Bettering Barca

Ruud Gullit admits AC Milan's win over Barcelona wasn't pretty, but it was the best way to combat the style of the Spanish giants.

Last Updated: 20/02/13 at 22:52 Post Comment

Boateng (r): scored Milan's opener

Boateng (r): scored Milan's opener

Goals from Kevin Prince-Boateng and Sulley Muntari secured a shock 2-0 win for the Italian side on Wednesday evening and gives them a strong chance of qualification for the quarter-finals ahead of the return at the Nou Camp in three weeks.

Lionel Messi and co barely created a chance in the game as Milan nullified their famously fluent style and former Rossoneri player Gullit said the defensive tactics employed by Massimiliano Allegri gave his team the best possible chance.

"I didn't expect that at all, but it's the way to fight them," he told Sky Sports.

"Barcelona are too good and you cannot outplay them. Not one team in the last five years have done that.

"They made it difficult for them to find ways in the middle. I didn't see Messi; he played on the outside and they were doubling him and were working very hard. They deserved this win and credit to Milan.

"Of course the purists, especially in Holland, will moan because they all back Barcelona in the way they play, but sometimes you have to find a different way to play.

"I always compare it a little bit with Muhammad Ali when he had his fight with George Foreman. He was on the ropes all the time - the greatest boxer ever went there in defence - and if he can win in that way, then that's exactly what Milan should do with Barcelona."

Celebrate

Glenn Hoddle, who was also in the Sky Sports studio during the game, suggested that Milan's players celebrated the victory too vigorously at the end, given there is another 90 minutes of football to be played in the tie.

But Gullit said it was a huge night for his former team, who currently trail Juventus by 11 points in Serie A, although he feels the tie is far from over.

"It is still game on," he added.

"But I watched Barcelona half an hour from the end and they had no idea what to do. It was funny to see because they almost always find a way and yet they couldn't find it.

"The players wanted to celebrate with the crowd because nobody expected it and I think the Milan crowd needed this success to boost the team and Milan itself.

"They also gave the crowd everything. It was fully packed and they were behind the team the whole time - and they wanted to reward them. It was great to see."

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S

terling needs to be told though that upon entering the Arsenal squad he will re-enact the final scene from Highlander where he will be thrown around a warehouse by cartoon dragons and then be a mere mortal that will only ever spend three to four weeks a season playing football and the rest on the physio's bed. There can be only one.....player available at The Emirates.

rodger's gusset
Arsenal interest in Sterling

T

he game changed in our favour when Carrick came on. We were able to play further up the pitch due to having a player who can give and go with the ball and keep possession. Yet barkley made some runs and Townsend scored a good goal but carrick's inclusion and chiellini's withdrawal made the biggest difference to the flow of the game

ricky villa
Hodgson: Barkley was brilliant

N

o, you've not silenced anyone Andros, i'm afraid. We know you can score a great goal, and it's really handy to have your direct running and willingness to shoot on the bench. But until you can do the other things expected of a winger (beat the man, put a decent cross in, stay wide etc) then you can't expect more than a regular cameo. Wonderful goal though, what a hit! No wonder Buffon wanted the shirt.

badwolf
Townsend: I've silenced critics

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