Saturday, June 26, 2010

FIFA World Cup 2010: The real battles have begun....

Just finished watchin'  Uruguay and Ghana win their Round of 16 matches against the South Koreans and Americans respectively. Have to commend the Goal-keeper of Ghana.....Wow! What a feat! It looked like he was single-handedly defending the goal everytime the Americans targeted his precious post....Must say this African Nation has come really far!

The Group Stage has been full of surprises. The big guns haven't really played like big guns. Ofcourse most of them made it to the round of 16, but most of the matches were not quite like what you would expect from some of the best teams in the world. What's all the hype about Premier League stars? I am yet to see an extra-ordinary performance from them!

On the contrary, the second-rung teams have really blossomed on the world stage. Most of the group stage matches have been about under-dogs this time around. They fought every match to the nail. It doesn't matter if most of them did not qualify for the Round Of 16....what matters is they fought hard!

These so called lower ranked teams gave their all to the matches and made life difficult for the top-rung teams....It must have been frustrating for the top ranked teams to get rattled by teams, almost 100 ranks below them. Now thats soccer for you....full of surprises! :-)

I am delighted that most of the teams that I thought would make it to the RO16 have made it, with the exception of France and Italy, who I thought, looked outrageously pathetic in all their matches. It was a pain to watch these former champions of the game go out in such a mediocre way. Neither did they fight nor did they play like they should have. Now this is what happens if you think 'Consistency' is only a word in the dictionary!

I enjoyed watching some teams play this time...Especially Chile! My God! They define the word 'Agility'! They move with so much speed and pass the ball so well that if you blink an just might miss a goal! Like-wise Mexico was awesome too...never quite thought they would make it to the RO16.

Yes, my favorite teams are still the ones who define the game of soccer like Brazil, Germany, Argentina, Spain, England etc but yeah am happy that the under-dogs are not making it easy for them! :-) (Now, who wouldn't wanna watch a nail-biting game...didn't somebody say 'A win isn't sweet when there is no challenge'!

The RO16 has 6 European Teams, 5 South.American, 2 Asian and one African...Now isn't that commendable considering that Europeans or S.American have always dominated soccer...I hope this beautiful game picks up in other continents and we have more of them challenging European and S.American supremacy!

The best part of the group stages has been the way the goals have been scored in most of the games. Every game, you had a different player scoring a goal for their nations. It has never been a one-man show so far...and yes am glad it isn't 'coz thats what makes a good team.

You cannot bank on just stars to run the show for you 'coz its obvious that the star would be the main target for your opposition. Rooney, Ronaldo, Messi--->All cases in point! (I must commend Messi tho'....he might not have gotten the goals but this guy has definitely stepped it up for Argentina, he has been instrumental in setting up the goals for his team! Definitely lives upto the title of 'Most valuable Player' the way this guy plays soccer! :-))

David Villa was awesome too...loved the way his goals came about! It requires great talent to score like that!(Torres needs to stop tail-gating and start scoring too :-)). Am curious to see as to who might win the golden boot this time around...there have been no great feats from any single player so far...Hoping to see some real action in the forthcoming matches!

Uruguay and Ghana made it to the am all set to see how the action unfolds in the next few days....Will new stars be born? Will soccer be taken to another level? Let the drama unfold!

Three Cheers,