CL Liveblog: Inter – Barça (Semi Leg 1)

Visca el Barça! Let’s do thiiiis. Launching just prior to kickoff.

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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.

137 Comments

  1. Eklavya
    April 20, 2010

    me being first = good sign! peanuts!

  2. Eklavya
    April 20, 2010

    noooooo jose beat me by half a second!

  3. Dave
    April 20, 2010

    Is it true about Ribery?? Don’t know how they do it with such fine women as wives. Anyone see Abidals wife?–smokin

    • Helge
      April 20, 2010

      LOL, yeah I would be happy to have a girlfriend at all 🙂

      And these guys have one of the best looking WAGs of the world, but still, Ribéry is allegedly a REGULAR(!) visitor of that luxury bordello in Paris…

    • Miguel
      April 20, 2010

      cheating has little to do with whether your wife is hot or not.

  4. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    Víctor Valdés; Dani Alves, Piqué, Puyol, Maxwell; Sergio Busquets, Xavi, Keita; Pedro, Ibrahimovic y Messi.

    To victory !

    • poipoi
      April 20, 2010

      it’s a great line-up and great bench too, yaya bojan and titi can come in at any time. I just can’t wait for the game to start.

      lara lara la the chaaaaampioooooons

  5. Kari
    April 20, 2010

    Barca line-up as per UEFA.com

    VV
    Alves – Pique – Puyol – Maxwell
    Xavi – Busi – Keita
    Messi – Ibra – Pedro!

    Inter lineup:

    Julio Cesar
    Maicon – Lucio- Samuel – Zanetti
    Motta – Cambiasso – Pandev
    Sneijder
    Milito Eto’o

  6. Miguel
    April 20, 2010

    abidal on the bench, atleast.

    //http://www.fcbarcelona.com/web/catala/futbol/temporada_09-10/arxiu_partits/champions_league/semifinals/jornada01/inter_Barcelona/partit.html

    • Miguel
      April 20, 2010

      i’d have liked to have seen pedrito as a super sub ):

  7. Kxevin
    April 20, 2010

    Crap. Not fond of Busquets in the middle, not against a side that can counterattack like Inter. On the up side, no Balotelli against Maxwell, which also worried me greatly.

    • Miguel
      April 20, 2010

      no iniesta means you gotta have xavi-busqui tiki-takaing. someone’s gotta go deep and move the ball up the pitch, too.

    • jordi™
      April 20, 2010

      Seems like Pep is going to go all out pressing like what we did at the emirates.The yaya doesnt really press as well as busi.Inter also dont really have any of the fast wingers that give us trouble.That said im glad Balotelli isnt playing.

  8. El Tel
    April 20, 2010

    The match is in HD in MD and Philly on Comcast Sports (Verizon ch. 576 in HoCo MD).

    • Corrine
      April 20, 2010

      im gonna log in if it doesnt launch in 5 mins lol

  9. y2k156
    April 20, 2010

    less then 10 mins to start. have to say that line up is just expected.

  10. G7
    April 20, 2010

    Oh Dear. Bartha are being HUMILIATED here. Whats happenin my Batha friends ??? Tactics all wrong :(((

  11. stephen
    April 20, 2010

    Why didnt we play the entire second half like we did the last 10 minutes??? … f*ck this.

  12. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    It wasnt even any special tactics or anything, we just played like girls and let them out battle us :/

    • poipoi
      April 20, 2010

      what a big dissapointment, no chances at all for FCB until the last 10 minutes. we should start in fifth gear this is CL semifinals. no movement and useless tikitaka. but still with a 2-0 in camp nou we’ll be in bernabeu. there’s still a hell of a game to play.

      we sucked indeed but what ibra did today is beyond the definition of sucking. poor xavi didn’t suck that bad I think, he was all alone today in the offensive midfield, keita’s weak points really showed today… and messi , what happened to messi?

      ibra has come here on vacation, how many chances did he find today? milito and etoo were a nightmare and they are half as good as him. he’s starting to make me nervous. plus, do they still like him in juve or inter? that is really significative to me

  13. Ciaran
    April 20, 2010

    I am very disappointed in Pep once again. Twice in 2 matches have we been negative. Inter go 3-1 down so he brings Ibra off and Abidal on. Not that Abidal done anything wrong but Henry and Bojan are sitting there twiddling their thumbs. Very annoying

    • Majatt
      April 20, 2010

      I noticed that too, I remember when we had Bojan, Messi, Henry, Eto’o and maybe pedro at the same time last year to win a game.

      Pep used his bench better last year, he seems more tentative.

