Inter 3 – 1 Barça: Keep Your Head Up

Look. I know this one is a tough pill to swallow. I’m right there with you. But don’t make the mistake of blaming refs, of screaming about missed penalty calls, of offsides goals, of fucking disgraces, and all that bullhooey. It’s not even that we were outplayed or cheated or shown up or outfoxed or any of that. We lost and we lost because we couldn’t put it together. We didn’t work hard enough and we didn’t push ourselves.

We looked shaky from the offing, like we weren’t good enough to be playing in this stadium, on this level; they got shots on goal, could easily have been up a couple of goals and then Xavi slots in Maxwell after a bad giveaway by Lucio and Maxwell just strolls to the byline and feeds Pedro for a goal. 19 minutes in and we’re cruising, looking better, looking like we’re going to be able to pull this one off and do it handily. And then, of course, we went and relaxed. Why? Why did we do that? Who do we think we are that we can relax in a Champions League semifinal?

If we thought we could, well, in the 30th minute, Eto’o receives a cross-field ball, misplays it to Maicon, who plays it back to Eto’o, who shoots a horrendous cross through our box and we go to sleep on it. Dani Alves inexplicably sucks and when Milito collects the ball far too easily, he easily slides it to Sneijder who tucks it away beyond a stranded Valdes. An absurd goal off a freekick at the halfway line. But it’s still 1-1. So we limp into the halftime and we can collect ourselves, right?

Wrong. We came out of halftime and…within 40 seconds give them the ball and a full on chance that Pandev couldn’t get to. But then 2 minutes later we gave them the goal they were looking for. Because we kept fouling them without cause and sure, they kept going down without cause, but whatever, we gave them the chance to do so and it’s the Champions League semifinal and maybe we should wake up and realize that. And maybe we should play defense even if Messi is fouled and it’s not called–and it wasn’t really a real foul, but it sure was a ridiculously bad defensive play by us. Stop standing and staring at the ref, Leo. Work for the ball, dammit. Care.

And then, of course, yeah, Milito was offside for their third goal, but we let them walk through our defense anyway. Thiago Motta, of all people, steals a ball off of Xavi, of all people, and slips in Eto’o, who chips to Sneijder, who heads horribly to Milito, who was offside behind Puyol. So yeah, maybe keeping possession would have solved that? Maybe not sucking in midfield would have solved that? Maybe having a defensive midfielder who was interested in playing, you know, defense in, you know, the midfield, would have solved that?

Maybe we’re tired, maybe we’ve got a lot of miles in our legs, but what about Inter? What about the miles in their legs? They’re in the Coppa Italia final, the Champions League semi, and fighting for the Scudetto. Why is no one talking about that? Because it doesn’t matter. There is no tiredness, there are no excuses. We either play to be Barça, to be beautiful, to be good, or we shouldn’t bother playing. And fatigue is meaningless.

When Maicon went down–and I hope he’s okay because head injuries are horrendous and you should never wish injury on anyone–we took over. We started to play how we all knew we could play. Maybe it was Maicon’s injury, maybe it was Diego Milito’s substitution, but I think it was us finally getting into our stride, figuring out what they were doing and, to a certain extent, playing without Ibra. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m pissed that Ibra was subbed off, that we put on Abidal for him, but we did dominate without him. Of course it would have been nice to have someone other than, um, no one to sub on for the final few minutes. Where’s Henry? Where’s anyone? I know that Iniesta is out and that hurt us, but that’s no excuse.

We had our chances: Xavi through to Pedro in the 77th, Pique’s forward bombs, Messi’s runs into the box, a few free kicks. Sure, there were the penalties, but we have to put away the real chances, the ones that aren’t up to the referee’s discretion. Because they are. Because they did. Because if we don’t, we’re gone from this competition.

You all love ratings, so here you go:

Team: 4. Way to show the spirit, folks. You put in 20 minutes of work. Yay for you. How about 90?

Guardiola: 4. Way to show faith in the full squad, to sub on Henry for someone if you really wanted a goal. We need to be ready for these matches and you didn’t help us out there, it would seem. You gesticulated on the sidelines a lot, but were you outfoxed or were you outmotivated? Let us know in the second leg.

Valdes: 5. A spectator except when your defense let you down. You did nothing bad, really, and a few good things, but you were mostly just left out to dry.

Alves: 3. Learn to cross, eh? Sure, you looked to have earned a penalty, but how about not going down so easily for 85 minutes prior so that you actually get those calls? That might be a nice change of pace.

Pique: 7. A rare bright spot in an otherwise gray and dismal blaugrana sky. You could have scored and it would have been brilliant if your first touch hadn’t failed you at the crucial moment.

Puyol: 5. You were burned a couple of times, but you were there and you weren’t horrible. You’ve got to get the boys going, though, you’ve got to get in their faces and get their blood up. You’ll be watching the return leg, but hopefully they can hear you screaming from la grada.

