‘Practically South American’ team wins European Cup

SOMEONE GET THIS THING OFF MY HEAD! It's going to rip my eyes out!

Well that was how Fox Sports commentator Fernandi Niembro put it after the final whistle, at least. In Madrid, Internazionale have beaten Bayern München 2-0 with a thoroughly convincing performance and two brilliantly taken goals from Argentina bit-part player Diego Milito to claim their third European crown, 45 years after the last one. Martín Demichelis had to do a lot of Bayern’s defending on his own, whilst for the victors as well as Milito, Walter Samuel, Javier Zanetti and Esteban Cambiasso were also involved.

Zanetti, playing his 700th match for Inter (he’s closing in on the all-time club record) lifted the cup after a display that saw him largely kept out of the limelight, partly by Milito’s goals and partly because Brazilian Thiago Motta’s suspension necessitated playing the captain in midfield rather than left back, and therefore he wasn’t able to have a go at nullifying Bayern’s only threat, posed by Arjen Robben down the right wing. Cambiasso worked tirelessly as ever in the midfield and Samuel was impassable at the back (not that Bayern tried to pass him much), but Milito stole the show with his two goals, and might (had Wesley Sneijder had his shooting boots on) have finished with at least one assist, as well.

The title was Esteban Cambiasso’s 20th winner’s medal. As such, he’s now level with Nicolás Burdisso and only one trophy behind Alfredo Di Stéfano in all-time list of most successful Argentine players. He won’t, of course, get the chance to add to his tally in South Africa next month. Nor will Zanetti. And for that reason, their two club-mates who are going, as well as the defeated Demichelis, have their own chances of doing so severely dented. If nothing else though, Argentina fans with a bit of sense will be hoping his two goals in the final have pushed Milito into consideration for the role as the selección‘s starting number 9.

UEFA Champions League final, 22nd May 2010: Internazionale (ITA) 2 – 0 Bayern München (GER)

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Photo pinched from ole.clarin.com


8 thoughts on “‘Practically South American’ team wins European Cup

  1. Congratulations Inter. You thoroughly deserve it!

    Great to see so many Argentines in the final. Milito took his goals beautifully and Samuel was immaculate in defence. There was a lovely moment before they collected the trophy, when Zanetti, Cambiasso, Milito and Samuel gathered in a joyful huddle. It really hit me at this moment how sad it is that Zanetti and Cambiasso won’t be going to the World Cup.

  2. Great for Inter and sad for Argentina as if it were not for having Mardona as coach, Cambiasso and Zannetti would be in the squad, if not starting team. The Great One (footballers that is ) is unfortunately not a good, forget geat coach and Argentina with just about anybody else would be a solid favourite to lift the WC. He has made the Real Madrid mistake of picking his best players and not the best squad / team. Brazil will now win the WC.

    1. Welcome to HEGS Richard. I agree with what you’ve said (as you’ll know if you’ve been reading for a little while before commenting), though I think you’re being more than a little generous to say Maradona’s even selected his best players!

  3. I think Milito really has become an amazing forward this season, it is just incredible how he is able to control the ball with a lot of defenders arround him. Another part of his success is Snyder, they play together really well.

  4. Lets all judge the world cup and maradonas perfomance as manager before the tornament has kicked off. Thats probably the most sensible thing to do. Please leave the post mortems and judgement until after the world cup.

    1. We’re only saying, Murt, that with Zanetti and Cambiasso in the team (and perhaps one or two others), Argentina would probably have a better chance of winning it. The way football can go, there’s every chance we’ll all be made to look very stupid as the players’ and Maradona’s predictions of a greater team spirit come to fruition and they storm the tournament with Martín Palermo coming off the bench to bag a hat trick in the final.

      But even if they win it, they could do so so much more nicely with a properly set-up team…

  5. I have a little query.

    Why didn’t Lucho even get a look in to Maradona’s squad? Tidy, professional player, seemingly must have had a good season in France where he picked up the trophy. Very odd.

    ‘My’ Argentinian WC squad:


    Zabaleta Samuel G. Milito Zanetti
    Gutierrez Demichelis Garay Burdisso


    Cambiasso Lucho
    Veron Aimar

    Messi Di Maria
    Aguero Tevez

    D. Milito

    1. Broadly speaking I’d go with your decisions, Tom, but you’ve got to pick a third goalkeeper.

      Lucho didn’t make the squad because, like Lisandro López, he’s not mates with Maradona. I love him and if I was managing Argentina he’d be one of the first names I’d write onto the starting XI, never mind the squad of 23.

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