Liverpool surged int a stunnning 3-0 lead at home to Manchester City inside the first 30 mins of the Champions League Quarterfinal first leg.

In the other game, Barcelona lead Roma 2-0.


Reader Comments (139)

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Colin Glassar
1 Posted 04/04/2018 at 19:43:46
Nasty kopites smashed up the Man City bus. Bottles and bricks galore.
John G Davies
2 Posted 04/04/2018 at 19:49:45
Vermin, Colin, typical of the breed.

Everybody's second favourite club, eh, as the media would tell us.

Tony Marsh
3 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:11:49
Liverpool tearing Man City to shreds here by attacking them. City not looking as good as them pundits reckoned on Saturday.
Joe McMahon
4 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:21:11
Colin - it's not looking good though... 3 - 0 up. I thought back in September after I saw their group, you know what's gonna happen.
Mark Boulle
5 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:21:15
We're going to need all the help we can get as a club. The Shite are running riot at Anfield! I just knew this would bloody well happen... they're going to win the fecking thing again aren't they?! Who is going to stop them with this kind of fervour at Mordor...?!
William Gall
6 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:23:00
Sam seeing how you are full of praise for unstoppable City, are you watching them against your opponents this weekend, they are down 3-0 after 30 mins to a team that don't stand around admiring them.
Daniel Lawrence
7 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:25:41
Compare our first half Saturday against Man City and that shower of shite's tonight and I don't think I've felt as far apart from them since the 0-5 derby defeat!!
Colin Glassar
8 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:30:41
I think on this form they’ll beat us by at least 10 goals.
Rob Halligan
9 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:37:34
Surely Real Madrid, Barcelona or Bayern Munich should have enough to beat these?
Jim Bennings
10 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:38:05
Liverpool have been absolutely dazzling again to be fair. Hate to admit it but the difference between us and them is a trillion miles now, bigger than it’s ever been!!!
Tony Marsh
11 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:42:50
I'm not going anywhere near Goodison Park on Saturday... What's the point? On this form and with our shithouse players, it could be 5 or more goals.. Imagine Schneiderlin up against these.
Paul Tran
12 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:43:24
Jim, they're playing really well. If anyone thinks the coach doesn't make a difference, watch them. A midfield that are half decent at best looking superb – purely down to conditioning, drilling and mindset.
Jack Convery
13 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:45:47
The so called best team the EPL has ever seen being bossed by Henderson / Milner – WTF!
Jim Bennings
14 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:47:29
Paul

What astonishes me is how super fit Klopp has every player in his squad, the likes of Robertson is running like he’s has 90 Red Bulls!

Contrast that with Everton players who all seem to run like old grannies – even the young lads look fucked after a bit of a jog.

You don’t need to spend billions to be super fit surely??

William Gall
15 Posted 04/04/2018 at 20:56:31
If Everton players run around tackling and harassing like our neighbours are doing, they would be knackered after 15 min or even sooner. Hope Big Sam is watching the team he admires as unstoppable, getting the same treatment that they gave to his team last Saturday.

Hopefully City are able to get a couple of goals back in the second half.

Colin Glassar
16 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:11:47
I can't get on the BBC match report. Every time I hit the Barcelona - Roma game, the RS come up. Bias or what?
Rob Halligan
17 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:17:09
The only good news so far to come out of this game is that Salah has gone off with a possible groin injury, so I doubt he'll play on Saturday.
Jim Bennings
19 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:22:54
Rob

They could play Liverpool Ladies and they'd still look fitter and stronger mentally than us at Goodison on Saturday!

It's just the difference between the training regime, the academy and the whole mentality of the club.

Rob Halligan
20 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:25:04
True Jim, but we have to look for some positives going into the game on Saturday. Salah possibly not playing is one of them.
Jim Bennings
21 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:27:34
Believe me, Rob, I'm really really trying to find some positives to even get some nervous enthusiasm about it, like the derbies of old when it wasn't so nailed-on that we will lose.

Danny Baily
22 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:34:18
Nothing at stake this weekend. Do yourself a favour and give it a miss!

Shame about that first half. Just wish we were capable of doing that to a side like City.

Jim Bennings
23 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:40:24
I get the feeling, Danny, we'll possibly be home early Saturday afternoon anyway. In typical Everton fashion, we'll give the game up inside 20 minutes and I'll be off by HT.
Dermot Byrne
24 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:46:28
After what they just did to Citeh, they could lose to us 5-0 on Saturday and it would just be seen as a little hiccup. Sad reality.
Colin Glassar
25 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:50:51
I’ve volunteered to work this weekend. I can’t bear to watch another thumping and another Allardyce meltdown.
Dermot Byrne
26 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:55:37
Wise man, Col.
Danny Baily
27 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:55:59
Grim isn't it. Let's hope it's a good old fashioned brushing encounter at least. Set them up for the second leg nicely.
Dermot Byrne
28 Posted 04/04/2018 at 21:57:21
It will be a brushing encounter as you say Danny mate! As they brush us aside.
Mike Connolly
29 Posted 04/04/2018 at 22:02:52
City beaten before the kick off. Big error training on our pitch before playing the shite. The gods above must have thought the shite were playing us tonight, hence some of the dodgy decisions they got.

Our ground has been jinxed for decades regarding the shite. The new ground can't come quick enough.

Trevor Peers
30 Posted 04/04/2018 at 22:28:06
Nonsense about training at Goodison, their hatred before the match was well planned and allowed by the police.

Utterly disgraceful. Will they never learn with this crowd? They'll stop at nothing, stand by for a riot before the return match at Man City. But then it will be all the Mancs' fault... disgusting outfit they are.

Jim Bennings
31 Posted 04/04/2018 at 22:38:46
Whatever the circumstances were before kick-off, it shouldn't come as any real surprise and it's disappointing again that Man City shit themselves at Anfield once again. If I was a City fan, I'd be annoyed they weren't ready for this tonight.
Brian Murray
32 Posted 04/04/2018 at 22:50:47
The only silver lining is Sam being the dignified man that he is will walk away Saturday and Bill will follow suit and finally let us grow into a big football club on and off the pitch. I am right, yes??
Trevor Peers
33 Posted 04/04/2018 at 23:01:02
Jimmy, you're always bleating about how soft we are, would you condone any behaviour as long as we won a trophy then?
Jim Bennings
34 Posted 04/04/2018 at 23:06:42
Aye Trevor!

I think we need a “bastard” about us and whilst it’s nice getting pats on the back, you win things if you are nasty.

Look at the great United sides?
Roy Keane, Cantona etc.

