Sunday, June 27, 2010

World Cup 2010 - Day 16 (R16 - 2)

After today's massive game-changing refereeing blunders FIFA will have to do something in order to ensure that all teams participating in the greatest sporting event in the world get a fair sporting chance. Yes, there's been plenty of ink and air-time wasted on the subject, but really [and I mentioned this in my Preamble already] the world-governing body has to embrace the idea and bring the game into the 21st century.

Video review should become part of the game (at least at the high levels) and it's a no-brainer, as TV cameras are "viewing" the game from every angle. One challenge per team in each half should do the trick. For those who maintain that such a measure would interrupt the flow of the game [FIFA primarily] I'll offer this: the time it took the Mexican team to argue with the referees was definitely much longer [and game-flow-interrupting] than a potential 20 second review of the goal.

There is no argument that today's games would have had a different outcome if such a rule was in effect. England was coming back after the second goal, and Mexico [Osorio in particular] would probably not have dropped psychologically and allow Argentina a relatively easy victory.

Regardless... today refereeing errors are an unfortunate part of the game and players at this level should be able to cope with whatever happens on the field (what I'm trying to say is that England and Mexico should look deeper than that in understanding why the lost today).

If you thought I was rash in the evaluation of the US performance yesterday, what do you want me to say about England? They were horrible again [par for the course in this competition]. Outclassed, outplayed, outmuscled by a very tenacious, highly energetic German team. They really did not start playing anything until they were two goals down already. Then, as they were turning the tide, the goal that was not given demoralized them. Fair or not, they should have continued to push forward, but the didn't. Germany fully deserved the victory, and England has a lot of reckoning to do... The [much] better team won on the day!

Positive accolades for the German team, particularly for Ozil, Mueller, Podolski and Klose, but really the entire team performed beautifully. Their next match against Argentina should be a pleasure to watch...

Yes, Argentina going through as well, but not without plenty of controversy there as well. Mexico started much better and could have been first on the scoreboard with a bit more luck... but then came the offside goal, the gift from Osorio, and the wheels came off for Mexico. Tevez's second goal was outstanding, though, so in the end, the better team progressed here as well. Messi was uncharacteristically 'quiet' today, but was closely marked by 2-3 Mexican players every time he had the ball. So maybe that's the [tactical] idea...

Overall, great day for soccer today, but shadowed by the aforementioned errors from the linesmen. I'm sure it won't be the last piece of refereeing controversy in the tournament...

Tomorrow, Holland [against Slovakia] and Brazil [against Chile] should progress, but I do hope that La Roja gives Brazil a run for their money.

1 comment:

  1. awesome games, Argentina that was beautiful, Germany, that was my, what a day.......