Evra ready for Messi meeting

May 22, 2009

“Reduce the Champions League final to a battle of its two premier talents and it becomes Lionel Messi against Cristiano Ronaldo. The equation, of course, is more complicated, but the decisive duel may involve Messi. The question of how to halt the Argentine has been posed regularly in a season that has brought 41 goals for club and country.” (ESPN)

The Global Sports Forum: Champions League Edition (NYT)
“Welcome to our regular meeting of the minds on international sport. The occasion for this Global Sports Forum is a grand one: the UEFA Champions League final in Rome on May 27 between last season’s champion Manchester United and Barcelona. With no World Cup finals or European Championship to distract the planet in 2009, this is unquestionably the match of the year, and it is also a reassuring development for those who like their soccer flashy and generally positive.”

Thierry Henry Back In Barcelona Training (Goal)
“Thierry Henry resumed training with the Barcelona first team on Friday morning for the first time since suffering an injury, thus taking an important step towards playing in the Champions League final.”

Iniesta & Henry Looking Good For Champions League Final (SPANISH FOOTBALL & SPORTS)
“All the news from ‘Camp Barça’ indicates that it’s all good. Two vital pieces in the FC BARCELONA line-ups are evolving favourably from their injuries & everything indicates that they will be present, available & roaring to go for Barça at the upcoming 27th of May Champions League Final against MANCHESTER UNITED.”

Xavi: Barca Have Played The Best Football In Europe (Goal)
“Xavi thinks that Barcelona have played the best football in Europe this season and says they deserve to win the Champions League next week. The Catalans meet Manchester United in the final and have the chance to win an historic treble if they do triumph in Rome.”

Messi to overshadow Ronaldo, say the stats (TheGame)
“Champions League finals can often be settled by relative unknowns – put your hands up if you had heard of Juliano Belletti before his late goal beat Arsenal – but many neutrals are hoping that next Wednesday’s match between Barcelona and Manchester United comes down to a battle of skills between the two teams’ great entertainers, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.”

Devil’s in the Detail for Barca (rivals)
“The question on everyone’s lips is who is the best footballer in the world – Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi? There is much debate, too, about the attacking probing of Barcelona and the lightning-fast counter-attacking of Manchester United, while many experts predict a footballing classic in what has been billed the ‘Dream final’.”