Man Utd 1 Arsenal 0

Another lame match at display in the first leg of the second semi finals of the Champions league.

Man utd started out all attacking and had a chance just after 2 minutes as Almunia was forced to make a fully stretched save.

Man Utd took the lead from a somewhat unlikely scorer in John O’Shea as he found space after Arsenal failed to clear a corner in the 17th minute of the match.

The goal did calm the nerves at both ends but made the game a lot boring. It was a night of good defense at both ends which was followed by measured attacks.

Almunia made around a dozen saves to limit the scoreline to 1-0. He was a man on a mission to make as many saves as the number of shots that came towards his goal. He did let one go past him from O’Shea but that was more to slack defending from Arsenal that his mistake.

Kieran gibbs at left back was phenomenal. He had to handle Cristiano Ronaldo in the first half and Wayne Rooney in the second half and did he do a fantastic job keeping tabs on both of them. He looked a bit nervous against Middlesborough the other day and i was so not sure about him being pitted against Ronaldo tonight. Maybe all the hype in the newspaper got to the kid. He was out to prove that Clichy should be looking over his shoulders going forward. He had one of the best games of his career without doubt and Weenger would be extremely pleased by his showing tonight.

Arsenals creative 4 i.e. Fabregas, Nasri, Walcott and Adebayor didn’t have much of a game and that was the reason there was no finished product to any of the Arsenal attacks.

Song i think was excellent once again and the more i see of the lad the more sure i am becoming of the fact that he will be one hell of a Star player for Arsenal in the future. Diaby though was disappointing as he kept losing posession and hardly created an attacking move.

Silvestre and Toure were pretty solid at the centre of defense. The defense surprisingly looked pretty good for Arsenal. And that would be a positive thing for Arsenal going into the second leg next week.

I still think Man Utd will prove too much for Arsenal in the second leg. Though i wish Arsenal can nip it with 2 goals in the second leg.

See you next week. Till then Adios…

Arsenal v Manchester United Semi Final no. 2!!!

A wonder strike from the World’s best footballer helped Manchester United become the first English side to beat Porto at home and go through to the Semi Final of the Champions league.

The Red devils slayed the dragons in their own home ground after Ronaldo scored a stunning strike from all of 40 yards to give United the cushion they needed to sit back and absorb any attack from the dragons.

It was a classic European job by Fergie’s men.

They will now face Arsenal in the semifinal after Arsenal comfortably defeated Villareal by 3 goals.

Wonderkid Theo Walcott opened the scoring after just 10 mins with a delightfull chip over keeper Diego Lopez. Walcott was a constant thorn in the right side of the midfield troubling Capdevilla on more than one ocassions…

Adebayor scored the second at the hour mark and after the next few mins Walcott won a penalty for Arsenal. The decision was dubious and Villareal players protested to no avail.

Robin Van Persie converted from the spot to make it 3-0. Arsenal are comfortably through.

Once again we have an English side assured place in the Champions league final and who knows we might have another all English Final…

Great game by Arsenal and Good European display by the Red Devils.

Catch you all at the Semi finals again!!!

World Cup Qualifiers results

England manages to scrape through a somewhat convincing 5-1 victory against Kazakhstan in its 3rd world cup qualifying match playing at home in the Wembley stadium.

Rooney scored 2 goals and set up another to lay the foundation for England’s victory. Heskey and Walcott were also instrumental in carving the victory for England, though they themselves could not get on the score sheet. England struggled in the 1st half to finish the many chances created. Game came alive only after Rio Ferdinand headed England ahead before the hour mark.

In other world cup qualifying matches, Germany defeated Russia 2-1 to go top of the table. Portugal and France continue to struggle after having been held to goalless draws in there qualifying encounters.

Brazil put 4 past Venezuela whereas Argentina defeated Uruguay 2-1. Paraguay beat Columbia 1-0 to take the top of the table in the South American group for the World Cup Qualifiers with 20 points. Brazil and Argentina are joint second with 16 points each followed by Chile at 13 points and Uruguay and Ecuador are on 12.

Next round of qualifiers follows in mid-week. Watch this space for more results on the same…

EPL Results & Review (4th & 5th October 2008)

Like i had told in my preview to the weekends big 4 clashes none of the matches was a cakewalk for either of the big 4’s.

One had a easy victory, one needed a slice of luck (liberal refreeing), one needed to fight back with all they had till the very last minutes of the game to get 3 points and another had to fight even harder till late into the injury time to snatch even a point from the game.

