15 April 2009

ARSENAL 3 (Walcott 10, Adebayor 60, Van Persie 69 Pen)

Arsenal blitzed the Spaniards from the start and took the lead with a magnificent goal. Eboue hit a firm pass into Fabregas who, with his back to play, flicked a back heel into Walcott, the jet heeled winger ran clear and as Lopez came off his line he dropped a lob over his head into the bottom left corner. Fabregas won a loose ball in midfield and passed to Van Persie, his change of direction confused the Villarreal defence and Adebayor took the Dutchman's pass in his stride and poked wide of Lopez. The goofy celebration dance that followed was the only mistake Arsenal made all night. Walcott took advantage of Godin's clumsy challenge to win a penalty and Eguren talked himself into a second yellow card. RVP slammed home his fourth goal of the campaign from the penalty spot.

Arsenal win 4-1 on aggregate.

Attendance : 58,233
Red Card : Eguren 68 (Villarreal)
Assists : Fabregas, RVP, Walcott (won pen)


Ronaldo settled the tie with an extraordinary goal. He received possession about 15 yards outside the centre circle, turned and struck an amazing shot which screamed into Helton's net. On the half hour mark Lucho Gonzalez buggered up his left knee after hitting a pass out of his own half. Giggs volleyed a Berbatov cross straight at Helton. Alves wasted Porto's best chance of the half when he failed to take advantage of slack marking on a free kick. Vidic did the same on a corner. United continued to look suspect on set plays but Porto couldn't take advantage.

Manchester United win 3-2 on aggregate.

Attendance : 50,000
Assist : Anderson

14 April 2009

CHELSEA 4 (Drogba 51, Alex 57 fk, Lampard 76, Lampard 89)
LIVERPOOL 4 (Aurelio 19 fk, Xabi Alonso 28 Pen, Essien 81 og, Kuyt 83)

Aurelio took advantage of Cech's awful positioning to stun Chelsea with a free kick. Ivanovic, two goal hero of the first leg, found Xabi Alonso impossible to resist and his unwarranted attentions lead to the SPANISH referee pointing to the spot. Cech, who is useless at penalties, didn't get close. A nervous Chelsea just about saw out the remainder of the first half.

Drogba settled Chelsea's nerves following a rare goalkeeping error from Reina. Anelka tore down Liverpool's left and swung in a hopeful centre, Drogba beat Skrtel to the ball, barely making contact, and Reina fumbled into his own net. Alex restored Chelsea's first leg lead with an absolute CRACKERJACK of a free kick. Ballack intercepted Xabi Alonso's loose ball out of defence and spread the play out wide to Drogba, who made an angled run to stay onside, dropped Skrtel with a subtle dummy and rolled a centre into the box for Lampard to steer past Reina and put Chelsea 6-3 up on aggregate. That should have been all she wrote but Liverpool refused to yield. Lucas made it 6-4 with a deflected effort from the edge of the box and two minutes later Xabi Alonso's fabulous first time pass freed Riera down the left and Kuyt got above two defenders to emphatically head past Cech. Liverpool were now within a goal of eliminating Chelsea but Drogba was at his destructive best and bullied Reira into losing possession, ran through another tackle then Anelka picked up the slack, centred and Lampard swept a right foot shot in off Reina's left post. There was still time for Essien to make a miraculous headed goal-line clearance from N'Gog. All this and no Gerrard. All kinds of awesome.

Chelsea win 7-5 on aggregate.

Attendance : 38,286
Assists : Kuyt (won fk), Xabi Alonso (won pen), Anelka, Drogba (won fk), Drogba, n/a, Reira, Drogba

BAYERN MUNICH 1 (Ribery 47)
BARCELONA 1 (Keita 73)

Bayern intercepted a slack goalkick and Ze Roberto ran through a challenge below threading a pass through to Ribery, he ran side on at Valdes, dropped him with a couple of feints then whipped the ball inside the top right corner. Keita put the seal on a fine Barca move which culminated in a series of one-twos and thumping drive.

Barcelona win 5-1 on aggregate.

