Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Can't Breathe

...for all the choking. All Boca had to do was take one single, solitary, measly point from their last two games and they would have won. They blew it and were forced into a tiebreaker against Estudiantes. All they had to do then was to keep hold of a one-goal lead, which they held until the 60th minute of the tiebreaker when Jose Sosa levelled the score. The drama was completed in the 82nd minute when Mariano Pavone made it 2-1 for the pincharrattas.

(and no, I don't know why they are nicknamed the rat-stabbers. Great nick-name, though)

Can anyone think of quite so disastrous an end to a season? And not just in the immediate sense, either. This was a very good Boca side that was past due for one of the periodic asset-strippings that Spanish and Italian sides perform on half-decent Latin sides. Boca has been better than most at re-investing the proceeds of these sales into good young players. Now, Real should be able to get away with stealing Fernando Gago at two or three million less than he would have fetched otherwise (although, to be fair, that will still be too much for an overhyped alleged successor to Redondo).

The good news? Estudiantes' late charge made for a nice welcome home for Juan Sebastian Veron in his first season back in Argentina. He is a talented man who gave most of his best years in Europe career to fatally-flawed teams (post-Schmeichl ManU, Ranieri-era Chelsea, the ever-hopeless Inter) that squandered his talents. Bravo for La Brujita!


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