On the borderline of chaos.

Posted on March 23, 2011

0


We recommend you watch this video without sound:

 

Gaitán’s goal against Paços de Ferreira was generally hailed as the culmination of a wonderful team play endeavour, “his shoot was preceded by 10 passes between 8 different players!” some pundits will tell you, “look how unselfish Cardozo was” others will remark. Watching it again (and again, and again, and again) I can’t help but feel that those statements are somewhat marginal to something much more important.

I mean, Barcelona only scores goals that are build up from 30+ passes or some ridiculous statistic like that, and some of them are immediately forgotten, 95% of all Barcelona goals are probably the result of intricate team play. A fair amount of those goals are as worth re-seeing as Gaitán’s, others perhaps even more. Nevertheless, there was something special about this one that appears to have slipped most pundits attention. Barcelona displays a level of control and precision that is nowhere to be found here. If you watch it again, focus your attention to the conditions in which every pass was accomplished. Every single one of those 10 passes was realized under almost certain probability of failure, a report:

Paços sends a long ball forward which is intercepted by a bicycle kick from central defender Jardel, a bicycle kick ladies and gentlemen. I mean, this play should have ended there and then. But no. It didn’t, in fact, the ball capriciously reached Franco Jara on the left flank, who was immediately put under pressure by an opposite defender, he makes a rather poor pass aiming at Javi Garcia in the middle. At this moment, Javi is surrounded by three adversaries and loses control of the ball, that is it, this play is obviously over. Yet, it isn’t. Javi makes an unorthodox sliding pass to the middle of the pitch with the tenuous hope of finding a team mate, Gaitán, brought on by a simple twist of fate, happens to be exactly on the right spot to collect it, which he does with a first time pass, executed with his weaker foot to Aimar in the middle. Alas, the pass was not perfect at all, which is comprehensible since it was done with Gaitán’s right foot, Aimar struggles to control it, loses balance as an opponent reaches him. It is over, this rather improvised, uncharacteristic, disorganized, and seemingly pointless play is over now. No, yet again, Aimar, perhaps inspired by his midfield team mate’s effort a few seconds ago, performs a sliding pass to his life-long friend Saviola, who in turn returns it first time back to Aimar. The midfield maestro spots Gaitán again on the right and addresses the ball to him. By this point this play is finally looking like a rational piece of organized offence. However, Gaitán decides to bring chaos back into the pitch, and maybe impressed by his previous right foot effort, performs an impossible, first time, right foot pass with a physics defying swerve to the now galloping right back Maxi Pereira. A moment which mirrored Pelé’s legendary into space pass to Carlos Alberto, an instant of artistic homage by Gaitán, bravo! Back to the play. Maxi, perhaps the least talented of all the players involved until now, is momentarily in charge of this production, he picks up some pace and dribbles (Maxi Pereira, dribbling, at this point reality is dangerously dangling on the borderline with surrealism) past the opposite left back, and perhaps due to his less aesthetic inclinations decides to make a rather conventional pass to striker Óscar Cardozo who is surely going to hit it as hard as he can (we have known him for 4 seasons now) into the goal. Nothing could be further from the truth, for an instant, Cardozo incarnates the same essence which fuelled the likes of Cruyff or Zidane and gently decides to serve his team mate Gaitán with a first time assist. Here is the moment where Gaitán discloses the meaning of what had passed. His shot was the clavis aurea of it all. The last line of a Shakespearean sonnet.

This play wouldn’t resonate as it did if it wasn’t for it’s thunderous finale. The lonely gentle curve described in the air was the epitome of arts frailty. A perfect metaphor of beauty springing out of chaos.

by Jack Rabbit

 

Gaitán’s goal against Paços de Ferreira was generally hailed as the culmination of a wonderful team play endeavour, “his shoot was preceded by 10 passes between 8 different players!” the pundits will tell you, “look how unselfish Cardozo was” others will remark. Watching it again (and again, and again, and again) I can’t help but feel that those statements are somewhat marginal to something much more important.

 

I mean, Barcelona only scores goals that are build up from 30+ passes or some ridiculous statistic like that, and some of them are immediately forgotten, 95% of all Barcelona goals are probably the result of intricate team play. Some of them are as worth re-seeing as Gaitán’s, others perhaps even more. Nevertheless, there was something special about this goal that appears to have slipped most pundits attention. Barcelona displays a level of control and precision that is nowhere to be found here. If you watch it again, focus your attention to the conditions in which every pass was accomplished. Every single one of those 10 passes was realized under almost certain probability of failure, a report:

 

Paços sends a long ball forward which is intercepted by a bicycle kick from central defender Jardel, a bicycle kick ladies and gentlemen. I mean, this play should have ended there and then. But no. It didn’t, in fact, the ball capriciously reached Franco Jara on the left flank, who was immediately put under pressure by an opposite defender, he makes a rather poor pass aiming at Javi Garcia in the middle. At this moment, Javi is surrounded by three adversaries and loses control of the ball, that is it, this play is obviously over. Yet, it isn’t. Javi makes an unorthodox sliding pass to the middle of the pitch with the tenuous hope of finding a team mate, Gaitán, brought on by a simple twist of fate, happens to be exactly on the right spot to collect it, which he does with a first time pass, executed with his weaker foot to Aimar in the middle. Alas, the pass was not perfect at all, which is comprehensible since it was done with Gaitán’s right foot, Aimar struggles to control it, loses balance as an opponent reaches him. It is over, this rather improvised, uncharacteristic, disorganized, and seemingly pointless play is over now. No, yet again, Aimar, perhaps inspired by his midfield team mate’s effort a few seconds ago, performs a sliding pass to his life-long friend Saviola, who in turn returns it first time back to Aimar. The midfield maestro spots Gaitán again on the right and addresses the ball to him. By this point this play is finally looking like a rational piece of organized offence. However, Gaitán decides to bring chaos back into the pitch, and maybe impressed by his previous right foot effort, performs an impossible, first time, right foot pass with a physics defying swerve to the now galloping right back Maxi Pereira. A moment which mirrored Pelé’s legendary into space pass to Carlos Alberto, an instant of artistic homage by Gaitán, bravo! Back to the play. Maxi, perhaps the less talented of all the players involved until now, is momentarily in charge of this production, he picks up some pace and dribbles (Maxi Pereira, dribbling, at this point reality is dangerously dangling on the borderline with surrealism) past the opposite left back, and perhaps due to his less aesthetic inclinations decides to make a rather conventional pass to striker Óscar Cardozo who is surely going to hit it as hard as he can (we have known him for 4 seasons now) into the goal. Nothing could be further from the truth, for an instant, Cardozo incarnates the same essence which fuelled the likes of Cruyff or Zidane and gently decides to serve his team mate Gaitán with a first time assist. Here is the moment where Gaitán discloses the meaning of what had passed. His shot was the clavis aurea of it all. The last line of a Shakespearean sonnet.

 

This play wouldn’t resonate as it did if it wasn’t for it’s thunderous finale. The lonely gentle curve described in the air was the epitome of arts frailty. A perfect metaphor of beauty springing out of chaos.

Advertisements
Posted in: Into row Z