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It's gonna be hard, but I think Milan might actually come out alive... This is gonna be an interesting CL
Bob, well, last season, Barca had good chances at Stamford Bridge and Chelsea only won 1-0 and then scored twice at the Camp Nou after being down a man and 2-0. You look at that match and say, "It's very possible that Milan wins this tie." Of course, it's also very possible that Barca come out and score three quick goals and the match is over. However, all Milan have to do is score one goal and then Barca need four to win. I don't think that Barca can put four past Milan and I don't think that the way Barca defends at times will be able to keep Milan off the scoresheet. The advantage is definitely in Milan's court, but Barca can still easily win this tie.
On the other hand they love some jolly rogue like Ribéry because he is just such a little fun guy. Let’s forget he cheated on his wife by boning a 17 year old prostitute, let’s not talk about how he f*cked over his national team at 2010’s World Cup, why even bother him scheming and intriguing against his superiors by crying on Uli Hoeneß’s shoulder and rather than condemning his punching of a team mate (because he dared to suggest Kroos took a free kick and not the French maestro) let’s celebrate him for finally packing a punch at the “arrogant” and “egotistical” Robben…
But I feel like I’m getting side-tracked… that’s a different topic.
In terms of skill, I actually feel the same. While Ribéry has a great technique and some good physique and athleticism he’ll always be a fair weather player who lacks effectiveness and is nowhere near as target-oriented as his position requires. That goes especially for Champions League games. – He’s a bit of the Anti Robben in that respect. While the Dutch has had some of his best and most astonishing performances in the UCL (i.e. turning the tides and winning games through strong individual efforts), I don’t recall that many games where Rib has been a match-winning protagonist…
In the Bundesliga on the other hand, the French has been an important pillar of our team. He’s been a constant top scoring player for the last three years: this year – 12 (4 goals/8 assists in 17 games); 11/12 – 32 (12 goals/20 assists in 32 games); 10/11 – 24 (7 goals/17 assists in 25 games)
But altogether I think Ribéry is lacking in the character and mentality department. It’s easy to shine when the whole team plays well. A true world class player should be able to take the lead and drag the team along…
As for Arjen’s current situation:
Personally, I don’t think Robben is currently getting sidelined for anything related to last year’s results. The club had backed him up at all times and the Dutch had been a regular starter for the first third of the season. – That is until he struggled with yet another minor and a more severe ailment…
Fact is, while Robben had to convalesce, his direct “opponent” Müller has played a ridiculously strong season thus far (top scoring player of the league for the last 21 match days with 11 goals and 9 assists; Kießling only took over last match day) and Ribery is the top-rated player in this season.
Another fact is, though, that neither of the two has been playing too well the past few weeks. (At least Müller has still been scoring like crazy nonetheless.)
IMO Heynckes is just pissed about the whole Guardiola hype and decided he’ll have to flex his muscles a little to show he’s still the boss around this season. (With Boateng, Robben, and Gomez acting as his scapegoats.)
Luckily, Arjen has been playing like crazy these past few matches and due to Ribéry being suspended from a red card in the German Cup, Heynckes is pretty much forced to make Robben a starter for the next few matches. – Accordingly, he already said so in an interview today.
As for Arsenal’s chances of turning this one around:
I don’t quite recall the last time we conceded more than two goals at Allianz Arena… I guess it must have been two years ago against Dortmund (1-3) during their fabulous 10/11 championship season. Or wait, there’s also the 2-3 loss to Inter the same year. – Which would not be enough for Arsenal though.
So, yeah… I was pretty optimistic from the very start but ever since yesterday I'm 99% sure we’re through.
The matches today were hilarious. Gala and Schalke were both utter shit. Schalke has become the wipping boy of the league in the last few months and still Galatasaray had been playing just as horrible.
The ref at Giuseppe Meazza should maybe go see the optician sometime in the future.
Kudos to Milan nonetheless. Wouldn’t have guessed that kinda result. This could turn out to be one hell of a hot dance at Camp Nou...
Last edited by Mr. Prince; February 20, 2013 at 07:38 PM. Reason: typo
Kinda offtopic, but you can't really blame Ribery for banging that 17 year old
Back on topic... the results these days weren't a big surprise...
But we can still make a comeback, anything is possible in football
Well I did suspect that it might be that it hit the head, I do believe the ref also believed it hit Zapata's head ...
So far things don't look good for any of the 4 Spanish teams on the CL.
It did his arm after the head, but in real-time that looks like handball. That being said, it did hit off of the Barca player first. I think it could have been called either way in real-time.
Some of Barca's players are held up as great, but some of them look great because of the system and aren't really great. Xavi's extremely overrated, for example, and he always comes up wanting against better sides. As much as I dislike Biscuits for all of his diving, he really is a solid CDM.
I don't really like Heynckes as a manager, but I do feel bad for him. Even if he wins the CL this season, Heynckes gets sacked, which would even be worse than the treatment that RDM got from Abramovich this season, because at least RDM got to have the manager's job, even though we knew that Roman would sack him at some point. In fact, Heynckes has already been sacked because Mr. "I'm unproven without having the best player in the world to use" Guardiola has been hired.
When we won 1-0 at the Bridge last season, I believed. Coming into the first leg, which I actually didn't see because I went and visited Kaoz and Sai and I couldn't find a tv feed where I was, I didn't have that much hope, but when we won the first leg, I believed that it was our year.
I don't think that it's Milan's year to win the CL, but it'll definitely be difficult for Barca to win. They still don't have a Plan B and that's lost them big matches.
Sorry, I sort of tuned out after you called Xavi "extremely overrated"
Anyway, regardless of any of that, that's not a reason not to discuss the issue, although given that I'm not sure if you're interested in Bayern politics, it's probably not that high on your list of interests.
I was just being a smartass...seemed appropriate with that level of hyperbole though.
I'm actually interested in why Pep chose the job. I guess he saw it as the easiest to succeed in. Going to a dominant team like Barca, with an equal or even less level of competition within the league.