Arsenal Invincibles has the likes of Keown, Adams, Viera.

Gordon Crawford
36 Posted 04/04/2018 at 23:09:21
I’ve done the same Colin, making sure I’m working. Hammering just around the corner me thinks. I hope they get heavily fined for the attack’s on the city bus.
Brian Porter
37 Posted 05/04/2018 at 07:15:42
Liverpool played without fear against Man City last night. It showed Allardyce up for what he is, a cowardly no-hoper who gives up before a ball has been kicked. Get rid now, Moshiri. We could do better without his jowls hanging over the touchline on Saturday.
Mark Smith
38 Posted 05/04/2018 at 07:54:58
Liverpool look like they will walk all over us this Saturday. With the crowd (when it is 0-3) sending a crescendo of boos towards the hopeless Allardyce he can walk straight out and catch his Taxi. Silver lining don't you think .

Just had a text from my daughter working in Australia as the Premier League blogger for the equivalent of BT (nice work) saying she was pleased someone gave City a bloody nose.

She's a lovely girl (and avid toffee fan) who at 27 years old still doesn't get it. I reminded her NO good score for Liverpool will be tolerated in my house. I'm going to have to fly out to start re-education!

Jay Woods
[LAT]

39 Posted 05/04/2018 at 08:02:16
Mark Smith, your daughter is no Toffee fan.
Tony Heron
40 Posted 05/04/2018 at 08:58:25
Well who would have thought it? "Unstoppable" City have now been stopped twice, by the same team! For psychobabble Sam, let me explain how:

Instead of worrying about the opposition, set up to make them worry about you. Identify and exploit their weaknesses (defence?)... and finally, as Henderson in particular showed, instead of standing back and admiring the opposition – GET STUCK IN!

Ajay Gopal
41 Posted 05/04/2018 at 09:42:17
I agree we do not have a 'nasty' player who hates losing in the present team – except, maybe Rooney, Coleman and Davies, and maybe, Tosun. The rest of them are too soft and nicey, nicey. I would love to see Calvert-Lewin, Davies and Baningime start against Liverpool this weekend. These guys will rough them up real good.

Pickford
Coleman Jagielka Keane Baines
Davies Rooney Baningime
Walcott Tosun Calvert-Lewin

Subs: Robles, Funes Mori, Martina, Schneiderlin, Vlasic, Bolasie, Niasse

Richard Reeves
42 Posted 05/04/2018 at 09:52:17
Liverpool won't win the Champions League. Klopp will be the nearly man when it comes to the Champions League and the Premier League. That's not me being bitter but what I think will happen in his time as their manager. He might have some success with the smaller domestic trophies but not the big two.
David Hallwood
43 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:07:17
Brian,

Liverpool did play without fear but they also played with Milner & Henderson doing a number on Silva & De Bruyne. No silky midfield skills just using their athleticism, to close down, chase, harry and generally disrupt City's midfield -– something that was totally absent from our midfield.

It's the facet of the game that's much maligned but essential, and every great team do it, including the Man City team, and the Man Utd team before that, where Giggs and Beckham, the flair players would be all over the opposition when they didn't have the ball.

The great ahhhhhh RS sides (God that hurts) had Rush & Daglish as the first line of defence. Recently, I watched a game between us & Man Utd from the mid-60s, and what was noticeable was Alex Young (yes, the Golden Vision) closing down, throwing some tasty tackles in.

This IMHO is the reason we have seen so many collapses this season, is that no-one is prepared to sweat blood for the cause, epitomised by Schneiderlin strolling round the park. Once again, IMHO, this is what a Director of Football or new coach will have to eliminate from our game.

It should be a case of: we're playing Man Utd, Man City, or Liverpool, etc – well, they'll know they've been in a game at the final whistle.

John G Davies
44 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:25:12
Richard (#39),

The devil has taken your comments on board. He will act accordingly when it comes to semi-final and final time.

Andy Meighan
45 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:27:49
I hope you're right, Richard. But I've said since September they'll win it. They've even tightened up at the back. God, I didn't sign up for this!
Chris Leyland
46 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:32:47
This game should have been 2-1. Liverpool's first goal was incorrectly allowed to stand when Salah was offside at the start of the move. Meanwhile, Man City's late goal was ruled out for offside when they were actually onside.

If the officials had done their job properly and not missed these high profile incidents that is, but it is Anfield so why should we expect that?

Talking of missing several high-profile incidents over the years, in reference to the bus attack, Guardiola stated: “but I did not expect a prestigious club like Liverpool doing this kind of thing.”

Rob Halligan
47 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:42:06
Chris (#42). Scum of the earth they are. Anyone remember a few years back when they played Man Utd at Anfield, I think it was an FA Cup tie, and Alan Smith broke his leg.

The scum have even threw bottles etc at the ambulance taking him to hospital.

Lawrence Green
48 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:52:55
I have tried desparately not to post on this thread as I'm not sure how the Champions League containing our arch-rivals is of interest to us as Blues - but I suppose it's better having an isolated thread for it than having loads of random posts about the brilliance of our neighbours on every other thread. Except it doesn't as many post about the various attributes of the other crowd at every opportunity.

The reason I'm posting is that a National newspaper has picked up a tweet by former red David Thompson (WHO?) that kindly informs the world that the attack on the bus was carried out by Evertonians!

Merseyside Police are conducting enquiries to identify those responsible for throwing objects at the bus, while Liverpool have condemned the attack and vowed to support City in establishing the facts of what occurred.

But Thompson has thrown a spanner into the works by tweeting: “Heard it was evertonians and not Liverpool fans who damaged the man city coach typical.”

It's in the paper it must be true eh? I also read a tweet last night from some RS that a few fans bad behaviour shoudn't see his club punished - that's ok then, except didn't we all get banned from Europe due to the behaviour of fans in 1985? Oh yes I forgot it was probably not their fans who were responsible. I'm still hoping beyond hope that Man City make it to the Semi-final, but in reality it doesn't matter to me as to whether the RS lift the CL or not, it doesn't help Everton either way.

https://www.express.co.uk/sport/football/941700/Everton-Man-City-Liverpool-team-bus-Champions-League

Everton Fans!

Colin Glassar
49 Posted 05/04/2018 at 10:59:00
There were a few of them doing it (tweeting lies) last night Lawrence. You know they are always the victims and WE will probably be fined and banned from European football. UEFA and the Premier League have to protect their darlings.
Ray Roche
50 Posted 05/04/2018 at 11:00:12
I saw that too Lawrence. What an odious little shit he is. "I heard it was Evertonians" anything to deflect from the truth. Sadly some knuckle draggers will believe the little bastard.


