC Napoli (New Entry)
"You're playing each piece like losing it hurts. This ain't checkers. You want my king, you got to come get my king. All these other pieces are just the means to do it.” (Fresh)
Napoli have enjoyed a pretty exceptional start to their Serie A campaign, beating Parma 2-0 and a COVID-riddled (yes, it's all a shambles) Genoa team 6-0.
But to really get our attention, and to really set a marker down as genuine title contenders, they need to come and get the king: they need to beat Juventus on Sunday.
7. Barcelona (New Entry)
"You need some time to grow up a little."
"I finished growing up, Léon. I just get older." (Leon)
Ok, so Ansu Fati about two months old and he is already one of the best players in Spain.
Yes, this fact makes me feel old, and it makes you feel old too.
6. Leicester City (Up 8)
"That's how you're gonna beat 'em, Butch. They keep underestimating you." (Pulp Fiction)
At 90min's DEPR HQ we are big enough to admit our mistakes. And last week we made a mistake.
We said: "let's bet that Leicester City, after winning their first two games against terrible opposition, will crumble when they face a half decent football team...like Manchester City...on Sunday."
Well, we lost that bet.
It turns out that Leicester City didn't crumble - they thrived.
5. Atalanta (New Entry)
“Get busy living or get busy dying.” (The Shawshank Redemption)
Atalanta could've very easily took their foot off of the gas after probably the best season in the club's history.
However, they haven't.
Instead they've two footed that accelerator and look bloody better than ever.
Their emphatic 4-1 win over Lazio was proof of that. Proof of the fact that Atalanta are still busy living.
4. Everton (Up 2)
"Would you let a person on board with a boarding pass like this? It's dated today, but it got blurred in the rain. I don't know where it's taking me. Do you?"
"No idea, but I'll give you another."
"Where do you want to go?"
"Wherever you want to take me." (Chungking Express)
Everton fans: Carlo Ancelotti, James Rodriguez, Allan and Dominic Calvert-Lewin are going to take you wherever you want to go.
Be it the top four, a domestic cup triumph. You name it; with those guys at the club, you'll get it.
3. Inter (New Entry)
"I'm the foot f***in' master..." (Pulp Fiction)
Dear lord, Achraf Hakimi is good at football. In just one substitute appearance and one start, the right wing-back has bagged himself two assists, one goal, and inspired an awe-inspiring 4-3 comeback win over Fiorentina.
Hakimi is the foot f**kin' master.
2. Bayern Munich (Down 1)
“Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.” (The Shawshank Redemption)
Bayern Munich's first defeat since, I don't know, the dawn of time (?) gave the rest of the Bundesliga some hope that maybe - just maybe - FC Hollywood won't completely run away with the title this season.
Then Bayern's win over BVB in the German Supercup crushed those hopes and dreams.
It was fun while it lasted.
1. Liverpool (Up 1)
"There's a passage that I got memorised, seems appropriate for this situation: Ezekiel 25:17.
"The path of the righteous man is beset of all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of darkness, for he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children. And I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who would attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee." (Pulp Fiction)
Liverpool are striking down upon those idiots who backed Manchester City to win the Premier League with great vengeance and a furious anger.
They are the best team in England - don't doubt that fact ever again.