    • Dave
      April 20, 2010

      Im pissed at Henry for throwing in the towel to the extent that hes merely only taking from the club now. Guardiola has clearly no faith in him. Bojan against these monsters is crazy too weak. Sure he’ll look good against a Spanish team but not at this level. Ibra 6-5 and manhandled. Some say he didnt get the ball-hes injured etc

  14. Majatt
    April 20, 2010

    We had chances and didn’t score them, as bad as the ref was Barca needed to be better.

    The tie isn’t over but a 2 goal cushion means they can do this again at the camp nou i.e. attack and pressure. A 2-1 I could see making them defensive but 3-1? I can see them going for blood.

  15. April 20, 2010

    Tough one to stomach. Hopefully, the return leg will bring better tidings.

  16. Dave
    April 20, 2010

    Bullied- lazy – no hunger- a stagnant pool bereft of conviction and leadership- we made arsenal look like boys but inter did that to us

  17. Majatt
    April 20, 2010

    Hats off to Inter though, 29% possession and 3 goals. Very dangerous.

  18. April 20, 2010

    Outplayed, outclassed, out thought. Hopefully the 2nd leg is better.

  19. Liza
    April 20, 2010

    … Disappointing. Not sure we can overcome the 3-1 deficit.

  20. DBarcaMan
    April 20, 2010

    I’m confused as to how taking off Ibra for Abidal was supposed to improve our scoring chances. Really, WTF Pep?

    We were collective shit today. And Alves needs a beating for those horrible crosses. Scoring opportunities died everytime the ball went out wide to him.

    • Luna
      April 20, 2010

      I don’t think either Ibra or Abidal are 100% in terms of fitness maybe recovered of the injury but not “back” for full time…at least that’s how i saw the sub, and abidal not starting

  21. Whatever
    April 20, 2010

    Seriously, did anyone notice how our players could receive a pass without the ball bouncing off? Something was definitely wrong with the pitch. 100%.

    • GM
      April 20, 2010

      Yes, I was wondering the same during the game. Either they didn’t water the pitch for some time before the game so that it got hard, or they pumped up the ball a lot, or both, but it really disrupted passing

  22. barca96
    April 20, 2010

    damn..alves was woeful.it was his fault for inters 2nd goal.
    ibra, what more can i say?…lazy bastard!! if you dont wanna play, stop playing football.
    milito’s goal was a clear offside, and yet those british commentators can say “slightly” offside..what a joke!!

  23. tMe
    April 20, 2010

    I wouldn’t be so confident, they will park the bus next leg and really really make us pay if we want to reach that final. This is what you get when you don’t stay focused 100% of the game.

  24. Luna
    April 20, 2010

    Dull game=exhaustion as well for Barca. NO not a great game by our side but to make things even, I think Inter should have to bus to Barcelona. I don’t care how luxury a bus your on, it still takes a lot out of you.

    An offside goal is an offside goal and this allowed goal is a huge deal, no matter how bad our side played. These semis should be decided by how poor, how well, how efficacious a side plays. The goal was clearly, clearly offside…this in my eyes is a travesty

  25. Corrine
    April 20, 2010

    this really, really, really sucks

    but there’s a reason no one has ever defended the CL title
    i woulda taken semi finals at the beginning of the season. inter played better, you can argue about the ref making shitty calls but we just didn’t show up today

    🙁

    visca el barca and i hope we have a good result at the camp nou!!!

  26. Nick
    April 20, 2010

    Lots of WTFs in my head right now. Would probably be better for me to stay away from the computer until tomorrow to cool down.

    • Dave
      April 20, 2010

      Staying away for a week from the usual haunts but give I have no problem giving Inter credit

      • Luna
        April 20, 2010

        I give Inter credit as well, however going into the second leg of the semis 2-1 vs 3-1, well that is something handed to them

  27. poipoi
    April 20, 2010

    bojan should start in camp nou and score a hat trick

    • Dave
      April 20, 2010

      Its pitiful-but can’t be any worse then the Statue we call our no 9

  28. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    “Xavi reportedly told Mourinho, that he should “go hug his friend”, while referring to the Portuguese ref, Olegario Benquerenca”

    LOL Xavi made me smile a little.

    I still cant believe we got owned.Reminded me of Chelsea 4-2 Barca.

    • barca96
      April 20, 2010

      lol.. we can make accusations as well just like how mourinho did with us and rijkaard back in 20005.

  29. Luna
    April 20, 2010

    The thing that struck me most about this match is the fact that our players were slow, standing around a bit, especially defensively, not swarming the ball. It seemed like they had run all the way to Milan and were just plain puckered out.

  30. Tyler
    April 20, 2010

    regardless of whatever shitty calls may or may not have happened. we played like shit. there was no magic anywhere. no spark. messi’s wasn’t on, I don’t think Ibra was even there, and Pedro did everything in his power to help, but we were never in the box to help him out. man do we ever miss iniesta. shadowing xavi is easy when there’s no offensive spark to help him out. we played like shit and deserved to lose, and it might now cost us a repeat trophy.

