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A Winter's Tale

Uefa Champions League 2011/2012

UCL 2011/2012  

5 members have voted

  1. 1. Who Will Win the Champions League

    • FC Barcelona
    • Manchester United
      0
    • Chelsea FC
    • FC Bayern Munich
    • Arsenal FC
      0
    • Real Madrid CF
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    • FC Porto
      0
    • FC Inter Milan
      0
    • AC Milan
      0
    • Olympique Lyonnais
      0
    • FC Shaktar Donetsk
      0
    • Valencial CF
      0
    • SL Benfica
      0
    • Villareal CF
      0
    • CSKA Moscow
      0
    • Olympique de Marseille
      0
    • Zenit St Petersburg
      0
    • AFC Ajax
      0
    • Bayern 04 Leverkusen
      0
    • Manchester City FC
      0
    • Olympiacos FC
      0
    • Lille
      0
    • FC Basel
      0
    • FC BATE Borisov
      0
    • Borussia Dortmond
      0
  2. 2. Who Will Be Top Goal Scorer

    • Lionel Messi
    • Wayne Rooney
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    • Cristiano Ronaldo
    • Sergio Aguero
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    • David Villa
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    • Zlatan Ibrahimovic
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    • Fernando Torres
    • Robin Van Persie
      0
    • Diego Forlan
      0
    • Arjen Robben
      0
    • Mario Gomez
      0
    • Diego Milito
      0
    • Karim Benzema
      0
    • Alexendre Pato
      0
    • Didier Drogba
      0
    • Ashley Young
      0
    • Javier Herandez
      0
    • Cesc Fabregas
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    • Juan Mata
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    • Giusseppe Rossi
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  3. 3. Best Midfielder

    • Iniesta
    • Xavi
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    • Fabregas
    • Lampard
    • Wilshere
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    • Alonso
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    • Fletcher
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    • Schwienstiger
      0
    • Sneijder
      0
    • David Silva
      0
  4. 4. Best Defender

    • Terry
    • Vidic
    • Ferdinand
      0
    • Lahm
    • Puyol
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    • Pique
    • Alves
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    • Cole
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    • Lucio
      0
    • Maicon
      0
  5. 5. Player of the UCL 2011/2012

    • Messi
    • Rooney
    • Ronaldo
      0
    • Iniesta
      0
    • Xavi
      0
    • Fabregas
      0
    • Sneijder
      0
    • Van Persie
      0
    • Aguero
      0
    • Silva
      0
    • Villa
      0
    • Lahm
      0
    • Vidic
      0
    • Pique
      0
    • Puyol
      0
    • Cesar
      0
    • Casillas
      0
    • Nuer
      0
    • Cech


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Also if you can't beat 10 men with Obi Mikel at centre back, then you don't deserve to be labelled as the best team in the world either, but I'm not too surprised really, Barca has at times struggled this season especially in defence, Puyol is past it and Mascharano is not really a centre back.

Chelsea have been lucky but Barca has only themselves to blame really, oh and I don't want Real Madrid in the final, they defensively have not been solid either and I much prefer Bayern on there own ground beating these lot. Knowing our luck, we will finish 4th and Chelsea will win the final.

I'm sure Harry Redknapp will have the biggest grin on his face also, wanting Chelsea to win the final, ham sandwich. rolleyes.gif

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Also if you can't beat 10 men with Obi Mikel at centre back, then you don't deserve to be labelled as the best team in the world either, but I'm not too surprised really, Barca has at times struggled this season especially in defence, Puyol is past it and Mascharano is not really a centre back.

Chelsea have been lucky but Barca has only themselves to blame really, oh and I don't want Real Madrid in the final, they defensively have not been solid either and I much prefer Bayern on there own ground beating these lot. Knowing our luck, we will finish 4th and Chelsea will win the final.

I'm sure Harry Redknapp will have the biggest grin on his face also, wanting Chelsea to win the final, ham sandwich. rolleyes.gif

Newcastle should be going all out for 3rd though with Arsenal faltering!