I heard that Elvis was a regular at the Grafton. Wasn't he?

Jim Bennings
51 Posted 05/04/2018 at 11:35:57
It would be great for Saturday or other future Goodison derbies if we could ban that lot from entering the ground with those pathetic continent sized flags with madcap pointless crap like “Wine for my men we rise at dawn” and other zany shit, sums up that freak show!
Dick Fearon
52 Posted 05/04/2018 at 11:39:32
It is long long overdue for Evertonians unplugged their heads from our own arses and take a good look at whats been happening in the Premiership over the last 20 years. We have been taken for a ride by a bunch of tax dodging carpet-baggers.

Our situation will not change until the match-going fans display the balls to say enough is enough. Moshiri must be made to see we are as mad as hell and will not take any more bullshit.

His first move should be to sack whoever is responsible for our pathetic fitness levels. Then he should send out on loan our so-called future stars with instructions to demonstrate their worth or bugger off to pastures new.

We should not be making excuses for poor displays because the little darlings have played just a dozen 1st team games. What in hell have they been doing for the past 10 or more years when supposedly they were preparing for the step up?

Dominic Calvert-Lewin is a typical example of what I'm on about. He has many of the physical attributes yet comes across as a boy in a man's world.

Ray Roche
53 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:03:12
Jim, or every Evertonian could take a small "I am Spartacus" flag and hold it up at different times. Just as a piss take, obviously.

Coz everyone knows, I am Spartacus.

Brian Harrison
54 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:13:28
It never ceases to amaze me who often their fans are allowed to continually get away with things that other clubs would be banned for. I heard one of their supporters on the radio this morning saying its tradition that they have a welcoming committee to try and intimidate the opposition – his words not mine.

This is condoned by their club who asked supporters to make as much noise in welcoming their own team and the opposition. And there wasn't just 1 or 2 throwing bottles and cans there was more like 20 - 30. I remember their chairman at the time of Hysel, John Smith, claiming it wasn't Liverpool supporters who caused the trouble but National Front supporters. They have attacked the Man Utd bus on many occasions.

Now the question is how will the City fans react next Tuesday when they are at home? Let's hope no further trouble is caused, but I hope that Liverpool Football Club instead of encouraging this welcoming committee they ban it all together. make as much noise as you like in the stadium, but bottle throwing at rivals takes us back to the bad old 70s.

Jay Woods
[LAT]

55 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:16:26
The media were bigging them up all week, doing their best to psyop City into defeat.

Then the police did their bit (by accident or design) by letting the coach get brutalised.

If right were right, UEFA would throw them out and teach "the best fans in the world" a salient lesson on how to behave. But maybe it has to happen to Real Madrid at Anfield before anything like that would be done.

Raymond Fox
56 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:29:52
I purposely have not watched the shite's game, and have only just seen a video of the reception the City coach received. What a disgrace, that comes top of the list for moronic behavior in my book. Absolutely disgusting it was.

I suppose everyone in the City will be tarred with the same brush as usual.

Jim Bennings
57 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:32:22
If we are going to lose that derby on Saturday the very least we can do is put that little odious tattooed rat ladyboy Firminho into Row Z.

I’ll go spare if I start seeing little niceties from the likes of nice guys Jags and Baines.

We haven’t had a single highlight during this woeful season so you better leave everything on that pitch come Saturday lunchtime Everton!!!

Jim Bennings
58 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:41:16
Jay Woods,

Well hopefully if they do get drawn to play Real Madrid they'll get baton charged by Spanish cops and put in their places unlike the pathetic attempts last night from police who “promised a safe environment” after every man and his dog knew what was coming – as was promised weeks earlier by those devil-worshipping knuckle-draggers!

Steve Cotton
59 Posted 05/04/2018 at 12:52:51
Jose parks the bus, Liverpool stone the bus.
Jim Bennings
60 Posted 05/04/2018 at 13:05:01
In the extracts from Slippy G's autobiography he apparently told how his first intention in a Merseyside Derby was to “do an Everton player” of which he did Kevin Campbell with a disgusting lunge.

I hope some of our players are thinking the same about Saturday to be honest, I want to see the “bastard” come out in us!!!

Ray Jacques
61 Posted 05/04/2018 at 13:45:22
Ashamed of nothing, offended by all. That should be the shites motto.
Steve Carse
64 Posted 05/04/2018 at 14:24:48
The incorrect offside calls totally shaped the outlook for the second leg.

Going a bit off topic, what surprises me is that such errors are commonplace, whether they affect goals scored or not, and yet they would be the easiest ones to check out with the use of a TV screen with a line across the pitch to show the relative positions of players, as used by Sky and BT in live games. It would take just a few seconds to review and calls would be black and white with no subjectivity and opinion involved. I'd be happy if offsides were the only reason that VAR could be used.

Pat Kennedy
65 Posted 05/04/2018 at 15:12:32
I am old enough to remember us competing in the European Cup as was in 70-71 beating Borussia Moenchengladbach in a penalty shoot out at Goodison Park – our hero was Andy Rankin. Such great memories!

As always, there is too much moral high ground comment about Liverpool FC on here. They deservedly beat the so-called unstoppable Man City and we should stop talking about their pacts with the devil and other such shite. They have only won 1 League Cup trophy in 6 years on penalties against Cardiff! Some fuckin pact that is!

There is another match next week and City are more than capable of beating them by 3 or more.

I hope and pray for a positive result for us on Saturday but I do feel more than a bit envious when I hear that Champions League anthem and think will we ever hear that at Goodison Park (or Bramley-Moore... if that happens?).

I wish this season was over right now. Has to have been one of the worst in living memory.

Don't worry – Barca or Real will win the Champions League!

Jim Bennings
68 Posted 05/04/2018 at 16:34:24
Brian

I’ll tell you why Leroy Sane looked great against us but shite last night!

Because we stood off him (and every City player) all match and just admired them, the lack of a meaningful tackle from any Everton player during 94 minutes spoke volumes.

Liverpool didn’t give City a seconds peace on the ball, always in their faces pressing and playing with gusto, that’s why last night Sane and City’s other big stars didn’t get a kick!

Dave Abrahams
69 Posted 05/04/2018 at 16:56:53
UEFA have charged Liverpool with four offences (they all look relatively minor to me) and will give their verdict on these charges on May 31st, so it looks like a heavy fine at the most, which the red fans will scream blue murder at.

I didn't see the game but it looked like Liverpool played against City with no fear and no respect for them and got a great result, slightly different from us on Saturday.