  31. Whatever
    April 20, 2010

    Oh yeah, and one more thing: We lost today not because of the referee, not because of the fatigue from the trip but because we played like pussies and let them totally physically dominate us.

    And I really don’t understand the Ibra-Abidal substitution Pep made. Yeah, Abidal made us look more dangerous, but I’m getting tired of Pep having us playing WITHOUT a proper striker.

  32. adal
    April 20, 2010

    Intel knows Zlatan too well to know how to defend him effectively. Its a pity that we don’t have a second option. Pique almost played in Zlatan’s position in the last ten. We lack depth in attack. Henry is a real disappointment and missing Iniesta hurts.

    It also shows fatigue the team has right now. Ran out of gas after the first half. If Inter played the same in the last 20 min, it could’ve been 4-1 or 5-1 even.

    • Dave
      April 20, 2010

      Ive always said that we signed Zlatan so we have a plan b, the
      trouble is we sold our plan A aka a hardworking pacy striker who bags 25 on average a season. Whatever your feelings on the swap you cannot deny eto was a far harder worker. Inter sat back which was a danger for them and thankfully they did.

  33. DBarcaMan
    April 20, 2010

    Yeah but even self. Abidal? We’re already losing. Send Henry on and give him a chance at least. Experimenting against low level sides in La Liga is one thing. But when it gets down to the wire that shit needs to stop.

  34. tMe
    April 20, 2010

    I think our normal pressure game hasnt been around for a few games now. And I’m really tired of having busquets on the pitch, yaya should be there at the very least. Keia/Yaya/Xavi or ideally Iniesta/Yaya/Xavi

  35. Tyler
    April 20, 2010

    can someone do all the possible scoring scenarios we will need to advance?

    • Achraf
      April 20, 2010

      2-0 or any higher score barca to the final
      3-1 penalties
      4-2 Inter through
      any loss Inter any draw Inter
      basically Inter MUST not score

      • Tyler
        April 20, 2010

        f*ck. and aren’t pique and puyol out on cards for the next match too?

  36. Bojan
    April 20, 2010

    And overall you want to tell me (besides our bad game today) that the refs didnt help inter. I mean the OBVIUOS offside goal and the penalty over messi which was not called was a thing to blame our players???? i mean come on as far as i saw there is a little thing to blame out guys at least they gave their hearts the last few minutes! Refs emmbaressed and humiliated the beauty of the football game.Shame for them! Critisice me all you want but i still think that our team was damaged by the refs! A FACT!!! And also FATAL ERROR was playing Busquets over Yaya, and CRUCIAL ERROR was the sub abidal for ibra!? By the way what the f*** was pep thinking bringing maxwel as a winger! Pep was terrible today with his decisions! But our guys on the field except Busquets!
    VISCA LA BARCA
    p.s. i really really hope that we could play better at the Camp

    soo sad 🙁

    • Tyler
      April 20, 2010

      the refs had nothing to do with our lack of ability to string together passes and pierce their defense. pep always states you must always ignore the refs and control what you can control: how you play. we can complain all we want, we never looked serious save for pedro’s first goal.

      • Luna
        April 20, 2010

        But you can’t deny that going back home 2-1 vs 3-1 changes things quite a bit, and that is something that has to be acknowledged. That’s quite a different feat

        • Tyler
          April 20, 2010

          yeah i acknowledge that, but why didn’t we make it 2-2 or 3-2 or 3-3. we have the best players in the world and we could only muster a single goal. whatever they do doesnt concern me, great teams respond by doing what they do. and we didn’t today unfortunately.

          • April 20, 2010

            Right–ignore the ref. He was shit, but we were worse. We have to man up and score goals our way. We could have done it if we’d wanted it, but we obviously didn’t want it enough. And now we have it all to do in the second leg.

            We will do this. And we will do it beautifully. I have faith in the team, in Pep, in our club.

            Visca el Barça!

          • Andrew
            April 20, 2010

            I don’t think we can do it. I mean I think we can, but I think this will be just like the Chelsea second-leg last year, but with an even better defense this time. Inter will sit 10 guys on defense, making it impossible for us to penetrate their goal. And who knows, they might even get a goal, putting us to bed, on the counterattack. I predict a 1-0 GRUELING victory, but still coming up a bit short. Similar to the Sevilla Copa del Rey tie.

          • Luna
            April 20, 2010

            All I know is that for me, after rewatching (not sure why I did it, makes my stomach hurt more) our players all lacked, IMHO, that extra spark, and Inter also let down the last part of the match as well. I don’t think it’s an excuse but I really, really do believe that bus ride had at least 10% to do with that and Pep won’t come right out and say it, but in a match where you need every advantage, even a 5% advantage to a side like Inter before you stop on the pitch is a big deal.

