I wasn't able to see the game, and from many reports it appears that might have been a good thing because it was a snoozer (hell, it looked like a walk-through even in the highlights). I watched the 10 minute extended highlights and I came up with a few things from the game (as well as from reports):
i) Vitorino Antunes, aka iTunes (that nickname rocks, all the credit in the world to whoever came up with it), is a stud and needs some more PT. Too early to be saying vice-Tonetto, but I daresay he might be a good option for the Coppa games against Torino.
ii) The Mancini who gives a shit rocks, and is one of the most dynamic players on the continent. Don't sell, just get a team of psychiatrists to follow him around 24/7 and all will be butterflies and cupcakes.
iii) I bet we'll hear some rumors of Sir Whiskey Honker lusting for Vucinic pretty soon. That's just how the CL group stages work. (And no, he can't have him.)
iv) Cicinho has proven he deserves to see some time on the field. I agree he is not always going to be the best matchup for a given day, but the guy has some serious talent and brings a completely different dimension to the team. That and he's fun to watch.
v) Those much-longed-for finishing booties are not going to be coming in the form of Mauro Esposito.
Considering iTunes was a Conti buy, and Spalletti was a Conti recommendation, you've got to wonder if maybe Bruno is the one who should be calling a lot of the shots up their in the front office. I suspect (and believe I've heard this somewhere) that BC has a lot more clout than most people think, and that may be a very good thing.
In the end, nobody got hurt and that's all that matters. A job well done by the fellas.
Alright alright, I had the left-footed CSKA Moscow winger making TGIP's heart go aflutter wrong, it's Yuri Zhirkov.
First of all, let's get this out of the way:
That's Zhirkov, and he is very, very good. He's a 1 v 1 run at' em and run through 'em type winger, and is called the Russian Ronaldinho. 23 years old, a regular on the Russian national team, and he's going to cost boatloads on money. But he's worth it.
Again, as will be the case with most rumors involving attackers which we'll see in the near future, this one's contingent on the departure of Amantino, and if he signs an extension, you can file this one under "highly improbable". If Mancini does move on, then I've got to imagine Spalletti is serious about his interest, as hes supposedly already contacted CSKA. This guy would be a great fit to the system and a worthy replacement of Amantino, you can tell by the rotation of his hips he was born to play out on the flanks with space and is the type of guy who will always be the favorite versus 1, 2 or 3 defenders.
Hopefully we'll hear more on this if Amantino continually fails to get his extension done. Til then, enjoy the youtuber highlights: