Monday, June 26, 2006

World Cup Diary VIII:England, Portugal Advance and More Predictions

Once upon a time, there was God and the hand of God. While God excelled in saving the Queen, hand of God picked her beloved England and threw them out of the 1986 world cup window. Apparently, God who still saves the Queen, and has assumed a recent responsibility of saving the collective ass of the England team.

Admit it, England has put up another ordinary performance today but still managed to scrap out a hard fought win thanks to David Beckham's habitual (not so much these days) accuracy from set pieces. And now they play Portugal in the quarter finals. Portugal will miss several of their key players including Deco, again thanks to their everything-that-could-go-wrong-went-wrong tie against Holland.

Eriksson's boys are riding their luck, which, at some point, very likely in their potential semi-final against Brazil, is going to run out unless they improve by leaps and bounds and start playing the way they are supposed to. That's not asking too much because they make millions supposedly for being good at playing football and not laying goose eggs.

The game of the day, of course, belongs to Portugal and Holland who saw 16 yellow and four red cards being handed out. Four red cards in a game is a World Cup record, never happened before.

It was a mess, a stinking mess created by an inept referee with more than adequate support from the reckless superstars resorting to dirty tricks and ugly fouls whenever they got a chance, causing long lasting damage to the image of the game and the Cup which has otherwise witnessed display of some brilliant football.

Portugal deservedly won by a slim margin of 1-0, but paid a heavy price for it nonetheless. They won't be getting the services of midfielders Deco and Costinha who were sent off in their next game against England.

FIFA will also be reviewing the case of their skipper, Luis Figo, who headbutted Van Bommel, but managed to escape with just a yellow card. It is probable that he's going to face a one-game suspension.

If you are paying attention, I am currently enjoying a 4-0 picking-the-winner streak, and for tomorrow's games here are my not so bold predictions:

Italy over Australia

Ukraine over Switzerland



At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I concur.

At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Me too.

At 6:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You're wrong.

At 6:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...



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