Barcelona versus Chelsea isn’t an “European Clasico” essentially in light of the fact that each time they meet, the pitch is adorned with some of Europe’s most lavish gifts. For an apparatus to really sizzle and bubble in the days and weeks before it is played, there should be some level of a requital or ill will story, a contention that transforms a rare mainland coordinate into the sort of “must win at any cost” derby like Milan versus Entomb, Rangers versus Celtic, Manchester United versus Liverpool or Madrid versus Atletico.
This one has all that and the sky is the limit from there, a reality that can be followed back to an overnight flight once more from Moscow to London toward the beginning of November 2004.
Jose Mourinho’s “Blue Machine” had quite recently ensured capability for the knockout round after just four months of his rule and four straight Group H wins. This was the point at which the Special One really was exceptional. He had consecutive European trophies with Porto while Chelsea had stumbled up, mysteriously, nearly the Champions League last the past season.
Dapper Jose had the Midas touch, in word and deed. Prior that night, Damien Duff had set up Arjen Robben for the 1-0 prevail upon CSKA Moscow that ensured Roman Abramovich’s new European power would achieve the last sixteen. Duff, an immense admirer of the cutting edge Barca school, takes up the story.
“Ideal from the main minute, Mourinho needed the attract to match us with Barca,” reviews the splendid Irish winger. “We were flying once again from winning in Moscow and the fellows were all simply having a touch of fun with Jose.
“We knew we would top our gathering so we were stating: ‘Who do you need in the following round manager?’ He quickly goes: ‘Barcelona!’ Our moment reaction was: ‘Are you without a doubt?’ But Jose just let us know: ‘It’s basic: We stop them playing and they let us play.’ Simple as that to the extent he saw it.”
Mourinho knew two things. Barcelona, in spite of the fact that on the ascent, were as yet the shaky legged Bambi of European football. Renewed, yet unsteady on their feet having not won any trophies for a long time and no UEFA title since 1992. They were ready for a football predator to tear into them.
Besides, Mourinho realized that in 2004, there was as yet an ideological war being battled inside the Camp Nou. Ostensibly, Joan Laporta, powered by his ultra-Cruyffist convictions, was in control. However, the president included adversaries inside his board, most outstandingly VP Sandro Rosell and current president Josep Maria Bartomeu. Those last two, among others, needed Barcelona to be down to business, reflecting Chelsea by marking enormous, solid, athletic footballers and to dump Frank Rijkaard so that (future Chelsea mentor) Luiz Felipe Scolari could assume control.
Barcelona vs Chelsea
Mourinho saw Rijkaard’s Barca, where the Ronaldinho-Samuel Eto’o association was youthful however encouraging and Andres Iniesta had as of late been the subject of an immensely savage civil argument about whether he ought to be played or advanced out, as not exactly prepared to repulse his image of footballing fire and fury.Essentially, Mourinho was right. The want that this unrealistic, wonderful, skilled and merciless man has needed to acquire the great life as Barcelona mentor originated from the instructing obligations he embraced as understudy to both Sir Bobby Robson and Louis Van Gaal in the late 1990s. What’s more, it was confirm most starkly in the “clasico wars” of 2010-11 when he was Madrid mentor contrary to Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona.
Be that as it may, the first run through Mourinho got a whiff of him having the capacity to control his way past a “Cruyffist” Barca and conceivably abandon himself as the best applicant when the activity ended up empty was the point at which this competition took severe root back in Spring, 2005.
What took after finished the following four matches was a stream of basically phenomenal occasions, milestone truth be told, which set the tone for a considerable length of time of fights between the new, developing Barca logic and the cutting edge Premier League perfect which mixed conventional English football convictions with a large number of the best foreign made mentors, players and thoughts. A fight that will seethe again this week.
In 2004 the tone, bellicose and streetwise, was set instantly. Prior to the match, one Catalan columnist prodded Mourinho about his past as “just an interpreter” at the Camp Nou under Sir Bobby Robson and he “bit his take off,” nailing what was, unmistakably, a false notoriety. At that point Mourinho offered to complete the public interview in surprising style: by naming each of the 22 players who’d take the field the following night.
To begin with he (effectively) recorded the Barca XI before going ahead, “giving ceaselessly” his Chelsea beginning lineup. The move was gone for assuming responsibility of the pre-coordinate brain research, to reveal to Barcelona’s staff and players “you don’t have anything I’ve not expected: I’m the manager.”
It was fun at the time however better still in the information that he really tricked his own players.
“I recollect Mourinho disclosing to me I was unquestionably beginning however then he played a couple of ‘mind recreations’ with the press,” said Duff. “He’d approached me and stated: ‘You are in the group tomorrow yet I will give them an alternate lineup in the public interview. I think he declared Eidur Gudjohnsen was playing rather than me.
“When I saw him name the group on TV, I began trusting it and needed to hold up 24 on edge hours to find that, lo and observe, I was in it.”
Obviously, the fun ceased there. Chelsea essentially out-strategized Barcelona: Duff constrained Juliano Belletti’s own objective and furthermore crossed the ball for the minute when Didier Drogba’s test on Victor Valdes brought a moment yellow and, consequently, red card. Eleven men appropriately beat 10 however Mourinho’s allegations of arrangement amongst Rijkaard and official Anders Frisk prompted demise dangers for the Swedish ref and his retirement out of fears for his family.
The arrival leg typified two schools of football. Barcelona, still sensitive and pretty as opposed to streetwise and the steely contenders they’d moved toward becoming, were overwhelmed by a standout amongst the most wonderful 25-minute strategic maneuvers you would ever wish to see.
“Barça were world-class and still, at the end of the day however not a fix on what they are currently,” said Duff. “We gave a mind blowing execution and it was down to us trusting Mourinho when he said that we chilly stop them playing.”
Shouldn’t something be said about the unpenalized foul Ricardo Carvalho conferred on Valdes with the goal that John Terry could head home the champ from Duff’s cross once Ronaldinho’s hip-shaking objective that shook the world had placed Barca in a triumphant position on away objectives?
“Only a little prod. The dim expressions we learned under Mourinho,” is Duff’s decision. The way that Chelsea justified experiencing in those days isn’t in much debate.