Maxwell: 5. Beautiful work on the offensive end, but, um, how about some of the defensive end?

Busi: 2. Good job out there. You really played…where did you play? Defensive midfielder? Wait, you were in either place? Terrible, terrible match. Invisible and careless, incapable of shutting down their midfield, incapable of opening up their defense. Either step up or go home.

Keita: 4. It would have been nice if your touch hadn’t deserted you, especially when trying to clear in front of Maicon. And also if your touch hadn’t deserted you everywhere else too. But still, you were there defensively a lot and were working hard, which is hard to fault.

Xavi: 5. Another off match by the maestro, which is strange to say, but this one was much better. You still fed several players good balls that they did nothing with, which is hard to fault you for, but you let frustration get the better of you at several points and that’s not a good thing. Keep it together and your passes will find open teammates.

Pedro: 5. Good work today, but you need a bit more steel and a bit more work on the tactics, which would keep you less frantic and in better position. A little more speed in front of goal late in the match would have given you a second goal and would have greatly helped the cause. Still, nice goal, and thanks for putting that one away.

Ibra: 4. You really didn’t have much support, but you sometimes do have to work a little with the team to get the ball and, um, get it towards goal. Your ninja-like move in the first couple of minutes would have been on Sportscenter for years, but how about just scoring it instead? That would have been a good way to start off the match, right?

Messi: 3. You looked distant and un-Messi-like for most of the match. These are the moments when you have to play smarter, not harder, which is something you’ll learn in time, but which, right now, would be great for you to know. It’s not your style, I know, but maybe you can become a passer when you’re shutdown offensively?


Abidal: 6. You were playing well from the moment you got on, you just didn’t have enough time to really make the impact I’m positive you can have. If you’re back and healthy for the rest of the year, the league is ours and we have a legit shot at blowing out Inter at home. Let’s hope it’s so.

So, it’s the Camp Nou, but not until after Xerez visit and we’ve had a chance to get our legs back under us in the league. I know we can do this. In fact, I know we will do this. This club never quits and it never will. Visca el Barça and long live beautiful football.

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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.


  1. cliveee
    April 20, 2010

    so what the heck had happened?

    0-0 espanyol and now 3-1 lost to inter.

  2. April 20, 2010

    The Penalty call was hard to swallow because we got a yellow card as well. I just understand what is it about the way we play that makes Ibra so uneffective. The thing that I hate the most is that we made Mourinho look like a genius… and he is not. I still have faith, we can do this. We sure missed Ineasta.

  3. Luna
    April 20, 2010

    It’s not like ALL teams hit the tired button at the same time, that’s too easy of parallel to draw. Certainly Inter had the where with all to capitalize on Barca’s mistakes. We really do need to be concerned at the level of energy of the team. It’s a fact, it concerns me. I think Alves is suffering from this as is Messi. Like I said earlier if the bus ride even gave a 5% advantage, it’s an advantage nevertheless.

    To not address the issue of the referee is also not taking in a part of the match that was influenced by refereeing decisions, whether they go in your favor or not. For me it points to something more systemic with FIFA, and it affects ALL teams, including Barcelona. Now MY concern, and I hope I am totally wrong, is that our team as a whole appears simply out of wind. The team has in the past been able to play through bad refereeing and manage to win. That didn’t happen today.

    No they did not look good out there, at all. I’d like to know what options the team has to play through the next match that can rest key players. Obviously I’d rest messi, I’d play JDS, bring on bojan, use Jeffren, but all at the same time??? It’s craziness I tell you!

  4. Tyler
    April 20, 2010

    This review sums up everything in my head perfectly. Unfortunately everything in my head is the nightmare that happened today. Why does losing feel like your girlfriend broke up with you?

  5. Memorylane
    April 20, 2010

    Missed Toure in the midfield he’d have made a difference for sure. I’d start him over Keita who like I’ve been saying is an excellent sub/squad player he doesn’t have the quality to start in these games and again it showed but I digress.

    Busi was exposed for the average player he is I call him average when compared to the player who was on the bench *sigh* I was scared this would happen.

    2 – 1 would be fine but I don’t think we can do it at 3 – 1 🙁 .

    Also in the opening minutes of the first half Maxwell put in an excellent cross for Ibra all he had to do was make contact with the ball via his head and it would be a sure goal but for some odd reason he tried back heel it in mid air:(

    Man I don’t know….. I don’t expect much from him to be honest anymore.

  6. jnelson
    April 20, 2010

    Yes, long live beautiful football.

  7. April 20, 2010

    1.2.3. Hard Work.

    Every good team has this cheer, and it seems that today we just didn’t have it in us.

    I’m terrified about the return leg, and how I very much anticipate one of the most blatant bus parking exhibitions in the history of the game.

    Jose’s self glorifying exhibitionism only makes me angrier. His comments after the match removed any possible “above reproachness” he may have been granted.

    I just hope Balotelli can start and miss a few chances on purpose. Lord knows he wants that team to fail.

