Andy Gray Questions Whether Barcelona Could Handle Stoke or Blackburn

I admire Lionel Messi’s incredible skills as much as the next soccer fan, but I’m not a member of the recent love fest in the British media where they’ve heralded Barcelona as the greatest team ever. They’re up there, no doubt, but I question Messi’s talent when he comes up against the tough teams either in the Champions League or World Cup, where the Argentine routinely disappears in matches whenever he’s faced against a tough opponent. So many of the opponents that Messi faces in La Liga look like Swiss cheese, allowing the best player in the world too much space to dart in and out before pulling the trigger to score wonderful goals.

That being said, Andy Gray and Richard Keys (both men were part of the second worst soccer TV show of 2010 according to a recent review of mine) took it one step further this past Monday during the Manchester City against Everton match when they entered into a Premier League versus La Liga debate. Andy Gray said:

“I don’t know if Barcelona have ever gone to a place like the Britannia Stadium and suffered the kind of onslaught from Tony Pulis’ team of long throws and free-kicks or been up to a place like Blackburn and been beaten up by their long ball into the box.”

I don’t doubt that Barcelona would have a tricky time wondering how to deal with Rory Delap’s long throw, but I’m confident that Barcelona or Real Madrid would be able to defeat Stoke or Blackburn. Just last weekend, Real Madrid faced a Sevilla side that played a very old English style of play where the team hoofed the ball up the field. Real Madrid won 1-0.

Here’s the complete video of the discussion between Keys and Gray. Keys, especially, was asking some leading questions:

Taken as a whole, I believe there is more depth in the Premier League than La Liga. I also agree that Tottenham Hotspur would be able to defeat Valencia. But I do believe that Barcelona and Real Madrid have more depth than the top Premier League clubs. In previous seasons, Premier League clubs have been able to defeat Real Madrid pretty easily. Barcelona has been another thing entirely, except for Liverpool who defeated them in the Champions League a few years ago.

Thanks to 101 Great Goals for finding the clip, and thanks to Things Fall Apart blog for the hysterical English Football’s Map Of Europe.

40 Comments

  1. Doug December 23, 2010
  2. yves Paquin December 23, 2010
    • jumbo December 23, 2010
  3. Frank December 23, 2010
    • O February 2, 2011
      • Messi's Right foot April 6, 2012
  4. SantaClaus December 23, 2010
    • Gaz Hunt December 24, 2010
  5. Ivan December 23, 2010
  6. Charlie December 23, 2010
  7. rivnam December 23, 2010
    • phalgun February 15, 2011
  8. efrain December 23, 2010
  9. jleau December 23, 2010
  10. RedMD December 23, 2010
  11. tedekm December 23, 2010
  12. brian December 23, 2010
  13. Blake Hampton December 23, 2010
  14. alex December 24, 2010
  15. mike December 24, 2010
  16. Gaz Hunt December 24, 2010
  17. Rumple December 25, 2010
  18. Manny December 25, 2010
  19. Ravi December 28, 2010
  20. Joe smart January 1, 2011
  21. Joe smart January 1, 2011
  22. Mike January 16, 2011
  23. Dominic Yusoff January 23, 2011
  24. Dominic Yusoff January 23, 2011
  25. Michael Scott January 24, 2011
  26. Wati January 24, 2011
  27. oscar January 25, 2011
  28. Brendan January 26, 2011
    • The Gaffer January 26, 2011
  29. mikey January 27, 2011
    • O February 2, 2011
  30. Zach Nix April 27, 2011
  31. Jacqui April 28, 2011
  32. Mick March 20, 2012
  33. arijit April 9, 2012

Leave a Reply