Thursday, June 17, 2010

Spain falters at the first hurdle

This had to happen sometime and I believe we waited pretty long for the first upset of the 2010 World Cup. Spain the joint favorites with Brazil, was beaten by Switzerland yesterday in a match, in which they had the more than 60% of the possession of the ball. I have been a fan of Spain from the last European Cup and expected much more from them, than merely kicking the ball around.

Seeing the match I felt they lacked the pace and penetration, it was like they had 10 kg stone tied to their legs. The injury history to most of their significant players could be the only excuse they can come up with, that too is not really convincing. It was frustrating to see arguably the best strikers and midfield players unable to even score one goal.

I really get the feeling they took the game lightly and should learn a lesson or two from the Germans.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Germans at their best

Germany Vs Australia was probably the match of the world cup till now. This has been the first time in this World cup that you saw a ‘favorite team’ play to their potential completely battering the opposition. The football showcased by the Germans was of the highest quality.

The Germans have the knack of peaking at the right time and making a significant impression in the tournament. They usually do not have the favorite’s tag, but always seems to make it to Semi or finals. This time too it may not be very different.

One really good sign is that the team has good mix of youngsters and veterans. The mix though is favoring the youngsters with Lahm being the youngest captain in German history. It was also nice to see the youngsters like Mueller rising to the occasion and making sure that the team did not miss the big name absentee, Ballack.

The team played with tremendous pace and exposed the weaknesses in the aging Australian team. I always believed goals makes the difference, and no wonder that this was the highest scoring match in the world cup so far.