  8. ElShowDeJason
    April 20, 2010

    we’ll grind out a 2-0 in the camp nou against mourinho’s 8-1-1

    and we’ll qualify

  9. Necro Spaaw
    April 20, 2010

    awesome review mate. agree on almost everything..

    but that WAS a penalty on alves. altho he was AWFUL tonight. ffs, wtf happened to his crossing? half of his crosses were totally unuseable :S

    their second goal came from a foul on messi. thx portugese ref -.-
    mourinho is portugese. we’d like a catalan ref at camp nou please.

    3rd goal is clar offside.

    so it should have been 2-1 for barca even with this dreadful and painful display.

    i am confident regarding the 2nd leg, but inter WILL score.
    so we’ll need at least 3 goals.. hope messi wakes the fuck up.
    and ibra, link up more.. go back for the damn ball ffs.

    agree about pep also.. should have put in both henry or bojan for keita and yaya for busi.

  10. jordi™
    April 20, 2010

    I dont know where it came from, but inter had more belief than when we first played them.I guess its from knocking out chelsea.When we played them earlier, one goal wouldve made them crumble, and i think the team thought it would happen again.Which is why you GO FOR THE SECOND GOAL.But even with 2 goals i feel we wouldve let in 2 with the way we came out in the second half.We should never assume that we are so awesome that teams will be deflated and not fight back.Especially when we aren’t leading anymore and the score at halftime is 1-1 not 0-5.

    Does anyone think that because all we’ve had away from home in Europe in recent years are draws, the team feel satisfied that they’ve done the job and get complacent with leads because they feel they will just finish the game at home?If we were at camp nou i doubt we would have come out in the second half the way we did.

    Seems like the whole world has been waiting for us to fail :D, you can almost hear the glee in their reports.Too bad for them this is only halftime and we’ve shown we can win 2-0 against this inter team if we get our tactics and work ethic right.

  11. Dave
    April 20, 2010

    I officially crown Sergio “WTF” Busquets the worst player on our squad. Congrats man, you deserve it. Sorry for the cynicism, but I’m hurting right now.

  12. aku
    April 20, 2010

    Its ok guys. Cheer up. I know we can beat Inter at nou camp. I’m really sure!! Barca!

    • Tomahawk1
      April 21, 2010

      We will win, the question is, will we score enough goals?

  13. corrine
    April 20, 2010

    we were completely off key today but we must not take credit away from inter, who played a very good game. there’s no way the score would’ve ended like that if the same team with the same mindset, with the same referee had met cksa instead. it was a poor performance, no excuses, and of all teams left in the CL, jose mourinho’s inter are the most capable of causing havoc on the defending champions

    if we don’t go through next week i still want the boys to put on a good show and make it look like they want to be in the final! i think watching them sit back and “not care” was more painful than losing the game. maybe we’ll get a wacky 4-4 like liverpool vs chelsea last season when ‘pool were going in with a 3-1 as well 😛 as long as we show some fighting spirit i’ll exit with pride

    but on a purely optimistic side, here’s to a dos a cero!!! overcoming a 3-1 is difficult but we’re not bordeaux, we’re fc barcelona! anything is possible

  14. Memorylane
    April 20, 2010

    This midfield is a poor mans version of last seasons.
    Iniesta is injured so can’t do much there. Toure only God and Pep knows why he won’t play him because it would made a hell a lot of a differnce had he.

    I’d still would play Busi over Keita though.

    Xavi needs an outlet he can’t do everything on his own… Inter have some capable players in midfield who exposed Busi for most of the game and then you have Messi who has to drop back in midfield to help Xavi because Keita can’t do much of anything with the ball.

    I don’t have it in me to watch next weeks game in my opinion with the likes of Lucio and Samuel and Juio Cesar and their powerful midfield it will take nothing but a miracle for us to go through.

    Oh well this just shows you how important Toure, Iniesta, Abidal are to this team and we don’t have players who can replace them.

  15. April 20, 2010

    Thanks for the quickly posted review Kev. Though it stings like Bactine on a nasty gouge; I know from past experience BFB keeps the wound from festering. Looking forward to everyone’s words.

    The dudes are dog tired. My own legs felt like jelly watching them. The dulling of our sharpness that the cursed parakeets started, two bus rides compounded. Not to make excuses, but we looked a shadow of ourselves. Inter didn’t so much look a winner as they looked like the guy who correctly picks the right unmanned grocery store checkout stand to open next…3 times in a row.

    Maybe that’s the pompous cule in me. Oh well. I accepted the 0-0 draw on the weekend. Explainable. Understandable. Expected. (A fun to watch battle even…to me.)

    But this, this …yeah Tyler. Not only the girl-friend-breaking-up-with-you feeling, but the how-did-I miss-the-3-count-em-3-guys-she-was-seeing-on-the-side feeling.