Steve Carse
70 Posted 05/04/2018 at 17:20:27
Pat (65) -- none of their cup wins this century have been won in normal playing time; all were won on penalties. The devil was asleep though when they lost their last cup final appearance, on penalties.
Paul Birmingham
71 Posted 05/04/2018 at 17:23:35
It will be interesting to see the UEFA Comittees stance on last night, in view of our fines this season for incidents inside Goodison Park in the Europa v Split, their fans on the bounce in the ground and for Ashley Willians's mad-dog attack on the Lyon players.

By the end of May seems a long time to wait for a decision in view of the prestige of the tournament.

Interesting also to see what happens next week in the return leg i.e. lessons learnt etc.. by the Police.. A bad omen for the game in my book, it's a dark walk back to the 70s and 80s.

Dick Fearon
72 Posted 05/04/2018 at 21:31:54
In the 60s, shortly after disgusting RS behaviour at Maine Rd, it was Everton fans that suffered a police backlash at Maine Road. Hundreds of arrests and parking fines were thrown out by the courts when proven to be unwarranted and discriminatory.

Everton's case was supported by hundreds of city fans who criticised their own police force for its blatant one sided action.

A similar event took place at Burnley when police selectively roughed up Blues fans only because a few weeks earlier the gobshites had visited the town with their usual bad behaviour.

Alan McGuffog
73 Posted 06/04/2018 at 11:52:49
Maybe it's time that we ditched “Its a grand on team to play for”. It's patently obvious that we ARE obsessed with the RS. I can't stand em but concede they are playing superb football. We should not let this preoccupation deflect us from the fact that Everton, from boardroom down, is a laughable crock of shit.
Pete Clarke
74 Posted 07/04/2018 at 01:23:53
I see Conor McGregor has openly admitted to being a red now as well !!
Brian Wilkinson
76 Posted 11/04/2018 at 00:29:59
Probs him who attacked the City bus Pete.
Stephen Brown
77 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:07:22
Oh God!! Real could be going out too!! It's lining up for them!!!
Guy Hastings
78 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:11:50
Stephen (#77) -- I share your pain.
Mike Gaynes
79 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:23:25
Hey guys, if the Old Lady can come from three goals down at the Bernabéu, she can certainly handle the RS. Keep the faith.
Mike Jones
80 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:44:37
Real Madrid are the only team that are more in league with the devil than the RS. Franco’s team.
Sandra Williams
81 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:47:38
I could actually cry for all those Juventus fans; they didn't deserve that.
Rob Halligan
82 Posted 11/04/2018 at 21:53:13
Jeez, talk about a pressure penalty for Ronaldo to win that for Madrid. It must have been a good four minutes before he took it. Buffon going mental at Michael Oliver then sent off. Was a deffo penalty in my opinion.
Stephen Davies
83 Posted 11/04/2018 at 22:07:25
Rob (#82),

And the taking of those chances/opportunities (no matter how much possession or chances the other team has or pressure the other team puts you under) is what separates winners from losers.

Mike Gaynes
84 Posted 11/04/2018 at 22:22:42
Rob, okay, a soft pen is a pen nonetheless.

But a straight red for verbals – no touching – in extra time of a Champions League quarterfinal classic to the most respected captain in Europe, was officious bullshit in my opinion. Typical Oliver.

Sandra Williams
85 Posted 11/04/2018 at 22:34:03
Good job I'm not a player I'd have decked Oliver!! Would be worth a red!
Andrew Keatley
86 Posted 11/04/2018 at 22:45:45
Mike (84) - "No touching"? Watch it again. Buffon barged right into the back of Oliver.

And as for the penalty, as far as I could see, Benatia does not make any contact whatsoever with the ball; it bounces off Vasquez's chest and into Buffon's arms. Harsh (in terms of the context of the game), but it's a foul.

Rob Halligan
87 Posted 11/04/2018 at 22:58:16
Mike, you can't deny Buffon went ballistic. He was like a raging bull. Most respected captain in Europe doesn't excuse you from being sent off.

As they were saying on BT sport, they were almost pleading with Oliver not to send him off and let him go out in a blaze of glory and try and save the penalty.

As slippy said, we will have to wait and see why Buffon was sent off. You can't deny verbally abusing the referee is no longer a sending off, if indeed that's what he was sent off for, or has that rule changed?

Mike Gaynes
88 Posted 11/04/2018 at 23:20:31
Rob, to me "ballistic" or "mental" means waving your arms, jumping up and down, grabbing the ref's arm or throwing a finger in his face. All Buffon did was yell.

And a top referee is expected to maintain perspective and take the situation into account. Sure, give a yellow, and then if necessary a second yellow. But when, with that much at stake at a moment like that, have you ever seen a straight red for dissent? Unless the player is threatening you or accusing you of taking a bribe, in my view a straight red is overboard.

Mike Gaynes
89 Posted 11/04/2018 at 23:24:02
But as you say, we'll know for sure when we find out what exactly Buffon said to Oliver.

I'm biased as a Juve supporter, but I've also been reffing since I was 18 and have some opinions based on that too.

Rob Halligan
90 Posted 11/04/2018 at 23:39:16
Mike I'm not saying Buffon was sent off for going ballistic, or mental. Blimey, there would be no players left on the pitch if that was the case.

Yes, he was yelling, or at least that's what it looked like, and in that particular situation I guess it's very hard to control what you say. Clearly Buffon said something which didn't agree with Oliver, something like "you effing cheat".

We shall wait with interest for the reason why he was sent off.

Mike Gaynes
91 Posted 11/04/2018 at 00:04:40
Rob, here's Buffon's quote from the postgame interview:

Buffon said Oliver should not have given the penalty so late in the game if it wasn't absolutely clear, and according to the legendary goalkeeper, "it was a tenth of a penalty."

"I know the referee saw what he saw, but it was certainly a dubious incident. Not clear-cut. And a dubious incident at the 93rd minute when we had a clear penalty denied in the first leg, you cannot award that at this point.

"The team gave its all, but a human being cannot destroy dreams like that at the end of an extraordinary comeback on a dubious situation. Clearly you cannot have a heart in your chest, but a garbage bin. On top of that, if you don't have the character to walk on a pitch like this in a stadium like this, you can sit in the stands with your wife, your kids, drinking your Sprite and eating crisps.

"You cannot ruin the dreams of a team. I could've told the referee anything at that moment, but he had to understand the degree of the disaster he was creating. If you can't handle the pressure and have the courage to make a decision, then you should just sit in the stands and eat your crisps."

