Archive for March 19th, 2010

Champions League Draw: A liveblog

587 comments March 19th, 2010

Morning all.

The Champions League draw is about to kick-off, and I’ll be covering it live both here and over on twitter.  See you in a bit.

1054 So, to be clear, we can draw any of: Barca, Bayern, Inter, CSKA, Bordeaux, Lyon, or United.  I wouldn’t fancy us in a two-legged affair against United, and having been at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday I can say there’s a solidity and discipline about Inter which is characteristic of the teams we struggle to beat.  Throw in the obvious fact that you want to avoid Barca, and the split in the quality of teams in the draw becomes clear.

1056 The bookies have us fourth favourites behind Barca, United and Inter, which pretty much reflects what I’m hoping for in terms of the draw.

1101 The draw is being conducted by the Jewish husband from Sex and the City.  Not that I’ve ever seen it.

1105 There follows a montage of the various teams in the competition.  Real diversity this year – nice not to have half of the final eight made up of the big four.

1107 I wonder how Florentino Perez feels about Real Madrid being here as ‘Champions League ambassador’ rather than quarter-finalists?

1111 Emilio Butragueno is asked to guess who will be the two finalists will be.  He declares football is unpredictable.  Ever the diplomat.

1112 “We can go now to the draw… actually not yet, because we have to explain the technical procedure”.  Oh goody.

1113 For those who are interested, the ‘technical procedure’ consists of pulling balls out of a pot.  Mind-blowing.

1114 Lyon vs Bordeaux.  There will be a French semi-finalist in this year’s Champions League.

1115 It’s Barca.

1116 WOW. 2006 Final rematch – arguably the two most attractive teams on the planet. Arsenal vs Barcelona. Incredible.  Amidst all that, Bayern drew Man U and Inter drew CSKA.

1117 If we beat Barca, we’ll face one of Inter or CSKA in the semi-final. IF we beat Barca.

1118 And it’s all over.  United are in the easiest half of the draw, no doubt.  We’ll have to get past Messi and Mourinho if we’re to reach Madrid, and if we get there it seems United would be waiting.

1121 By the way, if we do get to the final, we will technically be the ‘away’ side.  Imagine winning it in blue.  Weird.

1124 With William Gallas still struggling with his “endless calf injury”, I’ll leave you with this thought: Sol Campbell might be up against Lionel Messi in a couple of weeks…

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