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May 29, 2011

Midfield machine drives Barcelona to greatness

LONDON (Reuters) – The midfield machine behind Spain’s first World Cup success ticked back into the same relentless rhythm to deliver Barcelona’s fourth European Cup triumph at a spellbound Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

Technically, tactically and temperamentally superior, and with the genius of Lionel Messi to provide the coup de grace, Barca crushed Manchester United with the simple logic that without the ball you can’t do your opponents a lot of damage.

May 29, 2011

Soccer-Abidal stunned by Champions League trophy honour

LONDON, May 28 (Reuters) – Eric Abidal was stunned with
gratitude after Barcelona captain Carles Puyol invited him to
lift the Champions League trophy and cap a triumphant return
from illness at Wembley on Saturday.

Puyol made the gesture to his team mate at the end of their
3-1 win over Manchester United, clearing the way for the
Frenchman to take the honour following his return to the side
after having a liver tumour removed.

May 28, 2011

Guardiola “privileged” to coach Barca’s invincibles

LONDON (Reuters) – Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola, back celebrating at Wembley almost two decades after his first taste of European Cup success, said he felt privileged to coach matchwinners Lionel Messi and Xavi.

Guardiola was part of the team that helped Barcelona win the European Cup for the first time at the old Wembley in 1992.

May 28, 2011

Soccer-Guardiola ‘privileged’ to coach Barca’s invincibles

LONDON, May 28 (Reuters) – Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola,
back celebrating at Wembley almost two decades after his first
taste of European Cup success, said he felt privileged to coach
matchwinners Lionel Messi and Xavi.

Guardiola was part of the team that helped Barcelona win the
European Cup for the first time at the old Wembley in 1992.

May 28, 2011

Analysis – Midfield machine drives Barcelona to greatness

LONDON (Reuters) – The midfield machine behind Spain’s first World Cup success ticked back into the same relentless rhythm to deliver Barcelona’s fourth European Cup triumph at a spellbound Wembley Stadium Saturday.

Technically, tactically and temperamentally superior, and with the genius of Lionel Messi to provide the coup de grace, Barca crushed Manchester United with the simple logic that without the ball you can’t do your opponents a lot of damage.

May 28, 2011

Soccer-Midfield machine drives Barcelona to greatness

LONDON, May 28 (Reuters) – The midfield machine behind
Spain’s first World Cup success ticked back into the same
relentless rhythm to deliver Barcelona’s fourth European Cup
triumph at a spellbound Wembley Stadium on Saturday.

Technically, tactically and temperamentally superior, and
with the genius of Lionel Messi to provide the coup de grace,
Barca crushed Manchester United with the simple logic that
without the ball you can’t do your opponents a lot of damage.

May 27, 2011

United get second chance to pick Barcelona pocket

LONDON (Reuters) – Barcelona must beware the artful dodgers of the Champions League in Saturday’s final at Wembley where Manchester United will get a second chance to pick the pocket of Europe’s classiest team.

United, who have snatched two Champions League final wins from what appeared to be certain defeats, were overwhelmed by Barca’s precision passing game when the teams met in Rome in 2009, surrendering in a one-sided 2-0 defeat.

May 27, 2011

Soccer-United get second chance to pick Barcelona pocket

LONDON, May 27 (Reuters) – Barcelona must beware the artful
dodgers of the Champions League in Saturday’s final at Wembley
where Manchester United will get a second chance to pick the
pocket of Europe’s classiest team.

United, who have snatched two Champions League final wins
from what appeared to be certain defeats, were overwhelmed by
Barca’s precision passing game when the teams met in Rome in
2009, surrendering in a one-sided 2-0 defeat.

May 25, 2011

Impish Messi defines current Champions League era

LONDON (Reuters) – At the age of 23, Barcelona’s Lionel Messi has already come to define an era of European football in a way only a handful of players have managed since the days of Alfredo di Stefano.

Right now, as he prepares for Saturday’s Champions League final against Manchester United, Messi is undisputedly the world’s best, though he may have to win a World Cup to secure a place alongside all-time greats Pele and Diego Maradona.

May 25, 2011

Soccer-Impish Messi defines current Champions League era

LONDON, May 25 (Reuters) – At the age of 23, Barcelona’s
Lionel Messi has already come to define an era of European
soccer in a way only a handful of players have managed since the
days of Alfredo di Stefano.

Right now, as he prepares for Saturday’s Champions League
final against Manchester United, Messi is undisputedly the
world’s best, though he may have to win a World Cup to secure a
place alongside all-time greats Pele and Diego Maradona.