"It's an issue of sensitivity. It means you don't know where you are, what teams are facing off, what players are involved. It means you've understood absolutely fuck all."

If that's what he said to Oliver, then he was accusing him of choking -- obviously with a few more f-bombs in there. And so I stand by my opinion that, in the heat of that moment, there is absolutely no way it should have been a straight red.

Stephen Davies
92 Posted 11/04/2018 at 00:12:16
Mike/Rob

I think at the point when Buffon comes behind Oliver, something occurs (you can see Oliver reacting to something). Perhaps he was grabbed on the back?

I don't know but, immediately after that, he produces the red card.


John Pierce
93 Posted 12/04/2018 at 00:15:52
Deffo a pen. They’re not graded but binary, even Buffon is quoted as saying it was a ‘tenth of a pen’. So it’s a pen Gigi, no issues there.

As for Juve’s conduct, well I have little time for the emotional response rubbish. They know it’s a pen, they’re gutted and have tried to harangue Oliver into a change of mind.

In football you reap what you sew, too long the game has cultivated an environment were its okay to behave like demented idiots towards other players and officials.

Apparently the referee is expected to remain calm but the players can behave with impunity?!

Juve were desperately unlucky to go out but the damage was done in leg one.

Regarding Oliver, as an official myself I’d say he didn’t do enough to vacate the area, back away and give the players a heartbeat, any player who then continues to follow him leaves themselves open to sanction. Fair dos that.

I think he tried to remove himself but not hard enough. Still cannot excuse the behavior from both sides actually.

Ultimately Juve powered down expecting ET time and thought Madrid would do the same. The defence for the goal was very poor. Maybe that’s the real focus of their ire?

Rob Halligan
94 Posted 12/04/2018 at 00:36:18
Just read that Mike, on the BBC sport website. I can't believe Buffon said all that in the space of about five seconds.

Seriously though. For Buffon to say you can't award a penalty so late in the game, or because Juventus were denied a clear cut penalty in the first leg, which was nothing to do with Oliver by the way, is just plain daft. A penalty is a penalty whatever time in the match It is awarded. It was a penalty, you said yourself, albeit a soft one, but still a penalty.

If Oliver "choked it" which to me sounds the same as "bottled it", then surely he wouldn't have given the penalty?

Besides, Buffon didn't say in his post match interview why Oliver sent him off. That interview is only his feelings towards Oliver.

John Pierce
95 Posted 12/04/2018 at 00:43:58
Rob, I want to know what the crisps were?! Frazzles maybe? Golden Wonder Cheese 'n' onion would be class.
Dave Bowen
96 Posted 12/04/2018 at 01:19:45
My opinion, for what it's worth: I don't think it's a penalty, but from Oliver's position I can totally understand why he gave it.

The Real player was always gonna chuck himself to the ground under the slightest touch; however, I think he managed to get enough on the ball. If that had been an EFC player rather than Real, I would have been screaming for a penalty.

Buffon manhandled the ref. He had to go, end of.

Derek Thomas
97 Posted 12/04/2018 at 01:20:29
There are no English refs in the World Cup Panel for a reason...
Mike Gaynes
98 Posted 12/04/2018 at 01:57:07
Dave (#96), bollocks. There was no "manhandling" or anything resembling it.

John (#93), thoroughly agree that Oliver should have done what any Italian, Spanish or South American ref would have done in the same situation, backed off a bit and created some space. There's a whole lot of space between "impunity" and a straight red.

Rob, Buffon didn't think it was a pen... and his point was that it would have taken courage at that point NOT to call it in front of the Bernabéu home crowd. My point is that the red was the choke point.

Derek (#97), you got that right!

David Barks
100 Posted 12/04/2018 at 02:47:26
It was absolutely a penalty, he made the right call. The player did not dive as he had no idea a player was behind him. He was fouled from behind when attempting to take a strike at goal.

As for the Italians, please spare me their complaints about a ref sending a player off. Buffon acted like an ass and all the rest of them accosting the ref could have received cards as well. Italians criticizing fouls.

Look at their history of flopping around to draw sendings-off and then simply laugh in their faces.

Andrew Keatley
101 Posted 12/04/2018 at 03:18:59
David (100) - Totally agree. Benatia was already booked, so he should have received a red card.

Mike Gaynes - I think you declaring yourself a Juventus fan gives me a clearer insight into your passion, but anywhere else on the field it is a free-kick, and that's because it was a foul; I may be wrong but I seriously don't think Benatia even touches the ball at any point.

David Barks
102 Posted 12/04/2018 at 04:24:40
Wait, so Mike is a Barcelona supporter and a Juventus supporter, but he’s posting on an Everton site? Fucking hell, pick a club.
John Keating
103 Posted 12/04/2018 at 06:05:17
Oliver called it right. Definite pen.

As for Buffoon saying it was only a tenth of a pen... idiot.

I'm sure if Juve would have got that at the other end, they'd have declined it or deliberately missed because it wasn't fair.

Alan McGuffog
104 Posted 12/04/2018 at 07:07:24
Somewhere in the great beyond, Brian Clough is celebrating. Now he did go ballistic many years ago after Juve cheated Derby County out of possible European Cup glory. So eventually it would seem to come around?
Jay Woods
[LAT]

106 Posted 12/04/2018 at 08:39:38
Mike Gaynes, it's non-canonical (if you will) to support more than one top-level club in Europe. It's just not the done thing and, given that we're all Blues here, it is likely to see major aspersions being cast on the Toffee credentials of the guilty "polyfan".

You can, however, have other clubs that you have a sneaking admiration / affection for. I like to see Man City do well because my father supports them, but I am in no way a City fan. And Liverpool's opposition on any day also draws warmth from me, for obvious reasons.

As far as the Champions League goes for the remainder of this season, that means I wanted Real Madrid and Bayern to stay in it as they pose a greater threat to LFC's hopes of winning it than I believe either Sevilla or Juventus could have.

Dave Abrahams
107 Posted 12/04/2018 at 09:35:49
Mike Jones (80), I think Liverpool are at least the equal of Real Madrd at being in league with the devil. Being honest, I think Liverpool are the devil, especially when you take into consideration some of their followers.
Brian Williams
108 Posted 12/04/2018 at 10:27:10
In the midst of all the drama and the ongoing furore right at the death of last night's Real Madrid match, one thing stood out and made me laugh out loud.

After scoring the penalty and running to the supporters, Ronaldo threw off his shirt, did his "most muscular" pose (a bodybuilding thing) and in the heat of the moment with all that going on around him he still had the presence of mind to very deliberately pull down his footie shorts a few inches to attain the "best look" for his waist in his tightie whities. Now that is sheer professionalism for you!

