Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Arsenal v Dortmund or Milan v Barca - Dilemma



Another great day in the Champions League - and poses the question, what game to watch?

Arsenal v Borussia Dortmund jumps out as both teams are performing well domestically and not just getting results, but playing the type of football we all love to see. Dortmund are the only team I have seen recently that could live with Bayern. They don't have the consistency or overall quality, but they are really well coached, exciting and full of great individual talent.

Arsenal are a team that most of us loved to see fail, but by the same token, are a story of resurrection that we can't take our eyes off. Wenger was done, fans wanted him out and players were beginning to question him. But in came Mesut Ozil, something clicked and suddenly they are top of the league and pretty sure to reach the knockout stages should they win tonight.

My favorite story is Aaron Ramsey. He's 22, suffered a horrific injury against Stoke and is now displaying some great form, putting him up there with Ozil as one of the best midfielders in the league. People forget he's still a young guy and has so much potential. The abuse he got coming back from that injury was harsh, and I'm glad he's showing his true quality.

And so to Milan v Barca. The Champions League is the only real test for the Catalans. Yes, they play Real Madrid this weekend, and Atletico have started well in La Liga this season. But games like this bring out the best in Xavi, Iniesta and Messi. It's also a big test of Neymar. He's started well domestically, but we'll see if he's up to Champions League standard later. Of course I think he is, but I was fooled by Robinho before!

Milan are a mystery to me. Great one week, horrible the next. They have good players, but I still can't get past the fact they let Pirlo go...and to Juventus!

There's also Marseille v Napoli, Shalke v Chelsea and Celtic v Ajax to keep us entertained today - plus 3 other games for the DVR to take care of. Enjoy, as the winter break isn't too far away.