There’s something about time and the slow accretion of age that turns men wistful. Even the most stoic man will shed his hardened emotional exterior, and just might see himself so moved by, say, reaching an especially poignant milestone or achievement in life that he feels the urge to memorialize his swirl of emotions…
Bayern Munich’s impressive comeback victory against Juventus today had a farther-reaching effect than just sending Bayern into the Champions League quarterfinals: it ensured that England will hold onto its four Champions League spots for at least another year.
This is why Bayern are rightly considered one of the two best teams on the planet. Under immense pressure, down two goals to a great Juventus side, the Germans stormed back to tie the game up in regulation, then finished the job by adding another two in extra time.
Uh, did Juventus just kill Bayern Munich? Because from the look of this scoreline—the Italians are up 2-0 at halftime, the second goal set up by this marvelous run by Álvaro Morata—it really looks like Bayern will need something approaching a miracle to get back into this.
Look, this happened yesterday, but you deserve to see it now anyway. Juventus beat Sassuolo 1-0 in some Serie A action, and the lone goal was a truly magnificent little homing missile from Argentine forward Paulo Dybala.
As the Napoli team bus set off for Turin ahead of tomorrow’s monster Juventus-Napoli showdown, something like 1,000 Neapolitans showed up to see their boys off. Or, more accurately, to block the bus’s path in order to hoot and holler and light flares and gin up the players so that they step out on the pitch as charged…
England, man. Their clubs spend all that money on some of the best players in the world, get all that media hype about being the best league in the world, and right as you start to buy into it all they meet a couple underdogs from Europe and prove yet again that England isn’t as good as it’s made out to be.
Hehehe! This is basically the soccering equivalent of the old “Stop hitting yourself! Stop hitting yourself!” trick.
As we said after Barcelona took the (severely hobbled, it must be said) champions of Germany and ground them up into a fine powder to be mixed in with the mate the club’s South American contingent is always going on about, this team deserved to end the season surrounded by every trophy available. The football gods…
Just thirteen minutes after Álvaro Morata drew things level, Luis Suárez put away a Lionel Messi rebound to restore Barcelona’s 2-1 advantage. Juventus now has 10 minutes plus stoppage time to get a goal, or the Champions League trophy will go to the Nou Camp.
Barcelona controlled the opening minutes of the second half and had a few gilt-edged chances, but weren’t able to bury them. Juventus took advantage of Barcelona’s profligacy to draw the game even, when Álvaro Morata put home a rebound off of Carlos Tevez’s shot. It should be a cracking final 30 minutes.
All that talk about Barcelona’s terrifying front three and it’s actually midfielders Andrés Iniesta and Ivan Rakitić who combine to score the opening goal of this Champions League final just four minutes in. (Though to be fair, Messi and Neymar made the two key passes to open everything up.)
Today’s Serie A match between Juventus and Napoli ended with a red card for Miguel Britos after the Uruguayan delivered his skull straight to Álvaro Morata’s nose. Morata ended up with a bloody face, but the 3-1 win after the referee awarded a penalty for the incident.
Álvaro Morata, one of the best young strikers in the world and a Real Madrid youth product, just scored his second goal of this Champions League semifinal tie. Only it was for his new team, Juventus, and against his boyhood club.
If the European Cup is worth its weight in silver and prestige, Barcelona should win it this year. That is to say, if the major competitions in this sport are designed to throw the best clubs in Europe into the most demanding possible gauntlet and, in the end, reward the one that’s proved its superiority, then a year…
We now have our star-studded Champions League final four set, with Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Juventus moving on with a shot to win the trophy with the big ears. Let’s look at how we got here.
Every once in awhile you see an indirect free kick—meaning a goal can only be scored if it touches one other player first—awarded only a few yards away from the goal. In this case, the referee judged that the Empoli goalkeeper picked the ball up after it was deliberately passed back to him by a teammate.
Juventus and Borussia Dortmund are playing today, right now. A few minutes ago, they kicked off. Then two minutes passed. Then Juventus's Carlos Tevez got the ball. Then he blew up Germany's hopes, and also Germany. No more high-quality vehicles for anyone. Because there's no more Germany. Germany's gone.
While Arsenal were laying the smackdown on Manchester United today, ex-United player Paul Pogba was in Italy's Serie A playing for Juventus, and he was flourishing, and it was a beautiful thing to behold, and we're unspeakably lucky to have him in our life doing wondrous things, all the time.