Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Milan vs Barca: Stadio Guiseppe Meazza 20.2.13

The last time AC Milan beat Barcelona in UEFA Champions league action was October 19, 2004 by one goal to nil. They have not lost to them in seven Champions league meetings since.

Barcelona have won 4 games to Milan's 2 with 2 drawn. The goals stats are much closer though; Barca have scored 7 and conceded 6.

The mind games have long started with utterances like these,

“Milan is one of the most successful teams in Europe. We have always found it hard against them and have had some tough times in their stadium", says Roura (filling in as first team manager) 

"We have to be courageous to beat Barcelona", says Allegri (Milan coach)

“They are a different team, they play a different way, and we'll have to wait and see how they behave....but Milan are always frightening at the San Siro", says Roura 

These teams have tons of respect for each other but Roura made a statement that actually tells you how he feels this tie will end, by stating, “as long as nothing strange happens, it’ll all be decided in the second leg”.  Simply means in Jamaican dialect, 'when yu come a my yaad yu dead'.

Milan forward Bojan Krkic uttered similar sentiments “We will have to earn at least a draw to give us hope for the return leg". However, the difference is Bojan sees hope in Spain, but Roura sees none for Milan when they come there. 

Barcelona is a phenomenal outfit and will take some beating even away from home. Nevertheless, IN MY VIEW, Milan has the quality to do it. Them executing a perfect game plan will make all the difference for them. Barca plays the same way all day every day; they don't hide their strategy; suffocate you with ball possession. The only way of a Milan victory is to force Barca to make many mistakes and make very few of their own. 

Barcelona is my team so I don't see them losing in Milan. Although Milan has the quality, it may be a stretch seeing Barca lose there. If any Milan player sleeps on his role, my only hope is that Barca doesn't embarass them in front of their home crowd, because when the second leg comes around at Camp Nou in Spain, Milan are going to be on the back foot from the get go.

Barcelona are extremely hard to man mark, but I am sure they will try to nullify Messi and Iniesta; that won't be enough. Barca has too many ways to hurt you.

I am actually getting frustrated saying Barca can't lose, pretty much like me getting tired of Bolt winning. As much as we like see both winning, it is not good for the sport. I am getting to the point where I want to see them lose because they are just too dominant.

Nevertheless, if Barca plays to their full potential 3-1 to Barca. I don't see this game being a draw.

Let's see how it plays out.

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© 2013 Antonio Bell. All rights reserved

All the commentary posted in this publication are my personal view(s) and do not reflect the view(s) of any Association, Federation or Governing Body.