PotD: Photos from SHAKHTAR’s Game – Needs Moar… Something

This post was guest-blogged by Laura “Dirtbunny” G.
You can follow her on her blog, Dirtbunny.net or contact her on Twitter @Dirtbunny1.


JUVENTUS 1-1 Shakhtar Donetsk

♫ We want some Heineken

So at last, the Cacophonous Blaring of Marketing and Consumerism Soaring Chords of Inspiration and Glory known as the UEFA Champions League Anthem™ were heard in Juventus Stadium. The ignorant among us (yes, that includes me) approached the match with little concern for our opponent, which I disrespectfully called “WAXTAP”. I don’t know whether the squad felt the same way… probably not, if Conte/Carrera were doing their job. I was hoping for a decisive victory, though I knew better than to count on one. It was not to be.

The clues were there even before the opening kick-off. Gigi Buffon was uncharacteristically fidgety and uncomfortable during the anthem. On the other end of the line, Mirko Vucinic was gazing beatifically off into the distance as if he were hallucinating unicorns and rainbows. And I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who thought “He’s starting Ale Matri? Really? Are we sure that this is a good idea?”

During the squad photo, Arturo Vidal didn’t make it all the way down to one knee before the shutter clicked, and instead remains frozen in time in the pooping pose. When someone looks like that in the squad photo, that’s always a bad omen.

So The Boyz did not dominate possession, or string together lots of fabulous passes, or pull off thrilling attacking runs, or really any of that. They got away with a lot of stuff that maybe ought to have resulted in, um, cards, or perhaps, um, penalty kicks, which is always fun in international matches because it means we get to hear the UK-based commentators blather on with their stereotypes about Italian teams always seeming to get the calls, and hinting at conspiratorial reasons why that might be. Hooray. I get to be ticked at the progress of the match and at the commentary.

I do love them, even when they lose, and they held it together and did enough to keep from losing. A point! That’s good, right? Mmmh, you wouldn’t say that from all the negativity on Twitter…

Pretty much this whole post could be the Mirko Vucinic Gallery of Fail™, but I don’t have the heart to single anyone out. Well, maybe Matri. But I give a strong honorable mention to JuventusMember.com, for posting a fairly underwhelming collection of match photos. Get it together JM.com! We expect better!


★ ★ ★


So, Ale Matri. Is the slump really over, like some of the more optimistic among us hoped after the Roma match?

Um, not so much. Not yet, anyway. Would Other Ale miss a sitter? (Oh, come on. Everyone knows who the real Ale is)

Yes. Yes he did. It was painful to watch. He knows he messed up, but I wouldn’t have minded if he had burst into tears of shame, which he did not. See, my dear, this is why you spend most of your days on the bench.

Do you want to see some Vucinic? How about the subs? How about Giovinco and Quagliarella? Too bad. JM.com did not document their appearances in the match. See? Fail.

Speaking of which, Kwadwo Asamoah was pretty anonymous as far as I could tell.

Not a good time to go quiet on us, Asa, but we know you’ll be back strong.

I wouldn’t say that Claudio Marchisio was either anonymous or quiet.

He was the best Zebe in the midfield.

He even sent a few long, hard blasts towards goal. They didn’t go in, not even close, but at least he was trying. ♥

RRRRRRRRRR That ball is going to get it.

We’ve crossed the line. It used to be that Pirlo was wearing a beard. I think we’re now at the point where The Beard is wearing a Pirlo. I’m dubious, but I really want to give him the benefit of the doubt. Maybe Signora Pirlo likes it. Oh hell. He’s Andrea Fu**ing Pirlo, World Champion, and Regista of all Registas. He’s earned the right to do anything he wants with his hair without public criticism from the likes of me. Grow it, baby!

I know that this guy looks like Arturo Vidal but I’m convinced that he’s actually Arturo Vidal’s less-awesome twin brother.

He takes a great photo, but the football is not so great. Bring back Arturo.

Speaking of less awesome, I was a little surprised that Conte/Carrera didn’t sub Stephan Lichtsteiner out at the half.

But then I think he was better in the second half, so what do I l know?


★ ★ ★


And now we come to the best part: Juve’s Awesome Defenders. Shut up. I don’t care what you say. They are perfect and they were perfect yesterday and I love and adore each and every non-Lúcio one of them.

Starting with Gigi Buffon, because of whom I am a Juventina in the first place.

If you kick him in the face, he can take it. But please don’t. Hiya, Barza. *flutters eyelashes*

Giorgio Chiellini. Um, yeah. I’m all verklempt.


Warrior face. NNNNNGHHHHHH!

Leo Bonucci, last weekend’s dingbat, redeemed himself nicely. I’m a devoted fangirl even when he’s a dingbat, but I think we all agree that it’s better when he’s more controlled and less impetuous.

On the pitch, at least. At home, Leo‘s RAWWWRRR and impetuousness plus Bunny’s, um, Bunny-ness equals big fun. So you can see why I have mixed feelings about the possibility of him growing the frak up. Maybe he can find the sweet spot where he plays like an adult, world-class center back but remains his wonderful self.

Yeah. Achieving peak potential without losing oneself. That’s the dilemma facing us all, isn’t it?

Anyhow, he scored a pretty amazing goal.

I think this is it.

And Leo‘s goals are always followed by his traditional goal celebration. I don’t know what he thinks it means, but to me, it the Mouth Full o’ Spooge celebration. I’m willing to entertain other labels if anyone has a better idea what he’s doing.

[Bonucci actually explained it post-match to SkySport Italia: it's an inside joke he's been doing with his friends for several years. It means "wash out your mouth", probably in reference to the criticism he was subjected to some time ago -- Ed.]


Heh. His pants are ripped. Must have been some wrasslin’ going on somewhere. Carrera looks bemused in the background.

Eventually, some of the squad catches up and comes in for hugz. I don’t know where Marchsio is. He’s usually the first to jump on a goalscorer. Must be on the touchline, re-hydrating and getting instructions from il Mister.

Finally, Andrea Barzagli, Dirtbunny’s “Man of the Match”.

He knows why. The rest of you will have to use your imaginations.


★ ★ ★


Next match is Sunday at Siena, and then one of those cursed dry spells known as an “International Break.”


This post was powered by the aromas coming from that pot of spaghetti sauce I’m simmering. And Barza.


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