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Lyon shock Madrid, Portsmouth make it to Wembley, FIFA turn down technology and Wayne Rooney keeps on scoring goals. These stories and more feature in this week’s good, the bad and the ugly section of the podcast. Vocabulary support can be found for the words in bold at the foot of the post.
A good week for Bayern Munich, Manchester United, Lyon and Arsenal as they all made it through to the last 8 of the Champions League. The two English clubs won easily – United thrashed AC Milan 4-0, while Arsenal hammered Porto 5-0. Bayern lost 3-2 at Fiorentina but won through on away goals while Lyon caused the shock of the round with their 1-1 draw in the Bernabeu to knock out Real Madrid.
Good news for Premier League strugglers Portsmouth, who progress to the semi-final stage of the FA Cup in England after beating Birmingham 2-0. The winners in 2008, they will face either Fulham or Tottenham. If it is the latter, they will face their old manager Harry Redknapp and a host of ex-players, too. The club from the south coast were of course forced into administration last week, and still face the likelihood of being docked nine-points, something which would almost certainly result in their relegation. The cup run is just what they need, both to lift their spirits and to help their bank balance. Although it has been reported that the English FA may withhold Portsmouth’s match fees because they owe other clubs for past transfers. Winning the cup usually means entry into the Europa league but that too looks unlikely given their financial situation. Still, everyone’s loves a good cup run.
Nine-time winners of the Champions league, Real Madrid were dumped out of this year’s tournament after being held by French side Lyon at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium this week. This was the sixth year in a row that the Spanish side have failed to make it to the quarter-finals of the premier club competition in Europe. Already there is a huge amount of speculation over the future of coach Pelligrini while the Madrid press have also turned their ire on Brazilian star Kaka who has failed to reach the heights of when he was at Milan.
Bad for AC Milan’s David Beckham on his return to his former club, Manchester United. The LA Galaxy and Rossoneri midfielder had hoped to put in a winning performance in front of his old manager, Alex Ferguson, but didn’t make an appearance until the second half, and by that time his side were already 3-0 down and effectively out of the competition – they finally lost 4-0, 7-2 on aggregate. Beckham being Beckham though, he did manage to get himself in the limelight even after such a heavy defeat. After the final whistle he donned a green and yellow scarf – the colours represent the group of fans trying to get rid of the Manchester club’s owners, the Glazers. Anything for a photo opportunity!
FIFA’s decision to not use technology in the game and in particular goal line technology is ridiculous in my mind. Tennis, cricket, rugby and American football all benefit from having this form of technology to settle disputes within their respective sports yet football lags behind. While FIFA stressed that they did this in order to preserve the human decisions in the game surely it would be better for those decision makers, the referees, to have as much information as possible? Poor but unsurprising decision from FIFA.
thrashed: To be heavily beaten (hammered)
hammered: To be heavily beaten (thrashed)
the Bernabeu: The Santiago Bernabeu Stadium is the home ground of Real Madrid
were dumped out of : To be knocked out of a competition (in a bad way)
turned their ire: Became angry towards; looking for a scapegoat
lags behind: To be some way behind