It’s Hump Day once again at Aerys Soccer and we have plenty of football news to get you over the mid-week hump and on to the weekend. It isn’t surprising that last night’s Champions League victory by a ten-man Chelsea over Barcelona is still the most talked about football headline. There’s also some fun stuff from John Terry, David Beckham and Jose Mourinho, which should get your pulse racing, but at the very least, will get you through to tomorrow.
Even though it’s yesterday’s news, Chelsea’s elimination of reigning champions Barcelona still dominates the headlines today. The Blues overcame great odds to beat the Catalans with a 2-2 draw (3-2 on aggregate). The English side went down 2-0, lost Gary Cahill in the 17th minute due to a hamstring injury, and lost captain John Terry, who was sent off by red card due to a needless foul, all in the first half. Everyone would have thought the match decided at that moment, especially playing at Camp Nou, but somehow Chelsea managed to hold on to pull out a victory. It didn’t hurt that Lionel Messi missed the penalty kick, making Barca suddenly seem human. Surprisingly, Spaniard Fernando Torres took credit for the winning goal, which in my opinion, doesn’t make up for his poor form most of the season, but it will go far to boost his credibility with his Chelsea teammates and fans. The Blues move on to their third CL final appearance in four seasons. Should they beat the winner between tonight’s match-up between Bayern and Madrid, Chelsea will not only be the Champions League Champions, but they will also automatically get the number four position in the English Premier League should they not qualify on their own merit in the league table.
Today, another semi-final Champions League match up between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich can be seen at 2:45pm ET on Fox FX. Stay tuned and see who will meet (and hopefully beat) Chelsea in the Champions League final.
John Terry’s post-match comments made me chuckle. With eight minutes left in the first half, the Chelsea captain was shown an immediate red card for kneeing Alex Sanchez. Although Terry admits the replays look bad, he also said “I’m not that type of player to intentionally hurt anyone”. Terry is no stranger to negative publicity, being charged with making racially motivated comments earlier in the season, but the center-back seems to make a habit of outwardly aggressive behavior on the pitch. However, to be fair, Terry also went on to say
“I’ve raised my knee, which I maybe shouldn’t have done in hindsight. But hopefully people who know me as a person, as a player…I’m not that type of player.
“I’m disappointed but delighted for the lads. To come here and play the way they did and get the result they did with 10 men…I feel I’ve let them down. I’ve apologised to them and I want to apologise to the fans as well.
“At the time, I was bewildered because I was trying to protect myself a little bit, but looking at it on the replay, I’ve no complaints. I’ve let the lads down. They’ve performed brilliantly, so hopefully this doesn’t take it away from the players.
“This is what this football club deserves. We deserve to be in the Champions League final. The boys were excellent and I hope the incident doesn’t take away from how hard they worked.”
2012 London Summer Olympics
The US Women’s Olympic Team have drawn the same group of teams they played in the 2011 World Cup campaign. As part of Group G, the US will face Columbia, North Korea, France and two-time defending champions Japan at Wembley Stadium for the London Olympics. The US team won the two previous tournaments, Athens in 2004 and Beijing in 2008, and they plan to continue their winning streak again in London.
The Great Britain Men’s Olympic Team manager Stuart Pearce will fly to Los Angeles next week to watch David Beckham in action. Pearce has to make some final decisions soon and is considering adding the 36-year old MLS Galaxy player to his team’s roster.
It could be interpreted that Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho will likely stay another year at the Spanish club due to his recent ”there’s no reason for me to leave” comments. I hope what he says is true, but you never know what the colorful Mourinho has up his sleeve next.
Atalanta squeaked out a 1 – 0 win over Chievo yesterday, putting them in 9th place with an eight point cushion above the drop.