Champ’s League: Real Madrid Lyonized?

UEFA Champion’s League Tuesday….begin:

Will we get trademark Ronaldo...and precisely what is that? More blame or more game? (Photo credit: Shaun Webb)

• Real Madrid Hope To Be Lyonized in France

Ronaldo.

Your turn my man to step up.

For the past two Champion’s League seasons your team has not attained the crown and you’ve squarely placed the blame on your manager or, in the case last year, blamed your manager after guaranteeing advancement.

To date this year, Ronaldo has grabbed the goals in La Liga, but the accolades have went to Messi, Xavi and company.

This time, Ronaldo has Jose Mourinho on his touchline. Can’t make those excuses. Apologies Lyon–with Michel Bastos playing out of his mind in the competition–it’s also about the Madeiran in this series.

• FC Copenhagen hope to snuff out Chelsea at home

Dame N'Doye for Copenhagen

Is Parken Stadium the scene for Chelsea righting the ship?

Not sure where to put this next comment, but I’m surprised more hasn’t been written about how Chelsea are just desperately missing a single piece to the puzzle: a centrally attacking midfielder-forward.

They’ve got none. Anelka looks for his shot when withdrawn, Kalou is more naturally a winger and not a playmaker. Lampard prefers to trail, while Michael Essien prefers to defend.

Didier Drogba is much better deployed in the attack and prefers to run off center while Torres likes to threaten the opponent’s backline.

It has been fascinating watching teams play Chelsea for the past few months once they realize that, unless someone has a great game out of character to their skillset, they can sag off the Blues.

Copenhagen’s got some firepower in this one to challenge stalwart David Luiz and favorite villian John Terry in the form of veteran forwards Brazilian César Santin and Senegalese Dame N’Doye. If Copenhagen can provide the service, might be a tough one for the visitors.

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5 responses to this post.

  1. I’d say the time is right for FC Copenhagen to grab an upset here. Watching Chelsea recently, for me at least, has been like watching a car crash – I feel kind of bad, but I can’t tear my eyes away. I almost want to root for Chelsea as if they were the underdog, as ridiculous as that sounds.

    Anyways, should be a fun match to watch.

    Reply

  2. Posted by Steve Trittschuh on 2011/02/22 at 11:44 AM

    You’re right about Chelsea and their lack of an attacking mid. Would like to see more of Ramires in that role, even though his skillset is more geared towards tackling and making runs. But he is Brazilian, and they’ve been known to be suited for that type of role. And lets be honest here, when Ramires is on, he’s reallly on.

    Reply

    • Posted by Antonio H. on 2011/02/23 at 8:56 PM

      I don’t find your statementto be based on reason: just because Ramires is Brasilian doesn’t mean he can automatically play CAM. Besides he was brought up in Dunga’s playing schemeatic so that’s definitelyt a no go.

      Reply

  3. Posted by John on 2011/02/22 at 12:24 PM

    Chelsea starting with the Torres up front and Anelka behind technique.

    This should be an interesting result.

    Reply

  4. Posted by KickinNames... on 2011/02/23 at 7:49 AM

    I’ve been waiting for some analysis on the question of why Chelsea looks like an also ran this season. My thoughts-
    1) Lampard out and still not himself
    Frank just hasn’t found his form after missing most of the first half of the season and his importance to this squad can’t be measured.
    2) Essien has dropped to mere mortal status. Good player but not the game changer that he was.
    3) Ramires- I don’t see what everyone likes about his game. His decision making is very direct, he loses possession and takes risks in poor places and just doesn’t look like he’s a top shelf player. Yes he’s fast and does tackle but….overall rating of…meh.
    4) The Ballack Dropoff Factor- first to confess that I’m not a big Ballack fan, BUT having that level and class behind Lampard is very different in big moments from relying on Ramires or a diminished Essien. You could look to him in big moments and expect something big on occasion when needed.
    5)Too much Malouda- I think F Malouda is being exposed in a similar way to Dirk Kuyt this season. As a role player he’s phenomenal but when you are forced to depend on him he just isn’t THAT guy.
    6)Drogba’s Seasonal Holiday- He just looks worn out as he has every 3rd season or so after heavy EPL, intl WC schedule. Looks like he doesn’t much care either.
    7)Ancellotti’s tactics- Relying on Ramires when he hasn’t delivered yet-Jon Obi Mikel for anything other than substitution for Essien- lots of Paulo Ferreira (which Mourinho never did)-Strange midfield combos that just haven’t worked…

    I’d enjoy hearing thoughts of the TSG crew.

    Reply

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