Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Arsenal 2 Juventus 0

What a wonderful performance that was from Arsenal last night. The best I've seen in the Champions league since their 5-1 drubbing of Inter Milan in 2003 (when Edu and Parlour were playing in the middle). Fabregas and Henry will deservedly get the plaudits but every single member of the team played a vital part. Pires really impressed me in what was an unusual role for him, chasing and harrying, not something that you would have said before hand that he's have been too well suited to.

I was a little concerned in the first half because I felt that there was a lot of energy being wasted and that they wouldn't be able to keep up the pace throughout. Though they'll be abused in the press for a poor quality performance, at that stage Juventus were still looking confident. Fabregas' goal on 40 minutes put a vital dent in Juve's swagger. Arsenal stepped up the pace even further in the second half, maintained that level right through to the end and completely overran the Italian league leaders.

Well done again to Arsene Wenger and the team. Hopefully they'll complete the job just as confidently in Turin next week. Fabio Capello will know he's fortunate to be travelling home with a mere two goal deficit, though I suspect he will assign an old style Italian man-marker to Cesc Fabregas in an attempt to curb his creative instincts in the return leg.

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