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12 Jul 2010

World Cup 2010 - Was it really that good?

How many matches do you actually remember for having lots of footballing genius?

Portugal's 7-0 destruction of North Korea..... ranked 105 in World football?
Italy's 3-2 defeat at the hands of European new boys Slovakia, with Fabio Quagliarella's incredible goal?

There are just 2 games, possibly 3 that stick in my mind. And each of them involved the young German team given no chance by their own country. After a storming start against lowly Australia, a set back followed with a loss to dark horses Serbia. After clearing Ghana, they came against the English.

Believing they could sweep aside the Germans after an awful start was their undoing. Along with some Sunday-league defending from Terry and Co. This was a display in counter-attacking football at it's best. And rarest.
Another was Germany's 4-0 beating of Argentina. Again, fantastic flowing football from Die Mannschaft, but nothing incredibly spectacular from the South Americans.

And the only other match I can remember, that was probably the best, was the 3rd place playoff on Saturday past. Uruguay and Germany were both determined to get the bronze medal, and played like it was the show-piece final in Jo'burg. Brilliant pass and move football from both sides led to 1-1, and then again to 2-2. Then of course, up popped one rusty German in the right place and that was it all over, 3-2 to the young pretenders.

Apart from that, there were plenty matches completely empty of any sort of creativity, skill or simply good football. Algeria v England? France v Uruguay?

However, the worst in my eyes are the Spanish. World Cup winners too. They won their last 16 game 1-0. Their Quarter final, 1-0, their Semi final vs Germany was 1-0. As was the final. This was the team that promised amazing passing football that would rip defences in two, instead, we got Iniesta, Xavi and Alonso passing the ball to each other for 5 minutes, then Villa would miss. And repeat.

To say they deserved to win is almost wrong, they did play the most consistently. Consistently boring. In all, they scored just 8 goals in 7 games. Compared to Germany's 16 in 8, they were poor shooters.

Just a thought amongst all this Spanish praise.


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