Posts Tagged ‘Bookies’

Germany aren’t as good at football as Spain are

July 8th, 2010 No comments

Will the Dutch finally emerge from the stains of the 70s?  Down the years, the ongoing style of their play has been tarnished  by internal bickering creating at times laughable self induced implosion yet the elephant in the room of the collective Dutch football psyche is the memory of Munich on July 7th 1974.  Even lifting the European Championship trophy (ironically in Munich) has only papered over the cracks.  On Sunday they have the chance to exorcise their demons.  Their style is more pragmatic than their predecessors of 36 years ago but if the post semi final euphoric scenes in Amsterdam are a any barometer they are prepared to forego that for a chance of a crack at the big one!  Mind you, despite modern pragmatism, Cruyff or Neeskens would have been proud of Van Bronckhorst’s opener. 

If ever there was a 1-0 thrashing it was the semi final between Germany and Spain.  Germany missed the forward mobility of Muller but it’s unlikely his presence would have altered the result.  For minutes on end Germany just couldn’t get the ball.  Pedro was important.  His movement dragged the German defence out of their comfort zone.  Del Bosque proved he  could make the big decisions by omitting Torres from the starting line up and the decision making throughout the team was just as excellent.   The real decisive factor was that all the possession Spain had, and there was plenty of it, it was all for a purpose.  They played positive skillful football and played with their mind.  The irony was that for all the style and skill in this brilliant generation of players, the goal came from the old warhorse Puyol from a simple a method as a header from a corner!   And when Germany did press Spain didn’t just get men behind the ball… they had men behind the ball defending.  There was five of them everywhere.  And when it was required Casillas did his job well.   Class throughout the whole team.  I wonder how Raul feels seeing his compatriots making their mark on history.  His nation’s rich potential only started to be fulfilled when he’d been dumped…. coincidence?  Both semi finals were cracking games.  Well worth getting up at 4am for!!  

That sodding octopus was right again.  Paul is turning out to be my least favourite octupus ever…. and that’s saying something.  Never mind squelching around in a tank, if he had any sense he’d be at the bookies raking the money in.  What a waste of talent. 

It’s been a groundbreaking World Cup.  The first to be held in Africa.   The first time the hosts have failed to get through the group stage.  If Spain win the trophy it’ll mean the only unbeaten side in the tournament will have been New Zealand.  If Spain win it’ll be the first time a team has lost the first game and gone on to win the competition.  And whoever wins  it’ll definitely be be the first time a European team has won it outside Europe.   History being made all over the place.  Milestones appropriate to what has been an excellent tournament. 

Alex Ferguson has spoken out to say the pressure on Wayne Rooney was too high.  Well it’s understandable he’s defending his player but the point has to be made that Rooney was happy to declare he was about to ‘Write the Future”.  The pressure was intense but could it be any other way at an event of this magnitude?  The weight of expectation may well be overpowering at times but in choosing to do those adverts, for which we can assume he received handsome financial rewards, Wayne willingly contributed to his own burden.