Old Football Buffet–Dark Days

I am in a very dark place footballing wise.  It started twelve days ago when Didier Drobga knocked the ball in from close range to give Chelsea a vital 1-0 lead heading back to the Nou Camp. The following Saturday, CR7 rounded off a fantastic counter attack to seal the La Liga title for Real Madrid.  Seventy-two hours later, Barca ran out to a dream start before hitting a wall covered in Chelsea Blue to get eliminated from the Champions League.  Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, the Manchester Derby rolled around and added to my misery.

Ferguson clearly went for the draw, going for experience and energy in the midfield.  But City ran circles around United, with Nasri having a particularly good game, and on another day Aguero would have had a goal or two.  Kompany’s goal was coming, especially after a series of corner kicks followed by poor clearances.  I felt if United could have made it to halftime, the pressure would swing back to City and allow the Red Devils the crack they would need to break the game open.  Instead down a goal away from home, the changes did not come quick enough for me.  Young brought something but I felt Valencia was well off the pace, with very little drive in front of goal and a lackadaisical attitude in the defending third.

Zonal Marking assessed the game, noting that Fergie may have had the tactics right but the personnel wrong.  Park was brought in to nullify Yaya Toure, which I found shocking, because Toure had a fantastic game, snuffing out play and charging forward more and more as the game progressed.  Giggs was overrun by Nasri and Zabaleta on the left side, but I’m not sureYoung,Valencia or Nani would have done much better.  Mancini got his subs spot on as he nullified any change United tried to make.  As Zonal Marking mentioned: This was evidently a completely different type of game from the 6-1 earlier in the season – it was low on technical quality, but high on tension.

Doron Salomon echoed the sentiments regarding the right formation but wrong players in his post at Stretford-End.com.  He went one step further criticizing the lack of fight and goal scoring chances in a big match.  United have the easier run in but the dropped points against Everton may well be the difference in the title fight this year.

The momentum is well and truly with City as they go to Newcastle next Sunday. If the Magpies go at City, they may be in trouble.  As for the QPR game, my hope is that Hughes will take a team fighting for survival and fuel them with his hatred for the blue city of Manchester, causing them to stumble at very last hurdle.

As for the battle for third and fourth in the Premier League, all I can say is giddy up.  The midweek games could reconfigure the table dramatically, especially Chelsea v Newcastle, setting up two weekends of crunch time games.

My other team, Juventus, crushed Novara to get one step closer to the title.  Of course, I can’t take any solace in that because I have only been watching them from afar, having not seen a game since the Old Lady’s thrashing of Fiorentina back in mid-March.  Juve could claim the title this weekend if results go their way.

Roberto Gotta handicapped the race for third in Italy as teams headed into the midweek fixtures.  Roma are a long shot but still in with a shot, but Inter seems to have the momentum with Napoli possibly getting back on track just in time.


  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: