Man City deserved their win last night; apart from for the first 30 minutes they utterly outplayed Man U. United have had a season that by their own stupidly high standards has been a bit average performance wise, but yesterday's game was one of the first where i've seen them look short on ideas and passion. Joe Hart, Yaya Toure, Kompany, Zabaleta and Kolarov were all superb and even Balotelli worked hard (although he couldn't resist being the centre of attention at the end, winding up Ferdinand quite successfully).
For Manchester United there simply wasn't anyone who really rose to the occasion and the one stand out performance was memorable for all the wrong reasons. I'm of course talking about Paul Scholes; the man was, and on occasion still is, a great player, but tackles like the disgraceful studs up, thigh high challenge on Zabaleta he made yesterday mean that for a lot of fans his legacy will be as much about how often he earned himself bookings and red cards with dangerous tackles as about his undoubted talent as a box to box midfielder.
I'm rooting for a Bolton win today against Stoke but it looks unlikely right now as they're already two nil down after 30 or so minutes, purely because i reckon a Man City v Bolton final is more likely to be an entertaining football match (though FA Cup finals almost never are great games - the epic game between Liverpool and West Ham in 2006 is the last good one that springs to mind.)
Over in Spain the 'El Classico' game was a definite disappointment. That's not to say it wasn't entertaining or lacking in moments of real quality; it's simply that for a game that promised so much it delivered comparatively little. Games between Barcelona and Real Madrid seem to go one of two ways; either they're great games of flowing football where the vast array of almost obscenely talented players on display serve up quality entertainment, or it devolves into a scrappy, disjointed and extended scuffle, where time and time again play is broken up by niggling little fouls and play acting. Both goals in the 1-1 draw came from penalties, both deserved, and Barcelona arguably could have had another in the first half when Villa was taken out by Casillas. Messi showed in flashes what he is capable of but for large periods of the game disappeared, as did Ronaldo for Madrid. It could have been a very different score line though if Villa had been in form; he wasted a number of chances which you'd have expected a striker of his calibre would have put away.
So neither were bad games but sadly also neither were particularly great.
Today's song is one which i've liked for quite a while, bit rockier and heavier on the guitar than quite a lot of the songs i tend to post on here. It's called 'Said the People' and it's by Dinosaur JR.