Barcelona has just won the European Champion League after beating Manchester United 3-1 in a master class of a Footballing match that proved the superiority and the mastery of Barcelona as today’s Dream Team of the footballing world. Messi and his friends made the Manchester’s player look like third rate players chasing them around the field to get a touch of the ball, they destroyed Manchester, total destruction. Think of the statistic: Barca had %63of the ball, Manchester only had one shot on the goal compared to Barca’s 19, 6 corner for Barca and nothing for Man U. Barca with 662 passes completed from 772 attempts while Man U with 301 completions from 419 tries. Barca’s goalkeeper, Victor Valdez did not make a single save in the whole game.
For any Barca fan this moment is one to be remembered and one that top the recent Barca’s triumph, to be registered in the conscious for eternity, right beside Barcelona’s last year’s destruction of Real Madrid 5-0. Put the current Barcelona among the dream teams in the history of the beautiful game, they are the greatest team that has set foot on any0 footballing pitch, at times you felt that you were watching magicians with bags full of tricks as they memorized you with their brilliant football.
What is a Dream Team? In term of football, it is a team that is perfect, a group of player playing as one, as one being. They are a team made of many but move as in one body. They have their style, they always play for the sake of winning but also play beautifully to entertain their fans. They are a school on their own. Looking back into history, there are some dream teams that has left a mark, to name the best:
Hungary Squad of 1954 World Cup:
Perhaps, if one to name a single team that justice has denied them in marking their name in the Footballing history book is the Hungary Squad of 1954 World Cup. The first Dream Team, made up of group of friends turned into Football players, many of them were ex-soldiers in the Soviet army, leading them were the great Puskas. They revolutionized Football, instead of playing the traditional style of football, the defense-attack tactic, they started something new, the early version of Total Football; every player in the team is cable of both attacking and defending, players are cable of changing position and playing in different position from their original, keeping position is important and above all; attack in order to defend. Puskas and his friend took their game into England and taught the English a lesson, the first team to beat England in the Wembely stadium, they humiliated them with a 6–3 win. The team went on to be unbeaten for a record of 32 consecutive matches , until they lost in a controversial game to West Germany in the 1954 final, by a 3–2 score with a last minute legitimate goal from Puskas disallowed by the referee as an offside. Nowadays many consider that Hungary team of 1954 to be among the greatest ever, history has not forgotten them.
Johan Cruyff and the Holland Team of 1970s:
Johan Cruyff , the spiritual father of the current Barcelona team one was a legend on his own, he lead the way the Holland National team the 70s to European glory, only to lose to Argentina in the 1978 World Cup Final. It was the Holland team of Cruyff that took the early Total Football of Hungary of the 50’s and made it into a textbook, their Total Football (totaalvoetbal) was a forecaster to the “tiki-taka” of Barca and the recent Spanish Football team success.
Barcelona of the early 90s:
Johan Cruyff took the helm of Barcelona in 1988 as a coach, he took his Total Football and applied it to his youthful team, this time the Total Football was all about holding position, one or two touch, hight pressure, attack in order to defend. Cruyff s team won La Liga four times between 1991 and 1994, and beat Sampdoria in both the 1989 European Cup Winners’ Cup final and the 1992 European Cup final at Wembley. They also won a Copa del Rey in 1990, the European Super Cup in 1992 and three Supercopa de España.
Barcelona now and forever:
I did not see any of the Dream Teams that I mentioned above but I saw a team tonight that is the Dream Team of today. The current Barca team is made of many players who came through the school of Barcelona, they have been together from a young age as they came through the system. It was Pep Guardiola, a former player at Barca under Cruyff now turned coach that made this Dream Team possible, he came at the right time, taking over in 2008, from Frank Rijkaard just in time as the new generation of magician of Barca school were at their peak: Messi, Xavi, Iniesta, Carles Puyol, Víctor Valdé, etc. under Guardiola, in three years, they have won 10 trophies including 2 Champion League title. They are the best of the best.
How good of a performance and a master-class of footballing was Barca’s destruction of Man U tonight? It was so devastating that one single image could speak for the whole game: Barca is up 3-1, the camera shows Sir Alex Ferguson’s hand, the legendary coach of Manchester United was shaking as the camera tilt up to show his face, the man was full of fear. A friend who was watching the game with me, felt sorry for the man, “Poor guy, he is devastated, he need to get retired from the game”. Indeed, Barca’s performance was so good that it put fear into Sir Alex Ferguson, an iconic image that could hunt him forever.