    Re the Expensive Ninja Wannabee Who Never Smiles:

    Now I’m sure he does stuff that misses my newbee soccer fan eye, but Ibra’s presence feels like a governor on a porche. I know we’ve invested a ton of dough; I know sometimes it snows in Barcelona…but do we really need a gold plated snow plow on our sports car? Let’s trade him for 3-4 Maxwell-esque bench players.

    …and throw in the diving duo Alves and Busquets. (Make me wanna take that back guys, please make me.)

    Oh and one last thing. *$^#@#$!! Fox Soccer Channel ended halftime hi-lights of the 8 pm EST replay with “in the second half it was all Inter.” WTF!!!

    • April 20, 2010

      oops my bad, Isaiah…you know all you authors sound the same!
      ..ah still have some Kev comments to look forward to. Tommorow’s looking better

  16. jnelson
    April 20, 2010

    I really would have liked to have seen Yaya starting at DM today, but can’t do anything about that, can we? The way I see it, Busi will either be a revelation, helping us to truckloads of trophies, or will be the tragic mistake spelling the end for Pep (BTW I want Pep to be manager forever, even if we are trophy-less this year, which IMO we will still win 2 titles).

    Keita was dreadful. We need a solution at LCM. Keita had more shots than anyone because Inter knows he cant shoot so they gave him all the long shots he wanted, all of which were failures. It would have helped if his defence was good, but it was awful, as was Busi’s. Now it may be too late to play Yaya, seeing as we need goals and Busi is always the choice for situations calling on offense. I really don’t see Keita working at LCM though, not after this performance and how he didn’t bother Inter at all. He was about as useless on the left as Maxwell was the last 70 minutes. No threat.

    I know we can win, but we have to field a COMPLETE and MOTIVATED team. We have to do what we do best, pressure, control, and width. Any ideas?

  17. JDBarca
    April 20, 2010

    I liked the review Isaiah. Pep has it right with the no excuses approach. Not only is it the classy and smart thing to do, he happens to be right. We should have played better and it was painful to see Messi look so casual out there.

    The ref absolutely blew some calls but pouting never won a game. Just ask chelsea.

    I feel like 2-0 in the Camp Nou is definitely doable and I hope our boys are as fired up as I am for the 2nd leg.

  18. Karo
    April 20, 2010

    Just like the title says Keep Your Heads Up guys! I’m sure our boys will pull it off in the Camp Nou. I’d like to see Pep start with the 4-2-4

    Alves Pique Milito Abidal
    Pedro Messi Maxwell/Bojan


  19. evil that women do
    April 20, 2010

    we did not made Mou look genius at all, he planed for this match, even he asked to play with Juve on friday, so let give him a credit for his job.

    i now know that beating Barca is a TROPHY by itself, no body as recall have beaten Barca with more than 2 goals in any stage of CL since 2005.

    we were tired, we looked flat and plain and that’s sums it all. i wouldn’t criticize any player nor Pep at all, they played their best and the road trip all the way from Spain across France to Italy tell the story.

    i know we gonna look diffrent at the Camp Nou, in fact, Pep did Not win any away game in his career with barca at all.

    Camp Nou has this special spell.

  20. Museum
    April 20, 2010

    Did anyone think the Abidal for Ibra substitution was a bit odd when we needed a goal? Maybe he wasn’t influential to that point, but still, the odds of him pulling something out of nowhere are pretty decent.

  21. Museum
    April 21, 2010

    One thing I won’t miss about this great era we’re in right now – When I would watch Barca before and we’d score, it would be hugely exciting. It still is great, of course, but it’s different now. When we put it in the net, it’s just like “OK, things are going properly, as they should.” I don’t get the same rush because I’m expecting things to go a certain way every time I watch. You know how heroin addicts say they don’t get high after awhile, they just keep doing it because their bodies need it to function properly? That’s sort of where I’m getting towards. Not that extreme by any means, I still get high from the great play we usually have. It’s just hard not to feel spoiled after awhile, and that annoys me. I don’t want to be one of those rich sixteen year old girls on TV who complain when they don’t get a Porsche for their birthday. I need to shake this.

    Anyway, that feeling makes losing 3-1 more difficult to accept than it normally would be I think.

  22. barca96
    April 21, 2010

    pedro and pique were the only players who can be satisfied with themselves..abidal made a difference too!

    isaiah, to be honest, busi should get a higher rating than keita. keita was horrible today. didnt provide anything. before this he made runs up and down the pitch and i can appreciate that, but man cant even pass properly. he doesnt provide any threat.

    the biggest question is, why didnt pep made changes to the midfield?
    we lost control in the midfield. why not bringing yaya in who could protect the ball better and at the same time take shots on goal. pep needs to stop being so stubborn..

  23. barca96
    April 21, 2010

    some thing to smile about..

