May 25, 2003

Milan or Juventus: Who lifts the Trophy?: We have three days to figure this one out and I want to read your predictions and snarky comments. Last real big blow for non-MLS soccer for a few months, after all, so give us some meat. For myself, I wish I had a clue or had seen more of the run up.

posted by billsaysthis to soccer at 09:44 PM - 36 comments

I don't know, its going to be close... Nedved is out for Juventus, but there is also some major player out for Milan...can't remember who right now... But i say Juventus will win...2-1.

posted by StarFucker at 10:20 PM on May 25, 2003

Milan for me. Juve already have the Scudetto, two trophies in a year would be greedy!

posted by salmacis at 05:22 AM on May 26, 2003

It is impossible to go for Juventus and their catenaccio style, so I go for Milan, it's a bit difficult to give much of a monkeys though. This could be the worst final since the extremely dull, depressing and execrable affair in 1982.

posted by Fat Buddha at 06:53 AM on May 26, 2003

AC Milan 1-0 Juventus. In the most boring Champions League final in a long time (seconding FB).

posted by trox at 09:36 AM on May 26, 2003

I refuse to make a solid prediction on the final - porta sfiga* That said, my beloved Juve played extremely well against Real Madrid to advance. That half of the semi bracket was a pair of nail biters whatever your squad allegiance - truly spectacular games. But - no Nedved this time around. The Milan-Inter half, though, was less exciting. Inter played like crap; less so the return game, but still not well enough to advance. But Milan finished 3 ponts behind Inter in the scudetto, losing 4-2 to a relegated Piacenza the last day. As for the decrying of catenaccio, the away leg saw Juve employing it to some extent and Inter - fuck, I think I saw Milan's defense for maybe two minutes the entire first half. But the return games were much more exciting. It'll be a tough call either way. *'tis baaaaaad luck

posted by romakimmy at 11:50 AM on May 26, 2003

FB, Kimmy, I read the linked article but still have no clue what catenaccio means; the most concrete thing I get from the article is the style is 'negative' and 'defensive' but so what? How is this different from what I see in EPL play, for example?

posted by billsaysthis at 02:01 PM on May 26, 2003

Slightly better explanation of catenaccio, though "security chain" is closer than "door bolt", etymologically spekaing. (catena-->> "chain")

posted by romakimmy at 02:23 PM on May 26, 2003

The difference is one of attitude, morality and ethics. Catenaccio is a supremely negative tactic and state of mind. It is a cowards way of playing and it took hold in Italy in the 60's. The intention is purely to stop the other team playing and hope to score a goal on the break. It is football characterised by fear and timidity. It is the antithesis of football, invented by the devil himself. I would not presume to engage in etymological banter with romakimmy, but I think "door bolt" is a good description of the intent of catenaccio, in that the intention is to literally shut the door and bolt it tight, allowing for no possibility of intrusion. Arguably, it was this overreliance on a defensive state of mind that did for Italy in the last world cup. A potted history of footballl tactics can be found here. No apolgies for linking to 2 Glanville articles, he has been something of an expert on Italian football since the beginning of time

posted by Fat Buddha at 04:19 PM on May 26, 2003

FB and Kimmy, thanks for the great linkage; methinks I need to read Glanville's book.

posted by billsaysthis at 05:24 PM on May 26, 2003

The intention is purely to stop the other team playing and hope to score a goal on the break ... invented by the devil himself. Oh, I get it, it's the trap.

posted by alex_reno at 12:30 AM on May 27, 2003

Hopefully this will be a good game - I was lucky enough to get tickets through the UEFA ticket lottery for "neutrals" so will be off to Manchester tomorrow...

posted by Brettski at 10:35 AM on May 27, 2003

My prediction? Most. Boring. Final. Ever.

posted by squealy at 11:51 AM on May 27, 2003

If I had it my way neither team would win the crown; dam northern dominance.

posted by Bag Man at 01:40 PM on May 27, 2003

Forza Lazio!

posted by StarFucker at 02:17 PM on May 27, 2003

Bag Man, what kind of nothern dominance? Isn't Italy in Southern Europe? ;)

posted by billsaysthis at 07:00 PM on May 27, 2003

Northern Italy dominance, I'd guess. The southern mezzogiorno region isn't overly fond of the north and vice versa. Forza Juve! I am *so* jealous of Brettski.

posted by romakimmy at 07:17 PM on May 27, 2003

Romakimmy - I'll give them a wave for you ;-)

posted by Brettski at 04:51 AM on May 28, 2003

Well, i am going to have to avoid Sportsfilter for the rest of the afternoon. A friend of mine is recording it on his TIVO, so i will be watching it tonight. Anyone else doing this?

posted by StarFucker at 01:11 PM on May 28, 2003

Juventus won it on penalty kicks 29-28, after a scoreless regulation and overtime. Hahahahahahaha.

posted by worldcup2002 at 03:13 PM on May 28, 2003

wc, you are mean! I will say that I enjoyed the match a lot, not needing to root for either team though in the end the team that appealed to me more did win. And no Catenaccio either, both teams played offense.

posted by billsaysthis at 05:00 PM on May 28, 2003

Calcio is the only sport that can make me snivel like the girl that I am. Dammit.

posted by romakimmy at 05:35 PM on May 28, 2003

First half was excellent. Second half was scrappy. Extra time was what I'd predicted for the whole game. Some of the penalties were laughably shite, though the keepers, especially the Brazilian bloke were breaking every rule in the book. I think the better team on the day won. And it's always nice to see Shevchenko score the winner. I don't know what kind of drugs he's taking, but hell I want some.

