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AC Milan falls, Madrid cruises on Matchday Two of Champions League


In what will be remembered as one of the most surprising Champions League group stage upsets in recent memory, FC Zurich shocked AC Milan 1-0 at the San Siro. Hannu Tihenen's goal in the 10th minute proved to be enough. Zurich had shown some fight in the previous matchday, coming back from a 3-0 deficit to make Real Madrid sweat a little.

Needless to say, the loss continues what has been a dreadful start for Milan. They've managed one goal at home this season and just eight points from their first six league matches. Leonardo still has time, given a vote of confidence in the wake of their loss.

Real Madrid struggled to get started at the Bernebau, and ended the first half locked at 0-0 with Marseille. However, Cristiano Ronaldo jump started the offense and Madrid scored three goals in six minutes to defeat Marseille 3-0.

Elsewhere in the Champions League both English clubs were victorious yesterday, as Manchester United came from behind to beat Wolfsburg 2-1 and Chelsea squeaked by Apoel Nicosia 1-0. Most games were very close, as CSKA Moscow nicked Besiktas 2-1, Bordeaux needed a late winner to get by Maccabi Haifa 1-0, FC Porto saw off Atletico Madrid 2-0, and Bayern and Juventus drew 0-0.

What did you think of yesterday's Champions League matches? Shocked to see Milan lose? Will they recover? Can Real Madrid go undefeated in its group?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. @areign, K Bone:

    Well, I don`t claim that Dzeko and Grafite are the best striking partnership in the world. On the other hand, I also don`t think that Wolfsburg`s midfield is on par with Barca`s and Real`s. And hence I would argue that it is easier for other strikers with better players behind them to shine in the CL. But of course 2 games in the competition are not representative.

  2. hop schwiez! go zurich!

    ac looked uninspired and slow. i hope onyewu can be a spark for them.. and i like the forward position idea too.

  3. There’s no doubt they are both very good players, but gratife isn’t even a consideration for the national team. It’s hard to say a player is one of the best players in the world when there are much better options in their own country, even if it is brazil. To say they are the best in the world is quite a stretch, especially having played only two CL games so far…

  4. Tomasz

    10goals in 5 games is much better. especially when they werent even out there for all 5 games, 7 and 2 colletive starts and subs for 10 goals? much better.

  5. WHOA WHOA WHOA WaitingforGuiteau are you saying something about new jersey? did u forget that Howard, Bradley and Jozy are all from jersey not mention countless other footballers.

  6. DC Josh, no way is Djecko and Grafite remotely the best duo of strikers in world soccer. You are kidding right? They certainly scored a ton of goals last season, but do you really think either one of them would have scored that many in Italy (well, maybe), Spain, or England? I could see both of them going to England and being total bombs. I shall now name ten striker pairs that are much better than them: Rooney and Berbatov, Adebayor and Tevez/Bellamy, Anelka and Drogba, Benzema and Raul/Higuain, Aguero and Forlan, Eto’o and Milito, Van Persie and Arshavin, Messi and Ibra/Henry, Kanoute and Fabiano, and Defoe and Keane. I mean please, give me a break. Do you really think they are better than any of the above players? Just because you score a lot of goals doesn’t mean you’re the best, just ask Huntelaar, Alfonso Alves and Kezman, and the hundreds of others…

  7. @WaitingforGuiteau,

    Actually, Serie A is going through a heavy transition. The Italian teams realize that they need to compete financially with Spain and England, and the only way to do that is by updating and owning their stadiums. Juve and Fiorentina are already well on the way to building new stadiums, and Lazio and Roma just announced brand new ones. Also, the mid-level teams have gotten significantly better over the last few years (ie: Sampdoria, Genoa, Palermo, Udinese, Napoli, etc) because they are developing players and making smart buys for young up-and-coming players.

    The problem is not with the youth development system in Italy. In fact, all of their players are constantly poached by English teams due to the labor laws in Italy differing from the UK. Giuseppe Rossi, Federico Macheda, Michele Fornasier, and Alberto Massacci are just a few names of players poached by Man Utd. However, in Italy, there is a problem with these youth players not seeing significant playing time on the senior level particularly with the top clubs. They typically have to be loaned out to see playing time on smaller clubs. In the past few years, Inter (Balotelli and Santon) and Juventus (Giovinco, Marchisio, De Ceglie, etc) have given more playing time to youth products, but other than Marchisio on Juve they still are not playing consistently enough.

    Regardless, there are young Italians seeing time on smaller clubs, and there is much more than just Giuseppe Rossi coming down the pipeline. Just look at the recent performances of the Italy U21 team. In addition to Rossi, you have Giovinco, Marchisio, Balotelli, Santon, De Ceglie, Macheda, Paloschi, and more all under 23. The issue lies with Lippi calling up and actually playing these guys. But who really knows what Lippi will do? The guy won’t even call up Antonio Cassano (who is actually the best Italian striker right now, not Toni).

  8. Ronaldo: 8 goals in 7 games for Madrid. Oy vey. He is on fire. It will be a huge shame for him and his country if they miss the world cup when he is in the prime of his career. I will certainly miss him. Maybe FIFA should consider a consolidation cup next year? Argentina, France, Portugal all might be MIA.

    I thought the United/Wolfsburg game was decent. Djecko and Grafite are the best striker-duo in the world of club soccer. Poor Michael Owen. We knew he would miss time eventually with an injury. He’s a walking box of pick up sticks.

    Poor Milan, they get to see Real Madrid next. I don’t see them making it out of the group.

  9. yep no upset at all. AC Milan played just like they are right now: An 11th placed team in Serie A. I hope they play Gooch more as a center forward…his secret natural position :]But in all honesty that would help his offensive skills/touch more right?

  10. Soccer seems to rotate where the power clubs are. Recently it had been England, but now it seems to be swaying towards Spain. It has long ago left Italy, and AC Milan seems to have taken the worst brunt of all this. Italian soccer as a whole is aging, and never developed new talent to rotate into the roles of those aging players. Just look at the Italian national team. Luca Toni is their best striker, and quite frankly he is nowhere near world class compared to what other nations are putting out there. Their best young talent was born in New Jersey.

    I’m not familiar enough with how Italian youth programs work, but it seems to me that other nations desperately need to take a note from Spain. Most of their talent is home grown, and it translates into success at both the club and national levels.

  11. Every score was almost predictable for the exception of the Milan game. The Gooch had a decent performance.Some butterflys is the begining but he settled.

  12. I think folks are going to have to come to terms with the fact that AC Milan is not very good. Age, a suspect coach, and some overrated players have caught up to them. Look at their performance to date this season. They draw with, as this blog said, “lowly Bari” but Bari is one point behing Milan. I think it’s pretty funny but I was year early predicting their collapse. It may be here.


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