UEFA Champions League 2008 - 09, final phase

previous years:

2005 - 06

2006 - 07

2007 - 08


Quarter-finals, leg 1, April 7 - 8, 2009

Quarter-finals, leg 2, April 14 - 15, 2009

Semi-finals, April 28 - 29 and May 5 - 6, 2009

Final, May 27, 2009



Quarter-finals, leg 1, April 7 - 8, 2009


Villarreal - Arsenal 1 - 2, officially 1 - 1

Arsenal should have had a penalty for a foul on Adebayor around min. 55.


Manchester United - Porto 3 - 3 (officially 2 - 2)

One ref-missed penalty for each team, for fouls on Fletcher and Hulk respectively, in minutes 34 and 75. Very similar actually, both fouls not very clear but quite obvious on the replays. Sometimes it does even itself out.

Other than that, Rooney should have had a dangerous free kick at the end of the game.

The foul that led to United's second goal was somewhat debatable, but probably correct in the end. Borderline.


Barcelona - Bayern 6 - 0 (officially 4 - 0)

Toni pushed Henry on a corner around min. 65, then around min. 88 Oddo quite visibly pushed Iniesta when he was about to cross for Eto'o.

There were another 2 possible penalty incidents but less clear, as well as a dangerous free kick from about 20 yards centrally that wasn't granted, all for Barca. Well, at this score it probably won't matter much anyway.


Liverpool - Chelsea 1 - 3


Quarter-finals, leg 2, April 14 - 15, 2009


Porto - Manchester United 1 - 1 (officially 0 - 1)

Porto should have been given a penalty when O'Shea used his hand to hold back Rolando in min. 78. It was rather obvious on the replay. Otherwise his header might very well have gone in, since Van der Saar was out of the goal.


Bayern - Barcelona 2 - 2 (officially 1 - 1)

Barca were denied a penalty for a foul from behind on Iniesta around min. 53. Toni should also have had one around min. 66.

There was another possible one for a foul on Eto'o around min. 50, but not very clear live and no replay was provided.

Considering the score in the first match, none of these mattered very much anyway.


Chelsea - Liverpool 4 - 4

The free kick for Chelsea's second goal was wrong. In compensation, they should have had a penalty for a foul on Ivanovic shortly after Liverpool's second goal.


Arsenal - Villarreal 3 - 0

Adebayor was denied a penalty for a foul in min. 10. To compensate for it, Arsenal were gifted one for their third goal.

Qualified teams:

Porto (officially Manchester United)





Semi-finals, leg 1, April 28 - 29, 2009


Porto (officially Manchester United) - Arsenal 2 - 0 (officially 1 - 0)

Anderson was wrongly flagged for offside in min. 43. I'd say that would have been a certain goal if I didn't know how incredibly these things are missed sometimes, so I'll just say it should reasonably have been one.
Conversely, Giggs' goal from min. 79 was probably correctly canceled, it's very hard to tell even from the shown replay but it seems he might have been an inch or two offside. We've got to go with the refs here.
Other than that, 2 dangerous free kicks for fouls on Ronaldo that went under the ref's radar.


Barcelona - Chelsea 1 - 1 (officially 0 - 0)

Drogba should have had a penalty in min. 42 for a foul from behind.
There were no less than 3 wrong offside calls against Barça in dangerous attacking situations, one of which would likely have resulted in a goal (Eto'o, min. 43).
Henry had a penalty appeal for a foul ruled out in the second half. It was hard to tell, he was indeed pulled down by his shirt but he clearly was the first to use his hand in the incident. We'll give the ref credit on this one.


Semi-finals, leg 2, May 5 - 6, 2009


Chelsea - Barcelona 4 - 2 (officially 1 - 1)

Chelsea were denied no less than 4 penalties, for fouls on Drogba by Abidal in min. 27 and Yaya Toure in min. 56, then one on Anelka by Toure again in min. 79, and finally for a handball by Eto'o at the very end. Barca also should have had one, Drogba climbed on his opponent in min. 13 to clear a Xavi free kick. Interestingly, theirs would have been the first so it might have changed the game completely.
There was another possible penalty incident for Chelsea in min. 24, Alves and Malouda struggled at the edge of the box and the Chelsea player fell inside it. It's unclear however, both men fought quite unlawfully, if anything was to be called it was outside the box, which the ref did. There was also another penalty appeal by Chelsea for a handball by Pique in min. 82, but the ball was shot into him from very close and the arm, though quite far away from the body, didn't seem to move deliberately to handle the ball.
Abidal (Barcelona) was shown a straight red card near the middle of the second half for a foul on Anelka. The replays showed it almost definitely was nothing.
Over-all though it didn't feel like Chelsea were robbed, as the result correction suggests. The play was exceedingly rough in both legs (much more so in the second), and both refs allowed it. Of course Chelsea started it and did the bulk of it because it benefited them most. A stricter officiating manner would have perhaps evened things and enabled Barca to defend their chances correctly. There was also the wrong red card. So in this instance, even if on FairFootball Chelsea win because these are the rules, it looks like the official result might have been the right one. Strange, but as a result of our limitations this is bound to happen sometimes, unfortunately.
Anyway, horrible game. Disgustingly rough, and the ref was a shame. Luckily it also had a few bright moments, including the 2 goals and especially Essien's incredible volley, which even in this context deserves a special mention.


Arsenal - Porto (officially Manchester United) 1 - 3

Qualified teams:

Chelsea (officially Barcelona)
Porto (officially Manchester United)





Final, May 27, 2009


Chelsea (officially Barcelona) - Porto (officially Manchester United) 2 - 0

Fairly clean game, not much to report about.
Messi might have had a penalty due in min. 50, for a foul. Unfortunately, the live video was inconclusive and the replays were probably the lousiest ever for a penalty incident in a UCL final. Based on what could be seen, one can assume something was wrong, a hand seemed to be involved, but with this kind of video nothing can be said for sure.

Other than that, Pique got carded for a bogus foul near the begin of the first half. In compensation, Ronaldo was wrongly flagged offside near the begin of the second half, but the situation didn't look too dangerous. Then near the end of the game, Ronaldo again was wrongly showed the yellow card, for Puyol bumping into him.

Final ranking:

The FairFootball UCL winner for 2009 is Chelsea.

winner: Chelsea (officially Barcelona)

finalist: Porto (officially Manchester United)
semi-finalists: Barcelona (officially Chelsea), Arsenal