I'm going to try one of these live blog things. I've never done it, and I'm sure Blogger isn't the most conducive way to do this, but what the hell. I'll give it a shot.
Today's Champions League matchup features FC Barcelona vs. Werder Bremen from Germany. Barcelona won last year's CL, but are in danger of not advancing out of group play. They must win or they are done.
The teams' results up to now.
Group A Standings
0:00 - And we're off.
3:40 - A good rolling cross into the 6-yd box for Barca. So close. Gudjohnsen just missed that ball, and Ronaldinho was a bit too tardy to be able to clean up on the back post
4:50 - A good run for Barca. And the WB keeper just about kicked the ball off of a Barca player into his own goal. That would have been hilarious.
6:20 - Barcelona is getting really good pressure on Bremen. They have to be careful not go get caught on a counter. Being down 0-1 early after having been controlling is a huge momentum killer.
7:40 - A good chance for Bremen, but Puyol was all over that. Puyol, a native Catalonian, is very popular with the people of the region. It's like if Larry Bird had played for the Pacers, only the Pacers were a semi-autonomous region seeking independence. So maybe like if a Quebecois ended up playing for the Canadiens.
9:15 - A corner for Barcleona. It's taken short, and it develops into a good half-volley from Guily and an even better save for WB. Another corner.
9:50 - This corner is knocked right out for another corner.
10:15 - So is this one.
10:35 - This one is out on Barca. 0-4 on corners in about 1 minute.
11:30 - Ronaldinho is taken down right outside the box. This s a very dangerous spot for this free kick. It might acutally be too close to try to get the ball to dip once it's past the wall.
12:30 - Ronaldinho is over the ball. He puts it under the wall...AND IN! One-nil Barca! The ball was rolling far post and the keeper had no chance.
15:30 - Zambrotta just took an elbow to the throat. Ouch.
18:00 - A huge break down of the WB defense, and Barcelona gets another. Guily gets a long switch from Ronaldinho and rolls it to the middle to Gudjohnsen, who buries it with authority. 2-nil Barcelona.
20:00 - Guily gets sprung again, but he puts the ball wide. On the replay, he appeared to be offside, but it was not called.
22:00 - Bremen gets a shot off, but it was always well wide.
22:30- We need to get out of the 20's because my 2 key is kinda busted and doesn't always work.
24:15 - They just showed Gudjohnsen's goal again, and it does appear that he was offside. Oh well, I'll take it
25:00 - What the hell was that? The Bremen guy just up and kicked Puyol.
26:00 - There are reports that Jurgen Klinsmann is going to be hired as the US MNT coach. As of right now, those are just rumors. According to Soccernet, no deal has been signed.
28:30 - Werder Bremen's first corner of the match. There is a little scramble for the ball on the endline, but Valdes ends up with the ball.
31:00 - This live blog stuff is hard. I'm typing so much, I can hardly look at the TV. Plus, my trackpad is seriously slowing me down. I'll go grab my wireless mouse at the half. And I'll go back and get rid of a couple of typos and formatting problems.
33:00 - That touch was just a bit too heavy and goes harmlessly to the WB keeper.
33:20 - A great sliding interception by the WB defense. If that ball gets through its 3-0.
34:30 - Frings is over the ball for a WB freekick about 30 yards out. Puyol heads the ball clear, and Deco takes the ball from penalty area to penalty area. Ball is left for Gudjohnsen. A good move, another good move. WOODWORK! Right to Guily with the open net...AIRMAILS IT! Shit. That should have been 3-0.
35:00 - On the replay, my roommate Q - "Deco, that was sublime" He just out ran everyone for like 70 yards.
37:00 - Freekick for WB. That ball was ripped, but it was not accurate enough.
39:30 - Good look for WB, but too strong on the pass. He had space to work if the pass wasn't so far out in front.
42:30 - A dangerous ball in front of the Barcelona net. Miroslav Klose is late to the back post and the ball is out for a goal kick. That ball was a goal if Klose can get there.
43:15 - A WB player is down holding what looks like his throat. Replay - A forearm to the throat. That's twice now in the game, once for each side.
45:00 - One minute of stoppage time.
46:00- That's the half. 2-0 Barcelona. I'll be back for the 2nd half.
45:00 - We've started up again. Let's go
47:15 - A foul in a dangerous spot for Barcelona. A yellow for Puyol, which is complete crap. Complete crap. Gudjohnsen clears the freekick back to Frings, who takes a shot that is blocked. WB tries a bicycle kick, but is well wide. A+ on the effort though
49:00 - Bremen is coming out of the break putting all kinds of pressure on the Barcelona defense. They've had more good chances in these first 5 minutes than in the entire first 45.
