Saturday, June 17, 2006

World Cup Musings

One week of matches in the 2006 World Cup in Germany have been played and here are my thoughts:

It's way too early to predict who will win based on the games played so far. Although Argentina and Portugal have looked the sharpest, you should keep in mind that teams evolve during the tournament. Many teams will get better with each game and that's why you still shouldn't count out Brazil, England, or Germany.

I'm a huge fan of Ronaldo but I think he should be benched. First of all, he's obviously not match ready. Secondly, I don't like having Adriano and Ronaldo on the field at the same time. They are too much of the same kind of player - requiring service as opposed to creating opportunities. Finally, you're keeping Robinho on the bench and he could be Brazil's most potent weapon.

It wasn't Rooney who made the difference for England off the bench against Trinidad - it was Aaron Lennon. Sven should start him!

Ivory Coast were my favorites from Africa. I'm sorry to see them eliminated. Ghana made my day with their thorough drubbing of the Czech Republic.

Group E proved to be the Group of Death after all. Everything hinges on the final games. Each team can still qualify. Each team can still be eliminated. Wow!

The USA showed up today against Italy. I wish the ref would have let them play. Only De Rossi's red card was justified.

The Netherlands have been playing some beautiful soccer. Arjen Robben is legit! I haven't been following Kluivert recently but I'm shocked he didn't make the team.

Messi is legit! He could cause some damage in the knockout stages.

1 comment:

Michael D. said...

I'm with you on all of this, except for the red cards in the U.S./Italy game. All the red cards seemed quite deserved and spot-on. The initial yellow card on Pope was, however, harsh. Other than that, it seems simply unfortunate that the degree of physicality in the game forced decisions that had ridiculous looking consequences. I'm rooting for Ghana and Czech Rep. to go through.