First things first, on the night, within the 90, between the 22, FC Barcelona was the better team.
Brilliant , infact unbelievable midfield play, clinical frontline finish, deserved Champions. I am happy for them after the season they have had.
Now, to the inevitable task of picking up the ruins. I had to work late night today and I entertained the thought of swapping shift - but In the end decided against it
Its just a football game and from the moment chelsea got dumped out with their hopeless defensive play - I knew within my hearts that I got the dream final that I had always envisaged but I always knew it was game that could go either way - despite all the unfounded, if not laughable confidence of most other United fans! These two are the best football team at the club level in the world...
So, 7.45PM. I was trapped some 45meters below the surface of life in the central london area, the train moving as fast always, but I felt as though time stood still.
It was one of those rare momoents where I remembered I had a few hip hop mp3s on my phone, so I pumped up on Lauryn Hill - Da thing - and maxed out the volume. Football has a way of making you do things you are sure you are incapable of doing - the way I was shaking my head on the train, trying to stay calmn at what I was missing.
Stratford, 8PM, I took the 5minutes walk to my office, this time, playing the Secretz of War - 2pac + the Outlaw Immortals , and I was onto the livestream by 8.07PM.
Torn in between the shambles of trying to settle to work, on my desk and keeping an eye on the game; somehow the ITV coverage managed to keep the scoreline away from the TV and I didn't realise United had already conceded.....So onto my football forum only to realise the big news. well, nothing had changed, I had earlier hoped that Barcelona score first, just so we dont end up winning the game, the controlled way United! managed the feat against Barca last season so I urged myself on, United! always love it the hard way.
How wrong? I haven't seen United! so lame in midfield. Never.
Ferdinand was rusty clearly, and the seeming ease with which VDS got ripped by Etoo - brilliant striker by the way - sums the defence up. Make no mistake, the 1st goal was class. Indepth and technically deep!
Its always easy to pick up what went wwrong after the fact - and there were many variables here and there in this game , but by 2AM, having finally watched the entire 1st half from a download, you gotta admit Barcelona basically forced the steam out of United! We were pooor after the 1st goal, and you cant excuse that.
I sense we were overconfident - not a bad thing in itself - but you must always be prepared to back it up with the play when the crunch-time arrived.
We never did, for 80minutes, and thats how it goes.
Messi goal? aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaw! made me reccollect the beauty of a technique I think the NBA chaps call hangtime where a life-frame appears to the eye as though defying gravity - suspended in the air. It was a glorious beauty. A goal to remember,for all days until the end of time. Glorious.
I could watch just that Messi Header all day...delicious!.
It was the triumph of football over backroom tactical calculation; The triumph of dare over think....and the ultimate validation that the game must be played beautifully at all times. Whereas Barca stuck as they always do to their football philosophy, we reduced our competence to haphazard shaff - I doff my hat to a technically superiour Barcelona side. Deserved champions.
But I console myself, that at least last night, Manchester United! as always lost, outclassed and died fighting....fighting with the assued belief that we can always make things happen. It wasnt to be last night, but I enjoyed it. It was raw, humiliating and totally deserved. But it was fun....
& finally, isnt it so ironic, that the greatest lesson for us United! from the game billed as the biggest of the season is that timeless football fundamental:_ --->that you will create chances.... you will take them....you will win ?
We lost to a team that played Celestial football on the night....United! will be back.
United! forever :wink.