World Cup Day 7, Day 8

So, I’m beginning to think that unless you’re from Central or South America, you’re just here to disappoint me.  And I’m not sure that that’s even right because I wasn’t impressed with Brazil.  Even the Germans, who looked unstoppable after their total destruction of Australia, have lost to a minor team.  I guess that’s the great thing about World Cup, it’s unpredictable.  I dunno if you remember who my favorites originally were, but they are now officially 1) Uruguay 2) Argentina and 3) Mexico.  Favorites, of course, not being who I think will win, but who I want to win.

Argentina v South Korea

Argentina, 4-1, is looking pretty good offensively, especially with the first hat trick of the Cup going to Gonzalo Higuaín, but they let in a goal with a pretty intense lapse of defensive attention.  Still, they’re looking good and might go all the way.

Greece v Nigeria

Greece wins!  For the first time!  Nothing like a good comeback story, especially when there’s a very obvious villain in the form of a Nigerian player, Kaita, who got kicked off the field for a blatant red card offense.  It’s what red cards are there for.

France v Mexico

I admit that I actually freaked out with happiness when Mexico scored it’s first goal against France.  The second was just icing on the cake, because it’s almost impossible for France to advance.  This is two part, because I like Mexico and I know some people really enthusiastically cheering for Mexico, and also I hate the French team.

Germany v Serbia

WTF Germany?  How do you lose to Serbia?  This is one of two games this day that were dominated by over-refereeing.  I mean, the sheer number of cards thrown out was absurd, especially considering how mild some of the fouls were.

USA v Slovenia

Oh, let’s talk some referee bullshit.  The US was robbed, absolutely robbed, of a third goal.  They should have been moving forward with a win rather than a draw.  Still, the US will move forward if they win their next game, which slightly makes up for it.  But the lame-ass ref also gave a yellow card for an intentional handball that wasn’t.  Very irritating.  I read that the ref is probably going to be not allowed to ref any more World Cup games.

England v Algeria

Scoreless matches aren’t always boring, but this one sure as hell was.  England and I aren’t speaking for the moment, I’m too disappointed in them.  I don’t even want to talk about it, have some statistic porn, courtesy Nate Silver and Wikipedia.

Day 8 Odds

Group A: How to Advance

Group B: How to Advance

Group C: How to Advance

World Cup: Day 2, Day 3

Halfway through the first round of group matches.

Argentina v Nigeria

Argentina, especially Lionel Messi, was incredibly agile and fast with the ball, but they were denied again and again by the fast and talented Nigerian goalie, Vincent Enyeama.  Any goalie less talented and Messi would have had at least one goal and possibly three.  Argentina wasn’t fully confident, they’ve got some defensive weaknesses, but they’re the most impressive team I’ve seen so far.

S. Korea v Greece

Well, who the hell expected that out of S. Korea, a contender out of nowhere and good for them.  Greece has been a little weak lately, but did not expect that.

England v USA

This is a game the USA should have lost, the way they were playing, and if not for the awful error on the part of the English goalie, Robert Green, they definitely would have.  The English played much better, the US was incredibly lucky.  They’ll need to do better.

Algeria v Slovenia

Slovenia comes out the winner, leaving them the surprising leader of Group C.  This game was very evenly matched, possession and attempts pretty evenly distributed.

Germany v Australia

I’m not sure Australia even showed up for this game.  They’re ranked 20, but they looked like they didn’t even know how the game was played.  Gratuitous fouling and total inability to fight the German’s efficient play – so destroyed was Australia that Germany is now a favorite to win the whole thing.  Germany looks good (minus the diving) but Australia, come on, that was ridiculous.  Every game today got a red card too.

Serbia v Ghana

Well performed on the part of Ghana, especially as they were not at all favored to win.

THE CURRENT STANDINGS

Group A

1. Mexico (1)
1. S. Africa (1)
3. Uruguay (1)
3. France (1)

Group B

1. S. Korea (3)
2. Argentina (3)
3. Nigeria (0)
4. Greece (0)

Group C

1. Slovenia (3)
2. England (1)
2. USA (1)
4. Algeria (0)

Group D

1. Germany (3)
2. Ghana (3)
3. Serbia (0)
4. Australia (0)