Thursday, 6 March 2008

Only Barca Stand In Way

So, 3 of the English clubs are through to the Champions League Quarter Finals, and Liverpool will surely follow next week once they put in any sort of a good performance against Inter in the San Siro.

So will we have an English winner? The last 16 ties through up a number of illuminating facts.

Manchester United: Every year they seem to have the squad to win it, but fall down in some department. They laboured to a 1-0 win over Lyon, but while I don't believe they will win it, a final berth is the least they should be aiming for. They have a massive squad and have no excuses.

Arsenal: a great performance against Milan has Arsenal firing on all cylinders once again. As they proved 2 years ago, they can be dangerous against the best in Europe, and had Lehmann not foolishly got himself sent off against Barcelona, they may already have a CL in the bag. Question remain about their squad depth.

Chelsea: as expected, the Greeks were put to the sword. Had Mourinho still been in charge, I would fancy Chelsea as a winner. Avram Grant's performance against big teams has been poor in the League so far. However, as Liverpool and Milan have proven, league performance matters little in big games.

However the CL draw for the quarter finals pans out, it seems destined that there will be an English club in the final. Fenerbahce, Schalke and Roma should hold no fears for any elite club. Roma can have their days but overall their team seems lacking in real class.
So, the only team left standing in the way is Barcelona and their attacking quadrant of Messi (injured for 6 weeks), Henry (poor this season), Ronaldinho (rubbish) and Eto'o, who seems as good as ever. They have big names all over the pitch, such as Puyol, Xavi and Iniesta but they have proved very brittle in the league so far. And, lets face it, Liverpool can beat them 9 times out of 10....

So while England will be sitting at home watching the Euro Championships, they will have the consolation of being European Champions, albeit in the wrong competition,

Mark

4 comments:

Rushden fan said...

I'm also backing Chelsea; I think it is going to be their year at last, after a few seasons of dissapointment. Admitedly Olympiacos (sp?) were not the hardest team Chelsea could have drawn, but they showed them up proffesionally and with ease.

Rushden fan.

Donal said...

Presumably Liverpool are playing their 2nd round match next week because AC played at the San Siro this week? Why weren't the matches scheduled such that AC and Inter were playing home in different weeks?

Mark said...

donal, i think it was to be fair to all teams, the supposed advantage is having the first leg away from home, though that trend has not been seen too much in the past few years

Anonymous said...

romance romance blah blah was it fucking valentines weekend again or what