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May 29, 2011

MVP(Messi, Villa Pedro) Goals secure Barca the Title

FC Barcelona won their 4th Champions League Title of their history with a classy 3-1 victory over English Champions, Manchester United. With this victory we have won three Champions League title in last six years. In a picture perfect night goals from Pedro, Messi and Villa all scored to give Barca the victory and continue their love affair with the Wembley stadium. With his goals in the final, Messi has equalised thh record of most goals in a UEFA season and most probably has secured another Balon d'Or. It was kind of a footballing lesson handed out to Manchester United. The stats speak for itself. We had 16 shots, 12 On target, with 63% possession and 6 corners. The best moment of the night was Puyol giving the Captain's Armband to abidal and he received the trophy from Platini.

The official line-up was a big shock for everyone as Puyol missed out on the starting eleven. Puyol was considered a absloute certainity till the time official line-up was released. Apart from the shock of Puyol missing out the rest of the line-up remained the same as I predicted in the preview. We had Valdes in goal. Alves, Pique, Mascherano and Abidal made the defense. Iniesta, Xavi and Busquets made the midfield. And the front trio was the usual Messi, Villa and Pedro. The bench had Oier, Adriano, Puyol, Keita, Thiago, Afellay and Bojan. That was quite a surprise, if Puyol is fit to be on bench, then why not starting eleven? Manchester United lined up as Van der Sar, Fabio, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Valencia, Carrick, Giggs, Park, Rooney and Hernandez.

Manchester United started with an intention to close down any space given to us in midfield and they started as the better side. The high speed game of Manchester United was rattling us a bit. In the 8th minute a long goal kick from Van Der Sar found Rooney against Mascherano and he simply out run the defender, but Valdes was alert to come out to clear the danger. In the early exchanges Alves and Busquets looked very rusty and was losing possession very cheaply. In the th minute we had our first real chance with a great build up but Pedro could not guide the ball into the goal from a Xavi cross. In the 20th minute Villa received the ball from Xavi outside the box and tries a curler, it wasn't that far away. In the 21st minute Villa danced into teh box and squared the ball to Messi who waited a moment before shooting and that gave time for defense to clear. The very next minute Xavi found Villa inside the box but his shot was well saved by Van der Sar. In the 22nd minute a great pass by Iniesta found Messi in the box, but Vidic slid in with an inch perfect tackle. In the 27th minute finally we broke through, Pedro with an excellent finish from a elegant Xavi pass. That goal was coming for sometime.

In the 34th minute Rooney equalised for Manchester United. That goal came from nowhere when we were in the ascendency. Busquets has to be the culprit who went for a challenge and slipped and gave Rooney so much space to work with. I have written in my preview how ManU was the best effective team, and that goal was an example of that. In the 37th minute xavi shot high from outside the box. In the 39th minute Iniesta tried a shot from outside the box but that was tsraight at Van der Sar. In the 41st minute Valencia went with his two foot against Messi and conceded a free kick. It was a surprise that he wasn't shown the yellow card. The free kick was taken in an excellent fashion with Xavi finding the run of Busquets whose touch to Pedro was a bit heavy. In the 43rd minute Messi slipped the ball to Villa's pass to Messi went just wide of a sliding Messi leg. The first ten minutes was really tough for us but we came back really well, but that goal came from nowhere and that was really tough. The half time ended at 1-1.

It was clear that Barca has to take their chances early on in the second half. We were quick to raise our game and the initial minutes saw us winning two corner kicks. In the 52nd minute Van der Sar had to make a good save from Alves and Ferdinand did well to deny Messi from the rebound. In the 54th minute the magician Messi received teh ball from iniesta ran a bit forward and thundered the ball past Van der Sar to put Barca back in the lead. This was Messi's first goal in English soil. Manchester United defense gave him too much space and Messi obliged. In the 63rd minute Van der sar made yet another save this time from Messi. In the 65th minute Fabio did well to clear a Messi back flick off the line. In the 66th minute van der Sar pulled off a brilliant save to deny xavi from outside the box. In the 69th minute Ferguson took off Fabio and brought in Nani. In the 69th minute David Villa scored a sublime goal to take Barca 3-1 up. Messi danced into the box, the defense somehow cleared the ball but it went to Villa at the edge of box and he beautifully curled teh ball to the right top corner. In the 77th minute Paul Scholes was brought in for Carrick. In the 79th minute finally Valencia was booked for another ridiculous challenge on Messi. In the 84th minute Valdes needed to pull out another good save, but this time he was at fault coming off his line unnecessarily. In the 85th minute Nani went in a diagonal run but his shot went wide. Guardiola brought in Keita for David Villa as he was trying to consolidate the lead with five minutes plus stoppage time to go. In the 88th minute Guardiola brought in Puyol for Alves. In the 92nd minute Afellay was brought in for Pedro, more like a time killing change as we have already sealed the victory. Afellay helped himself to a shot on target shortly afterwards.

I think I will write a detailed review about specific which led to the victory. We simply was the better side and that too by miles. Messi has been voted the best player of the night by fans at UEFA.com, but for me the best player was Xavi. He looked in total control. I am so happy that Villa got that goal, and that too a heck of a goal. He was off colour in recent months but performed brilliantly from start of this match. I was a bit worried when I saw Puyol's name missing from the starting eleven, but apart from the first ten minutes our defense did really well. Off to some records. As I satted earlier, Messi currently hold the joint record of maximum goals in a season in Champions League. He also got rid of the dubious record of not scoring in England. We continued our record of not losing after being seeded as the home team in Champions League final. Rooney also have scored for the first time against a Spanish opponent. Now, its celebration time. This team has given us lots of sepcial moments in recent years and let's all hope that continues.

All About FC Barcelona

AllAboutFCBarcelona.com is a Blog dedicated to the Most prestigous Club in the world, FC Barcelona by an ardent fan. Here I discuss about the Latest happening surrounding our Club and present my Views about the same.


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