Attendance : 65,000
Assists : Ze Roberto, Xavi

8 April 2009

LIVERPOOL 1 (Torres 6)
CHELSEA 1 (Ivanovic 39, Ivanovic 61, Drogba 66)

Liverpool put Chelsea on the back-foot with a longball into the box, Alex cleared as far as Kuyt who spread the play out wide to Arbeloa with a great reverse pass and Torres swept his first time centre past Cech. A brace of headers from Chelsea's forgotten centreback, Branislav Ivanovic, dramatically turned the game in Chelsea's favour. The first was from a Malouda corner and on his second goal it was Lampard who provided the cross, the Yugoslavia international punishing slack marking by Gerrard. Public liability Terry was booked for a ludicrous challenge on Reina, almost injuring himself in the process. The yellow card rules him out of the return leg, to Chelsea's advantage. Drogba finished off a slick passing move to give Chelsea a foot into the semi-finals. Ballack released Malouda with a ball down the left and Drogba burst between two defenders to turn his centre past Reina.

Attendance : 42,543
Assists : Arbeloa, Malouda (ck), Lampard (ck), Malouda

BARCELONA 4 (Messi 9, Eto'o 12, Messi 38, Henry 43)

Iniesta looked to play a one-two with Eto'o on the edge of the box but the volatile striker slipped a pass between two defenders to Messi who stroked the ball inside Butt's left post, no that wasn't a euphemism. Messi returned the favour with a magnificent disguised pass which Eto'o slotted into the corner, nutmegging Butt in the process. Guardiola was sent to the stands after protesting over the none award of a penalty for an apparent foul on Messi. The Argentinean forward, no stranger to blatant cheating, was rightly booked for diving. Henry teased Oddo on the right before accelerating away and centring for Messi to tap-in Barca's third. Henry scored his 50th Champions League goal after Barca's over elaborate passing broke down at Eto'o's feet, Van Bommel took out Messi with a deliberately placed elbow to the jaw before inadvertently playing in Henry when trying to clear.

Attendance : 97,000
Assists : Eto'o, Messi, Henry, n/a

7 April 2009

VILLARREAL 1 (Senna 10)
ARSENAL 1 (Adebayor 66)

Almunia injured himself when landing awkwardly following a clash with Rossi. Senna gave the home side the lead with a tremendous shot from distance, which flew inside Almunia's left post. Alumina made way for Fabianski. The 24 year old got down well to parry another Senna drive and made a tremendous recovery save from Capdevilla on the follow up. Adebayor's astonishing equaliser was a goal missed in real time by the idiots at ITV, which isn't the first time they've been guilty of that during a Champions League broadcast. Fabregas sent a 40 yard pass over the top of the Villarreal defence and the giant striker, with his back to goal, bounced the ball on his chest, leapt in the air and corked an overhead kick into the bottom left corner. Fantastic.

Attendance : 74,517
Assists : Rossi, Fabregas

MANCHESTER UNITED 2 (Rooney 15, Tevez 85)
PORTO 2 (Rodriguez 4, Mariano 89)

Lucho intercepted Ronaldo's wayward pass as the Portuguese winger tried to launch a United counter attack, Lucho fired forward in the general direction of the box and his equally wayward pass was only half cleared by Evans, Rodriguez gathered the ball, ran past Fletcher, dropped a shoulder to steal a yard on Evans then fired low into the bottom left corner. Rooney's clever pass out wide found O'Shea in acres of space and his cross was met with a firm Ronaldo header forcing Helton into a great save. Bruno Alves' shocking hospital pass gift wrapped the equaliser for Rooney. Rodriguez should have restored Porto's lead but headed Lucho's cross straight at VDS. Lisandro wasted an even better chance with Lucho once again the provider.

A piece of unmitigated brilliance from Rooney lead to the ugly little troll Tevez giving United the lead. He flicked on a Neville throw-in with an outrageous backheel volley and Tevez held off his marker to shoot over Helton. Man United's recent defensive frailties were once again exposed as the Portuguese scored an unlikely late equaliser. Lisandro turned onto Costa's pass, via Hulk's dummy, and progressed down the right flank, O'Shea deflected his cross over the back post and Maridano showed great composure to take the ball on his chest before beating the advancing VDS.

Attendance : 25,000
Assists : n/a, n/a, Rooney, n/a