52:00 - A hard, late tackle by Motta. A rightly deserved yellow card. Barcelona's second yellow card of the half.
53:45 - Good play by Zambrotta to seal off the endline and steal the ball from WB inside the penalty area.
54:20 - Another good chance for WB, but again denied by Barcelona. This time it was Klose sliding in to touch the ball, but it was defensed by a sliding Barca back.
55:00 - A shot of Frank Rijkaard looking good on the sidelines. The European coaches dress like they're going to dinner at a really nice place. Like nicer than Olive Garden nice.
56:00 - A great ball over the top from Ronaldinho for Gudjohnsen. He tries to chip the ball far post over the keeper, but it's saved. The keeper is down. Never mind, he's back up . Corner for Barca. Low shot from VanBronkhorst, but easily saved.
59:30- AHHH! Valdes is fooled by a cross that looks to go out of bounds but ends up hitting the woodwork and coming back into play. Luckily, WB is unable to capitalize.
62:00 - Barcelona subsititution: Motta out for Lilian Thuram, French international.
64:00 - Terrible clearance by WB, forcing their keeper into a really nice save. It's like when you drop your phone, but then catch it just before it smashes on the sidewalk. Sure, you made a great catch, but that's a catch you'd prefer not to have to make in the first place.
65:00 - Iniesta goes down after a hard tackle. It wasn't malicious or anything, just a hard tackle. It might have gotten some ankle, but nothing much worse than anything else that goes on. They bring out the cart for him, but of course he's right back on the pitch. Sometimes, those soccer players, I'll tell you what.
69:30 - A good ball for Deco, but it's just out of his reach.
70:00 - WB Sub: Almeida out, Klasnic in.
72:00 - Barcelona Sub: Iniesta out, Xavi in.
73:00 - Does anyone know if Messi is available tonight?
73:45 - Yellow card for WB's Wome for a late tackle on Zambrotta.
75:00 - Messi is out for at least 3 months as of mid-November after breaking a bone in his foot. So he's not available tonight. Which is a shame, because I've seen him play, and he's really good. Especially considering he's a full year and 3 days younger than me.
78:00 - They put up the Chelsea score. 1-0 Chelsea. Bastards.
78:45 - The Barcelona defense collapses on Klose, who lays the ball off to the middle of the penalty area, only he's got no support. One more bullet dodged.
80:00 - Big counter attack by Barca. Ronaldinho gives the ball to Deco. Deco is wide open at the left side of the box. The defense did not stay with Deco, instead collapsing on Ronaldinho. I've seen Gypsies stay home better than that. The goalie came out sliding hard to take the ball and Deco is down. He might have gotten clipped, but the keeper did get the ball. If it wasn't for this keeper, WB could be down by 4 or 5 easy.
83:45 - Nice ball handling by WB, but the shot blocked out for a corner.
84:30 - Barcelona's last sub: Guily out, Ezquerro in. Guily had a great game. Maybe MotM material.
85:00 - Looks like I missed a sub for WB in the 79th minute. Hunt on for Wome.
87:00 - WB is throwing everything at Barca, who have 9 behind the ball.
89:40 - A good shot parried away by Valdes. The ball is loose in the box, but it's cleared out for a corner by Thuram
90:00 - We're into stoppage time. The announcement is 4 minutes of stoppage time.
91:00 - Chelsea's just gone final. 2-0.
91:30 - Yellow card, Diego of WB. Marquez goes down. Usually I don't like Marquez because he plays center back for the Mexican national team, but I'm willing to let that slide while he's playing for Barca. I still don't like him, I just no longer wish for his leg to come off mid-kick.
94:00 - That's full time. 2-0 Barcelona wins. They're through to the knock-out stage, along with Chelsea from Group A.
All in all, a good game to watch. It was very exciting, and it never hurts when your team wins. Guily played a fantastic game. His energy on the wing was key to Barca's offense in my opinion. He was creating so much space with his speed that he was forcing Bremen into tough spots. The biggest negative on Barcelona's part was their lack of offense opening the 2nd half. Bremen was down 2-0 and knew they had to get something on the board early. Barca let them come instead of trying to finish them off, which will not work against elite teams like Chelsea.
From a live blogging perspective, this was really fun, but too hard. I couldn't pay good enough attention to the game. This would definitely work better for baseball or football, a sport with more pause in the game, not a constant 45 minutes of activity. My hands were sore by the end. I hope you enjoyed it. The things I go through for you, my loyal readers.