30 April 2007

CL Semis, Leg One

For once, I got to watch both of these live. And also for once, they were both decent games. In really different ways, obviously, but both worth taking a few hours away from studying to watch.

Man U 3 - Milan 2. By now, shouldn't Milan have figured out that they can't really take their foot off the gas in Europe? I hate to be the fan that's always bringing up the 2005 final, but here I am. Milan were really hurt by Gattuso's having to come off early in the second half due to injury -- and speaking of that, I think the Man U fans were booing because they thought he was faking it. If they know anything about Gattuso, they should have known that he's probably #1 on the list of Italians least likely to dive or fake it. But I guess not. Stay classy, kids. I also think taking Maldini off at the half was a bad decision; I know you have to be wary of his health, since he's, what, 400 now? But Milan looked so much weaker at the back when he left, so unless he was just unable to continue, I would have kept him in longer. Even though they lost this leg, I think Milan have the advantage going into the return this Wednesday. They just need a 1-0 to advance (or failing that, they just can't allow more than two goals). I know they've struggled some at home this season, but you'd think that their fans would come out for this one.

Chelsea 1 - Liverpool 0. This was also a decent game, though incredibly frustrating. All I really wanted from this was an away goal as a little bit of insurance going into the second leg, but no such luck. Cech's getting back to his pre-injury form incredibly fast, and Joe Cole picked just about the most annoying time to come back into the side. Liverpool couldn't really get anything together, maybe because of Rafa's confusing team selection -- I've started screeching unattractively every time Zenden's named as a starter, and I have yet to be proven wrong. Honestly, I don't have a good feeling about the return leg here; as much as I'd like to think the Anfield crowd will make a big difference, I think we've had too many games like this for Chelsea to be surprised or intimidated by the atmosphere anymore. (Seriously, playing each other 14 times in three seasons? It's ridiculous.) They may surprise me, and I hope they do, but right now, I'm not seeing it. Maybe playing the B-team (and Xabi) at the weekend will help, but I don't know. I'm having a hard time seeing this as anything but Chelsea making it through.

Speaking of that weekend game, it's time for Dudek to go. You can either complain about not getting starts anymore, or you can play like that when you do start. You can't do both. I realize it sucks to be effectively dropped after winning the Champions League, but that's the game.

In completely unrelated news, Arsenal Ladies are on course for a quadruple. While this sort of thing irritates me on the men's side, I'm just glad the women are having this kind of success, because they're adorable. If that makes me a hypocrite, so be it.

Hi to Being Sven! I always enjoy good Liverpool bloggers, especially ones who can cut it in the demanding Deadspin commentariat.

1 comment:

badgerdaddy said...

Is it going for a quadruple that irritates you on the men's side, or that it was Chelsea going for the quadruple? Either way, yes, you're a hypocrite. And saying 'so be it' don't make it any better!