CL Liveblog: Arsenal – Barça

Thank you to Eklavya for running this. Treat him nicely, everyone. It launches a few minutes prior to kickoff. And remember: Visca el Barça!

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Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in the greater New York City area with his wife and daughter.

138 Comments

  1. Colby
    March 31, 2010

    (Bear with me if none of you have ever experienced this).
    That game reminded me of a can of Coke. The first few sips are oh-so-sweet. You think, “I love coke. I LOVE coke. Why don’t I drink it more often?” Then the middle of the can is average, but still very enjoyable, because the original burst of sweetness has faded and your taste buds are used to it. Then, the last 1/5th of the can is pretty much disgusting because all the syrup is at the bottom of the can and the coke has warmed up and lost its fizz. After finishing you think, “I thought this would be such a great can of coke, but now I kind of regret drinking it.”

    • Sam
      March 31, 2010

      Best. Analogy. Ever.

      • Jnice
        March 31, 2010

        Hahah great analogy.

      • inNYC
        March 31, 2010

        Works for me too.

    • March 31, 2010

      Someone on the Guardian blogs had a better one, comparing it to farting after having long-drawn out sex with a supermodel.

  2. fc
    March 31, 2010

    We have seen this so many times, haven’t we? Busi makes a wrong pass in own half and suddenly we are conceding goal. For me, he hasn’t earned his place for critical matches yet. No matter how awful Yayas offensive contribution is he brings calm in the defence. Anyway, we will go through at the end and I can already see Ibra tearing up Madrids defence in classico 😀

  3. Chris M (Arsenal Fan)
    March 31, 2010

    Now was that a freakin game or what. Im happy that i was able to watch this match today. Barca playing there best football and Arsenal showing that fight back spirit. Barca owned us the whole game, sad that we again have injuries but i really hope that the 2nd leg can be as good if not better then the 1st leg, hoping that Arsenal play there best this time so we can really have an amazing 2nd leg. Even though Arsenal played horrible im proud of them this game because having injuries to 3 KEY players in the same game and played very poorly, we still were able to come back from 2-0 and draw againts the best team in the world, so im proud of my team today. Amazing game Barca, today you showed why you are the best team in the world.

  4. lovelymofo
    March 31, 2010

    I’m not happy with the result, particularly in regards to that red card for Puyi. I could have handled the pentalty and the tie, but that red just felt harsh.

    There are positives tho. (1) Two aways goals, (2) we’ll hopefully get Iniesta & Abidal back, and (3) the team will feel the have a point to prove.

    I usually enjoy the liveblog, but the last few have become Ibra hate fests. That’s just not fun. Not saying our players should never be criticized, but it’s just a little overboard. You know, just putting that out there. Love the blog, love the team, but sometimes the commentary lessens my enjoyment of the matches and I end up just logging out.

    Anyway.

    ¡Visca Barça!

    • Jnice
      March 31, 2010

      Agreed about the hate fest in the liveblog. The Ibra hating at halftime was craaaaaazy.

    • March 31, 2010

      Completely agree.

    • vicsoc8
      March 31, 2010

      I skipped out during halftime. Saw some Ibra hating but man they looked stupid the way Ibra came out of the gates.

      • lovelymofo
        March 31, 2010

        Ha, yeah that was pretty funny.

    • jordi™
      March 31, 2010

      I agree, it was bad enough with the dicks at skysports but from our own fans is something else.I wonder how many more crucial goals ibra has to score for us .

  5. Alexinho
    March 31, 2010

    My two cents:

    -Xavi played the best game he’s played all year. I couldn’t take my eyes off him when the team was at their high-flying best.

    -Barca is a better team than Arsenal, even more so than I really expected.

    -Maybe Barca took their foot off the gas, but Arsenal fought as hard as I’ve ever seen them fight to get into the match for 90 minutes, and it finally paid dividends after the hour mark. It was sad, I was set for a vintage Barca win, from one of the best performances I’ve seen from them, almost definitely the best all year (except for Messi I suppose), and then my Arsenal pulled off the trick. I’m very, very proud of them for an all-game effort. But at the same time, my heart is a little broken.

    -I remember that someone said, after the draw was announced that “Seriously, I think we’re going to destroy them” or something like that. What now? Arsenal are not to be taken lightly. Frankly, I think Barca’ll still roll them at home, but don’t be surprised if the Marquez/Milito pairing results in a go-ahead goal for them. They’ve looked good before with Fabregas out, they just slot in Nasri and duke it out.

    -Speaking of Nasri, did anybody take a moment to watch his effort? When Arsenal was at its lowest, he was the only glimmer of hope.

    -Bit disappointed that Messi wasn’t more involved (read: dominant)in the game, and Henry too.

    -Isaiah nailed that prediction didn’t he…

    -Holy crap was Xavi excellent. Where has he been all season? We aren’t talking about a dominant Barca without him getting every third or fourth touch of the ball. Oh I said that right? Jeezus.

    • Jnice
      March 31, 2010

      I mean we didn’t destroy them score-wise, but I mean for all this talk about the football being similar and what not, I thought we destroyed them football-wise. I said a couple of times that I didn’t think we played anything alike, and to me, this game solidified that. Arsenal aren’t to be taken lightly, but if we have our finishing boots on, that game is over by half.

  6. Kari
    March 31, 2010

    Just want to say that I know my above posts seem a little arrogant and might be belittling Arsenal a bit. Sorry about that, Arsenal fans.

    The thing is, as much as you’re buoyed and proud of your team’s performance tonight (given the circumstances), I’m just as disappointed and irritated. It’ll calm down by tomorrow.

    Thanks to arse, Shobo, and Charlie M for being humble and civil here! Always a pleasure for sensible fans to come by, especially so soon after the game. Cheers!