    I saw that Materazzi was attacking him in the players’ tunnel and I’ve never seen anything like it,” Ibrahimovic told RAI. “If I were him, I’d have left Mario alone, but Materazzi was attacking him and I was stunned. If Materazzi had attacked me like that, I would’ve decked him in a second!

    ibra would’ve knocked materazzi out!!
    i dont think he like materazzi from reading that comment.…league&cc=5901

  24. roja_N
    April 21, 2010

    Hi Isiah…im a regular reader of your blog,…and though i may not comment a lot, i do like to throw in my $0.02 every now and then :). Yesterdays match was sad for me as a fan of barca to watch. Maybe i along with a lot of people here were spoiled by last years achievements, but still….your review sums it up PERFECTLY…..It looked like there was no desire or passion to win. It looked like our players judt did not care. It was shocking, surprising and sad to see them flounder about the pitch like they were. I dont know what it is. i dont buy into the fatigue factor or refereeing biases too much. We’ve had our share of luck with the refs although yesterdays ref did seem a bit skewed. It wouldn’t have mattered anyway in my opinion…we played a champions league semi-final with no heart….and even after luck gave us a break with the first goal, we were playing too half arsed to push for the final. Im really looking for excuses but cant find any and i feel sad. Inter outplayed us not by any tactical genius, but just by having a greater desire to win…thats all there was.

  25. Alexinho
    April 21, 2010

    What a miss Iniesta is. I know that most of us struggle with Guardioila’s playing him in the left-forward spot, but his absence is coming to roost now that Guardiola is playing two fullbacks down the left.

    Visca el Barca. I am confident that a less-rusty Abidal and a less-nostalgic Ibrahimovic, with an undoubtedly more defensive Inter, will get us a 2-0 win at home. Hell, with all the shots that we should have taken, but instead passed (I swear Messi looked like Theo Walcott once or twice), we could’ve had a much brighter looking scoreline.

    That said, hats off to Mourinho. I don’t know if he’s a genius, but he sure knows how to win these games. We might not have played well, but on so many of those counterattacks, the simplest of passes were finding acres of space.

    The only thing that worries me now is: who will play right-back? I’m somewhat bitter about the call on Alves at the end. I think it could have been a penalty, but it was also a real obvious exaggeration for a guy whose reputation precedes him. It was a bit harsh that it was whistled at all, I’ve seen those kinds of contacts go by with a simple play-on from the ref. I feel a bit sorry for Alves, but the other half of me is shouting “stupid!” What’s it going to be…Jeffren time?

    One last thing. I don’t know how many yellows Xavi is on, but lately I’ve noticed that he has a penchant for getting into unnecessary arguments with the ref that get him carded. Something to think about.

    • Whatever
      April 21, 2010

      I’m pretty sure Guardiola will roll out with the same lineup at Camp Nou. Alves will definitely be our rightback, no doubt about it.

  26. vicsoc8
    April 21, 2010

    The turning point for me was when Busquets was trying to shimmy along the sideline past two Inter players. He gets clipped a little by the first, but gets past him and then Zanetti just steals the ball like the man he is and Busquets fouls him. After the call Busquets stands up with the ball and spikes it into the ground, and gets a deserved yellow.

    First of all, What the hell is Busquets doing trying to beat two Inter players on the sideline?

    More importantly, that shit is contagious. We can’t have players bringing that type of negative energy to the team. You get a bad call? Smirk a little at the ref, and get your head back into the game. Your teammates draw energy from you, and acting like a petulant child with the ref makes it harder for your teammates to stay mentally in the game. So suck it up, start doing the simple things right, and always maintain a positive attitude. This doesn’t only apply to Busquets, but to many of our players.

    On the positive side, Pique looks like a future captain out there. He plays with confidence and purpose and never loses his cool. I wish it would rub off on some of his teammates, and quickly too.

  27. Jnice
    April 21, 2010

    Really dissapointed in our boys today. Didn’t show up with the right mentality for me. Dissapointing effort in all honesty. We can score goals at home, but I doubt we will advance. Congrats to Inter.

    Let’s hope we can at least buckle down in the league and win our remaining games. We are in great danger of going trophyless in that too.

    Re: the first goal- If you look back it, Alves was sucked in by Milito because he wasn’t properly marked, and Pedro just watches as Alves goes and doesn’t fill it at all. I don’t know, poor defending throughout the match.

  28. Jnice
    April 21, 2010


    Disappointed that our players are such sore losers. All of them acknowledge Inter was the better team, but all of them are talking about the referees as if they have never benefited from bad calls, missed calls, whatever. Do they not remember what happened a year ago? Our image looks horrible right now. Instead of saying “Inter played a great game, but this tie isn’t over, we our confident we can overcome them at home” they fucking cry. It’s unacceptable to me.

    • Corrine
      April 21, 2010

      was just thinking about that. it’s always because the team didn’t wanna play or the ref made every call against them. i’ve avoided everything that has had to do with post-match except i shamefully stumbled upon mourinho’s comments


      that response from him still got my blood boiling despite mildly agreeing with him aha. but whatever mourinho is an asshole, the sky is blue, water is wet etc etc

  29. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    Appropriate post Isaiah.