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Also if you can't beat 10 men with Obi Mikel at centre back, then you don't deserve to be labelled as the best team in the world either,

He wasn't playing at centre back. Have you seen a better side than Barca in the last 50 years? maybe the great Ajax team or IM.

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oh and I don't want Real Madrid in the final, they defensively have not been solid either and I much prefer Bayern on there own ground beating these lot. Knowing our luck, we will finish 4th and Chelsea will win the final.

Solid enough to win the Spanish league. Anyway the thread isn't about an average Newcastle side.

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I see Terry has now backracked on his original comment.

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I'm not a Chelsea fan and I admire Barcelona but I've got to say that was one amazing moment in British football! What an achievment and effort from all the players and for once they've got a manager that I like and perhaps for once they've got a team that I like. Perhaps when you look at it, Chelsea vs Bayern/Madird would make a more interesting final. And what a moment for Fernando Torres who is a player who deserved to score that goal. Barcelona on the other hand are a great team but aren't the greatest of all time as their success seems to evolve around the brilliance of Messi and if you can stop that fella then you can stop Barca. And it seems that Barcelona don't really have a plan B when it comes to alternating styles of football and their defence isn't reliable. There is nothing wrong with being a possesion side but it depends on how it is done. For example you've got possesion style of Madrid, Bilbao, Swansea, Arsenal and in the Dutch teams of the 70s, Brazil teams of the 60s and the Lisbon Lions. I feel that possesion play is the best way to play football but it's how you do it that's most important and you have to be able to do the dirty and solid stuff that Chelsea did tonight. Personally, I feel that Bilbao are a more efficent "team" than the Messi orientated Barca and I believe that the Dutch in the 70s, Brazil 70 and Celtic 67 are examples of more efficient and special styles of football.

Well Done Chelsea! I hope you don't win the tournemant and Newcastle finish 4th in the PL instead but you've deserved the glory of this special night!

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He wasn't playing at centre back. Have you seen a better side than Barca in the last 50 years? maybe the great Ajax team or IM.

I think in terms of individuals, Barca have players any club would love to have but as a team, I'm not too sure, especially on this seasons evidence, struggled against teams away from home, especially in the early part of the season, gived away a 2 goal lead against a newly promoted team before albeit winning 4-2 in the end and conceding 3 at home to another newly promoted team in Granada and in the Madrid game, you seen they struggled when the ball was in the air so I always though Chelsea had a chance and seeing them rated as 10/1 to beat them was quite long odds, thought they be shorter price than that.

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As I said, there is no correct way of playing so can people stop critisizing hoofball or "parking the bus" type of play, Chelsea has been rewarded with the final because of that style of play!

I think if a team wants to be succesful then it can't rely on one way of playing and must be able to adapt. Therefore emphasis on technique and awareness is important through coaching and youth systems. Teams must be able to adapt to changes in a game or the styles of the opposition. Mentality is very important too as the Italians have the collective mentality to score last minute goals and Manchester United have the mentality to win titles. I feel that if you combine all of this and particulary the coaching and development of technique then you have a succesful team. Swansea play a different kind of passing football that can beat "certain teams" whereas Blackburn play the long ball which can cause certain teams problems. I feel that the most succesful styles evolve around possesion but development of technique for teams to be able to change quicky and efficiently in certain scenarios. What I've noticed is that Barcelona haven't got a striker who can head the ball or finish like Drogba, Van Persie... and they haven't got the same wingers who can cross the ball very well like Bale, Giggs and they don't have a midfielder who can score from long ranger like Gerrard or Ronaldo and you can't rely on Xavi or Iniesta scoring against an English, Spannish or German side from a corner.

Barca think they can win by just using possesion.....but they're wrong....they must adapt and alternate their style by using their passing style as a foundation to build on.

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I do believe that Barcelona only got their success last season from the brilliance and continued improvement of Messi, in previous seasons Messi was very good but not quite at his level right now, they had Xavi and Iniesta in midfield but most importantly they had Eto'o, Henry and Ibrahomivic who are proper forwards who will score goals, get into good positions for Barca's midfielders to give the ball too. If Messi had a severe injury then Barca would be in serious trouble so they must get a proper centre forward.

