Barcalona repeated their victory over Man.Utd in Rome two years ago in front of a brilliant atmosphere at Webley stadium. With Messi on fine form, Barcalona showed United how they game is played and ran out 3-1 winners against the champions of England.
|Abidal lifts the prestigious trophy after battling with cancer for most of the season.|
Manchester started as the better team, the enthusiastic Park winning the ball on several occassions and creating chances for Utd. However no clear cut chances were made and Barcalona soon settled in to their usual ellegant play. After ten minuets Barcalona should have been ahead when a low ball in to the box was perfect for Pedro but he just managed to flash the ball wide of the post.
Davis Villa came close next when a mazy run from Messi attracted the attention of two United players leaving Villa free to cut in to the box and send a hard low ball into the corner, bravely being blocked by Van Der Sar making his final appearance for any football team.
A goal looked omnious for Barcalona, however you can never forget about the threat United pose and a lobbed ball from Giggs sent Rooney chasing and nearly got to the high ball before Valdes who bravely punched the ball away in super man style before Rooney could get his head on to the ball.
Barcalona had given Xavi the captain role for the night and he showed the rest of the players how to pass when he slotted Pedro through on goal, squeezing the bal through two United players before Pedro simply passed the ball into the net past Van Der Sar, typifying the way Barcalona play the beautiful game.
The goal lead to United becoming scared that they may suffer the same fait as they did two years ago and for a while left their brains scrambled, Fabio gave the ball away leaving David Villa wih more room but sent a shot from inside the D just wide past the post but had the United retiring goalkeeper scrambling.
Sir Alex Ferguson looked troubled man, not only because he could not find a way to get through the barriers in to his techinical area, but also because his team were being taken apart, weeks of training and tactics thrown out the window.
However , one laps in concentration from Barcalona lead to Rooney exchanging passes with a possibly offside Giggs who aquared the ball back to Rooney who managed to sweep the ball, curling it beautifully in to the top left hand corner leaving Valdes no chance a queing a joyous celebration from the whole United squad giving them hope with ten minuets left before half time.
However this moment of pure inspiration did not set Barcalona back and they were nearly back on top just moments from the re-start when Messi delightfully darted past two United players and sending the ball out wide to Villa who sent a ball almost to perfection back in to the box where Messi had made the run but an otherwise perfect performance, failed to make contact with the ball.
During the second half Barcalona carried on their fine display of passing and finishing as Alves was the next player to be denied when he stormed forward in his usual style for the first time and struck a ball, but the on rushing Van Der Sar saved well but the ball fell down to Messi just outside to box who had to lob the ball over the United defenders but Evra just managed to stick out his foot to stop the genius putting Barcalona ahead.
Messi only needs a few seconds to produce a moment of genius, so when Patrice Evra made the strange decision to back away rather than close him down, Messi took full advantage. We are used to seeing his wonderful runs, but this time Messi pulled a powerful, curling shot out the bag like no other we have seen the young Argentinian do before. The ball curled away from the United keeper and straiht in to the back of the net. With Messi celebrating wildly it is clear he is playing for the club he loves and probably will do for many years, however the camerman may not be too pleases he broke the microphone as he ran away to celebrate.
Messi carried on threatning and Van Der Sar was certainly kept busy on his last day at work having to make another save from Messi, being rather fortunate as he dived the wrong way but the ball cannoned off his legs to make the save. He then had to rely on Fabio to keep United in the game when Messi did all the work before sneakily playing Alves through who was more free to go forward now Barcalona had the lead, but Fabio managed to block his shot off the line. Th eball fell abck out to Busquets who suprisingly lest in for Xavi who's rocket of a shot left Van Der Sars hands stinging and they probably still are now.
In an attacking move Fabio was taken off for winger Nani in an attempt for United to get back level, however just secinds after arriving on the field Barcalona struck again when the ball fell to Villa's feet just outside the box and he conrolled it perfectly and he seemed to have all the time in the world as he sent a world class finish, curling in to the top corner past the United keepers outstretched arm, unable to keep the ball out of the net and ultimatly giving Barcalona the win and a unflattering scoreline.
Suprisingly United just gave up after this and even sent Paul Scholes on for the last 15 minuets, probably his last ever game of football ever as well as he makes up his mind as to whether he will continue playing or not.
Eric Abidal deserves a special mention as he was given the captains armband and the right to lift the trophy as Barcalona collected their prize. Abidal had a deadly cancer in his liver, which he bravely survived and remarkably managed to play again this season and play the whole champions league final in what has been a very dramatic season for him particularly.
Away from the football last night, Berbatov was reportedly very un happy about not even being on the bench and rightfully so considering he was this years top scorer and the rumours are that he has already left United as he didnt tun up last night. there is reason to believe that Tottenham have offered him a dramatic return to White Hart Lane.
Saturday, 28 May 2011
|Barcelona ||3-1 ||Man Utd ||FT |
|(HT 1-1) |
- Pedrito 27
- Messi 54
- Villa 69
- Barcelona 68%
- Man Utd 32%