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Michelle Ackermann

Michelle Ackermann

Born in South Africa, soccer has always been a part of my life, and was pretty much ingrained in my genes. Journalism is my second love in life, and what better way to combine my two favorite things in life than to write about the one thing I am most passionate about. I follow the New York Red Bulls religiously, but have a deep passion for La Liga. This passion is part of the reason why I have moved to Barcelona to pursue my dream of becoming a sports broadcaster.


TANGENTS

One Step Closer to the King’s Cup as Barcelona Proves Triumphant at the Bernabeu

Written by on January 18, 2012 | 3 Comments »
Posted in Barcelona, La Liga, Real Madrid

It may seem redundant for me to begin by writing about all the hype and excitement that surrounds a “Clasico” match-up between La Liga powerhouses; FC Barcelona and Real Madrid. Regardless if an individual follows this “two-team league”, as most consider it to be…no one can deny that watching some of the best players fight it out is never a dull day.

This first round quarterfinal Copa Del Rey match was no different; Guardiola and the squad headed to Santiago Bernabeu fully aware that it would be no easy feat. This game would be a rematch of last season’s final; which happened to be the only one Madrid won. Out of the last eight times the two teams had met, Barcelona was victorious in four of those quests, while the remaining three ended in draws.

To many, seeing Pinto replace Valdes in the net during such an important game seemed a dangerous gamble, but as Guardiola stated in yesterday’s press conference; “I don’t doubt him. He doesn’t participate as much but I don’t believe anyone doubts him.”

Di Maria would be absent for Real Madrid, but let’s face it, they do have superstar striker, Ronaldo. From the minute the whistle blew, both teams were on the attack. Barcelona may have dominated the possession stats during the first ten minutes, but it was Ronaldo that broke away in the 11th to find the net, leaving Pinto helpless. Social networks were sent into a frenzy; fans from both sides in disbelief, not only at the fact that Real Madrid had taken the lead, but jokes about Pinto’s outdated ponytail. The rest of the first half saw Barcelona with numerous opportunities and countless tries from Iniesta, Messi and Fabregas, but Real Madrid’s defense was not ready to let go of their lead.

The game changer came in the second half, in the 49th minute, when Puyol’s header found the back of the net; the moment they equalized is also the moment that the game became a dirty one. Real Madrid seemed like the face of frustration, and it could be seen all over the field with shoving and tackles all over, but it would be Pepe’s actions in the 67th that would eventually push Barcelona to find that second goal. Messi and Pepe had both fallen during a tackle, and as Pepe emerged, he decided to intentionally step on Messi’s hand. After all, this is a player that is known for his violent plays. As Barcelona’s playmaker, it is no surprise that his teammates were all enraged that Pepe had not received a yellow card for his actions, as the referee had not seen the incident, but in true Barcelona style, the incident just pushed them towards the victory, which would come from Abidal in the 77th, assisted by Messi.

It just so happened to be Guardiola’s birthday and surely he could not have asked for a greater gift than a victory at the Bernabeu, placing Barcelona in a comfortable position prior to the second leg that is to be played next Wednesday at the Nou Camp.

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3 responses to “One Step Closer to the King’s Cup as Barcelona Proves Triumphant at the Bernabeu”

  1. tim says:

    Why is Madrid such a dirty team….something is wrong with Pepe and Alonzo…Karma gets Mou every time…

  2. Ed Gomes says:

    Let’s begin by stating the obvious, when Barca is at their best nobody can touch them. I’m sorry but they not only have great players, but they also have great cohession on the field. They can be seemless in their movement, touches and passes with each other.

    Pepe has also proven more than once to lose it. And I just don’t mean against Barca. He was the same way at Porto, the Seleccao, and vs other teams in La Liga. It doesn’t make it right, and he deserves any suspenssions and/or fines he should get. The fact of the matter is that once it starts to really hurt the club, he will be shipped off.
    On a side note, everyone of the pundits seem to brush asside all the theatrics that some, not all, Barca players do. Busquets and Alves are an embarrassment. By the way there’s video proof of Pepe never making contact with Alves in last seasons match. Alves rolled around as if he was shot and went nuts. I agree that Pepe could have been called for intent, but Alves claiming he was killed just infuriates Pepe more. Once again, it doesn’t make his actions right.
    Barca wears the “white hats” or at the very least that’s what the pundits have put on them. I have always loved to watch Barca play when they are on the attack and driving forward. Let me add that they have also played some of the most boring football ever. They’ve gone up on teams 1-0 and just shut it down and knocked the ball at the back. The second and third goals usually come really late on.

    Disclaimer:
    For all who will come on an point out how Cristiano is a diver, be careful. He has always been taught to lift up his legs should a harsh tackle come in. Sometimes it looks like a a really bad dive. By the way, I’ve seen Messi and countless other speedesters do the same.
    Does Cristiano dive? Sure. Is it infuriating? Yes.
    Would you go as nuts about it if you were one of his fans? No.

    Lastly, I couple of things came out of this one.
    Let me add that I love Twitter, because it allows athletes to prove what we always knew. They themselves are complete idiots and must live in an different dimenssion where their own actions are never remembered.

    Rooney call Pepe “an idiot” on twitter. And went on to say that “Pepe deserved” to suffer Barca’s go ahead goal.
    Does he fail to remember how many times he has put his club, Man United, and England at a disadvantage due to his stupidity? Has a more important player to his clubs, done so much in the way of losing his composure and get tossed?
    Maybe the hair plugs are being held by rivets that have damaged a large portion of his brain when applied.

    By the way, former Real manager, Bernd Schuster said that what Pepe did went and goes on all of the time. The problem for players now is that there’s a ton of cameras on them.
    No I’m not saying what Pepe did was ok. He should be suspended and fined. I would go as far as fining Real, since this has happened multiple times and they haven’t controlled their player.

  3. Ed Gomes says:

    Just in case people think that I will excuse everything Real does and despise Barca, let me add that Carvalho deserved a red on his late tackle on Messi. He barely got the ball, but the intent was there.

    Barca was just far superior to Real in the 2nd half.

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