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Sundries
...a sweatshop of moxie

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

The Devil Makes the Pots

Fear not -- not another "grandpa sayings" post for your reading enjoyment.

Rather, a brief mention on the Champions League Final between AC Milan versus Liverpool FC, Wednesday in Istanbul.

Istanbul - it's nobody's business but the Turks

A match for the ages.

A match made to be savoured, wept over, moaned about, teased over, raised to the heavens of hyperbole, because it was that kind of match. It had it all.

For one half, AC Milan -- the darlings of Italian calcio, as pampered and fussed over as a parlour of poodles -- were the cringingly triumphant better team in a very one-sided affair.

As an erstwhile Milanista, I was over the moon.

I thought "we" had it won, since who on earth can score 3 goals to come back and draw a match versus, as some call them, The Great Scented Ones? No one. They had Sheva, they had Kaká, they had Dida, they had Paolo Maldini, for pete's sakes.

It was ovah. Ovah!

So Silvio Berlusconi, Italian Premier and owner of AC Milan, was certainly thinking in the VIP stands, having already disparaged Liverpool before the match had even begun, saying that Milan had too much "class" for the working-class team from Merseyside.

Silvio, Silvio...have you learnt no humility from that recent no-confidence vote scare?

Apparently, he hadn't.

But what could Rafael Benitez, their manager, say to Liverpool in the dressing room at the half?

What impossible combination of mad self-belief in himself, and his squad could he have relayed to them, as they faced another 45 minutes of sure obliteration by the princes of Milan?

Never mind the Gipper. I want to hear that half-time speech!

...because score 3 electrifying goals they did, forcing Extra Time, and then unto penalties, to hoist their first European Cup in 21 years.

21 long years of Heysel, Fowler/Owen hype, and Premiership heartbreak. Gone. All smeared by the same hand of fate that lowered them into an abyss, now lifts them to the summit of club football.

Liverpool FC European Champions 2004-5

Of course, no coronation is complete without the court jester making his appearance.

Diego Armando Maradona, who was doing commentary ironically for one of Berlusconi's many television channels in Italy, paid the English side the ultimate compliment, with this charmingly back-handed compliment:

"Not even the Brazil team that won the 1970 World Cup final would have been able to come back from 3-0 down like that."

In the Liverpool newsgroup, there came a shower of grateful thanks from many Italian residents, not only Juventini either, gushing relief that Berlusco's team hadn't won the Champions League title.

One person said simply:

"The Devil makes the pots but not the cover. Thanks Liverpool."

Ah well. We'll get 'em next time.

Reds Everywhere!

EERILY INTERESTING FACTOIDS

1978:

Wales win the Grand Slam in Rugby
The Pope Dies
Liverpool lose in the League Cup final to the eventual League
Scudetto Champions that year -- Juventus
Liverpool win the European Cup


2005:

Wales win the Grand Slam in Rugby
The Pope Dies
Liverpool lose in the League Cup final to the eventual League
Scudetto Champions that year -- Juventus
Liverpool win the European Cup

And of course, petrol prices were through the roof.

If you haven't seen this match. Do. It's the game of our generation.

2 Comments:

  • Don't forget Inter winning the Italian Cup! Thats the linchpin in this theory and the basis for Dan Brown's next novel.

    By Blogger Renato, at Sun May 29, 11:42:00 am GMT-4  

  • You leave Dan Brown alone, Renato!

    He wouldn't demean himself by working on a novel which underpins anything Interista, even though it the sangria goblet each player drinks from before matches clearly has a HOLY GRAIL connexion, since everyone knows Inter were Mary Magdalen's favourite team.

    Cheers,
    V.

    By Blogger vbspurs, at Sun Jun 05, 04:51:00 am GMT-4  

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