      • Bojan
        April 20, 2010

        so what you say is that the offside goal was fair, the start from behind on messi was not a foul or lucio didnt play with his hand, or countless other times right?

        • Bojan
          April 20, 2010

          well at last i must agree with VISCA LA BARCA! And must have a faith! BARCA!!!!!!

        • Jim
          April 20, 2010

          No it wasn’t fair but life isn’t fair and champions should be able to overcome some bad decisions. We didn’t tonight but there is another night on a better pitch with a home crowd.

  37. lovelymofo
    April 20, 2010

    Obviously, I’m totally disappointed with this match. I’m not sure what Pep’s tactics were and I really don’t get making only one sub. I didn’t mind Abidal coming in, but if Ibra is gonna be subbed out, how about throwing in another offensive player?

    It’s clear Mourinho knew what he was doing. I hope Pep figures out what he needs to do in the return leg.

    And – can Messi get a rest against Xerex please? He may not want to, but I think he needs it.

  38. Sal
    April 20, 2010

    Inter deserved it, we sucked. Alvez Messi Ibra were the worst players ever. Pedro is teh only positive thing tonight, he was teh only guy who really wanted to win. We were lazy adn we have players like Busi and Maxwell who really don’t have what it takes to play at Barca. Lets be honest, last year we had Iniesta Henry eto’o and Yayha firing all cillinders. players like keita Maxwell warmed teh bench, disgusting.

    • barca96
      April 20, 2010

      wtf???!!!
      alves and messi worst ever????
      alves is maybe off form but even messi???worst ever???
      how old are you?
      show them some respect!
      especially messi…
      we wouldnt even be here if it wasnt for messi

      • Sal
        April 20, 2010

        OK MESSI i admit it was not his fault. but should defenitly REST him against Xerez

  39. ané
    April 20, 2010

    we didn’t play our game. inter put alot of pressure on us and they were very efficient.
    the ref sucked big time. that was clearly a PENALTY ! sneijder came from behind, not going for the ball at all. u can say he held himself back, but contact is THERE. referees 9 out of 10 times call this one.
    but to all those who are already losing hope or blaming pep, i say, do not despair… we’re gonna kick the shit out of them in the 2nd leg.
    VISCA BARCA !

  40. Dave
    April 20, 2010

    This summer we need to man up. I remember when laporta signed Davids he said he finally believed he had signed a man. Purists on this blog will say Im wrong but forget Cesc- we need an Essien or Mascherano a pitbull in midfield hassling and leading when the chips are down. Tiki Taka and sticking to your philosphy is all well and good but winning is most important. Tonight we got bullied. Some will say hold on a minute we have an Essien on the bench in the form of Yaya but Pep should either play him or sell him. Man up

    • Tyler
      April 20, 2010

      totally disagree, its not that we weren’t hitting them hard enough defensively. we need more offensive options! with xavi shadowed our entire flow is stopped. when ibra is rusty, and messi is tired, we could have 9 mascheranos beating the crap out of people, but that isn’t going to put balls in the back of the net. we need reserve midfielders and and a strong front three forwards. I think messi and ibra make two thirds of that, and pedro does well. we are a team with a philosophy built on attack attack attack. not defend, beat up, and disrupt flow of play. but hell, messi knocked maicon out of the game.

      • barca96
        April 20, 2010

        lol @ mascheranos..
        lol..that incident with maicon was accidental..

        • Tyler
          April 20, 2010

          haha i know it was accidental but it’s still funny little pulga knocked out one of the most feared right backs in the world

  41. waleed
    April 20, 2010

    Visca el Barca!!
    now I love them even more

  42. Ethan
    April 20, 2010

    im sorry, but that was a corrupt game. all there is to it. we played ok, they didnt play any better, score should have been 1-1. 2 bullshit goals, never seen a ref so corrupt in my life, and that is blowing my mind right now. so sad that this is what the champions league has come down to. its an utter disgrace, and why i can still appreciate all american sports bc a game would never be allowed to ref’d like that, and if it was, u would never see them again in the pros. i just as a fan wish to see fair play, and that was as far from it as i have ever seen. we didnt play bad at all, but we were taken out of the game by one man, it was awful. sorry. goodnight.

    • barca96
      April 20, 2010

      exactly..i follow nba..and its sad that at least over there calls are made. just look at the fiorentina-bayern match…disgrace..
      and also barca-chelsea..it wasn’t a penalty but the whole world especially in england thinks that the ref helped us even though there was only one genuine hand ball..

      • Jim
        April 20, 2010

        Oh come on guys. We’re bigger than that. Playing well we’d have humped that team. We didn’t play well until the last ten and even then it was hash and bash rather than beautiful football which plays into an Italian team’s hands.

