Thursday, May 28, 2009

Man United loses Champions League title

The clash between the two best football teams in Europe has to be a big ticket event. The fans expected the match between the two teams Barcelona and Manchester United in Champions league final 2009 would be of a ferocious one. With the best players in either team available to play in the final, it was expected to be a lip smacking encounter. But more often than not, big tickets are often a big letdown. Even this one was as Manchester United was easily and comprehensively beaten by the more agile Barcelona team in the final played in Rome yesterday.

With two successive titles already in their kitty, United was looking for a third title this year and wanted to be the first team to do so. However, they appeared a tad numb on the big occasion compared to their opponents who appeared exhilaratingly alive. Barcelona defenders were spot on to deny any freedom to Ronaldo and Rooney whereas serious defense errors by the Man United defenders cost them not only the match but also the championship. There were a few goal scoring opportunities for United early on but they weren’t able to capitalize.

Barcelona seized the first available opportunity in the 9th minute when Samuel E’to opened the scoring with his artistic touch by easily beating the unbeatable Van Der Sar. Post the first goal, United surprisingly never upped the tempo of their game and looked sluggish giving away many opportunities only to be saved by the brilliance of their goal keeper. However, they failed to read one superb pass by Xavi in the 70th minute and allowed the Barca fire power Messi to get away by scoring a header. There was no Ferdinand, no O’shea nearby when Messi strolled in United area. Soon the game was out of reach.

The United Manager Sir Alex Fergusson made important substitutions by bringing in Tevez and Berbatov but both of them appeared a mere shadow of their previous selves. A flood of memories overwhelms me when exactly a year back, United looked unbeatable and what a match they played against Chelsea to retain the title. This explains the improbable nature of triumph. This was a third trophy for the Barcelona team. A few players were seen shedding tears of joy after touching the trophy. The master tactician Sir Alex lost out against the 38 year old Barca coach Pep Guardialo this time. Sir Alex meanwhile has already his eyes set upon the trophies next year and for sure Man United is a team to watch out for next season as well.

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