John G Davies
109 Posted 12/04/2018 at 10:36:58
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/stephen-the-devil-french-spotted-10349605.amp?source=images

There you go.
Even their fans are on board with beelzebub. 😁

Martin Nicholls
110 Posted 12/04/2018 at 11:41:03
Brian (#108) – did Oliver remember to book him?
Brian Williams
111 Posted 12/04/2018 at 12:21:14
Martin. Think he was too busy enjoying the view. :-)
Brent Stephens
112 Posted 12/04/2018 at 13:07:31
Mike #88 "to me "ballistic" or "mental" means waving your arms, jumping up and down, grabbing the ref's arm or throwing a finger in his face".

To my eye, he went ballistic. I think a man with no arms or legs could still go ballistic (although unlikely to be a goalkeeper!). Bang out of order.

Tom Bowers
113 Posted 12/04/2018 at 13:15:58
Clear penalty. Oliver had great guts to give it at that stage of the game. Kudos to him as many refs. far too often won't call those ''clever'' deliberate fouls by defenders in the box especially from corners.

Red card justified too although one can understand the frustration of Juve being so close to at least extra time but can only blame themselves.

Tony J Williams
114 Posted 12/04/2018 at 13:25:52
Clear pen.

Buffon can't at least say he is in the same camp as McFadden for being sent of for verbals.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

115 Posted 12/04/2018 at 13:47:46
Mike Gaynes at various.

First up, I first took notice of Michael Oliver the referee when he reffed the Blackpool v Man Utd game. He was 25-26 I recall. I was hugely impressed then and I think he has developed into the best English ref in the PL today.

Secondly, for me it was 100% a penalty. For perhaps the only time over the 90 minutes, a RM player gets free and in behind the Juventus defence, centrally, in the 6 yard box.

A tremendous crossfield pass from Kroos picks out Ronaldo who has the ability and awareness to not only win the header, but to set up Vazquez rather than attempt a header on goal himself.

Vazquez is fully focussed on the ball. He is not looking to 'buy' the foul. The Juve defender Benatia clearly shoves Vazquez in the back. Even as Vazquez falls to the ground Benatia wraps his left foot around the RM player, catching him chest high. At no time in this play does Benatia make any sort of contact with the ball.

It doesn't matter it if happens in the first 15 seconds or the last 15 seconds of the match, or any time in between.

It doesn't matter what the state of play is, not even the extremely dramatic scenario of last night, the referee should not take into consideration any 'emotional consequences' as claimed by Buffon post match.

If the ref sees it, it is a foul, it is a penalty.

You further claim Mike that Oliver 'choked' by sending Buffon off. Didn't give himself 'space' to make the decision. And you also deny there was any 'manhandling'.

Oliver does not live in a bubble. He will know this season is Buffon's self-declared last season playing CL football, a trophy he has never won in his illustrious career.

Rather than being a bottler or choker, to award the penalty AND send off the Juve legend as he did, at the time he did, in the circumstances that he did, Oliver showed himself to be the complete opposite of those charges.

As for your charge of giving himself 'space' to make the penalty and red card decision, Oliver can be seen in the 'D' of the penalty area when the foul is committed. When he blows and gives the penalty, he runs forward before standing stock still just to the left of the penalty spot to which he points to in making his decision.

Naturally, as to be expected, the Juve players erupt. Oliver DOES back off, but he is surrounded on all sides by a swarm of Juve players. One of those is Buffon who (I agree with you) doesn't 'manhandle' Oliver per se, but he does bump into the back of the referee twice, once unbalancing Oliver. Shortly afterwards, the ref shows the red card.

As a football lover I would have been delighted to have seen the game go to extra time to see how things panned out. That they didn't was because a Juve player committed a foul to concede the decisive penalty and the team's most experienced player lost it and was removed from the field of play when his team needed him most.

Who knows what have may have resulted in a Ronaldo-Buffon shoot out? Who knows, even if Ronaldo did score against Buffon, if a calmer Juve couldn't have contrived a fourth goal in the time remaining to win the game?

As it was, the bedlam and delay that Buffon helped create allowed Ronaldo 5 minutes to compose himself and win the game for RM with an unstoppable penalty.

I have HUGE respect for how Juve played and what they (nearly) achieved last night.

I have HUGE respect for the Giant Legend that is Buffon.

I understand how raw the emotions must have been in the moment, the immediate aftermath of the game and again today, but some of Buffon's comments about Oliver - including now labelling him 'a murderer' - do him no credit at all.

Mike Gaynes
116 Posted 12/04/2018 at 15:07:44
Jay #115, thoroughly disagree. In that situation, as John and I as refs both agree, it's more professional to just ride out the wave of emotion for a few seconds, or even better to just walk to the side of the penalty area and see if the players follow and continue. And it is definitely more appropriate to show a yellow and then a second yellow, unless the verbals are pretty vile.

The straight red is the amateur approach. I know, that's what I would have done in the Sunday league I ref in. But that's not what a top-level international ref should do in an emotional moment in a CL quarter. It's officious bullshit, something Oliver has been guilty of before in my eyes. And perhaps not mine alone... interesting that such a talented ref has been passed over for the World Cup. (PS... I also said it was a pen.)

Mike Gaynes
117 Posted 12/04/2018 at 15:56:34
Jay #106, I had to look up "non-canonical", so thanks for the incentive, and the respectful phrasing.

To explain, I'm a Yank, so I'm not a born Blue, I'm made. Everton became my passion the first time I ever saw them play on TV --1985, the Cup tie against Ipswich with Sheedy's double free kick. But I was already 29 years old and had been soccer-mad since I was 13, the first time I ever touched a ball. (Still playing now at 62.)

Aside from being a committed fan of my hometown Chicago Sting (born 1975, defunct 1984, may they rest in peace), I built an affection for both Juve and Barca from watching them when their summer US tours came through Chicago. I was indoctrinated into Juve by an Italian-born teammate, and Cruyff's Barca enchanted me.

I still support both today in their league and Cup competitions, but my heart is Everton. When we played Juve in San Francisco four years ago, Lyndon will vouch for my being decked out in what little Everton gear I owned (one of the team PR people gifted me a scarf) and cheering my lungs out for the Blues. Went nuts over Stones' cheeky pen.

To those who believe that retaining those other longtime loyalties makes me insufficiently Blue, I'll simply say that's what I do, take it or leave it. (My wife doesn't mind that I'm still in touch with my ex.)

