Saturday, June 17, 2006

World Cup Diary - Day 9

Portugal have had a similar World Cup to England, they scraped through their first game with a 1-0 win and today in their second match they left it late to get a 2-0 victory. Ronaldo scored a penalty but didn't have a good game at all. None of his tricks worked and he was greedy in promising positions. The heart beat of the team is Figo. When he plays well the team starts to play well. Deco was also very good and scored a really good goal.

Iran just didn't have the quality in the final third in order to convert the few chances they had.


In one of the surprise results of the World Cup so far the Czech Republic lost to Ghana. I only watched the first half. Czech Rep looked like a very different team to the one that beat USA so well earlier on in the week. Against Ghana there was no fluency or urgency. They seamed lethargic and slow. On the other hand the Ghanians were quicker to the ball and played with determination and passion.


There is always one or two freak games in the World Cup. The Italy vs. USA match was one of them. Italy started off quite slowly but the USA looked a transformed team from the slow and pointless team that turned up against Czech Rep. USA had a great tempo to their game and were causing Italy lots of problems. Then it all changed Italy had De Rossi sent off for an elbow against McBride. It was a horrible moment and it definately deserved a red card. Just before the sending off USA had brought themselves back on to level terms with the help of a own goal, after Italy had gone ahead earlier on. It looked like it was going to be a very open and attacking match before the sending off.

After the sending off the game changed but USA couldn't take advantage of the extra man. Then USA had their midfielder sent off for a rash callenge. Then straight after the break USA had Pope sent off fo a second yellow card. After all these sendings off the game got very streched. To be fair USA had some of the best chances even though they had a player less. Italy should have killed off the game during the second half but they couldn't, so it ended all level.


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