Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Eight Is Enough

Thanks to a scheduling quirk where both Milan team cannot host UEFA matches on consecutive days, today the Champions League will shrink from 9 to 8 and the quarterfinals will be set.

Inter Milan-Liverpool
ESPN2, 12.45 p.m. {maybe}

Liverpool bring a 2-0 lead into this 2nd leg, but something tells me that Inter are going to get it done today, either 2-0 and get to extra time or 3-0. Just a hunch. Of course Torres is completely en fuego at the moment for Liverpool, and 1 goal on the road will pretty much sew it up, as it would necessitate no less than 4 goals from Inter. And no one scores 4 goals against The Pool {except Arsenal's B team of course}.


Inter Milan 0-1 Liverpool.
Liverpool advance 3-0 on aggregate.

Very similar to first leg. Inter create chances but can't finish them off, then have a dude sent off kind of harshly for 2 dodgy yellow cards, and are forced to play damn near all of the 2nd half with 10 men. Liverpool score a goal that arguably wouldn't have been conceded if it was 11v11.

Tough not to feel bad for Inter. I think they were pretty hard done by in both legs with the sendings off, and had to play 100 of the 180 minutes a man down. This after going out in 3 of the previous 4 years on the away goals rule {getting knocked out of a competition when you don't technically lose is a kick in the balls in any year, but 3 in 4 years is startling}. But, such is life.

As for The Pool, not sure what to make of them. They looked pretty impotent in both legs when both sides were at full strength, and had the benefit of playing 100 of 180 minutes a man up. But full credit to them, they did what you have to do when you get such an advantage: they put their opponent to the sword.

They are so tricky- so average in the EPL, but when that Champions League hymn is played something Pavlovian happens with them and they turn into a a club that just gets it done, no matter the opposition. Bizarre.


beast in 'bama said...


Golden Boy strikes again!

Kanu said...

That was a great goal- dude is beyond on fire at the moment.

Congrats man, they did what you have to do when you are a man up for 100 of the 180 miuntes: put your opponent to the sword.

Another shitty game for us neutrals ruined by an early and dodgy sending off.

Now we have to wait until Friday for the draw...

beast in 'bama said...

Was he paid per yellow card issued?

Inter had all kinds of chances, and they blew them all. I don't feel great about either one of these games with Inter - except for Torres' and Gerrard's (game 1) brilliance. Kind of sums up the whole season for Liverpool.

Kanu said...

Funny, I was watching at the pub and thinking "damn, this dude is handing out cards like a salesman on 100% commission".

One way of looking at it is that Pool were crap and needed a man advantage to score. Another way to look at it is that once again they did what they needed to do.

Either way, they're in it, and you have to be in it to win it.

Hard for me not to feel bad for Inter, I thought they were hard done by in both legs, after going out on away goals in 3 of the 4 previous years. Such is life, and they 'll win their first 'real' scudetto since 1989 this year, so not a bad year for them overall.

beast in 'bama said...

The last paragraph of your update is so true. Without any data to substantiate this, I believe it's Benitez' oft-maligned "rotation" that does it for them in the CL - and subsequently works against them in the Prem. He's just plain gotten it DONE in the CL over an extended period of time. He must know something.

However, I will say that since the Barnsley debacle, he's stuck with pretty much the same lineup (barring suspensions) and they're on fire, finally getting 3-1 and 4-0 results against lesser opposition like I expected back in October.