And to the pissant David Barks, who keeps posting the same snotty comment, I'll simply say fuck off.

David Barks
118 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:15:25
Mike,

While I maintain that supporting multiple clubs is a bit ridiculous, as would most people on this site if you ask them, you should be aware of sarcastic humor by now if you’ve been around Evertonians for decades now. We find it funny that people would call themselves a supporter of Barcelona, Juventus and Everton. The “Fucking hell pick a club” was simply a joke. Do whatever you want, I don’t really care. Not sure why you feel the need to call me a pissant and to fuck off.

John G Davies
119 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:23:09
You asked for that to be honest David.
Mike has a right to reply in kind.
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

120 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:39:41
Mike @ 116.

What exactly do you 'thoroughly disagree' about my post?

An accurate reporting of the sequence of events as they unfolded?

Buffon's reactions?

The Juve team's reactions?

How Oliver handled the situation?

Because I mention them all. I also offered my opinion that it was a clear penalty. At no point do I claim that you said it wasn't a penalty. I read your previous posts in the thread carefully before penning my own reply and noted you conceded that 'a soft penalty is still a penalty, nonetheless.'

As a self-confessed referee yourself (at a very low level, judging by your own words) you quite rightly say it is prudent to 'ride out the wave of emotion for a few seconds, or even better to just walk to the side of the penalty area and see if the players follow and continue.'

Oliver attempted to do that, which you seem unwilling to admit. He awarded the penalty whilst stood close to the penalty area. He backs away - as much as he is allowed to, surrounded as he was by the mob of Juve players, to stand OUTSIDE the penalty area before sending Buffon off.

I agree with you Mike and already stated that Oliver was not 'manhandled', but to claim @ 84 as you do that it was 'a straight red for verbals – no touching' by Buffon is 100% false.

Buffon clearly bumps into the back of Oliver, not once but TWICE, the second time causing the ref to lose his balance. That is taboo! So on that alone it was perfectly legitimate to produce the straight red card,

Even then, Oliver did not immediately produce the red card, but Buffon would not give it up, when - as the respected and seasoned professional he is - he should have walked away and composed himself as THE man in the Juve team responsible for defending the penalty. He didn't.

Are you exempting the players themselves from any accountability for their actions and the consequences of those actions?

As for your speculation at just how vile the verbals were, you yourself quoted in this very thread the really nasty personal things Buffon said about Oliver after the match. Do you think on pitch he was quietly and politely asking Michael Oliver to re-consider his decision over a cup of tea and cucumber sandwiches...?

And Buffon compounded those insults further today by describing Oliver as 'a murderer'. Do you subscribe to that view also, Mike...?

Ta very much, but I'll stand by my stated opinions, both on last night's game and that I regard Michael Oliver as a fine referee.

He had an EXCELLENT game himself last night, over and beyond the single minute you wish to focus and condemn him on.

Michael Lynch
121 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:43:18
Yeah fuck off David Barks.

Just thought I'd get that in.

Remember when you were a kid and there was a fight going on, and you'd sneak in a little punch from the sidelines? No? Just me then.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

122 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:49:06
I forgot to add, as for being called out for 'supporting' other clubs, ignore it.

I have no doubt your greatest passion is for Everton.

Due to family connections, emotional reasons and my travels, I also 'support' (adopt, if you will) other clubs. These include:

Blackpool
Queens Park (of Scotland)
Sporting (Portugal)
and no less than 3 clubs in Brazil - Cruzeiro, Paysandu and since the plane crash of last year, Chapacoense.

Shoot me!

David Barks
123 Posted 12/04/2018 at 16:54:09
But I don’t want to shoot anyone. Do I have to?
John G Davies
124 Posted 12/04/2018 at 18:33:05
Michael, (#121),

There are a few other apt descriptions of the type you mention. 😊

John G Davies
125 Posted 12/04/2018 at 19:06:38
I am a big supporter of St Pauli. That is more for the club's left-wing politics than the football.
Andy Crooks
126 Posted 12/04/2018 at 19:39:00
Mike Gaynes, I have a soft spot for quite a few clubs especially Sheff Wed and Morecambe. The reasons are sentimental but important.

Regarding the sending off I see it as epitomizing the problem for referees. At every corner in every premier game there are players who, by the book, should be sent off. A referee who sends one off will be technically right but wildly differing from his colleagues. Oliver was right in my view but wrong, if you get what I mean.

The governing bodies should spend the summer clearing up the rules. Swearing at the referee should be defined as a sending off or not. Same with the nonsense that goes on at corners. Referees are uniformally spineless. Oliver was not. Juve had the one referee in a hundred with a backbone. That, Mike, to me, makes them very, very unlucky.

Had Oliver refereed every derby game over many years I suspect he would be hated by Liverpool.

Rob Halligan
127 Posted 13/04/2018 at 12:35:32
The devil's work is nearly complete as the RS draw Roma. As sure as day turns to night, this was a certainty.

Michael Lynch
128 Posted 13/04/2018 at 12:39:43
Didn't even need to see the results of the draw. Of course it was going to be Roma.

Jay Woods
[LAT]

129 Posted 13/04/2018 at 12:48:22
Juve have enjoyed preferential refereeing for decades. It's a bedrock of what they are as a club, so they were maybe due an "injustice".

I thought LFC would get Roma but, then again, Roma know Salah and they've already humbled Barcelona so here's hoping.

Tony J Williams
130 Posted 13/04/2018 at 12:48:47
Let's see if they have the balls to try and wreck their coach. I very much doubt it.
Jeff Hough
131 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:12:40
John 125, Oh the left wing politics eh???
No other reason to support St Pauli is there?
Nudge nudge, wink wink!
Lawrence Green
132 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:28:31
Apparently Roma had ticket information for the Champions League tie with LFC posted on their website prior to the draw actually taking place. It seems they had the second-leg to be played at their ground – so they got it spot on. Fixed European footy? surely not!!

James Hughes
133 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:29:42
Mr Gaynes (#117). You have posted many gems before but that is an excellent riposte.

An excellent answer to the accusation oft repeated on here: "You're not a true Blue"

Jay Woods
[LAT]

134 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:32:04
Good answer, Mike Gaynes, and well explained!
John G Davies
135 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:34:44
Not with you there Jeff.
You sound like Eric Idle.

Unless you mean turning left instead of right towards the ground when walking down the Reeperbahn?

