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There’s always next season (and the one after that)

March 24, 2008

With Liverpool visiting Old Trafford on Grand Slam Sunday, and with Torres and Gerrard firing on all cylinders, I had every reason to believe that Liverpool could cause an upset in the title race. However, all that went up in smoke before the game even started. In fact, all hopes of Liverpool starting a late charge up the table went up in smoke a good 3 days before the game when Rafa Benitez claimed his side could still win the title. This caused an avalanche effect and all Liverpool fans started to prepare their title winning celebrations before the Old Trafford game even started! Thankfully, Man Utd put them in their place when a Wes Brown scored a fluke goal off his back and Ronaldo and Nani completed the rout.

I don’t have an issue with the smarter Liverpool fans, but I always laugh in the faces of unrealistic Kop fans who think that they are one of the big teams. Let’s face it, only Chelsea, Man Utd and Arsenal have won the BPL (bar a fluke run by a Alan Shearer inspired Blackburn side in 1995). Liverpool only get their Big Four status courtesy of their successful history. The last time Benitez said they could win the title, they endured one of their poorer starts to a season! There is a curse in every Kop manager who make fans believe they are serious title challengers, and Benitez is no different.

If you compare soundbites from Benitez in Champions League matches, you will see that he is always cautious about claiming he could win the UCL title. Because he knows that it could all fall back in his face. But it works! His team DOES do well in the UCL. Hence he should start changing his luck in the BPL by doing what he does best in the UCL i.e. keep his mouth shut.

What does this mean to Arsenal vs Liverpool trilogy in April then? As a Spurs fan, I was actually supporting Arsenal to go through against Milan, and the reason for that is because I knew it would be too much for Arsenal to handle the heat of a BPL race AND win the UCL at the same time. And I was right. Arsenal may still have a mathematical chance of winning the title, but their body language certainly seem stuck to the day Eduardo broke his foot against Birmingham, and their continuous insistence that they should have the divine protection of the referees to play their pretty football. YOU’RE in England, and thats how they play it! GET OVER IT or GET OUT!

Against Liverpool however, they have a chance. Liverpool, as their mentality goes, think they are a big club who can play pretty football. Everyone knows that if Gerrard is off form, the wingers can’t do shit and Torres is left on his own, so thats the way to beat them. Pretty football involves your defensive midfielder also making pretty passes (see Flamini). I somehow don’t envision Mascherano doing that.

Who’s going to win the UCL tie (who cares about the BPL one since neither are involved in the title race then!)? For this tie, I’d pick Liverpool. Because they’ve done it before, AND Arsenal are actually a better side than Liverpool. Which suits Benitez’s game plan quite nicely. And Benitez actually has the players to destroy Arsenal’s pretty football methods (as long as they get picked!). Arsenal on the other hand, always do well against the supposed big teams from the continent. Because all these teams don’t play as fast as they do in England, and if Arsenal is already one of the faster teams in England, then it doesn’t leave much breathing space for the continental teams. Facing Liverpool however, is different, because the Liverpool players can adjust to Arsenal’s pace, as they have to do it at least twice every season anyway, and Arsenal’s element of fast surprising football will not faze the Liverpool players.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 26, 2008 6:38 am

    damn, you should write for bbc. lol. ive always noticed the benitez curse too. lol.

  2. glamorousdiss permalink*
    March 26, 2008 11:59 am

    thanks! i’ll take that as a compliment! hehe…

    yeah the benitez curse is usually a lot worse when more liverpool fans believe in it =)

  3. March 28, 2008 5:02 am

    lol!

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