Messi Mesmerizes Mourinho

April 27, 2011

Two moments of magic by Barcelona’s Lionel Messi resulted in a 0-2 victory in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final in Madrid. Messi netted his 51st and 52nd goals of the season and set up a probable final between Barca and Manchester United at Wembley in May.

Lionel Messi

Photo: Pretty Friendship


Dream Team – FIFA World XI 2010

January 11, 2011

FC Barcelona Museum

Selected by 50,000 professional players world wide.

  1. Iker Casillas (Real Madrid & Spain)
  2. Maicon (Inter & Brazil)
  3. Lúcio (Inter & Brazil)
  4. Gerard Piqué (Barcelona & Spain)
  5. Carles Puyol (Barcelona & Spain)
  6. Wesley Sneijder (Inter & Netherlands)
  7. Xavi (Barcelona & Spain)
  8. Andrés Iniesta (Barcelona & Spain)
  9. Lionel Messi (Barcelona & Argentina)
  10. Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid & Portugal)
  11. David Villa (Barcelona & Spain)

Eight players from La Liga (six Barcelona and two Real Madrid) and three players from Serie A and Champions League winners Inter. No Premier League players.

Centre half Puyol as left back? Evra, Cole, Bale, Alves, Marcelo, …?

Photo: Ivan Minaric

Messi vs Ronaldo Shoot Out Stats

January 10, 2011

Messi and Ronaldo

After 18 rounds of the current Spanish La Liga season here’s how Barcelona’s  Messi and Real’s Ronaldo have made their mark:

  1. Messi 1 (1) Ronaldo 0 (0)
  2. Messi 0 (1) Ronaldo 0 (0)
  3. Messi 1 (2) Ronaldo 0 (0)
  4. Messi – (2) Ronaldo 1 (1)
  5. Messi – (2) Ronaldo 0 (1)
  6. Messi 1 (3) Ronaldo 2 (3)
  7. Messi 0 (3) Ronaldo 2 (5)
  8. Messi 2 (5) Ronaldo 4 (9)
  9. Messi 2 (7) Ronaldo 2 (11)
  10. Messi 1 (8) Ronaldo 0 (11)
  11. Messi 2 (10) Ronaldo 0 (11)
  12. Messi 3 (13) Ronaldo 3 (14)
  13. Messi 0 (13) Ronaldo 0 (14)
  14. Messi 2 (15) Ronaldo 2 (16)
  15. Messi 2 (17) Ronaldo 1 (17)
  16. Messi 0 (17) Ronaldo 0 (17)
  17. Messi – (17) Ronaldo 2 (19)
  18. Messi 1 (18) Ronaldo 3 (22)

Messi 18 league goals from 15 starts. Ronaldo has started all 18 games and scored 22 goals.

To be continued …

6-2-2011 update.

Photo: Keith Williamson

A Ramos Rollercoaster

November 30, 2010

Sergio RamosOne week, two matches, two red cards, nine goals and a £16,700 fine from UEFA. What a week for Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos. A week ago he was part of a triumphant 4-0 Champions League victory over Ajax in Amsterdam. A victory that saw Real secure a place in the last 16 of the competition. The party turned sour when Ramos and Xabi Alonso where apparently instructed by Mourinho to delibrately get red cards to circumvent possible bans in future knock-out matches.

Last night Ramos saw red again when frustration boiled over in vicious challange of Lionel Messi in the games final minute. From 4-0 in Amesterdam to 0-5 in Barcelona, a weeks a long time in Football.

Today UEFA charged Jose Mourinho with improper conduct, banned him for one match and fined him £33,500. Alonso and Ramos where fined £16,700 each, and Real goalkeepers Casillas and Dudek where also fined for their part in the incidents.


Photo: EnriqueBurgosgarcia

Mourinho – Guardiola Head to Head

November 27, 2010


Guardiola is 39. Mourinho 47.

Playing careers

Guardiola was a defensive midfielder in the Cruyff’s Barcelona dream team of the 1990’s. He made 263 league appearances and won six league championships, a UEFA Cup and Champions League winners medal. He played 47 times for Spain.

Mourinho played a limited number of games for lower level Portuguese clubs Rio Ave, Belenenses, Sesimbra and Comercio e Industria between 1980 and 1987.


Guardiola was promoted from coaching Barcelona’s B team to replace Frank Rijkaard as first team manager before the 2008-9 season. In his first season at the club he completed the treble of league championship, domestic cup and Champions League (defeating Manchester United 2-0 in the final). Guardiola is the youngest manager to win European club football’s most prestigious trophy. In his second season in charge at the Nou Camp he again won the league, but Barca where knocked out of the Champions League by Inter in the semi-final.

Mourinho tasted managerial success with Portuguese club Porto where he won two league trophies and lead the club to European glory winning both the UEFA Cup and the Champions League. He moved to Chelsea where again won the league twice. Chelsea reached the final of the Champions League in 2008 but lost the penalty shoot-out against Manchester United. Mourinho joined Inter Milan where he again won a double of league championships in his two seasons. In his second and final season in Italy he won the treble of league championship, domestic cup and Champions League (defeating Bayern Munich in the final).

Guardiola against Real

Barcelona have won all four meetings with Real under Guadiola’s leadership. 2-0 and 6-2 in 2008-9 and 1-0 and 2-0 last season.

Mourinho against Barcelona

Chelsea knocked Barcelona out for 2004-5 Champions League competition 5-4 in the last 16 stage. The two clubs also met in the 2005-6 competition at the same stage, this time Barcelona came out on top winning 3-2.

Mourinho versus Guadiola

Inter and Barcelona where paired together in the group stages of last seasons Champions League. Both teams advanced to the knock-out stages after a 0-0 draw in Italy and a 2-0 win for Barcelona in Spain. The clubs met again in the semi-final. Inter won the first leg at home 3-1 with goals from Sneijder, Maicon and Milito. Barcelona failed to break a resolute ten man Italian defence at the Nou Camp. Pique scored minutes before the end of the game. Inter advanced to the final where they defeated Bayern Munich 2-0 thanks to two goals by Argentine strike Milito.


Flickr to Kick

November 23, 2010

Champions League

Real Madrid – Marseille, September 2009

Photo: Jan SOLO

Messi and Ronaldo on Fire

November 21, 2010

Both Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi scored hat-tricks in yesterdays La Liga matches. Real Madrid defeated Athletic Bilbao 5-1 at the Bernabeu stadium in Madrid, while Barcelona hammered Almeria 0-8 in South-East Spain.

Lionel Messi

Messi scored the only goal of the game for Argentina against South American rivals in Doha. While Ronaldo had played for Portugal in their 4-0 victory over World Champions Spain at Benfica’s Estadio da Luz in Lisbon.

Ronaldo has scored two hat-tricks for Real this season. The first came in October when Real won 6-1 against Racing. He has netted 15 times in 12 league matches this season for top placed Real.

Cristiano Ronaldo

Messi has scored in his eight last matches, including international and Champion League games. He has 13 goals in 10 league matches so far this season. Barca are second in the table one point behind Real.

It’s just over a week until  Ronaldo and Messi meet at the Nou Camp.

To be continued …

Photos: Boldorak and Jan Solo