    • Kari
      March 31, 2010

      *sorry CHRIS M.

  7. jordi™
    March 31, 2010

    I still dont know how one getds a penalty and red for kicking the opposition defender.We’ve been going about it all along guys, tell BANGS and Leo to kick the defenders and we’ll get pk’s again.

  8. Evil that men do
    March 31, 2010

    Sergi does it again with his stupid 1 touch passing which resulted in the turn over and goal he had an excellent game up till that point but it doesn’t matter stupid mistakes like that are costly,

    I honestly sensed it was coming I was saying replace Keita who practically was INVISBLE the entire game!!!
    Yaya has shown he can boss the midfield better then most so why not put him on.

    Henry was pathetic didn’t even show any effort.

    Ibra goals were excellent he should be more consistent though with his finishing which was pretty poor in the first half.

  9. Evil that men do
    March 31, 2010

    Heres hoping Abidal is fit for the second leg, the best 11 for me would be:
    Valdes
    Alves Yaya Toure Milito Abidal/Maxwell
    Sergie
    Xavi Iniesta
    Messi Ibra Pedro

  10. Evil that men do
    March 31, 2010

    I have to blame Guardi for this outcome. I can’t for the life of me understand why he is so hell bent on starting Busquet ahead of Yaya. Aresnal’s first goal that happened to turn the match around was all due to Busquet’s fck up.

    I co sign 100 % but I’d replace Keita instead of Sergi for Yaya, it really pisses me off to see such a fine player on the bench like this.

  11. March 31, 2010

    if today was any indication, we will come out smelling like roses after arsenal have to visit us.

  12. waleed
    March 31, 2010

    Tomorrow, after you all will calm down, you’ll realize how great was this away draw actually 0-0 would’ve been good, 1-1 very good, 2-2 is priceless! loosing Puyol and Pique shouldn’t be a problem!
    can you imagine the kids we faced tonight walking into the Camp Nou?? I really feel sorry for them. don’t mistake me! I really like, respect, and even adore Arsenal, but they literally have no chance! I wish they have, had another opponent.

    I’ve never seen ,and most probably wont see, a champions league side dominating an away game and creating endless chances the way we did tonight! that was insane!

    and believe me the last 20 min will guarantee another demolition in Camp Nou, they wont walk away with it.

    hats off to Winger, he read our weakest point and made his strike brilliantly, and unfortunately, Pep failed to respond quickly.

  13. Jnice
    March 31, 2010

    Apparently: Barcelona made 533 completed passes and Arsenal only 265. Wow.

  14. fc
    March 31, 2010

    Here’s the breaking news guys. Ibra disaster has scored 20 goals = (15 liga + 4 cl + 1 copa) so far. I suppose he is a FLOP! 😀

    • lovelymofo
      March 31, 2010

      Totally. Ibra flops with style.

      Can’t wait till next year when he’s clicking with the team on all cylinders and is out to prove a point after not being able to participate in the World Cup. 😀

    • Luna
      March 31, 2010

      wow maybe we just misunderstand what folks mean by flop,lol 😉

  15. jordi™
    March 31, 2010

    honestly i think the return leg will be just like when we played inter at home.We got a 0-0 away and their fans acted like it was a victory, and we didnt even outplay them like we did today.We don’t even need the game of our lives to qualify.0-0, 1-1, or any win sends us through.It would be worse if we had played like this at home,only tied 2-2, we would be under much more pressure.What are the odds on ,if we win ,hearing the usual bullshit about the opposition “not turning up”? I don’t think any of their players have had the experience of 98000 fans whistling their every touch, so that will play in our favor.

    • Colby
      March 31, 2010

      As an Arsenal fan said above, “For many of our younger players, Fabregas, Bendtner, Song, Denilson, Walcott, Diaby (who are all under 23) this was the biggest match of their professional careers, and it showed.”

      There is no reason to suggest that it will not show again when we return to the Camp Nou, which will again be the biggest match of their professional careers.

      That having been said, we should be extremely wary. If a better Arsenal side turns up next week (which I think they will find hard to do because they will be without Fabrgegas, and maybe Arshavin and Gallas, and because a large part of the reason they played poorly is because we played well) we could very easily get knocked out. Just ask United what a bad deflection and a bit of lackadaisical defending can do to you.

      Yes, we wiped the floor with Arsenal for most of this game (and to me proved that we are on a different level). However, they also showed that we can be better, even a lot better, and they can still get a couple of goals (and anyone who says we were not a lot better is wrong (and yes I know pep said so)). So basically, this was a long rant when I could have just said: Remember how fickle the champions league is.

      • Kari
        March 31, 2010

        Contrary to what some people think, Arsenal didn’t play bad or with ‘fear’. They just didn’t have the ball, and thus were forced to defend, which isn’t their strong suit. Unless they can keep the ball longer than we can, ie. outplay our midfield, I don’t think the second leg will be much different.

        Also, it’s not just Arsenal that will learn lessons. Like Colby said, we will too.

        We know that without the ball, we’re not very good. Arsenal are worse.

      • jordi™
        March 31, 2010

        Yes, it will be a bitter pill if we do go out, i still have just barely gotten over being knocked out the copa in the manner that we did.

  16. Larm
    April 1, 2010

    im sorry if this haws been mentioned above. but does anybody think we are possibly the worst counter-attacking team? i mean we seem to rush the ball to our front player and then instead of run up field with the ball they look for a drop. we always loose the plot on a counter attack at the crucial moment, and because of that if a touch isn’t perfect it results in the team loosing their cool.

    that being said, hell yeah for ibra, 5 goals in the last 3 games in all competitions. so wegner better check himself before he wrecks himself.

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