It’s Halftime Folks




UEFA Champions League

UEFA Champions League

The first leg of the Champions League came to a close last night. With the return legs to be played in a fortnight’s time all the eight places for the quarter finals are up for grabs. Let’s have a look at how the teams fared, and what is to be expected from the return legs.

1. Milan 0 – 1 Tottenham Hotspurs – A superb cross by England international Aaron Lennon to the ‘Crouching tiger’ Peter Crouch led to the solitary goal of the match. The game had been marred by controversy of the Gattuso – Joe Jordan row. But Spurs had the last laugh. With the attacking depth Milan possess they could well make a comeback. Spurs are slight favorites for this one having the lead and the away goal. Will Milan’s Champions League experience count for nothing against the debutants?

2. Valencia 1 – 1 Schalke – The Los Che could easily have been two or three goals ahead but poor finishing and a dramatic comeback from the legendary Raul, means Schalke are well truly back in it and with the away goal and the best shot stopper in the world another match that could go anyway.

3. AS Roma 2 – 3 Shakhtar Donetsk – The Romans began the scoring, but the three quick goals from the Ukranians were enough to break their spine. Roma have made a blunder of what could have been an easy passage to the quarters. Shakhtar are heavy favourites for this one, can a new coach on the bench bring a change in the fortune for the Italian runners-up. Too much to ask.

4. Arsenal 2 – 1 Barcelona – Probably the best game of the round. An epic comeback from the gunners in the last fifteen minutes of the game meant Arsenal is not going to give in. With the return leg to the Camp Nou. Barca is slight favorite.  Arsenal though has everything that is needed to knock Barcelona out. And there is a strong intuition that the Gunnery will qualify at the expense of  the ‘Best team in the world’.

5. FC Copenhagen 0 – 2 Chelsea FC – The only game which might be well and truly over, two away goals from France ace Nickolas Anelka is going to be too much for the Danes to cover up. Chelsea is a heavy favorite to be in the top eight.

6. Olympique Lyon 1 – 1 Real Madrid – The record European champions once again failed to win against their bogey team. Former Lyon star Benzema opened the scoring for the Spanish capital club. But a late goal from Gomis was all but enough to end the game in a draw. Madrid has got the crucial away goal, heavy chances they will go through.

7. Olympique Marseille 0 – 0 Manchester United – The game ended as it ended, and Marseille looked dangerous at times, and with United failing to score an away goal. Marseille have a great chance they can make it to the top eight if they score first. As the game is at the ‘theatre of dreams’ United are favorites for this one.

8. Inter Milan 0 – 1 Bayern Munich – The most mouthwatering clash on the table a repeat of last year’s Champions League final, ended with Bayern Munich scoring the goal in the last minute of regulation time. Robben’s long shot was rebounder of Inter keeper Ceasar falling straight to the feet of Mario Gomez who dint make any mistake. Both the Milan sides have lost at the San Siro and with the same scoreline. Their dreams of defending the Champions League title look all but over. The return leg is at the Allianz Arena, Bayern have been very strong on their home ground, and with one goal lead that too an away goal, Bavarians look certain to go through.  Complacency could harm the Double winners though; they are not taking things lightly.

My predictions for the second leg are:

Tottenham Hotspurs 1 – 2 AC Milan

Schalke 1 – 0 Valencia CF

Shakhtar Donetsk 2 – 1 AS Roma

Barcelona 3 – 2 Arsenal FC

Real Madrid 2 – 0 Olympique Lyon

Manchester United 3 – 1 Olympique Marseille

Bayern Munich 3 – 1 Inter Milan

The teams that will go through in my opinion are: Spurs, Schalke, Arsenal, Real Madrid, Manchester United and Bayern Munich.  Let us know what you feel.

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Ojas Mhatre

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Hello guys, all you sports fans. This is Ojas Mhatre here I am 16 and I am giving my HSC exams this march so pray for me. But that is besides the point I am a sports fanatic, I have represented the state in cricket and played football at district-level. February is a special month for me Last month this time I was called for a trial with the Royal Challengers Bangalore and, this time I get to write for you. Hope to entertain you with my articles mainly on football as I am a big Arsenal and Bayern Munich fan, But also Cricket and Tennis. Here’s hoping I become the most loved writer. Guys your love matters the most to me, Cheers to our relationship getting on the right foot.

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