posted by squealy at 05:47 PM on May 28, 2003

Squealy, could you (as an exercise in my continuing education) give a few examples of how the keepers broke rules? I didn't notice anything they did wrong and that snappy pair that ESPN constantly uses said nothing.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:55 PM on May 28, 2003

You aint supposed to move until the ball is kicked. All goalies do, which is why so many pens are scored straight down the middle. The Brazilian dude, who I thought was very dignified, virtually matched the run up of the pen taker in reverse; it almost became a drop ball. The point being one of angles..he was giving the kicker much less to aim at by the time he reached the ball. Did you notice most of the scorers had hardly any run up?

posted by Fat Buddha at 07:15 PM on May 28, 2003

I don't know what kind of drugs he's taking, but hell I want some. Considering the other Milan games I've seen this season, Shevchenko was on crack tonight, at least during the first half. And Davids always gives me the impression that he's breakdancing with the ball.

posted by romakimmy at 07:31 PM on May 28, 2003

bill! Did ESPN use those two American soccer-know-nothings, including that annoying young airhead dude with the nasal fake Euro accent and stupid stupid jokes? I want to kill him. Why can't they just use the Brit announcers? I'd even prefer to hear the commentary in Italian rather than that dork.

posted by worldcup2002 at 10:43 PM on May 28, 2003

Goalkeepers are allowed to move side-to-side along the goal line, but not to move forward until the ball is struck. As FB notes on the fourth pen the Brazilian keeper was so far off the line one feared he was going to take the penalty himself. Buffon also took a step forward off the line on each penalty, probably to give him leverage to move sideways, but strictly against the letter of the law. It's always been an inconsistently enforced rule but Dida's strides forward would have been punished by most referees IMHO.

posted by squealy at 03:30 AM on May 29, 2003

Well I'm a little tired this morning but the 400-mile round trip from London to Manchester was well worth it... The crowd were in good form, great atmosphere from the Milan fans, but the Juve crowd only got going every now and then. Old Trafford looked fantastic and the crowds before, during and after the game were a credit to Italy - I didn't see a single nasty incident (unlike my previous italian football experence - being coined at the San Siro by Roma fans a couple of years ago!) and the fans mixed before the game in a carnival atmosphere, no doubt helped by the hot weather... The first half was great - we all thought Milan had gone a goal up, if they had perhaps Juve would have had to come forward more. A few decent chances - great Buffon save - thought Davids in the first half was outstanding, always the player in the middle of things. Milan all over them first half. Second half Juve came out like a different team - for 20 mins of so it was Juve all the way. As the end came closer the game tightened and neither side took too many risks. How there could only be 1 minute of injury time after 4 substitutions I don't know (I thought each added 30 secs?) - thought it a bit of a risk that both sides had used up all their subs within 90 mins, and Milan were effectively down to 10 men for half an hour. Extra time was spent waiting for the inevitable.... The penelty shoot out was bizarre - we were in the top tier of the north stand, level with the goal line where the penelties were taken and I thought a couple should have been retaken as the keeper moved forward before the ball was hit. The Juve players body language from penelty one suggested there would only be one winner - the Juve players looked terrified and lacking in confidence. And so it was - I thought the game was great, though it tailed off towards the end, and after a season watching Sunderland it was a welcome diversion!!!

posted by Brettski at 04:59 AM on May 29, 2003

Thanks for the post Brettski!

posted by StarFucker at 08:47 AM on May 29, 2003

being coined at the San Siro by Roma fans a couple of years ago! One of the fews reasons AS Roma fans get on my tits. I'd even prefer to hear the commentary in Italian rather than that dork. I dunno about that wc200. We must have heard references to silver goals & golden goals (right terms in English?) every 10 seconds for the entire game.

posted by romakimmy at 12:19 PM on May 29, 2003

Kimmy, you must never have heard JP Dellacamera and Tommy Smythe, think those are the names in question, call a game. I really got tired of hearing them every day last summer during the World Cup but I'm thinking they must have incriminating photos of ESPN execs. At least Smythe seems pretty old and maybe will get replaced but the other schmoe is too young to hope for that.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:05 PM on May 29, 2003

No, can't say that I have. I became a rapid footie fan these past years living in Rome and subsquently learned everything I know about the sport (and still learning) in Italian. I'm still not sure what the proper English terminology for rimessa laterale is. :-)

posted by romakimmy at 03:08 PM on May 29, 2003

Sideways rimming? Hahahahahahahaahaha. Arghh, bill! So it is those two buffoons? Esp. the young guy. How did he get the job? Holy crap! And you mean FoxSports, not ESPN, right? Whatever, I hate that guy as much as StarFooker hates Heskey.

posted by worldcup2002 at 12:36 AM on May 30, 2003

I hate Murphy and Carragher more than Heskey...

posted by StarFucker at 08:40 AM on May 30, 2003

No, Champions League and World Cup are shown on ESPN (with some WC on ABC too). FoxSportsWorld has EPL and other national league matches (Germany, Brazil, Holland, etc), different broadcasters entirely.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:13 AM on May 30, 2003

Well, watch the FoxSports EPL weekly coverage for the worst in sportscasters. Oh, muh, gawwwwwwww!

posted by worldcup2002 at 04:38 PM on May 30, 2003

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