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Friday, August 18, 2006

Next up: Barca v Inter - the other Inter

Ah, the Copa Libertadores final. Both sides missed crystal-clear chances all through the match, and the defense was sloppy all around. But there were bright spots. Inter of Porto Alegre's talismanic captain, Fernandao, played end-to-end the whole match a la Drogba for Ivory Coast. And Clemer, their 38-year-old keeper, made a couple of splendid saves to seal the tie.

The Argie commentators finally stopped complimenting Elizondo after he expelled Inter's Tinga for celebrating the second goal by taking his shirt off; it was by the book, but "a bit harsh," as we always say. Still, the irrepressible Fernando Niembro managed to compare lively Inter to lowly Nueva Chicago, his own favorite team.

Rogerio Ceni, Sao Paulo's offensive-minded goalkeeper, didn't come upfield for the final corners - which was strange, especially for him. After the final whistle, helicopters flew through the smoke above the stadium, which, within minutes after the match ended, looked like the world's largest bong.

Porto Alegre may not be well-known in the world, but it can claim about 1.4 million people, about the same as all of Merseyside or Philadelphia. So why shouldn't it be champion of South America?


Toon case of good news, bad news. Bad news first: Owen may not play this season. Good news: We didn't sign Kanu to replace him. Maybe we can get Gallas to replace a certain other Frenchman? We can dream.


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