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As a Arsenal fan, I can congratulate Chelsea on a superb performance over both legs. Football is about sticking the ball in the net, the one who gets the most wins it's as simple as that. As pretty as Barca are they have been proven not to be the best in Europe over 180mins of football.

Defending is an art too and people should not forget that, as good as Barca are at going forward like Arsenal they cannot defend so if you can get the ball up the other end you will always get chances.

Hats off to Chelsea tonight.

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I think in terms of individuals, Barca have players any club would love to have but as a team, I'm not too sure,

This smacks of the wonderful weather pundits on this site. Souness reckons it's the best club side he has ever seen. Good enough for me.

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I think in terms of individuals, Barca have players any club would love to have but as a team, I'm not too sure, especially on this seasons evidence, struggled against teams away from home, especially in the early part of the season, gived away a 2 goal lead against a newly promoted team before albeit winning 4-2 in the end and conceding 3 at home to another newly promoted team in Granada and in the Madrid game, you seen they struggled when the ball was in the air so I always though Chelsea had a chance and seeing them rated as 10/1 to beat them was quite long odds, thought they be shorter price than that.

You didn't answer the question.

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Mentality is very important too as the Italians have the collective mentality to score last minute goals

Does that actually mean anything or am I just being thick again?

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As a Chelski fan of over 40 years I'm astonished at some of the comments about Barca - they've been at/near the top of European football for years. Something's gone wrong the last few weeks, but it doesn't make them as bad as some people here are implying.

The final, featuring Chelski's 3rd 11, will be interesting.

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Regarding "correct" and "incorrect" ways of playing, I don't subscribe to the view that any style of play is OK if it gets results. Football, as with a large majority of sporting competitions, is largely dependent on its fan base, and many fans want to be entertained, not just to see their side win.

However, I think the entertainment-draining side of "hoofball" and defensive play are generally overstated. The main problem regarding entertainment is rather those games where teams set out to stifle the opposition without creating much play of their own, resulting in a lack of quality play and very few goalscoring chances. I think the spirited defensive play that Chelsea put up in these two matches against Barcelona actually entertained a lot of people- it was hardly as if the two games were stalemates, Barcelona had plenty of goalscoring chances but a combination of their wastefulness and Chelsea's good defensive play kept their score low, while Chelsea remained a threat on the break.

Overall an excellent result for Chelsea and astonishing to see Torres breaking his goal drought at the end- seriously you could hardly make that up!

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Regarding "correct" and "incorrect" ways of playing, I don't subscribe to the view that any style of play is OK if it gets results. Football, as with a large majority of sporting competitions, is largely dependent on its fan base, and many fans want to be entertained, not just to see their side win.

Couldn't agree more......I seem to remember certain Chelsea fans having a pop at Manchester United for not playing well but still winning......

Chelsea portrayed a formidable defence tonight with Barca suffering the same 'ailment' as Arsenal have traditionally done by playing an attractive passing game but produing no end result. The type of game Barcelona play is risky in as much as a monostrategy with no plan B can become problematic when a team decides to play stubborn like Chelsea did tonight. Statistically Chelsea weren't even on the pitch tonight and Barcelona outplayed them in just about every technical aspect.

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astonishing to see Torres breaking his goal drought at the end- seriously you could hardly make that up!

So he should for his price tag and wages. I'd like to go into work and demand 100+k a week without actually producing what I'd advertised in my interview! Chelsea buying Torres has been like me splashing out on a car, only to find out it now has no engine!

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Personally I don't think you can criticize Barcelona, they are after all a very good at pinging that ball about. The one statistics that worries me is that they have scored 97 goals this season (now 99) and Messi had scored 67 of those, perfectly honest with you he didn't score in the last 3 games.... so I think that would probably explain the reasons why Barcelona have fallen short against Chelsea twice and against Real Madrid at the weekend.

I suspect they will bounce back this weekend in the La Liga. But what's immense is two of the richest clubs in the world, Europes Number 1 and 2 (according to last years UCL final) could become trophy less at the end of the season.

Barcelona and Manchester United. Strange Season that's for sure. Even Liverpool have a trophy to there stadium sized trophy cabinet.

