Anorak News | Blowing Doubles

Blowing Doubles

by | 8th, April 2004

‘ON paper at least, Chelsea’s chances of winning the Champions’ League were enhanced still further last night when holders AC Milan were knocked out in sensational style.

The Great Escape

Claudio Ranieri still captures the main headlines, with the Telegraph saying how he and his side plan to win this season’s Premiership as well, but the story of the day comes from La Coruna.

In northern Spain, Deportivo thrashed European Cup holders AC Milan 4-0, overturning a 1-4 deficit.

The final four vying for the biggest prize in club football is now known. And with the lesser names of Porto, Deportivo and Monaco in the silken bag, Chelsea have every chance of winning the cup.

Just as Arsenal have every chance of fishing what until a week ago was a spectacular season empty handed.

The Independent’s news that the Gunners will have to make do without Thierry Henry rubs a large does of salt into an already festering wound.

For Chelsea, losing a player would be no big thing – they have so very many of them he could get lost in the crowd. But for Arsenal, a team the paper says are playing the season with just 12 men, it’s a big blow.

“Chelsea are on the way up,” says Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, “just when we are on the way down a bit.

“We have crossed each other…We’ve now lost a bit of freshness and belief.”

A lack of belief in a team that is yet undefeated in the Premier League says something for the standards set at Highbury.

But, as the Sun reports, Liverpool are hopeful of doing what no other side have managed and plan to beat the Gunners in the league this Friday.

And Paul Scholes says that, if Arsenal are to win, they’ll have to toughen up a bit.

This is a rather odd comment on a team that managed to cause a fight at the end of the match at Old Trafford and boast an unenviable disciplinary record.

But it’s Paul Scholes talking and, since he plays for Manchester United, the Sun must hear him out.

Not that there is not too much to hear. Scholes is one of the game’s quieter players and merely says of his FA Cup semi-final foul on Arsenal’s Jose Antonio Reyes that “there are always going to be tackles in big games like that” and that he’s not bothered about being seen as the bad guy by the London outfit.

The only surprise is that this non-story should take precedence over the Deportivo result, which the Sun reduces to an afterthought.

Perhaps if the Spaniards had texted the result to David Beckham, we’d be hearing more about it?’

Posted: 8th, April 2004 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink