Thursday, December 09, 2010

I'm Sorry, but this is Hilarious to me

Barcelona absolutely destroyed Arsenal last year. 2-2 in the first leg flattered Arsenal in an unbelievable fashion in light of the fact that the Gunners couldn't get the ball out of their own half in the first half. In the second leg, Barca played without Iniesta or either of its first-choice centerbacks and won 4-1. (Yes, I know that Arsenal had injuries as well.) This year's Barca side is better than last year's because David Villa is a better fit at striker and Iniesta is healthy. There's not another team I'd rather Barca play in the Champions League because Arsenal try to do what Barca do, only they aren't as good at it. Possibly to his credit, Wenger can't or won't play the counter-attacking style that is a necessity against the Blaugrana.

I mention all of this because I was laughing for about ten minutes straight when I read this:

Twitter / @Henry Winter: According to one #afc play ...: "@henrywinter
Henry Winter
According to one #afc player, only one name discussed in Emirates dressing-room afterwards... Barcelona
12 hours ago via Twitter for BlackBerry® Favorite Retweet Reply"


Anonymous said...

This post doesn't really make sense. If I'd taken a hiding last year by Barca, and just finished second in my group, and was trying to get focused by thinking about the caliber of teams I'd be facing in the first knockout round-- then yeah, Arsenal should be thinking about Barca after the Partizan game (which seems to be when this was Tweeted). As an Arsenal fan, my initial reactions were "You made your bed (finishing second) now let's hope we dodge the Barca bullet."

I laughed for ten minutes when I read that holy Barca had sold their shirt sponsorship to QATAR! QATTTTTTTAAAAAARRRRRRR! Cue the usual "mas que club" diatribe and remind us again why Barca is so special for reasons other than "they're really effing good."

Barca selling their shirt sponsorship to Qatar (especially after precious Pep pimped himself out to that farce of a bid) is so delicious, I'm going to be full for a week. Your response will probably be "they sold it to a Qatari semi-charity" which won't change the fact that they sold it for 125 million. You might also say "everyone else sells their shirt sponsorship," to which the response will be-- exactly, Barca are pretty much just like everyone else, only they're really really good and many of their fans seem really personally invested in spreading the Barca gospel.

Michael said...

My point is that Arsenal ought to shut their mouths about wanting to play a team that beat their asses last year and is playing at a higher level this year. Just be quiet and play the team against whom you're drawn, as opposed to acting like Samir Nasri's better form and Chamakh's addition prepare you to play a group of players who have won everything there is to win, club and country. There's a reason why Cesc wants to be with us and not you.

Sadly, I agree with you on the Qatar piece. The club still stands for a lot of great qualities, especially when compared to Franco's beloved Real, but the image isn't as pristine after taking the Qatari millions. The sad thing is that a team with the best youth set-up in the world (a reason why the club is both special AND really effing good) shouldn't find itself in a financial position to need to sell out, but for whatever reason, here they are.

Anonymous said...

Re the first paragraph: *sound of cat screeching*

I didn't read "Want to play Barca" from that tweet. And even if that is the correct interpretation, then I say: awesome. You *should* want to beat the best. You *should* want to get back in the fight. AFC seem to play with an inferiority complex even though they're quite good, though admittedly not effing good.

Re the second: See

I actually don't there's anything wrong with them selling shirt sponsorship, even if it's to buy CF4. It's just a heaping plate of schadenfreude cooked up by many Barca fans.

Michael said...

Lest you think that I'm nuts, Sean Ingle made the same point on tyhe Guardian podcast that I did about the Arsenal players' comments after the match last week. Or maybe I'm nuts along with Sean.

I had read the Swiss Ramble's post on Barca. SR is invaluable. My recollection is that Barca's debts are down to: (1) very high salaries; (2) bonuses for winning everything; and (3) wasting a huge pile of change on Ibra. SR previously made the point that Rosell's accounting approach has been to make the finances of the club look as bad as possible.