Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Not Bad

6 of 8, and I'll give myself half credit for calling 0-0 and Penalties in the Swiss-Ukraine napgame. Plus, Oz wuz robbed vs. the I-T's. (Though I missed the enormous obviousness of it given that Hiddink was the Australian coach, and he rather did the same thing to Italy in 2002 - though they are still a diving bunch o' .....NM.

As for Spain - France: 2nd best game of the round, rather obviously. The five minutes after France equalised and before halftime belong in a time capsule. France finally played up to their abilities - Ribery was fantastic all night. He has a little of the street-fighter in him to go along with his speed and skill. Plus he looks about as badass as a Frenchman can look (the scars are apparently from a car accident when he was an infant.) Spain did not play badly at all, but they lacked a certain edge after they gave up a goal. Rather predictably, I might add as the nerves were palpable from everyone over 21 (Fabregas and especially Sergio Ramos are absolutely fantastic; Real Madrid needs to get some central defenders so he can play full back.)

Despite the expected bitching from Spain about the free kick which lead to the second goal (yellow card was perhaps harsh, but Puyol clearly used his arms to hold Henry back. Completely unnecessarily, I might add, as Pernia had the play covered,) the referee was fantastic as well. It's not rocket science folks. Make the calls quickly and decisively, and have a rapport with the players. To paraphrase Churchill, jaw-jaw is better than card-card.

(P.S. I forgive you. Sorta. Ok, not at all...)

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