Corporate memory of persistent champions


I watched Real Madrid outplayed by Chelsea for most of last night.  The visitors performed exceptionally well to take a three goal lead and could have put the game out of sight before Real got  a foothold in the game.

Chelsea won twice in Spain in last season’s Champions League, scoring five without reply at Sevilla and Atletico, before taking a draw at Real in the semi-final, they know how to compete in this competition.  No team, however, knows more about winning in the Champions League than Real Madrid.

Real win this tournament when they are well below par domestically, they find an assured calmness to their play, even when, as last night, they were 0-3 down and the obits were being written about coach Carlo Ancelotti.  This is all down to corporate memory.  More than any team in football, they know how to perform under intense pressure on the big stage.

You have witnessed this on a smaller scale in Scotland.  Celtic’s 36 game unbeaten run in domestic cup competitions, from 2016 to 2020, defined credulity.  Form varied during that run, the only consistent was outcome.  Celtic won so many knockout games, they knew most of the pitfalls and prepared thoroughly.

If anything, form at semi-finals and finals is even more impressive.  Celtic are on a run of 18 successive wins on these Hampden occasions, without once going to extra time.  Others must reach the National Stadium and start work on blocking out so many bad memories.  When you go up against Real Madrid in the Champions League, or Celtic in the Scottish or League Cup, you have a chance, but whatever you have in your locker, you cannot match the winning attributes of persistent champions.

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  1. I should say City are my favourites for CL providing they see out the next ten mins !



    Atletico are a good example of what P67 was talking about in his article today. They rarely fail to compete at this level.

  2. the long wait is over on

    An dun.



    I agree on Atletico but they were a horrible outfit in 1974 and they’re a horrible outfit now.



    Can never bring myself to wish them anything other than failure.

  3. Best Celtic team?














    I go for 1970!

  4. the long wait is over on

    See what I mean about them?



    Truly repulsive lot.



    They remind me of another horrible outfit.



    Can you guess who it is ?

  5. God – I feel like I have been transported back in time = remember the assault on Jinky!!!!!

  6. Iniquitousiv



    Got to admit I have zero interest in the Champions League, or any Euro games bar the finals when we’re not competing…but do love yer enthusiasm ;-))




  7. What is the Starz on



    “The Serbian ethnic cleansing of Yugoslavia which have been debunked,all lies ”


    Really ??


    You are absolutely beyond help.

  8. the long wait is over on

    12 mins played of et before whistle blown.



    Good riddance classless Simeone and his pack of jackals.

  9. WITZ – Ignore chumps.



    I know it’s hard cause they talk so much crap.



    Celtic supporter my A#$e



    D :)

  10. WITZ…as Bankiebhoy continues to promote…starve thum of oxygen. Tho sometimes it seems that’s exactly what brought on some thought processes ;-))




  11. What is the Starz on

    David 66




    Probably best ignored..But it’s hard to do so.


    So many blatant lies being sprouted and dressed up as truth with long winded nonsense like ” I know this because I read extensively “…..and of course the rest of us don’t ( we are told what to think by The BBC and The Sun apparently).


    He actually must be mentally unbalanced if he genuinely believes some of the garbage he posts on here.


    Very sad and ruins the blog

  12. Listening to Five Live from Madrid, with Chris Sutton doing back up commentary serves to remind me not only that the development of radio (in all its’ forms) is the greatest scientific contribution to the 20th century (albeit rooted in the 19c) it remains one of if not the best, and the most democratic, medium through which to follow live events, especially sport, and in particular football. Who needs Sky? City go through. Just