    On to the game. My god, that was painful to watch. Whoever said it’s like a break up, is spot on. Good thing I decided to watch the game after my work for the day, or else… I am sad, crushed. Right now, I don’t think I can do anything productive, and I don’t want to 🙁 we were 2nd best on the night, we didn’t take our chances, I accept and credits to Inter as well. but I’ll take the away goal. As long as the team has the desire they will overturn this setback. This is not done yet. Now that we’ve managed a dull 0-0, a painful loss by 2 goals no less, can we get a string of comfortable wins from now on? Surely that’s enough bad result for the season? Visca Barca!

  30. Memorylane
    April 21, 2010

    Is Alves out for the return leg? If that is the case then wow we are out.
    Busi yesterday was exposed for all his short coming in no shape or form is that man a world class DM we needed Toure out there and Keita not much to be said about him other then it didn’t surprise me 1 bit how bad he was yesterday.

    How nice it would have been to reach the final in the Bernabau

    • jordi™
      April 21, 2010

      I dont think dani is out, only Puyi is out

  31. Corrine
    April 21, 2010

    toure yaya nike spot to lift the mood!! mommy, i have a crush on this boy from a soccer team, his name is yaya

  32. stephen
    April 21, 2010

    I am as disappointed as anyone else. We’ve had bad refereeing the entire.. century. Lets move on. Keita wtf? Stay on your feet.

    There could be books written on what we couldve done, but can we write a library on what we WILL do??? Please!

    I think we will overcome and make it more historical.

    ps: im so very glad Abidal is back. and hopefully for the rest of the season.

  33. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    I guess mourinho is gonna be EE’s next coach.

  34. y2k156
    April 21, 2010

    I have to say that am gutted because of loss.

    Inter played well so i do not have too many complaints. It would have been nice to get a decent and balanced referee though but it seems impossible in european or liga games nowadays. It not just us who has suffered in hands of refs. Zanetti was class yesterday.

    We have mountain to climb and need fair bit of luck. At this stage in competition, every one needs luck. Fingers crossed and next wednesday cannot come soon enough.

    Alves did not get penalty because he is getting reputation as diver. He and Busi do need to clean up their act though Busi was fairly good yeseterday. Waving hands has not helped any team.

  35. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    Is Inter gonna wear white next week?

  36. unreal2
    April 21, 2010

    okay… now the bottom line is that we suck with ibra… i know it is hard to take but guys, all the matches this season in which we have performed exceptionally well have come without ibra (except arsenal 1st leg). we move better without him.

  37. tom
    April 21, 2010

    Great review Isaiah… As for the substitutions, I never really understood why Pep wouldn’t get Bojan in. He has played very well in his last games and he should have been substituted for Keita or Busi. He should start at Camp Nou, I believe, and not Ibra(although I love Ibra).


  38. Sal
    April 21, 2010

    Pep was the big REASON why we lost. Everyone knew that MAXWELL was the weak link. Only he didn’t know it. All 3 goals came from Maxwell sides. Only thing Mourinhio had to do was to attack that weak link and it payed off. As soon as Abidal came on, it was a different story. Pep was stupid to do this, together wth playing Busi. If we had played Abidal and yayha we would have won 3-0 comfortabally. Maxwell wasn’t good enough for Inter why should he be good enough for Barca??

    • Jim
      April 21, 2010

      Woah! In what way was Maxwell the weak link ? Apart from the fact that Ibra should have at least had a decent scoring chance from his first cross and the the fact that he alone made our only goal, the first goal came from a rotten Eto’o cross where we had three players in the middle marking two waiting for it and nobody made a tackle. Maxwell blocked the dangerous cross just in front of the keeper but Eto’o hooked it back. No danger. Dani got sucked in leaving Sneijders free ( where was Pedro who failed to go with him and stood and watched it develop?

      Second goal Messi and co (3 of them) watched Inter run off into the distance, Maxwell tried to cut off the pass to Milito and failed ( okay partial blame) but still left enough to cover. Keita got back in time but made no attempt to cut off the ball to Maicon.

      Third goal was blatantly offside and just a rotten decision ( and did come from the worst header I’ve seen in a long time. )

      How does this equate to Maxwell being the weak link? Happy to hear your explanation.

  39. aku
    April 21, 2010

    i’m totally with you unreal2. I think that we moved better, creating chances, opened up spaces when Ibra is not around. I found that Ibra is kind of player who is lacking of ball control skills and like to reverse the ball backward instead of moving forward. He is too big to sneak like a rat between the defenders and therefore he can’t open the space for Messi to go in.

    Just look back when we demolished Arsenal forth week ago. I personally think that Ibra should not start at Camp Nou. Let Messi runs the show and probably Henry will be given a task as centre.

    I’m totally believe that Barca we’ll bring them down at our cursed ground next week. Trust me. Barca!!

    • stephen
      April 21, 2010

      Disagree… the “ton of space” opened when Abidal came on, but notice all the balls that made it to pique in the MIDDLE, Ibrah quality first touch, wouldve put it behind the net.