      • Museum
        April 20, 2010

        Really not a fan of this kind of talk. We’re not Chelsea, so let’s not whine. We had our opportunities and we either didn’t do well enough on them or Cesar did a great job stopping them. True, I didn’t think they outplayed us to the tune of 3-1, but the ball bounces that way sometimes.

  43. corrine
    April 20, 2010

    we can get through with a 2-0 which is not an impossible scoreline at the camp nou, but all inter milan have to do now is park the bus and with the likes of lucio, samuel and cesar, we’re in trouble!! and frustrating us to a 0-0 draw in a champions league semi final hasn’t been impossible either.

    this really blows… i hope uefa lose out on all their endorsements because a final without barca or an english team won’t attract tv sponsors and endorsement deals. haha that’s the only thing i have to hold on to right now. so bitter. tralalalalala

    • barca96
      April 20, 2010

      was hoping messi would try to get samuel booked as he was on a yellow already

  44. Tajh
    April 20, 2010

    News right now is that Messi has a broken Maicon’s incisor. I wonder how long that takes to heal.

    • Tajh
      April 20, 2010

      By the way how can UEFA allow the ref and even the linesmen to have the same nationality as Inter’s coach…This simple detail can influence a match.

      This Portuguese referee Olegario Benquerenca really showed favoritism towards Inter……I guess I now know how Chelsea felt last year 🙁

  45. Jim
    April 20, 2010

    To be honest this has been coming since we lost Iniesta again. Xavi has too much to do on his own. Messi hid that for a while with his outrageous form but that can’t last. Who did we have in the team tonight that you thought could create something on their own? My answer would be Xavi and Messi. It’s not enough.

    I’m also frustrated at Maxwell though I’ve been his biggest supporter. What he did for the first goal is what he could do if he adopted a more aggressive mindset. We need him to drive at defences although putting him up front wasn’t the best move. That was the biggest mistake of the night for me. I can understand Pep taking Ibra off. Whether injured or not doesn’t matter. I don’t want to see him again till he’s fit and then he’ll get a couple of games from me to see if he’s prepared to put himself about enough and make the right runs time after time to prove he’s Barca standard. And in saying that I’m probably admitting defeat – I’ve always said that to win this year we need him and Henry playing well. What was unforgivable was that Henry wasn’t brought on when Ibra went off. We needed him as CF and Messi behind him. Henry knows the runs to make and his timing of them is much better than Ibra’s.

    Having said all that it may also be time to look at how high we try to hold our defensive line. It borders on the suicidal at times.

    Unfortnately, what this might provoke is Pep resting two or three for the weekend to give them a chance to recover for next week. you take either Messi or Xavi out of this line up and your left with lightweights who can’t shape games.

    Maybe the above is a little pessimistic and a good Barca performance at home is capable of turning this around but Andres I’m sure missing you and your mate will be as well. Didn’t like to see him throw up his arms in frustration at the lack of movement ahead of him when he had the ball in a great position just outside their box. That speaks volumes.

    • Tajh
      April 20, 2010

      At least we play Xerex at the weekend where Pep can play a similar lineup to that of the game against Athletic before the 2nd leg against Arsenal.

  46. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    We have to do it for andres, its that simple.

  47. fc
    April 20, 2010

    Let us have FAITH in our team guys. We can do it. We will do it.

  48. iBlau
    April 20, 2010

    Inter wanted it more. We looked sooo uncomfortable on the ball…even Xavi was rushing at times but I can see that Mourinho knows both Barca’s weakness & Inter’s strength all too well. Some comments on the match:

    1) What he did was to shut us down through the middle (indirectly making Messi & Ibra’s life no easier) and force us to the wings which is why Pedro! was so immense today. He knows that we cant beat Inter in the air so he allows us to play the ball out to the wing therefore restricting out link up play. I bet if Pep played Messi as a RW, we would have seen a better performance from both Messi & Barca.

    2)As much as I love Busi, this was not his game. I can only hope that this defeat will open Pep’s eyes & show him that Busi does not deserve to start over The Yaya in the DM position. He plays better in either Xavi or Iniesta’s postiion IMO, not The Yaya’s.

    3) It’s sad that Pique, in 10 mins, did more as a CF than Ibra *sigh* Just a little more mobility up front would have given us a better shot at goal. And IMO, Pique cud hav scored at least once in the last 10 mins.

    4) Julio Cesar should be banned from playing anywhere in Europe.

    On another note, how bout that Materazzi-Balotelli bust up in the tunnel after the game huh

    • Jim
      April 20, 2010

      Some fair points, iBlau but can’t agree on Pedro having an immense game. To me he was invisible again. I know he scored a goal and it sounds really mean to criticise him as he is busting a gut but he had chances to create something and didn’t. I don’t remember him running / dribbling past anyone or starting a move. No he wasn’t alone in that and he wasn’t the worst tonight but he’s like that most games and he did occasionally have a 1 on 1.

