Saturday, April 26, 2008

Excerpts from Phil Ball's Soccernet Article.

Full Article can be Read here

"Although there is nothing wrong with Cantabrian cuisine, as I stared down onto the pitch on Sunday night, Madrid simply looked better-fed. Apart from the tiny Cannavaro, who tickles and tackles like some infuriating little bug, never leaving the opposing forwards alone, the rest are fairly hulking dudes.

Pepe is scarey, and is beginning to look rather good. Sergio Ramós is no shirker, and Heinze is more physical in his approach than the average Spaniard. And then there's Diarra, protecting the back line anyway. Nothing much gets past him, and I fail to see the problem that the Madrid press has with him. Particularly in away games, where there is less obligation to win with a bit of style, Diarra is the perfect player to have in your ranks. The fact that he's about to win his sixth consecutive league title (four with Lyon and one last year with Madrid) does rather suggest that he might have had something to do with those successes, and he does the simple things right - cutting out any passes that stray into his zone, dispossessing anyone who tries to run at him and then playing the ball either short or long with more accuracy than he is credited with."

I think the words written about Diarra at a time wherein speculation about his future is rife (latest rumor has him going to Inter in a Cash+ Player deal for RM to get Ibrahimovic) make this a good time for fans like myself to stress the value of players like him in a team.

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