Champions League 2010-11 Preview

Let’s be honest, the most meaningful trophy in the world is silver and has handles on it. You won’t find The Oranje in the Champions League final because they clearly aren’t good enough to make it there. You sure as hell won’t find some random named Rabah Saadane or Juan de Dios Castillo (clearly a feared man) managing anyone at Wembley in May.

The Champions League final is played by the two best teams assembled that year. The Mourinho card is really just an exception.

CL qualifies four teams from England, Spain, and Italy and three teams from France, Germany, and Russia and the champions from every other league in Europe. I don’t even feel like naming the leagues that qualify two teams like the Rangers or Celtic. They just take up space and suck. MLS>SPL.

The first of the new faces from last year is Tottenham, who takes the usual Liverpool spot. Tottenham got embarrassed by the prepubescent Young Boys last week, but will hopefully do something decent when they head back to White Hart Lane.

From Ligue1, Bordeaux drops out giving AJ Auxerre a CL berth. Nobody worth naming on that team so good luck.

Unless Jose Mourinho is your coach, the Portuguese Liga does as much for me as Celtic or Rangers. They are just there to screw with the goal differential and nothing more. Falcao and Porto didn’t defend their title allowing Braga into the group stage. Who cares.

The Serie A send two new teams in Roma and Sampdoria. Doria just got sent home by a more skilled Werder Bremen, while Daniele De Rossi and Roma are waiting for the group stages to begin. De Rossi may very well be the best CDM in the world with Mascherano deciding to sit out and wait for someone to pick him up.

Everyone’s new favorite striker, Diego Forlan and anime lover, Kun Aguero decided to take ninth in La Liga last season. Winning the Europa League was amazing, but I would prefer to see them in the CL rather than a Villa/Silva-less Valencia.

The accidentally bleached hair of Keisuke Honda will not be seen taking free kicks this CL year. CSKA Moscow play in the Europa League allowing Spartak Moscow and Zenit St. Petersburg to see CL play. The most expensive player in the Russian Premier League is worth watching. Portuguese striker, Danny, wears #10 for club and country and will try to finesse his way to the CL group stages, but probably won’t.

I like what I see from the Bundesliga. Wolfsburg and Stuttgart had a less than average year allowing Schalke 04 and Werder Bremen into the CL. Schalke just picked up Raul, one of the best goal scorers of the last decade and Bremen have the German version of Arshavin. Marko Marin was a no show in the World Cup, but the midget has some skills.

Who cares about the Romanian, Turkish, Ukrainian, Swiss, and Netherlands qualifiers because none of them will go far. If they do it will be by accident. The Eredivisie haven’t put together a good team since the powerful Ajax days, while Greek teams struggle except for the occasional Panathinaikos or Olympiacos that might make the elimination round.

Wouldn’t mind seeing newly acquired Yoann Gourcuff and Lyon going far and maybe meeting an Arsenal or a Chelsea. Say what you like, but Arsenal plays the best soccer in England and I wouldn’t mind hearing  more Wenger speeches. Barca is the most complete team walking this earth right now so seeing anyone else in at Wembley will piss me off. Also, I better not hear about Chicharito leading anyone to anything.


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