      Btw, i noticed some negative comments about Valdes on the liveblog. I didn’t see him put a foot wrong. Did I miss something? I also didn’t see what Cesar did to incur the wrath. Why should he be banned?

      However, if ever I doubted our need for a LW who can either go past people and/or score a hatful I’m now a convert.

      • iBlau
        April 20, 2010

        The part about being banned was a joke….cuz he’s so good

        • Jim
          April 21, 2010

          Oops, sorry. My humour sensor obviously wasn’t working that night 🙁

    • stephen
      April 20, 2010

      I disagree partly in your 3 here… Yes pique could’ve scored, but Ibrah never got the ball when he was there, the comparison isnt fair.

      and def. with you in number 2. Yaya would’ve made a world of difference.

      Vamos al Camp Nou !

  49. Museum
    April 20, 2010

    Man. Just finished watching. I really can’t stand it when I have a massive amount of work to do during a day, stupidly take a couple hours to watch Barca, and get rewarded by the gods dumping a bunch of toilet bowl cleaner down my throat. Not enjoyable. And Julio Cesar – kind of talented, the son of a bitch.

  50. Tajh
    April 20, 2010

    After re-watching the match I am now starting to realize why Barca are so keen on signing Fabregas….with Iniesta being injured so often it only now makes sense why Pep want him back so badly. Xavi can’t do it on his own all the time and Messi is at his best on the wing cutting in not in the mid helping out Xavi.

  51. April 20, 2010

    We suffered again from a lack of urgency when needed, and an inability to have the killers edge both on offense and defense.

    We can talk all we want about the call against Dani, which wasn’t a penalty. A foul, yes, but a penalty? No. I know this sounds ridiculous to say it was a foul but not a penalty, but anyone who watches a lot of footy knows that fouls in the box aren’t always called for a spot kick. A lot of it is based on the “clear goal scoring opportunity” rule. Anyway, it was ridiculous Dani received the card, but let’s move on.

    Messi get’s fouled. Everyone looks at the ref and complains, and by the time we refocus ourselves, Maicon’s practicing for the ballet with his twinkle toes goal. It sucked, but it happened because we let our guard down.

    The third goal was sheer luck. In development, it took skill. But the ridiculous bounce off of Sneijder perfectly fell to an offside Milito, all while the assistant referee was checking out the hottie in section 213. It was dumb, but again, that’s the game for you.

    We need to go out and win 2-0. I don’t see them scoring because we’ll have the more strategic lineup of Milito-Pique, which I’m excited about. However, if we score, they’ll simply shut down even more, and perhaps, we may see the most intentionally blatant “bus parking” in the history of the CL.

    Piss. I hate losing.

    • Museum
      April 20, 2010

      Really didn’t like to see Messi getting distracted with the ref while they went on a break and scored. Not sure it would’ve made a difference, but come on.

    • Jim
      April 21, 2010

      Not sure how a tackle from behind which is a foul can be anything other than a penalty. It doesn’t have anything to do with goal scoring opportunity. The only reason I can think of for an indirect free kick like that would be obstruction which is possible. In reality though that rarely happens as obstruction in the box is usually tied to a goal scoring opportunity and therefore a penalty. I do agree though that there’s no point in us moaning about it.

  52. messi_fan
    April 20, 2010

    We need someone to compete with Alves for the right back spot. He’s been crap most of this season but yet is an automatic starter. That speaks volumes.

    • stephen
      April 20, 2010

      He’s been doing the job well enough, he’s had a few bad games and ref’s are not helping.
      He’ll recover form.

    • April 20, 2010

      it’s somewhat comical how quickly we dismiss our Brazilian after we pretty much told him his poo smelled like roses after our Deportivo match and that bycicle kick of his.

      just an observation.

  53. amal
    April 20, 2010

    no body has the right to complain against the referee, i know he’s been crapy all night long, but last season tom Henning ovrebo gave us a great advantage against chelsea … so keep it

    we were crapy, Messi, Alves, Puyol, all of us were tiredand that’s the main reason.

  54. Museum
    April 20, 2010

    Great, now Xavi, Pique and Pedro are all whining about the referee. I really don’t like the way we lose sometimes. Let’s focus on what we can do better, get pissed and take them out next Wednesday.

  55. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    The truth is , if we are honest, we didnt do enough to get the 1st goal.It just came out of the blue and since the team didnt have to work to get it, they coasted and felt they could up the tempo if they needed.It seemed they were satisfied with the away goal because after the half they came out doing the same things and got punished.Then when pep was about to make the abidal sub to secure the left, they scored again.This game was perfect for andres to come on and help with possession at halftime but sadly we didnt have the option.Yet another game where we come out with more cards and suspensions than the team which has been overtly physical.Its ridiculous.

