SPANISH FOOTBALL | SPORTS: FC BARCELONA 1 REAL MADRID 1 | FC BARCELONA WINS ( 3-1 AGG) TO GO INTO CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL

FC BARCELONA 1 REAL MADRID 1 | FC BARCELONA WINS ( 3-1 AGG) TO GO INTO CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL

FC BARCELONA drew 1 - 1 aginst REAL MADRID in the return leg of the CHAMPIONS LEAGUE semi-final tonight to earn their ticket straight into the Final at Wembley Stadium (London UK) on the 28th of May. This result gave Barcelona a 3 - 1 aggregate score after disputing two highly tense & explosive semi final legs.

Real Madrid went in with an attacking line-up this time around in their attempt to pull off a  "miracle", with attacking players like Kaka, Di Maria, Higuain & Ronaldo on from the first whistle. They looked better, they started strongly & scored a goal via HIGUAIN that was disallowed incorrectly by the referee. A called foul on Mascherano by Ronaldo that never existed. This obviously could have helped Madrid head onto bigger things, but I don't wish to get into debates & be accused biased,  as I wish to point out that FC Barcelona then took control & were owners of the ball. Real Madrid then found themselves chasing & especially Carvalho being overrun by  the likes of Messi & company. The outstanding players for Real Madrid at this period were Lass Diarra ( great match) & Iker Casillas ( will take latter more ) which indicated that Barça had the edge & were attacking in waves.

But there was a difference tonight,under the circumstances, Real Madrid played Football, not speculating & were still more than alive & with chances at the end of the first half.


Real Madrid 2011
Iker Casillas proving his the "Best in the World"
photo:Josep Lago

But lets briefly talk about this "fella", IKER CASILLAS. Huge tonight with same saves that can only raise admiration from fans of all colours demonstrating again - or at least to me - that he is currently the "Best Goalkeeper in the World" at this current moment. His Club may have gone out defeated tonight but Casillas leaves "Camp Barça" as a winner. It was spectacular to watch the man tonight in action.

FC Barcelona
Pedro scores for FC Barcelona:
photo Sui/afo

The second half saw in the 54th min an excellent & alert "pass" from ANDRES INIESTA that found PEDRO between defensive lines to score the opener & put the semi-final out of total range for Real Madrid. I put Iniesta in capital letters, because as with Casillas, this man is a Football marvel, a pure "god given talent" that really gave Barça some differentiating quality tonight. A mention was in total order.


Spanish Football
Marcelo gets the equalizer
photo: Sergio Perez


Real Madrid admirably found some of their historic grit & pride & reacted with a goal that Di Maria started with a post that rebound back to then find MARCELO that equalized in the 64th min. Madrid went super offensive, logically looking for some fresh legs, & put on Abebayor for Higuain & swapped Kaka for Ozil in an attempt to at least "die with their boots on". 
Barcelona then played it cool with ball control & did what they do best, make the opponent ran after them to take all the wind out of their sails.


Spanish Soccer
Abidal back from his sickness

Then towards the end, a magical & human moment that transcended Football & rivalries, when Coach Guardiola put on ERIC ABIDAL to receive the roar of the "Camp Nou" after coming back from liver cancer surgery. It was a moment that put the hairs on your arms on end.

The referee blew, Barça was into the Champions League Final & it was a tension releasing moment of celebrations in the middle of the field between the players & their fans. A total communion that united the Barça Camp & rightly prized their well earned victory tonight & the semi-final phase.

Real Madrid fans will be sad & talk about tonights wrongly disallowed Higuain goal, but they should forget that & rightly congratulate Barça & just think about the following. Both side have meet five times this season were Barca won 2, 2 draws & Real Madrid won the other. The gap between both sides is closing & rapidly & next season could bear juicy fruits for Real Madrid.

Until then, Spanish Football is very proud & happy to get back into a European Cup Final a Spanish Team & we all wish FC Barcelona all the luck in the World. 


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