Trevor Lynes
136 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:41:23
Well over a hundred comments on a future champions cup that we will not be involved in. Most of the comments are pretty dire and unfortunately demeen our less vitriolic supporters.I for one am not too interested in what Liverpool or any other club accomplish and this site should concentrate on Everton F.C and not waste space on ridiculous, jealous sounding sour grapes.I would love us to be in the semi finals of a top trophy and then I would show full interest but at the moment we are outside the window just looking in and I just wish that the fans ambitions of our clubs future would come to fruition.
Jay Wood
[BRZ]

137 Posted 13/04/2018 at 13:57:40
For those bemoaning Liverpool getting the 'easier' draw of Roma, think again.

Here in Brazil, local TV broadcast both Barca-Roma ties live, rather than t'other game. I watched every minute of both games.

Believe me, Roma were extremely hard done by in the 4-1 loss in Spain. They did not park the bus, but they were certainly very solid defensively.

Nor were they passive in attack. They took the game to Barca throughout and had many threatening moments of their own.

Barca only took a 2-0 lead thanks to two own goals. Roma deservedly pulled a goal back, then lost a third to a sucker counter attack. Even then they remained well in the game, until the dying minutes when a really, REALLY dumb mistake in the dying minutes gifted a chance to Suarez to make it 4-1.

It looked a goal too far for Roma to turn over in the 2nd leg. Not at all, as it proved. Roma absolutely twatted Barca. They easily kept Barca at arm's length and totally, but TOTALLY overran the visitors' midfield and had (until that night...) the best defence in this season's Champions League under constant pressure.

The particularly delightful Schadenfreude that football can throw up is that the two Roma players who scored the own goals for Barca in the first game – skipper De Rossi and defender Manolas – were the scorers of the crucial 2nd and 3rd goals that sent Roma through.

I for one believe, more than Man City, Roma has the all round game to nullify Liverpool's attack and ample in midfield and attack to overwhelm the pinkies' own frail defence.

And if you think Anfield can be hostile on European nights, wait until you hear the 90-minute reception our loveable neighbours will receive in Rome.

Michael Lynch
138 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:07:09
Jay – great post, cheered me up no end. But if you're wrong I'm going to have to kill you.
Jay Woods
[LAT]

139 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:20:18
Yes, Jay in Brazil, that is heart warming stuff... thanks!
Dave Abrahams
140 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:22:50
Jay (137), nice to read your post. I must admit I'm not very aware of European clubs, most probably because we (Everton) don't have much to do with the top clubs in Europe, but I was reading very recently what a great team spirit Roma have; you have just confirmed some of that.

The biggest fear I have is a lot of teams crumble before a ball is kicked at Anfield, especially on European cup nights. No matter how much they are told what to expect on the night they never seem ready for it. I hope the Roma team are fully prepared on the night.

Ed Fitzgerald
141 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:41:47
John G Davies

I am a little surprised as YWNA is an anthem for Saint Pauli fans – do you join in or object on political grounds – when you are there?

I can understand that you might align with them as a Blue because they, like us, are fucking awful – but much more trendy, I will grant you that.

John G Davies
142 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:48:17
Join in?
JOIN FUCKING IN?

Trendy?
Not a word I generally use Eddie

John G Davies
143 Posted 13/04/2018 at 14:50:09
Apologies.

*Ed.

A little untrendy of me there.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

144 Posted 13/04/2018 at 15:22:37
Dave @ 140 (and others...).

This Roma side are made of sterner stuff than some teams who crumble at Anfield.

Their manager, Eusebio Di Francesco, is a curious one. Ex-Roma player, managed a number of lowly clubs, sacked from a number, but at Sassuolo (Who??? ... Exactly!!!), 3-4 seasons back he won them promotion to Serie A for the first time and subsequently got them as high as 6th to qualify for the Europa League.

On the back of that, he was appointed Roma manager last summer... and look where they are now, even having sold Salah to t'neighbours.

He has them playing excellent pressing football all over the park. Very high octane. No little technical ability. Tigers in defence and tackling. Add him to our own manager wish list, perhaps...?

Interestingly, an earlier manager of Sassuolo who also contributed to their rise up the leagues was none other than Juve's excellent manager, Massimiliano Allegri.

Sounds as if the Sassuolo chairman knows how to spot a good manager – a bit akin to our own guardians! Cough!

Mike Jones
145 Posted 13/04/2018 at 22:49:14
Not sure how to phrase this without it seeming inappropriate.

I was in a works course today. National attendance. I got talking to a delegate. Female. She heard my accent. Assumed I was a scouser (correct). Assumed I was a Liverpudlian (incorrect).

I asked her where she was from (Carlisle) asked if she liked football (yes) asked her who she supported (Liverpool). We laughed, me asking why she supported Liverpool; she saying she liked the songs and the atmosphere ever since she could remember as a child although never visited!!!!

We got deeper and discussed Hillsborough and Heysel although, and this is where it got disappointing she asked what Heysel was. I'm 48 and she is 47. I was 15 at the time of Heysel, she was 14.

No loss of life at a leisure event is acceptable, but it seems a significant event has been forgotten in the midst of time in lieu of another. The latter was the fault of the authorities, and thankfully the law has exposed that. But what about the former?

Any loss of life at a sporting event is unacceptable, but I worry about the airbrushing of history. No unavoidable death is better than another. But society needs to remember them all equally, lest we lose something as humans

Tom Bowers
146 Posted 13/04/2018 at 22:59:01
In cup football, no matter which competition, if your name is on it then you will get past anyone.

It was really surprising how Man City played against RS (twice) – three times if you include the last Premier League game but I have suspected the City defence had flaws long before those games and RS have the offence to exploit those flaws which they did. Playing Kompany ahead of Stones was a big blunder.

However, no-one in their right mind would have predicted that Roma would make that comeback against a terrific Barca team. The chances of Roma repeating that feat are remote and so they will be ultra defensive in the first leg against Salah and Co..

Having said all that, I am more enthused by the prospect of watching the Championship playoffs rather than Champions League.

Jay Wood
[BRZ]

147 Posted 13/04/2018 at 23:09:17
Tom @ 146.

"No-one in their right mind would have predicted that Roma would make that comeback against a terrific Barca team. The chances of Roma repeating that feat are remote and so they will be ultra defensive in the first leg against Salah and Co."

You evidently didn't watch the TWO games Roma played against Barca. I did, as I reported @ 137.

Rest assured, they will not set up to be 'ultra defensive ' in the 1st leg at Anfield.

This is a very, very serious football team with a very, very good manager at the helm.

Damian Wilde
148 Posted 14/04/2018 at 22:57:21
I would fucking love it if Roma did them horrible bastards. Their fans are booking flights for the final, arrogant gobshites.

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