Chelsea had a relatively easy win over Aston Villa. First-half goals from Joe Cole and Nicolas Anelka kept Scolari’s men at the top of the Barclays Premier League, and it could have been more but for the reflexes of Villa goalkeeper Brad Friedel. The hosts, already without the services of host of their star players then saw midfielder Cole limp off as he picked up his apparent foot injury and hobbled down the tunnel. Anelka, struggling with some spasms before the match, was also taken off at the break meaning Franco di Santo got a decent run for full 45 minutes. Branislav Ivanovic also made his league debut for Chelsea and appeared to be in control with John terry in the heart of the Chelsea defence.

Manchester United needed a bit of luck as brown broke the deadlock just after the half an hour mark as referree seem to have ignored the fowl of Vidic on the Blackburn goalkeeper Brown. Once that goal happened ManU looked like a completely different side showing glimpses of the Manu of last season. Ronaldo set up Rooney for just after the hour mark for the English player to continue his decent goal-scoring form off late. Tevez and Berbatov had chances which the strikers could not finish unfortunately with the formers effort hitting the cross bar.

Liverpool left it late for Dirk Kuyt to snatch the winner before 2 goals from none other than Fernando Torres had cancelled Manchester City’s lead. Stephen Ireland scored the opened for Man city and Javier Garrido the young left back scored from a super free kick to double their lead. Rafa must have given his team some very important team talk as they looked completely in control in the second half. Man City also took the foot off the pedal and were happy defending in numbers but had to pay the Price as Torres slotted in from close range to reduce the lead by half. Man City were made to pay the price further as Zabaleta was sent off by referee Peter Walton for what the official deemed as a two-footed lunge on Alonso. Torres soon doubled the lead by putting in a header from Steven Gerrards corner. Dirk Kuyt scored 2 minutes into the injury time to give Liverpool all 3 points and leaving Mark Hughes wondering what went wrong for his side after they had taken a comfortable 2 goals lead.

In the fourth match of the Big 4’s this weekend, Arsenal’s bad form in the Premier league continued with Wenger’s boys almost facing consecutive defeats at the hands of Roy Keane’s Sunderland. Sunderland played defensively all along and left Arsenal to create very few chances. Robin Van Persie’s goal before the hour mark was disallowed after the referree deemed that ball had gone out of play before Theo Walcott crossed it in the box for RVP to score. Replays suggested otherwise. Nothing seemed to go right for the Arsenal team as the deadlock was finally broken with four minutes remaining when Leadbitter drilled the ball past Almunia and in off the underside of the bar, although the drama was far from over there. With the game in the third of four minutes of stoppage-time, Fabregas headed van Persie’s corner home to snatch a point and rescue his side. Arsene Wenger will have a lot of thinking and tinkering to do to his side who have so far shown a lot of incosistencies this season.

In some other Matches over the Weekend, Hull City beat Tottenham Hotspurs and continue to amaze all and are now sitting 3rd in the league table. Spurs on the other hand sit right at the bottom of the table with just 2 points from 7 games. Geovanni was the scorer for Hull and continues his knack of scoring audacious goals with a stupendous free kick already having scored 2 stunning goals this season.

 Everton were held by Newcastle in a 2-2 draw. Bolton ran 3-1 winners against West Ham away. Both Engalnd internation strikers i.e. Jermaine Defoe and Peter Crouch scored to help Portsmouth to a 2-1 victory over stoke city. West Brom defeated Fulham 1-0 to take all 3 points.

The newly promoted sides this season definitely look much better than last years. Though only time will tell if all or any of them will be in the premier league the next season too.

Below are the list of EPL results i have compiled for you, so enjoy: –

         
 
West Ham
1-3 Bolton  
  Cole 68:41   Davies 29:39  
    Cahill 33:27  
    Taylor 86:00  
 
Tottenham
0-1 Hull  
      Geovanni 8:08  
 
Chelsea
2-0 Aston Villa  
  Cole 20:45      
  Anelka 43:04    
 
Man City
2-3 Liverpool  
  Ireland 18:16   Torres 54:52  
  Garrido 40:48 Torres 72:47  
    Kuyt 90:00(1:17)  
 
Portsmouth
2-1 Stoke  
  Crouch 24:52   Fuller 47:39  
  Defoe 50:18    
 
Everton
2-2 Newcastle  
  Arteta 16:43 Scored   Taylor 45:00(1:32)  
  Fellaini 34:27 Duff 46:16  
 
Sunderland
1-1 Arsenal  
  Leadbitter 85:05   Fabregas 90:00(2:45)  
 
West Brom
1-0 Fulham  
  Bednar 60:26      
       
 
Wigan
0-1 Middlesbrough  
      Aliadiere 88:21  
 
Blackburn
0-2 Man Utd  
      Brown 30:10  
    Rooney 63:19  
         

Do leave your comments if any..