      Its unfortunate, but I’d rather have Ibrah than Henry any day, Ibrah can at least complete some passes.

  40. Reagan
    April 21, 2010

    Call me a sour puss but we all knew this lack of depth would catch up with us! Pep had absolutely no-one he could bring to make a quick difference. Absolutely noone! Henry! You shmuck! What the hell is wrong with you? Bojan needs to grow up a lot quicker to play games like this and besides the two of them there was nobody pep to turn to to add fresh legs and a new dimension to the game with the Inter players tiring.

    This defeat hurts more for all the wrong reasons.. as many of you guys have posted, it seemed like we couldn’t have cared less in the first half and beginning of the second half. tiredness? perhaps

    You guys have to do the business at home!! You just have to!

  41. Memorylane
    April 21, 2010
    A question that’s been long over due, no 1 can tell me had Yaya played the outcome would been different.

    Had Iniesta been fit that would have taken pressure of Busi and our defense. But I can’t stand a fit Toure on the bench when our midfield is being dominated.

    What I’ve been saying for months sounding like a broken record regarding Keita being clueless on the attack and Busi inevitably will be exposed against top opposition in the champions league all came true in the end and potentially has cost us once in a lifetime trip to the Bernabau :\ :\

  42. Eklavya
    April 21, 2010

    I don’t think there was any penalty on Alves really. It looked like he dived to me. Yuup.

    • Sal
      April 21, 2010

      I agree, we have no depth, last season we had Gudjohnsson and Lheb, now we have nothing. Either we trust players like Jeffren, Dos Santos in these big games or we buy some quality players. Pep trusts them only against weak la lig asides because he know they are not (yet) ready for these big games. So he should have bought a Deco-type of technical attacking midfielder. I really hope Fabregas comes, we need him bad.

      For teh Xerez game PEP should rest key players, I hope is is not stupid to start Messi Xavi Pique in this game.

      we should play like this:


      Puyol Marquez (save Milito for inter) Chigry Abidal

      Busi Maxwell/Keita

      Bojan Zlatan henry (definatly rest Pedro and Messi)

  43. Sal
    April 21, 2010

    I hope Pep starts resting players now. I tota

  44. Henke
    April 21, 2010

    The first goal was’nt Alves’s fault. He was in need to go with Pandev. I think it was Busquets’s “DefensiveMidfilder” fault.

  45. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    That pk call on Alves is a close one. Some refs give some don’t but all the bad calls he’s been getting isn’t a coincidence. He’s got a reputation for play acting so now the calls are exaggerated as well. I fear Busquets will be the same if he doesn’t mend his ways lol.

    Good thing Abidal is back, we’ll need him if we are to protect a 2-0 score at camp nou.

  46. y2k156
    April 21, 2010

    I agree that Xavi and Messi need to be rested against Xerez. They have played too many clutch games and need a bit of breather to get their energies.

    To be honest, if i feel next week that we tried our damndest i shall be happy, irrespective of result. It will be a huge match and Inter are masters of defending. Though i do think that the away goal we scored was quite important. It does give me hope. Winning 2-0 against Inter is tough but definitely not impossible. I still give 40% chance that we will make through.

  47. Helge
    April 21, 2010

    Any news on Maicon’s injury?

    And if we are out of the CL by next Wednesday, we will 100% focus on la Liga. I’m sure we will win la Liga then!

    • April 21, 2010

      I read somewhere he lost a tooth but i’m not to sure to what extent the injury is.

  48. barca96
    April 21, 2010

    pep doesn’t even trust yaya anymore..which saddens me..
    pep needs to stop this beef with yaya.yes he had a bad match against espanyol, but cmon, everyone has a bad match once in a while.
    we clearly needed to man up our midfield but pep is too stubborn sometimes.

  49. Memorylane
    April 21, 2010

    What is the beef between them? That’s what everyone wants to know because it sure doesn’t come down to on field performances that’s for sure.

    Ultimately as good as Pep has been to Barca I’d be very bitter if we get knocked out. Leaving Toure who on his day is the best DM in the world is just absurd to me.
    My starting eleven would have been:
    Alves Pique Puyol Abidal


    Xavi Toure

    Messi Henry Pedro

    Whats done is done lets hope whatever problem Pep has if there is indeed a problem then I hope it sorts it self out before next Wednesday……..

  50. April 21, 2010

    Don’t worry guys, We’ll bounce back next week. A defeat even as painful as this will do us good.

    First time conceding 3 this season, first time losing more than 2 goals for PEP’s team. There’s always first time.

    Have a little faith.

  51. Mikel
    April 21, 2010

    I believe we will get to the final. 2-0 is easy for Barca at the Camp Nou.
    It’s a historic chance to get to 2 consecutive finals and Barca simply won’t let that escape.

