I will save my detailed analysis for later, when the dust has settled somewhat but there were two main reasons for our demise tonight, one was completely outside of our control and the other was not. The referee was absolutely useless. The first half saw him yellow card several of our players for very very little, give Barcelona numerous non free kicks, give us very little despite several hard tackles going in on our players, fail to book Messi for a blatant dive and fail to punish Abidal for grabbing the throat of RVP. Biased? Corrupt? It was certainly shite.
Having said all that Arsene got his tactics completely and utterly wrong. He started with two players who were clearly not 100% fit, RVP and Cesc, and neither of these lads did themselves justice. Rosicky was chosen to start for some bizarre reason only known to Arsene, he was deeply average and rather anonymous in every possible way. This left us to be overwhelmed in midfield, I thought Jack and Abou did pretty well given the circumstances. We also had so little in the way of an attacking threat, Arshavin was on the bench, what a terrible waste.
The sending off of RVP killed us and what an appalling piece of refereeing it was, RVP clearly didn't hear the whistle, the referee showed him a ridiculous second yellow, even the Barcelona players seemed shocked by the incompetence of the decision. Barca still struggled to finish us off, they needed a very dodgy penalty from yet another Pedro dive to score their third, Bendtner had a last gasp chance when he should have been clean through near the end, his poor touch let him down.
Again Barcelona can be proud of the pathetic cheating that they indulged in from the first minute to the last. They tried to get our players books with little rolls, pirouettes and pikes from the off, it was quite appalling and completely unsportsmanlike. This was all summarised by David Villa's rolling around on the ground after Koscielny had cleanly won the ball with a fair tackle in the second half, yet another piece of despicable gamesmanship from yet another Barcelona cheat. They may have won but they have very little credibility left as sportsmen left in my eyes. Pedro Messi, Villa, Daniel, Busquets, so many cheating cunts in one football team.
I wouldn't like to finish with ranting about Barca's cheating in isolation. Our defeat tonight was sadly predictable and a mixture of refereeing incompetent, Barcelona cheating and Arsene's lack of tactical awareness killed us. Fucketty fuck fuck fuck, fuck fuck fuck.