    • Museum
      April 20, 2010

      It’s true, there was a sense of urgency late in the match that wasn’t present before we were down 3-1. It’s too bad.

  56. Kxevin
    April 20, 2010

    Well, thanks to Comcast and a glitchy DVR, I have no match, and no TV. So you all will have the joy of an Isaiah review. Apologies.

    • Tajh
      April 20, 2010

      Well at least u missed it this match is so hard to shallow. I still can’t believe we lost 3-1

  57. Kxevin
    April 20, 2010

    Just finished watching some Web highlights. We were terrible, and deserved the hiding that we got. From what I saw, everybody is clustered around the ball on the first goal, and Sneijder is standing there by himself. The second goal was schoolboy defending. Get on with it. The third was offside, but they blew an offside call for Inter in the first half, so those even out.

    We are NOT Chelsea. We lost. The ref didn’t stand around while Maicon scored, the ref didn’t have everybody around the ball, leaving Sneijder alone. If Alves marks his man, that goal doesn’t happen. When the Chelsea folks came here, ranting about Ovrebo last season, we laughed at them, and told them to grow up. Now let’s check the mirror. Because reality is that we played well enough to advance, so we did. The ref missed calls for both sides. Going on match reports and Web replays, looks like the same thing happened here. That’s life in football.

    Most importantly, why are we turning on players who wear the Blaugrana? If Henry isn’t playing, whose fault is it? His or Guardiola’s? You have to at least try him. I’m sorry, but you do. If Busquets doesn’t play well, that’s part of the game. He’s played well often enough this season where I’m sure that he’s still on the plus side of the ledger. A fit, focussed Barca doesn’t allow ANY of those goals. But we did, and have to deal with it. We beat them 2-0 at home in the group stages, we can do it again.

    And if we can’t, then we go the hell out like men, not whining little babies. The ref this, the pitch that. Recall that we beat Chelsea on a festering quagmire of a pitch, with mud patches. We beat a team during monsoon season, where puddles were stopping the ball. We had a shit match. That’s two in a row. I wouldn’t bet on three.

    Squad depth and injuries are affecting us now, at the wrong time of the season. Everyone here says that they looked tired. I can buy that. They looked tired at Espanyol. Last season, key players weren’t hurt. This year, no Iniesta means that a determined side can shut down Xavi, which kills the engine that makes us go. Big difference. Who picks up the slack? Nobody, as I see it, which is a problem. But it’s a problem that Guardiola will have to solve, or we will go out.

    Ultimately, the reason that it’s so difficult to repeat as Champions League winner is because you play so many more matches. Not only that, but then you have the various Super Cups, and World Club Cups, etc, etc. Six trophies means that you’re playing a lot of matches. We’re seeing fatigue injuries. Tired muscles are brittle, and brittle muscles tear. You can’t stay hydrated, and bad stuff just happens.

    Last season, we were able to use Gudjohnsen, and Hleb, and Henry was fit and playing well, and Krkic was contributing in the second-tier matches. Henry can’t get time, so he can’t get match fit, so he can’t play well. It’s catch 22. Krkic isn’t ready for the big stages such as this one, which is another handicap. We have NO midfield support. Should Txiki B and Guardiola have brought in someone? How can you predict that Iniesta will be suddenly made of glass?

    Are we really that spoiled after one glorious season? Really? Suddenly we expect to win everything? It doesn’t always happen that way. Inter played a good match from everything that I read (and saw). So hats off to them. We will have to play a better one if we want to advance.

    So let’s make it happen next week.

    • Colby
      April 20, 2010

      I completely agree with you about turning on players and/or coaches. I posted this below, but it’s worth repeating: “Players, Supporters, United we are strong.” This is the truth of the matter. If we turn on one player, we are turning on the whole club because disunity–even among the supporters–is what will keep us from being the best. This is a great opportunity to band together–players, supporters, coaches–and to show that we are the best.

      • Luna
        April 20, 2010

        Here here! I’ll repost

        Tot el camp, és un clam
        som la gent blaugrana, Tant se val d’on venim
        si del sud o del nord
        ara estem d’acord, ara estem d’acord,
        una bandera ens agermana.
        Blaugrana al vent, un crit valent
        tenim un nom, el sap tothom:
        Barça , Barça, Baaarça.!

  58. MT
    April 20, 2010

    The fat lady may be on cue, but she hasn’t sung yet. Don’t lose hope and keep the faith. This tie isn’t decided in one leg.

    • Colby
      April 20, 2010

      Amen. What happened to the “som un” days?

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=749gIF1sMbc

      And what about the anthem?

      Players, Supporters
      United we are strong.
      We’ve achieved much over the years,
      We’ve shouted many goals
      And we have shown, we have shown,
      That no one can ever break us.

