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Sunday, June 25, 2006

WC2006: Day 16

TDH missed the first half of the Germany v Sweden game, and both goals. But that was okay, because TDH was attending the baptism of a friend's daughter - and the godmother's husband was... ENZO FRANCESCOLI.

Enzo was looking quite fit, and appropriately so, one supposes, for someone whose playing career lasted so long. In fact, had he been playing for Uruguay against Australia, his team might have been the ones facing Italy in the not-too-distant future. With 198 goals in 510 games, he would have been worth a shot even at the ripe old age of 45, right?

Anyway, the Swedes - with the exception of the underwear model - didn't seem to be running quite as much as they did against England in the second half. Larsson missed a penalty, and Lagerback inexplicably switched Ibrahimovich for Allback rather than throwing all four strikers forward in the last 20 minutes or so. TDH would have said, "Excuse me, but there's no tomorrow - or, as they say in Buenos Aires, la vida es ahora...." Germany's advancement hardly seemed unjust.


What a stinker Riquelme had for Argentina. When he's off, the whole team looks off. His passes were spraying wide, and he looked more worried than usual. (Does this man ever smile?)

Pekerman took off Cambiasso for Aimar, but TDH would have left Cambiasso on and let Aimar dictate instead of Riquelme. Aimar has always looked quick and efficient with this team.

Messi's goal in extra time clearly should have counted - yet another terrible offside call in this World Cup. But the score ended up 2-1 anyway, thanks to a shot Maxi Rodriguez appeared to have stolen from Young Joe.

The Mexicans played their socks off, putting in a far better showing than TDH expected. But it was never meant to be, was it? Now all TDH's local friends are dreading their encounter with Germany. Watch the referee be Austrian, Brazilian, or English... whoops, no, it can't be Graham Poll, because he might give Sorin three cards before expelling him! Which will happen, mark TDH's words.


Blogger the Maradona of Malawi said...

good predictions, below. I'm of much the same mind.

rubbing shoulders with football aristocracy - what next, an invitation to El Diego's next barbecue?

I was losing my mind with anger last night. How did PEkerman not see it fit to introduce MEssi before the 83rd minute?

Palms will no doubt have something to say about the offsides this year - shocking decision.

8:15 AM  
Anonymous Palms said...

It's been just horrendous this year. Why have an offside rule at all if the officials are incapable of applying it correctly? It doesn't make sense. For all the correct offside decisions being made in this world cup they might as well have replaced the linesmen with a machine that raises it's flag randomly. it would certainly raise the number of correct calls. These are supposed to be the best officals in the world, but their judgement stinks. Either scrap the law or make it clearer. the amount of arguments I hear and participate in in a pub concerning what the actual law is is unbelievable (should there be daylight between the attacker and last man? Is it if any part of the body that can play the ball is in front of the last man?). Games are going to be won and lost on a linesman's guesswork and it's undermining the whole competition. I honestly don't remember a World Cup where it's been this bad.

1:53 PM  
Blogger The American Geordie said...

I also couldn't understand why Pekerman waited so long past the hour mark to let los pibes (the kids) take over the game. But in the end they were that much fresher for the half hour of extra time. Did you see Mascherano defending in the last 15 minutes? Fantastic.

On the way to the baptism, I asked a friend's kids (two little girls) who their favorite player was in La Seleccion. The answer came as one word: "Messitevez" - which stood to reason since they are, let's face it, almost always a unit.

4:29 PM  

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