The Champions League Draw For the Semifinals

Thursday, 10 April, 2008

As everyone knows, the quarterfinals are over, and the semifinals will be upon us in two weeks. There were some great games in this most current round. Two that come to mind are the Fenerbahce win(2-1) in the first leg over Chelsea, and the Barcelona win(1-0) in the first leg over Schalke. Those games were good because both teams were even throughout except for a few short moments where the winner took the initiative. Instead of rambling on, here’s the draw for the semifinals:

– Chelsea v. Liverpool:

* This is another all-England tie. It is the second English team in a row for Liverpool to deal with. This is a rematch of last year’s semifinal, with Liverpool getting the better of Chelsea last year. Liverpool lost in the final to AC Milan after that, with very pathetic and boring/predictable play throughout most of the game. They’ll need to do MUCH better in order to get to the final, and win if they make it to the final. Chelsea are saying how this isn’t a revenge matchup, that they’re just focused on beating whoever they’re against. Ha! They’d love to get revenge on a team from their own league. Games in the Premier League between the top teams always turn out as expected. If they pretend it’s a Premier League game, I expect this one to be rough and both teams to show up with their best form. They ARE vying for a spot in Europe’s premier club competition, you know.

– Barcelona v. MANCHESTER UNITED:

* This could be a pretty good defensive battle. Neither team lit up the scoreboard last round, but didn’t let their opponents score at all. I see both teams scoring, but not very much. Manchester United have everyone who was injured back and healthy. The problem is that Nemanja Vidic, one of their best defenders, went down with an injury, and he’ll miss the semifinal games. Carlos Tevez has been one of United’s unsung heroes this whole competition. He’s gotten goals in half of their contests. Barca may or may not have Messi, so Thierry Henry’s improving form needs to keep improving to try and score more than once in each of these games. Both teams just need to keep defending as they have been, and sprinkle just a bit more offense on top of that to really make a great two games out of this.

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