      If Barca are the team I think they are, we will still go through. We’ve put ourselves in a heck of a place, but I am hopeful, as we all should be. If Inter decide to park the bus, all it will take is one goal from us to panic Inter. Just one. Maybe we should make a commercial: “Volem un”–We want one. That’s all we need to be right back in it.

  59. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    The committee also havent rescinded Dani’s suspension, but we should be able to beat Xerex without him 😉

    • Helge
      April 21, 2010

      maybe we even have a better chance without him. Puyol as right FB as he’s suspended for Inter anyway.

  60. Colby
    April 20, 2010

    I think that people saying “we should just shut up about the ref” miss the point to some extent. I agree with you that we have no one but ourselves to blame for the loss, and that champions man up and play through this. Regardless of the ref, we should have won this game if we played a “good” match for us. We were dijointed, partly due to inter playing well, but also due a little more to our own poor play.

    However, when breaking down the match IN ITS ENTIRETY, objectively, it is still necessary to talk about the referee’s performance and impact on the game. And with that having been said, it is necessary to note, when reviewing the game, that the referee affected the outcome negatively for us. At the very least we can point out a fact–Milito was offside. 2-1 vs. 3-1 is a huge difference. If the linesman doesn’t blow that call, we would be favorites instead of longshots. It is also perfectly legitimate to note the fact that somehow we ended with 6 yellows to their 2, and that is ridiculous. We shouldn’t dwell too long on the penalty appeals, or the Maicon goal that happened after Messi was pushed off the ball (whether it was a foul or not is up to you). Claiming that the game was rigged is ridiculous as well, but pointing out that the ref was poor is objective, and necessary to gain a full view of the game.

    All of that having been said, I think the reasons for the loss today are somewhat around the following: 50% was that we played poorly. 35% was that Inter played well. 15% was that the ref had the stank.

    • Luna
      April 20, 2010

      I’d add to that what we are also seeing is the exhaustion catching up with players…will and love of the game and to play for your colors can only take you so far and I believe our Barca team is at that point.

      …Todo el campo, es un clamor,
      somos la gente azulgrana,
      no importa de donde vengamos,
      si del sur o del norte, eso si, estamos de acuerdo,
      estamos de acuerdo, una bandera nos hermana.
      Azulgrana al viento, un grito valiente,
      tenemos un nombre, lo sabe todo el mundo:
      Barça!, Barça !, Baaaarça !!!!

      On a personal note one of the reasons I came to this site was for critical examinations of the futbol. It seems that of late, there are enough individuals that can just be hella nasty. I understand the frustration, boy do I, but I personally, IMHO, want to hear real critiques, assessments, deconstruction, of the matches. Maybe I need to just ignore these nastier comments and what I desire is only found in some magical futbol realm. *sigh*

      And why we are cules

      Tot el camp, és un clam
      som la gent blaugrana, Tant se val d’on venim
      si del sud o del nord
      ara estem d’acord, ara estem d’acord,
      una bandera ens agermana.
      Blaugrana al vent, un crit valent
      tenim un nom, el sap tothom:
      Barça , Barça, Baaarça.!
      Jugadors, seguidors, tots units fem força.
      Son molt anys plens d’afanys,
      son molts gols que hem cridat
      i s’ha demostrat, i s’ha demostrat,
      que mai ningu no ens podrà torcer
      Blau-grana al vent, un crit valent
      tenim un nom, el sap tothom
      Barça, Barça, Baaarça.

        • MT
          April 20, 2010

          And even though most of us here who follow this blog come from different corners of the earth – I come from Southeast Asia where watching matches on TV means going to work the next day all wonky because you had to wake up at 3am to catch it live – it doesn’t make us any less of a cule than the city dwellers that roam Las Ramblas wearing scarlet and blue.

          We rejoice together when we win, we mourn together when we lose. This is what Barca is all about. Let’s rally around that crest next week and will our team to victory. Because even if Pep, Messi or Laporta don’t hear our battle cries through our TVs or computers, they know that our support will never waver – not even if we lose the tie to Inter next week, lose the league at the end of the season, or fall to relegation in twenty years. They know that we’ll all still sing the anthem we all love with pride in our heart, WIN OR LOSE.

          Keep the faith! FUERZA BARCA!!!!

          On another note, I love how my wife sings “Tot el camp” as “Dogs and cats” whenever I force her to sing the hymn with me.

  61. jnelson
    April 20, 2010

    Great words, Kevin. We were just flat out beat today. One word to describe our play: stale. Oh, and what happened to Keita! Eeeessh

  62. waleed
    April 20, 2010

    if a bad ref.+ 14 hours on the road+ missing key players+ compact schedule are all not excuses, our team should never ever loose a point or even draw

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