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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)

Round 16


vs


Arsenal FC| Real Madrid CF


Real Madrid travel to London this week knowing they face a tough task to overcome Arsenal and reach the Champions League quarter-finals.

The million dollar question will be wether Ronaldo will return to the Real Madrid team, or wether he will be dropped which would surely signal the end of his Real Madrid career. Guti and Zidane are both carrying knocks and are not certain to make this match. Robinho, Cicinho and Sergio Ramos will return to the line-up after both missing the Madrid derby.

There may be a start for Raul.

Arsenal continue to have problems at LB with Cole and Clichy still out, although Flamini is covering for them superbly. Campbell and v.Pierse are still not fit, so Arsenal are expected to remain unchanged from the side that became the first British team to ever triumph at the Santiago Bernabeu.





TEAMS:




ARSENAL FC:


-------------Lehmann------------
Eboue---Toure---Senderos---Flamini
----------Gilberto--Cesc-------------
--Ljungberg-----------Hleb------
-----------------Reyes------
----------Henry------------------

Bench; Diaby, Pires, Bergkamp, Djourou, Walcott, Almunia.



REAL MADRID XI:


------------Casillas-----------
Cicinho---Mejia---S.Ramos---Carlos
------------Gravesen------------
Beckham--Guti--Zidane--Robinho-
-------------Ronaldo---------------

Bench; Raúl, Cassano, Baptista, Salgado, Helguera, P.Garcia, Cobeño.






CURRENT DOMESTIC FORM:


Real Madrid: WWWLD


Arsenal FC: LLWDLW




TIME AND VENUE:

UCL| Round 16| Wednesday| 8 March 2006| 20:45 CET| Highbury






TV:

Sky Sports 1
ART Sport 3
Premiere Sport Portal
Canal+ (Spain)
Sport TV
Sky Calcio 10
 

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Discussion Starter #2
To speak the truth, too many factors indicate an Arsenal win.

a) Lopez Caro's team selection will once again be atrocious. If fit, both Guti and Zidane will play (even though only ONE of them should be playing at a time). Raul will start ahead of Cassano (even though Cassano is the better option for anybody who understands football). Also, Raul Bravo could be preferred to Mejia (even though Mejia is a much better central defender). :googly:

b) Arsenal play at a much faster pace. The small Highbury pitch will make their counter-attacking even more deadly.

c) Real will simply be over-run in midfield. A midfield of Guti-Gravesen-Zidane is TOO SLOW.

I think we will lose and get knocked out. Our only hope is if we actually come out and perform to the best of our ability. That means we must be clinical and Guti and Zidane must control the midfield with their passing and possession.
 

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I don´t see Guti performing on this one, too much pressure for him to take the team over, Zidane should play close to Robinho for something to work or they will be outmarked.

The right side will be the biggest problem, no proper cover for Cicinho to go up so I see him staying back more meaning Beckham will not hold the ball on the right. When time passes by Cicinho will finally release and then Arsenal will roll over on that side, Ljungberg will have a field day.

The weakness on the right side will make life for Arsenal easier to mark Robinho and Zidane and I don´t see the attack connecting to an isolated Ronaldo that way. Unless Iker, Robinho, Zidane and Ronaldo pull a habit there is very little chance with that formation, tactically in my opinion the game is lost already.

Mejia and Sergio sounds like a good idea though, but Cassano should play with Ronaldo, while Cicinho should take Beckham spot adding some stability to the midfield, a player thats fast, consistent, marks better and can hold onto the ball when there is no space.

The question is should Zidane or Robinho play on the left and how should the DM spot be solved, is it better to have Sergio out of position there with a weaker backline or is better to risk again a less mobile duo in Guti and Gravensen. Or should Guti even play as he missed many passes on the first leg.
 

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Arsenal 4 - Fulham 0

Cesc played the last minutes of the match and scored. Titi scored twice...

They are ready. We?
 

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You guys were confident of a result in the first leg, but looking at El Feno's preview, it seems that confidence has drained significantly.

I'm feeling more confident myself (not saying much) so all this points to...

2-1 Madrid :depress:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Lite®nit said:
I don´t see Guti performing on this one, too much pressure for him to take the team over, Zidane should play close to Robinho for something to work or they will be outmarked.

The right side will be the biggest problem, no proper cover for Cicinho to go up so I see him staying back more meaning Beckham will not hold the ball on the right. When time passes by Cicinho will finally release and then Arsenal will roll over on that side, Ljungberg will have a field day.

The weakness on the right side will make life for Arsenal easier to mark Robinho and Zidane and I don´t see the attack connecting to an isolated Ronaldo that way. Unless Iker, Robinho, Zidane and Ronaldo pull a habit there is very little chance with that formation, tactically in my opinion the game is lost already.

Mejia and Sergio sounds like a good idea though, but Cassano should play with Ronaldo, while Cicinho should take Beckham spot adding some stability to the midfield, a player thats fast, consistent, marks better and can hold onto the ball when there is no space.

The question is should Zidane or Robinho play on the left and how should the DM spot be solved, is it better to have Sergio out of position there with a weaker backline or is better to risk again a less mobile duo in Guti and Gravensen. Or should Guti even play as he missed many passes on the first leg.
Spot on, especially about the game already being lost tactically (assuming we line-up as expected).

Hopefully Beckham will pick up a knock in training today or tomorrow, and Zidane will fail to recover in time so he will start on the bench.

