Barcelona 5-0 Real Madrid: historic Barca win

November 30, 2010

Pep Guardiola
“Barcelona produced a truly legendary performance to go top of the table. Pep Guardiola deviated little from his favoured XI so far this season – the closest thing to a surprise was at left-back, where Eric Abidal played ahead of Maxwell. Lionel Messi started in the centre, with David Villa on the left.” (Zonal Marking)

Barcelona as Slime
“Poor Sergio Ramos — not to excuse or justify him, of course, but he’s an elite athlete, accustomed from childhood to running circles around other people, and now, before an enormous world-wide audience, to have people running circles around him — and so evidently enjoying it — well, that’s an insult not to be borne, I suppose. Everyone gets beaten sometimes: even Messi was dispossessed a couple of times yesterday. But to be humiliated for ninety minutes almost without respite, as Real Madrid’s players were yesterday . . . that doesn’t happen very often at that level of sport.” (Run of Play)

Barca teaches Real a master class
“Greatness is not measured in medals alone but in style. ‘Great clubs,’ Arrigo Sacchi said, ‘have had one thing in common throughout history, regardless of era and tactics. They owned the pitch and they owned the ball. That means when you have the ball, you dictate play and when you are defending, you control the space.’ There can hardly have been any doubt about the greatness of Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona, but beating Real Madrid 5-0 confirmed its place in the pantheon.” (SI)

David Villa strikes twice as slick Barcelona thrash Real Madrid
“José Mourinho always said that his side would lose one day but he did not expect to lose like this – not after enjoying the greatest start of any coach in Real Madrid’s history. His team, so impermeable before, were punctured. Five times. They were sunk. A 5-0 victory for Barcelona was described by the Madrid coach as a ‘historically bad result’ for his club – it was the worst defeat he has suffered in his career.” (Guardian)

No contest in clasico
“No contest. Those are the only two words that can sum up the clasico, a disappointing occasion if you’d been expecting an evenly-fought slug-out, a euphoric one if you’d been hoping that Barcelona could re-stamp their authority on the Spanish scene, after their rivals’ previously unbeaten start to the season. Whatever, the least one expected was a manita (little hand), the phrase reserved for games that end in a 5-0 scoreline. In some ways, they’re worse than a 6-0 result, because the latter has no nickname, no bruising synonym created to humiliate.” (ESPN)

Barca simply the best after Real rout
“It was said that Monday night’s game at Camp Nou – hyped like few other domestic league ties in the history of the game – would settle two raging debates: who are the best team in the world, and who is the best player in the world? If this solitary match could be said to be decisive in that regard, then the judgement was emphatic. It left no room whatsoever for argument.” (ESPN)

FC Barcelona 5-0 Real Madrid (El Clasico) – Video Highlights, Recap, and Match Stats – La Liga
(The 90th Minute)

Video of the Week: Only A Game, Part Two: The Manager

November 30, 2010

“We’re moving onto Part Two of the 1986 BBC series ‘Only A Game’ this evening, and this week’s episode focusses on the role of the manager within Scottish football. There can be little doubt that, at the very least between the 1950s and the 1980s, Scotland provided some of the greatest football managers that the world game had to offer. Unsurprisingly, this episode of the programme focusses in part on Matt Busby, Bill Shankly and Jock Stein, as well as taking a look at the swash-buckling young manager of Aberdeen at the time, one Alex Ferguson. Narrated by William McIlvanney, this video comes in five parts and our thanks go to the original uploader.” (twohundredpercent)

The Existential Reinvention Of Joao Moutinbo

November 30, 2010

“Round Twelve in Portugal saw one player return from whence he came, and put the exclamation point on his personal and footballing transformation. Ben Shave has the story.” <a href=”Round Twelve in Portugal saw one player return from whence he came, and put the exclamation point on his personal and footballing transformation. Ben Shave has the story.” (In Bed With Marabona)

Money Makes The World Cup Go Round

November 30, 2010

Sepp Blatter
“As the World Cup (excuse me, the 2010 FIFA World Cup) was officially declared open last week amid great colour and emotion, one man in particular beamed with pride. That man was Joseph ‘Sepp’ Blatter, the long-standing President of FIFA, whose bold decision to award the most prestigious competition in world football to South Africa had paid off – in every sense of the term.” (The Swiss Ramble)

Panorama: The Righi Programme at the Right Time
“Have we completely missed the point? I watched investigative journalist Andrew Jennings’ Panorama programme on extensive bribe-taking among high-ranking FIFA executive committee members (unlike England 2018 bid chief Andy Anson, it would seem). So I find it hard to imagine that any of those named would vote for England to host the 2018 FIFA World Cup, and I doubt whether England will ‘get’ any World Cup in the lifetime of Sepp Blatter or his fellow-travellers in the FIFA hierarchy – present and future.” (twohundredpercent)

Tottenham 2-1 Liverpool: Lennon wins it late

November 30, 2010

“Spurs came from behind yet again to record a last-gasp victory. Harry Redknapp continued with his 4-4-1-1 system, with Rafael van der Vaart off Peter Crouch, and Jermain Defoe on the bench. Wilson Palacios was chosen in the holding role – the rest of the side was as excpected.” (Zonal Marking)

The unseen LFC revolution
“It’s been a year of change at Liverpool Football Club. New faces in the dugout and boardroom have hogged the headlines, but away from the leer of the camera lens, along corridors where journalists rarely stray, a quieter revolution has been taking place. This summer, Dr Peter Brukner was employed to head a new sports science and medical team. His brief was simple: bring the methods which have earned him respect the world over – methods largely ignored to date within football – to Melwood.” (Liverpool FC)