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Category Archives: Uefa Champions League

UCL 10/11: Week 2 Thoughts

Auxerre vs Real Madrid

– Real Madrid started with a 4-3-3 system, but the only midfielder that could move the ball cleverly was Xabi Alonso. Lass is too defensive-minded and Khedira is a box-to-box player. So, there were problemas with the well organized Auxerre. Anyway, the three strikers were very static, so they didn’t create any spaces in the french team defense and almost didn’t create any opportunities.

– Cristiano Ronaldo and Higuaín are anxious. Every time they get the ball they try to do an individual move. Moreover, the portuguese is not dribbling anybody. Mourinho have to change that.

– Real Madrid always tried to attack throught the centre when they should have opened the field. When Di Maria came in, late in the second half, the game changed a bit, and that was the way to score the first and last goal.

– The positive part: The Special One is The Lucky One too. Three points and no goals conceded, and top of the group.

Rubin Kazan vs Barcelona

– Maxwell is not good enought for Barcelona. He’s a good full back, but not a world class player as Dani Alves. Barcelona is lacking of depth and speed when their attack through left side.

– Select Mascherano and Busquets together is not a good idea when you play against such a defensive team. They are two of the best defensive midfielders in the world, but they play better behind the ball, and against Rubin Kazan, Barcelona should have been put players between Kazan’s defense and midfield.

– Villa is not at his best. I don’t know if he needs more minutes with their new teammates or if he’s going throught a bad patch, but he’s not the goalscorer he used to be.

– I don’t like Rubin’s tactic, but it’s valid, and it worked. Their match was almost perfect.

Valencia vs Manchester United

It’s difficult to create something with Albelda and Tino Costa as midfielders. With Manuel Fernandes it would have been better, obviously with Ever Banega, that was injured.

– Valencia is playing better with two strikers. The progression of Aduriz is beeing impressive, and he starts being a very complete forward.

– Manchester United is smaller without Rooney and Scholes. And I can’t think in many players who had wasted his talent as Dimitar Berbatov.

– Small things always help big teams. Manchester United was lucky, and they won a match that deserved a draw.

UCL 10/11: Week 2 Results

Group A

Internazionale 4 – 0 Werder Bremen

Tottenham 4 – 1 Twente

Group B

Shalke 2 – 0 Benfica

H. Tel-Aviv 1 – 3 Lyon

Group C

Rangers 1 – 0 Bursaspor

Valencia 0 – 1 Manchester United: 85′ Chicharito Hernández

Group D

Panathinaikos 0 – 2 Kobenhavn

Rubin Kazan 1 – 1 Barcelona: 30′ Noboa (pen) [1-0], 60′ Villa (pen) [1-1]

Group E

Basel 1 – 2 Bayern

Roma 2 – 1 Cluj

Group F

Spartak Moscow 3 – 0 Zilina

Chelsea 2 – 0 Marseille

Group G

Ajax 1 – 1 Milán

Auxerre 0 – 1 Real Madrid: 83′, Di Maria

Group H

Partizan 1 – 3 Arsenal

Braga 0 – 3 Shaktar Donetsk

Many nights like this one

kaka_rmd-mil

It’s been said that Real Madrid’s lack of playing style is such a big handicap that nothing can level the balance in order to satisfy their fans, not even their effectiveness (specially when Ronaldo is in the pitch).

The continuous search for a certain style which suits the team’s history and its supporters’ polish taste usually ends up with the press making comparisons with Barcelona and their performances which let them win the treble in the last season.

Last night’s defeat against AC Milan in the Santiago Bernabéu stadium showed us many different aspects of this new galácticos version: the squad’s inaccuracy towards the opposite goal when Cristiano is absent, as we mentioned above, or the easy match their rivals can have if they’re kind of a serious team – Milan wasn’t that reliable team, but Alexandre Pato’s intervention was enough to win the game.

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Sevilla’s competitiveness level, something to keep in mind

luisfabiano

It’s been a month since Sevilla’s last defeat in Mestalla, in this season’s first date. During this time, Jiménez’s team has won every single match they’ve played (Zaragoza, Unirea, Osasuna, Mallorca, Athletic and Rangers), plus they’ve showed off their playing style and superb competitiveness level.

Last night’s game at Ibrox Park, where they beat the ‘teddy bears’ by 1-4, is a sort of demonstration of how good they’re doing things in Europe after last year’s premature elimination in Sampdoria’s Luigi Ferraris. Surely, they will qualify for the next round by winning their group – if they’re lucky enough they won’t play against a big team in the 1/16 finals.

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