Wednesday, April 25, 2007

UEFA CL Semi finals ManU vs AC Milan

Well for one I am a Manchester United fan and a fan of football so to see AC Milan in the Champions League and to make it to the semi finals was quite upsetting to me. You may wonder why, but after all the match fixing in the serie A last season you ask how the hell did AC Milan make it back into the Champions League. It seems as if they weren't even punished for all the match fixing that happened and why did Juventus get tosses into Serie B and Milan kept in Serie A and still made the Champions League??? Well that is a question and issue for another day... I am not even going to bring up the issue with Italian fans and the cops that got killed or the way the English fans were attacked in Rome during the last round.

This match on any other day would have been one sided.. that is if Manchester United had their first choice starting eleven available for selection against the AC Milan first eleven. That is not the case so we won't dwell on that either. Armed by a manager that knows how to get the best out of his players, ManU started a reasonable second string back four with Patrice Evra being the only starter that still remained in the back four. SAF sacrificed Alan Smith for Darren Fletcher to protect the back four which was well understood. The match started and both teams were really trying to feel eachother out... United on almost their first true attack scored an interesting goal that the officials took most of the match trying to decide whether to credit Christiano Ronaldo or Dida.. Right after that goal United still kept sleep walking and now the aftermath of the Roma debacle was starting to kick in as the United team was sorta playing with over confidence. At some point it seemed like Christiano was trying to prove the whole world right that he is the best player on the field by taking on the entire Milan team which made it easy for Reno "Bulldog" Gattuso to handle his business by shutting him down. Expending that much energy going forward didn't help because you could see Ronaldo failing to help get back on defense. Magicians like Scholesy and Giggsy couldn't even get into the game as you watch Kaka not only get the first goal but a second one also. The first I charge right back to Van da Saar and I still wonder how long SAF is going to keep accepting his errors before he puts Kusciak in goal. It was easy for the surgeon general Seedorf to start tearing the United team apart and quite frankly the fellas did nothing to stop him. Old Trafford was quiet as it seemed like Milan was here to stop a dream again but knowing that half time was nearing SAF will make the needed adjustment and also get in his players arses to get busy.
The second half starts and u can see much of the same but the United players trying to get at it. SAF immediately put man maker extra ordinare on Kaka... he made Wes Brown responsible for Kaka which in turn took him out of the game. Darren Fletcher got the lads kicking with his energy and all of a sudden it was very clear that United really wanted this result. They started exploiting the Milan team with their pace, movement and effective passing and all of a sudden players like Scholes and Giggs came to life. Even the calls were starting to come United's way and all the 50-50 balls were now going in ManU's favour. It was great to watch as the never say die attitude of the ManU team this season kick in and you could tell after Rooney scored to tie the game, United looked to win and get one or two goals.

Overall it was a very well played match.. ManU started strong and ended strong pulled out a win at home.. there is still work left to be done in Milan. Hopefully some of the ManU defenders will be back for the second leg to make it more exciting. My man of the match today was SAF... he made the right adjustments and motivated his team to come back.

See you in the second leg and the all English finals :-)


AdeyKop said...

Great game. Rooney took his goals well... Carrick was impressive, I think i am getting to like him. He is not a dirty player. Scholes passing to Rooney for the second goal is not something you learn on the training pitch. Pure gunius.. Shame Evra got himself a yellow card. I think Man U ll definately score in Milan... Hopefully Gusstuso stays out... Looking forward to the game tonight, Hope the best team wins and the loser dont cry.......LOL....

Glendon said...

Kaka did tear up that United defense on both goals. Those were SWEET goals for anybody to get. Heinze is just too slow to mark up. Good overall performance from United and nice first touch goal at the end from Wazza catching Dida out of place. Precious win for United.

What is it that SAF says on that Nike advertisement, something to the effect of , "He'll drive me mad, that boy!"

The Gaffer said...

I have always talked about Carrick. Wait till he has spent a second season in the ManU system he will walk into the English National side but that is not saying much these days. His passes are always on the ground and right to the strikers foot. He needs to work on his left foot 'cos he had a couple of chances yesterday that he couldn't put away.

I don't think Heinze is slow it is just his reading of the game is not that of a central defender. He expects someone to be behind him to cover which is different when you are a central defender.

I thought the yellow card to Evra was harsh. That match was quite clean and if Gattuso could leave the field without a card no one should have gotten one.

Glendon said...

That yellow to Evra was completey messed up. Yeah, you have a point with Heinze playing out of position. Mqybe that is why he looked so lost out there?