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Personally I don't think you can criticize Barcelona, they are after all a very good at pinging that ball about. The one statistics that worries me is that they have scored 97 goals this season (now 99) and Messi had scored 67 of those, perfectly honest with you he didn't score in the last 3 games.... so I think that would probably explain the reasons why Barcelona have fallen short against Chelsea twice and against Real Madrid at the weekend.

I suspect they will bounce back this weekend in the La Liga. But what's immense is two of the richest clubs in the world, Europes Number 1 and 2 (according to last years UCL final) could become trophy less at the end of the season.

Barcelona and Manchester United. Strange Season that's for sure. Even Liverpool have a trophy to there stadium sized trophy cabinet.

Yes he should spread his wings to Old Trafford. He'd certainly ruffle a few Premier League feathers blum.gif

I actually miss the days of Van Nistelrooy......a goal machine of a high caliber. People criticised the football we played with him in the team but boy we could always rely on him to produce the goods. The days of Van Nistelrooy and Henry banging in 40 goals a season each for Man U and Arsenal respectively were good days for the Prem.

Ferguson has no option this summer other than to dramatically strengthen the squad.....and I think this is going to have to mean spending big on a couple of key players to bulk up a relatively weak midfield. They may be cash strapped but basic economics in this situation would dictate that it's best to speculate to accumulate before the rot completely sets in. The Glazers will benefit more if the squad retains its prestigious status....they're going to have to release funds, there's no two ways about it I'm afraid.

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Yeah, 2003-2006 where the good old days for English Football. I think they where the golden days, especially for the England team what with Euro 04 being the best.

It's quite shameful, but since Henry and Co left the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea (I am a fan) spent, Man UTD spent and Liverpool somehow managed to find the loopholes, the premierleague has just become a multi-billion pound bore machine.... recent games are not as interesting.

Chelsea a few seasons ago, used to be absolutely stunning... breaking the 100 barrier, only something Barcelona could probably do.

Football in Europe is very different. Games such as Chelsea vs Man City used to be an easy victory.

Games such as Manchester United Vs Manchester City would be unheard of to be title deciders 5-6 years ago.

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Barcelona are excellent- but Chelski could afford to just park that bus all half after Ramires' goal- they got a bit of luck after Messi's penalty miss- but it was doubtful whether it was a penalty anyway- and you can't say Chelski don't deserve it.

Bayern-Real tonight... if Bayern win then I can only see the physical Bavarians hammer Chelski's makeshift final side in Munich- but if Real win I can see a Chelski shock as they are pumped up against what is in my opinion- not the best side in Europe in Real. I'm hoping for Bayern to win tonight and win in Munich.

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However I don't think it's as simple as any team we face in the final can beat us, surely us beating barcelona (who where supposed to have thrashed us 10-0) according to most pundits, non-Chelsea fans. Give credit where due, Barcelona are a team to rip apart your defence like it's a can made of paper. They failed at Chelsea, what's to say Bayern or Real may fail.

Be interesting to see what happens tonight... I am hoping for a Real V Chelsea final.

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A message to Barcelona fans worldwide.....Short pass here, short pass there, short passes everywhere....Change the record Barcelona, you're getting boring and predictable, that's why you failed to put Chelsea away last night!

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A message to Chelsea fans worldwide..... get in there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! See you in Munich!!!!!!!!

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Barcelona are still a formidable side, but indeed, they suffered from many of the same problems as have been characteristic of Arsene Wenger's Arsenal over the years.

That sort of "passing" brand of football really needs to be accompanied by a selection of on-form strikers who can put the finishing touches to attacking chances, attempting shots from outside of the penalty box, rather than just trying to pass/walk the ball into the net. This season Barcelona appear to have been heavily reliant on Lionel Messi to provide the goods (as highlighted by Robbie Garrett above) so when he has off periods (as even the best players do) they're always going to struggle for an end product. Similarly, Arsenal's success during the "Invincibles" era was helped by some star attacking players, notably Thierry Henry and the likes of Bergkamp and Pires, who provided a strong end product.

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