Thursday, August 28, 2008

Match Game

Champions League draw is out. The groups, and then some thoughts:

A: CHELSEA, Roma, Bordeaux, Cluj.
B: Internazionale, Werder Bremen, Panathinaikos, Anorthosis.
C: Barcelona, Sporting Lisbon, Basel, Shakhtar Donetsk.
D: LIVERPOOL, PSV Eindhoven, Marseille, Atletico Madrid.
E (for Easiest): MANCHESTER UNITED, Villarreal, CELTIC, Aalborg.
F: Lyon, Bayern Munich, Steaua Bucharest, Fiorentina.
G: ARSENAL, Porto, Fenerbahce, Dynamo Kiev.
H: Real Madrid, Juventus, Zenit St Petersburg, Borisov Automobile and Tractor Electrical Equipment.

Clearly, I stole that from the Guardian's MBM of the draw, but it holds up. Christ, could United have handpicked an easier draw? Maybe they would have taken PSV instead of Villarreal. But Aalborg? Google would have to stop and ask for directions on the way to that place. Ridiculous.

First off, obviously, Liverpool ... their European campaign this season needs some kind of clever nickname about a reunion tour. PSV and Marseille are recent Liverpool victims, and, of course, the ultimate get-back-together: Atletíco. Those will be a blast. Basically, Liverpool's group stage is a reminiscence of the Rafa Benitez era in Europe.

The other one that really excites me is Real Madrid/Juve/Zenit/BATE. The Old Lady is back in Europe, and you know they'll be ready for it. But neither Juve nor Real Madrid want to go to Russia. Zenit could cause a lot of trouble, even though it looks like Pavlyuchenko is headed to Spurs. Then, all three of those get to kick the crap out of Borisov Automobile and Tractor Electrical Equipment.

Chelsea, Bordeaux, Roma and Cluj. Whatever. Same thing for Inter's group. Boring.

I'll leave the Arsenal for Colin.


Carl said...

Side bar?
I know it is in the future but how about we get some tickets to girl talk on Nov 4th yes i know that is the day of historical proportions but what better way to ring it in than with Girltalk.

Jim said...

There is no use of PTO time allowed for anything other than the most dire, life-and-death situation on that day at my job.

So, yeah, I can't go to Girl Talk, as I've been saying all summer, but thanks again for bringing it up.