Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Isn't it ironic?

A team sits back in defence all night, barely manages a shot on goal, provides no support for its loan striker and earns plaudits. Yes, Arsenal's 0-0 draw with Villareal has been receiving the usual rave reviews from the media. Is it too cynical to suggest that if an Italian team had played in that manner they might not have received such recognition? Indeed, isn't the 'crime' of catenaccio one that Italian sides have been sentenced to condemnation for decades after they stopped playing it?

Still, hats off to the Gunners for getting to their first Champs League final. In previous games, to be fair, they were not so defensive. A team that can't even finish in a Champions League spot in their domestic league salvaged by a dodgy foreign keeper. It all sounds horribly familiar, doesn't it? It would be nice for Milan to get through to get a chance to kill the ghosts of Istanbul. Doesn't look likely but if they can at least convert the chances they will undoubtedly create they might yet have a hope...

19 comments:

martinobhoy said...

Sorry pal (and don't tell them at the San Siro in case I get banned) but I want Barca to win tonight.

I really dont want another side that is no better than 4th in their own league being crowned champions of Europe again.

My reckoning is that Barca will be capable of scoring against Arsenal whereas I wouldn't bet on Milan not conceding to the Gooners.

a.c.t said...

No better than 4th in their own league? Milan are slowly creeping on Juventus so I reckon there is every chance they'll win the title. In a way, I'd rather Milan lose tonight than to see them defeated (again) in the semi-final.

a.c.t said...

Looks like I got my wish :-( And so did you Martino. Never mind, we've only got the title to concentrate on now..

martinobhoy said...

act

The "no better than 4th in the league" was aimed at Arsenal not the mighty Rossoneri. I just think that Barca would be more likely to beat Arsenal than Milan.

Still I thought Milan were a bit unlucky last night (why was Shev's goal ruled out?) and really, really hope they go on to win the Scudetto.

As for the final my dream is that a certain Swedish God-like striker scores the winning goal for Barca.

a.c.t said...

Apologies Martino. I don't know why that goal was disallowed either, refs should be shot for making bad decisions like that - especially in crucial matches like this one. Sometimes justice is served though - like Lehmanns mighty save from yet another dodgy penalty decision. Milan will definitely go on to win the scudetto now..

martinobhoy said...

act

If you think last night's decision was dodgy wait until you see some that will go Juve's way if Milan lessen this gap any further!

Ginkers has fostered a healthy cynicism in me when it comes to refs and La Vecchia Signora.

ginkers said...

Sad to see the Rossoneri go out but, over the two legs, they didnt take their chances (except one perfectly good one) like they normally would. People are apparently calling Arsenal v Barcelona a "dream final" but to me its a nightmare. Which team do I dislike least? I don't really know.

As for the Bianconeri, well, we all know its never over until La Vecchia Signora gets her penalty...

martinobhoy said...

No question for me Ginkers. I actually dont mind the Arsenal (compared to Man Utd and Chelsea) but if a team has Henrik Larsson playing for them, there's only one team I'll be supporting. (Unless it's Sweden v Italy in which case an Italian win but Henrik scoring for Sweden).

a.c.t said...

You should read 'the miracle of castel di sangro' by Joe McGinnis -it's unbelievable to see how many dodgy deals occur at the end of the season. And the worrying thing is that all the players accept it as though it's a normal thing to do.

martinobhoy said...

act

I've read it. Perhaps the biggest surprise was that the author, having spent so long in Italy, was surprised himself that all this was going on.

Spangly Princess said...

any self-respecting Italian and especially a fiorentina fan should loathe the rossoneri almost as much as the gobbi, I'm disappointed in you!

I don't think anyone can pretend justice has been served but it certainly made me laugh...

ginkers said...

For me Juve will always be public enemy number one and Milan a long way behind. Also, we British-Italians live a strange life where in Serie A we support one team and hate the rest but in Europe we kind of fly the flag for all Italian sides.

It's a hard one to explain to Italian-born Italians but if you live in the UK for any length of time you will find that people don't make distinctions between the club sides. So, you kind of feel you have to defend them all. Plus Milan have the legendary Rui Costa.

However, it is only fair to let you know that when I was at the last Fiorentina - Milan game I joined in all the chants against Galliani, Berlusconi, Inzaghi et al... And enjoyed beating them too!

a.c.t said...

I know what you mean - I even find myself supporting Inter if they're the only Italian team left in European competitions.

To be honest, I'd join in the anti-Berlusconi chants if I thought I could get away with it. As far as I'm concerned he's the only thorn in our side. I wouldn't mind if he put more money into the club with all his millions. Instead we have a side of ageing players, so what the hell is he doing exactly?

a.c.t said...

Martino - I left a comment on your blog a few days ago, I think you need to change the settings (unless you want to of course)

martinobhoy said...

act

Dont know what was up with my blog (apart from the quality of article) but I've changed the settings and just put a test post up and it worked.


spangly princess

Have to back Ginkers up here. I was at that Fiorentina game against Milan with him and his dad and it was three very happy Viola boys at the end of it.

Spangly Princess said...

hmmm I've never really got the supporting Italian teams in europe thing, just as I don't understand English people supporting other English teams in Europe. maybe I'm just a bit misanthropic ;-)

anyway, I'm really REALLY hoping that Palermo do you on Sunday. IN a friendly way, of course.

ginkers said...

Well, you got your wish. But you didn't get the three points from Chievo either. Which leaves us, ahem, still two points in the Champions League. Oh, and Palermo play you next week. Forza Di Michele!

Spangly Princess said...

nah we already had our disappointing draw at the Barbera, we've only got Treviso home & Milan away left.

feels very much like the end of our 4th place hopes though.

ginkers said...

I dont know where I got my duff league schedule from. A lot depends on whether Milan are still in the Scudetto race or not. Both sides should get three points next week (Viola play Reggina). But in the last week it depends how much Milan and Chievo have to fight for. I wouldn't give up hope yet - Fiorentina were no great shakes in Sicily.