To win this match, we should play like this IMO;

-------------Casillas-----------
Salgado--Ramos--Mejia--Carlos
----------Diogo--Guti-------
Cicinho-----Cassano------Robinho
------------Ronaldo-------------


Zidane will be double-teamed and completely marked out of the game like he was at the Berbabeu (we don't have someone like Ballack to open him up and give him space), so Guti better step up and perform. Guti is going to be crucial, he holds the key because he is the man responsible for linking midfield with attack. We know he is capable of completing 95% of his passes when on form, but his performance in the first leg was shocking. Hopefully he will show up this time. Also, with Zidane we play at a slower pace.

With this formation, at least we will play at a fast pace and can create many chances to score goals.
 

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in my books we've lost the match, but my book is entitled "bad luck and the long road of pessimism"

to be honest i havent taken into consideration the 11 vs 11 on the pitch, im merely basing this on instinct. and i dont think we will win, which is a shame. either we dont get the goal(s) required, or we are dominated so badly that we go home like a bunch of idiots.

whatever lineup we assemble will be overridden in midfield. if we noticed guti against athletico and his i wouldnt say inability, but id call it lack of desire to go back and defend. hence why we saw gravesen act the way he did, and look poor on a couple of occasions.

zidane can show the goods, but if other players show productivity from his passes. if they get the ball and start sucking on their thumb (see baptista) then the only place we'll end up is back in madrid fighting for 2nd spot.

i hate to say this but we're not going through. i cant predict the score, but i can predict our fate. lets hope things are different on the day, but the likelihood of that is closer to impossible than possible.
 

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this is one of the hardest matches of the season, and if we have crapham, craptista, slow zidane and lazy ronaldo we will lose it for sure

but on the other hand if we get out of the CL the team will concentrate more on getting the 2nd spot in the league, which would be amazing for us considering that this season has been crap since the begining...
 

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The match will be showned on '3+ (Denmark)' too. Will Cassano be in the squad for this game? Because he isn't in L-Pheno's first post.

Btw, I don't think we will win this match but I still hope we do.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Anastacio said:
The match will be showned on '3+ (Denmark)' too. Will Cassano be in the squad for this game? Because he isn't in L-Pheno's first post.

Btw, I don't think we will win this match but I still hope we do.
Sorry, I forgot to edit. Yes of course Cassano will be in the squad. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #11
At least one good thing about this match is that, although we know we have to score 2 goals to advance, we can afford to concede 1 goal and still go through on the away goals rule if we win 1-2 on the night.
 

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L-Pheno said:
At least one good thing about this match is that, although we know we have to score 2 goals to advance, we can afford to concede 1 goal and still go through on the away goals rule if we win 1-2 on the night.
That's my greatest fear. I want to avoid that scenario a la Chelsea.

Cicinho, overlapping run, late goal? :scared:
 

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Yeah, so even if Arsenal score first, Real shouldn't put their heads down because we needed to score 2 goals anyway.

Hmm, I can see Madrid scoring for sure, but I can't see Arsenal not scoring either.

Should be a cracking game.
 

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I think We Can!
 

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L-Pheno said:
Zidane will be double-teamed and completely marked out of the game like he was at the Berbabeu (we don't have someone like Ballack to open him up and give him space), so Guti better step up and perform. Guti is going to be crucial, he holds the key because he is the man responsible for linking midfield with attack. We know he is capable of completing 95% of his passes when on form, but his performance in the first leg was shocking. Hopefully he will show up this time. Also, with Zidane we play at a slower pace.

With this formation, at least we will play at a fast pace and can create many chances to score goals.
Guti is not speedy gonzales either and although I did not catch the last game I have not seen him covering a lot of ground, he hardly tracks back too. I agree its though to play both Zidane and Guti though specially if Robinho starts as well.

I can understand any coach having problesm to sort that out considering there is no options.
 

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Maybe Raul Bravo can have an incredible performance just like in the return leg against Juventus last year.

Oh wait, he didn't have an incredible performance, he actually cost us the tournament and assisted Zalayeta's goal beautifully.
 

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FigoIsGod said:
Maybe Raul Bravo can have an incredible performance just like in the return leg against Juventus last year.

Oh wait, he didn't have an incredible performance, he actually cost us the tournament and assisted Zalayeta's goal beautifully.

He made Totti proud with that assist :star: :jester:
 

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Well for once, i agree with most people here... ;)
The chances of us winning this game are slim, the chances of us actualy going through are even slimmer... :depress:

There too many factors to be considerd for this game and our starting point does not look good.
First there is lopez, he is just not a match for venger. Even without doing a matchup with vegner, lopez have shown to have a past of idiotic desicion making and i'm sure he'll follow the lineup of zidan, guti, gravesen, beckham and robinho as our midfield, a midfiled that does not consist of one(!!!) player who can actually defend, have only 2 players(gravy, beckham) that track back (uselessly) and is very slow and very predictible.
It will be the first game all over again.

Since i'm sure he'll (lopez) put this lineup, our chance actually comes from two players: ronaldo and beckham (Yes, i know what you are thinking...)
These two individuals have a lot on the hand for this game.
Ronaldo will probably either not stay with real madrid, in this case he'll like to start show the world that he is still at the top, or he might want to stay and in that case he'll want to get the fans affection back.
For beckham it all comes to business, he is now for the first time performing on english soil with real madrid, this is he's one chance to show that he is worth the time real madrid is spending with him on the pitch. For him it is also a business decision, as a defeat to arsenal, on english soil, will hurt his image too much. That's he's biggest game for real madrid.

Beside these two, we will need a super super day from ikerman, have the goddess of football luck on our side, and gravesen injected with makelele DNA in order for us to pass arsenal...

The good thing about this game (if you can call it good), is that once we are out, there will be no more excuses for lopez/martin to continue with the same lineup, so maybe we'll actually see some changes and maybe even cantera players playing more time... :)
 
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