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May 17, 2006



Well, not being a Man U. partisan, I can't say I share your preferences on the matter, but it looks like you got your wish after all. Sometimes the bookies do call these things right, unfortunately ...

Frank McGahon

It's actually not for partisan reasons I wished to see Arsenal denied. Rather, Barcelona are worthy European champions. This years model of Arsenal, despite a decent run in europe, were not. They were fortunate to grab fourth place in the Premiership on the last day of the season and are easily inferior to Liverpool, Man Utd and Chelsea, none of which were serious European contenders this year. The same might have been said of Liverpool last year and their win, following that of Porto had drained away what little prestige was still associated with the tournament. Thankfully for the tournament, the trophy was lifted by proper European champions this year.


I was rooting for Barca too, for reasons of domestic harmony, and predicted the score accurately (utter serendipity, mind).

I thought it was a terribly sad way for Arsenal to go, though. Lehmann deserved to be sent off (and pity poor Pires) but I thought it sort of put an unfortunate gloss on proceedings from there on in.

Frank McGahon

It did. But not just for Arsenal. Barcelona were certainly hard done by with the "goal" disallowed and the freekick awarded for Eboué's dive which led to Arsenal's opener. Despite the whingings of gooners and "neutrals" (yeah, right) Barcelona were worthy winners and there's no basis for believing that had Lehmann spurned the opportunity to take Eto'o down and he had scored, they would have had what it took to beat Barcelona. Their best chance of winning was to nick a goal and tightly chaperone Ronaldinho (which is what they more or less did after the sending off)- this presupposes they don't go a goal behind so in the alternative reality version of the game, they are still a goal down. Evryone talks about how Arsenal had the better of Barcelona in the first few minutes. Sure, the first three or four minutes. But, from then until the sending off Barcelona were in complete control and easily the better side.

Gerry O'Sullivan

Oh dear. Schadenfreude is neither big nor clever.

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