Sunday, November 08, 2009

Big Game

It was Chelsea against Manchester United in West London today. The Premier League’s current #1 vs #2. The two teams that have been English champions for the past five years. Chelsea owned by a Russian oligarch. Man U owned by a rich American. One coached by an Italian; the other by a Scot. The Blues playing the Reds.

The game wasn’t beautiful. It was tough and rough, hard-fought and scoreless until the 76th minute, when the Chelsea captain, John Terry, gave Chelsea a 1-0 lead with a header. That was it. The shoving and pushing and hard tackling continued until the end, but no more balls ended up in the back of the net.

As usual Alex Ferguson complained about the referee. As usual Carlo Ancelotti was measured in his response to the game. We’re told the two managers shared a bottle of Brunello after the game. I doubt any of the players went out for a beer with someone from the other team.

Arsenal and United are both five points behind Chelsea, but Arsenal has a game in hand. I’m more impressed with how Arsenal is playing than any of the others. Arsene Wenger has done a fabulous job of molding a group of mostly young players together into a cohesive and effective unit. And he’s done it without spending hundreds of millions of pounds/euros/dollars. Good for him.

I’m happy that the fortune spent by the new Manchester City owners from Abu Dhabi hasn’t yielded results yet. They’re now in sixth place, 10 points behind Chelsea, and have settled for a draw in their last five games. It’s kind of like Real Madrid and the NY Yankees – trying to buy a championship. Unhappily, sometimes it works. Arggghh!

If I were a Manchester United supporter I’d be acutely conscious of just how much they miss Cristiano Ronaldo. I think he’d have them on top at this point if he were still around. Double Arggghh!


Post a Comment

<< Home