  52. Helge
    April 21, 2010

    And some stats about our home CL knockout matches under Pep to increase faith:
    4-0 against Stuttgart, 4-0 against Arsenal, 4-0 against Bayern, 5-2 against Olympique Lyon

    I’ll not mention Chelsea here, especially given the fact that Inter is far more like Chelsea than like any of the above mentioned clubs – and I don’t want to destroy faith 😀

    • Jose
      April 21, 2010

      Why not mention Chelsea? Our first leg with them was also a poor result and after the first leg we were called whiners and poor sports because we complained about the refereeing. If anything, the events of last year give me the belief that we can mentally recover from such a poor attitude in the first leg and take control of the tie in the second.

      Only now we’re at home. And we have to score twice.

      • Helge
        April 21, 2010

        But Chelsea came to our house with the aim of defending a 0-0. That’s the same game plan as Inter will most-likely be using…

  53. Memorylane
    April 21, 2010

    Ibra wasn’t playing in any of those games………… Just something for y’all to think about.

    • Jnice
      April 21, 2010

      He did play in the game where we scored 2 goals away for the 1st time in the knockout round under Pep…

      If Ibra is fit, he will play. I can’t imagine what he and his agent would have to say if he didn’t play in the deciding game against Inter. Especially since they complained after the Stuttgart match.

  54. Memorylane
    April 21, 2010

    If Toure can be benched after coming of the season he did then Ibra should have no problem either considering how bad he was last night and other then the Arsenal game what has he done to justify his big money swap.

    Anyway lets forget all that I for 1 will not be watching next weeks game I’m not built for it…

    • Panderton
      April 21, 2010

      Ermm score a crucial equalizer against VfB Stuttgart in the CL last 16 and score the winner during El Clásico at Camp Nou? However, in 40 games (in all competitions) this season he has score 20 goals and provided 11 assists. Not worth the money.

  55. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    That’s Pedro’s 20th goal? Not bad for a debut season!

  56. fcbfan
    April 21, 2010

    Good to read ppl criticise Ibra. That means he’s going to score some crucial goals for us soon.

  57. cliveee
    April 21, 2010

    TWO GOALS and we will be in the final! VISCA BARCA!

  58. skyislm
    April 22, 2010

    sorry, I did not read the rest of the comments, so may be this is already said:

    In my humble opinion Ibra’s rating should be “0”. black hole! pathetic work rate. our front 3 or front 2 are the real defenders. when they are not upto the task, we lose.

    And Guardiola’s should be “1”. When you don’t sub bad players (players who are bad in a given day), it sends wrong signals to the bench. i would have liked the following substitutions:
    1)bojan for ibra (at 60min)
    2)yaya for biscuit (at 60 min)
    3)henry for messi (at 75min)

    There is nothing in this match to press the panic button – the only reason we lost this was “fatigue”. If you thought the body language of our guys was bad, that is because they were tired. Physically.

    Before I leave, two words:
    1. poor xerez.
    2. poorer mourinho!

  59. Ethan
    April 22, 2010

    i just have to say this, the ref ruined the game. i am not one to blame a game on the ref, but this one i most certainly will. again and again and again. yes we didnt play well, but how can u when a ref is literally taking the wind out of our sails. card after card, when they when in to hurt us with every tackle, getting nothing. what kind of message do u think that sends to the players? how do u think they respond mentally knowing that they could be hurt on any play with the ball bc the ref has no interest in protecting them, and with inter knowing that they could dive bomb for any ball without care. that is dangerous and affects players when they dont want to be out for the season and the world cup. the ref was an absolute disgrace to the game. they should not have gotten the 2nd and 3rd goal. clearly. we desreved a penalty, and i dont care about all this, alves shouldnt go down like he does so he can get those calls, bc obviously we just werent going to get ANY calls. and that is where the real story is. a ref that took us out of this match, just like the ref against chelsea last year got us through to the final, this ref most likely will get them through, and he knows that, mourinho knows that, everyone knows that. and i guess we cant really say anything bc of what happened last year, but the fact it was call after call after call, and i mean wrong call after wrong call. that offside goal was disgusting, the yellow cards we received were disgusting, the ref looking the other way on every occasion against us was disgusting, and most importantly, if UEFA continues to disregard games like this, it will ruin any purity left in the competition. they obviously dont care, and its sad. i dont want to see teams being allowed to injure players knowing they wont get in trouble, and i dont want players worried about being injured bc they are not being protected. it turns a game that should be fun to a game that is awful to watch. when they went up 3-1 i literally stopped watching the game bc it didnt matter what we did, nothing was changing. the ref was a genius, he fucked up the players mentally and let mourinho know he could let his players do whatever they wanted. disgraceful. now lets hope we play like the real barca, and have a ref that protects players and lets inter know if they are going to play with 10 men behind the ball, and they are going to foul, they will get cards and give away free kicks, and we will take them out. if we can play through what happened next week, we should get through easily. but lets see just how tough this team is mentally and hope the integrity of the game is brought back so that the best team actually wins, even if that is Inter. Visca El Barca.

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