Sunday, 13 June 2010

Greece vs South Korea

South Korea vs Greece - The Report
This game could be important. This group is tight. Argentina, Nigeria, South Korea and Greece could all go through to the second round. Argentina are favourites to win it as they have Milito, Messi and Tevez in their squad. Nigeria have got a good chance due to their all round squad. South Korea are speedy and have great passing abilities. Greece are the underdogs because as of late they have won few games out of many losses. South Korea were favourites for this battle, they should win but Greece are always a threat.

It was a calm start with Greece getting the closest to scoring. However you could see by watching just the first 4 minutes that South Korea had a great chance of winning with their overlapping on the flanks. This all paid off when on one of the runs down the flank they got fouled and South Korea had a
free kick. The free kick was taken only feet away from the corner flag and was nearly a corner but from the free kick it flew past all of the players and landing in the feet of number 14 Lee who placed it in the goal. A goal within 8 minutes will ease the nerves. The game grew older and South Korea grew stronger. A South Korean ran into the penalty area, flicked the ball over the Greek defender but was pulled back so he couldn't reach it. But no foul... no penalty!?! Greece slowly got back into the game. 2 corners in a row showed some kind of threat yet on the second corner it was an easy header away from goal for South Korea. Greece attacked once again but this time showed no support. Gekas had the ball in the penalty area but no one was in the penalty area with him so he had to just give up. A better team would have made a chance out of it. South Korea had a major blunder just 2 minutes later to add to their recent misery. A long lob by Greece was too long so no Greek players chased after it yet a South Korean headed it behind for a corner. Why?!?! Then South Korea's form returned. A great break and a nice pass made it easy for the striker to score but instead of scoring he scuffed the ball so badly it went wide by 5 metres. So far in this World Cup the referee decisions have been good up until now as the referee says he saw a South Korean trip up a Greek player but on a closer look he clearly loses his footing. South Korea should have scored in the 26th minute however, after a great break a South Korean player is 1 on 1 with the goalkeeper. His shot is not good enough to score and the goalkeeper pushes it away for a corner. From here on the play slowed down dramatically. Both sides looked poor and we had to wait till the 40th minute to finally get a shot from either side. This shot came from Park Ji Sung, the Manchester United player, but was over the bar by quite a distant. The half ended with no added time and 15 minutes Greece must of been waiting for. Greece need to polish their passing, and create better crosses, and stop losing the ball - could they create a turn around, or is this just too hard.

The game began quietly. Simple passing between the South Korean players keeping the Greek players at bay. A blatant foul on South Korean number 17 Lee stopped the passing and gave South Korea a very helpful freekick. In the 51st minute a break from South Korea gave them a goal. Greece were passing the ball around, quite happily when Park Ji Sung intercepted the ball ran straight down the middle, held of the defenders and slotted in style. Surely this game is over. The game was always going to be South Korea so when they got the ball back from the restart there were no surprises. In the 55th minute a foul by Greek player Torosidis on a South Korean resulte
d in a yellow card - are the Greek players going to get reckless? In the 62nd minute the most delightful cross was produced by Cha into the penalty area but Park Ju Yung headered it 1 foot over. Greece started to get more attacking, making me laugh. One shot was an overhead shot which failed and the second shot, a header, was so soft the goalie could have saved without looking! It took till the 80th minute to have a good crack at goal from a Greek who's shot need the goalkeeper to save. Moments later a goalkeeping error when a long shot from South Korea the wide yet the goalie parried. Not needed. The final moments of the game produced a nice run down the flank from Park Ju Yung who's shot has little power but accuracy so it needed to be parried. Another shot identical to it came from the South Korean number 17 on the opposite side of the penalty area who's shot also was about accuracy and little power but a parry was need by the goalkeeper. The corner resulted in a thunder shot wide by South Korea. The final whistle blows and South Korea know it is a perfect start.

Korea won the game with style but if they want to get further in the competition they need to beat Nigeria or Argentina which will be a lot harder than this game. I feel they can win against Nigeria if they play like this. It would be great to see South Korea in the second round and I feel it is likely, but I do not feel they can get to the quarter finals like in 2002. Greece however had no style and few shots, they cannot beat Nigeria unless they up their game.

Petersocool 2010 ©

Saturday, 12 June 2010

France vs Uruguay

France vs Uruguay - The report

A game that could make a difference to England. If France win all 3 games in the group, they are likely to play England in the quarter finals, if Uruguay win all 3 games they would be likely to play England in the quarter finals. This game may not seem that important but it could be in the long run. A late kick off enabled a cool game and more action compared to the first game, hopefully. Uruguay should be a confident team. It is not a hard group and a draw would be fine for them, however France has had many upsets backstage. Malouda, a star man for France, has argued with the coach so Diaby has replaced him.

The game kicked off in front of 64,000 spectators. A very lively start with France quickly breaking down the left and Ribery slotting the ball across goal with Govou missing it, just. He should have scored. Uruguay had the second chance and
a great chance. Poor defence by the French opened up room for Forlan to rocket one with the goalkeeper push away. France were on top but nothing coming from them until Ribery collected the ball, ran the flank and got fouled near the corner flag. Most players would have crossed into the box but Gourcuff hit it into the top left corner and a save had to be made. The goalkeeper was nearly caught out! After some brilliant passing from France just before half time Sagna, the left wing back, produced a nice cross but no-one could get their head to it. Half time and its 0-0.

Play had began again and both teams were ready. You could see in their faces that they meant business. The first chance of the half fell to Forlan who's shot flew miles high. You could see in his expression that he should of hit that on target. With Urug
uay on the front foot a very confident player went past 3 players before passing to Suarez who was fouled near the penalty area, great position. Forlan hit it but it did not have the power to create any problems for the goalkeeper as he happily caught it. After a foul on a French player Lodeiro kicked the ball away resulting in a yellow card which later made this a stupid mistake. Uruguay, who played very well in this second half, had a throw in. It went long, headed onto Forlan who rocketed it just wide, should have scored. In the 81st minute the first bit of action occured. Lodeiro, the one who was booked for dissent, fouled a Frenchman and got a second yellow resulting in a red. Even if he didn't have a yellow to his name earlier I feel that this could have been a straight red. The first red card of the World Cup! Uruguay have to defend. Which they did with the help of an arm. Sagna crossed into the box, it somehow found its way to Thierry Henry who's shot hit the arm of a Uruguay defender. He could not have stopped it from hitting his arm so the descision was correct from the referee. The final whistle blows.

It is quite easy to see who should have won - France. France had lots of posession and more shots than Uruguay but Uruguay was a fret and had two excellent strikers. The defenders beat the Attackers which caused a 0-0 draw. Both teams look brilliant and either one of them could be top of their group.

Petersocool 2010 ©

South Africa vs Mexico

Mexico vs South Africa - The Report

Its a tornament that has had a long and spectacular build-up, but now is the time to see the brilliance of South Africa hosting the amazing World Cup. The first game being South Africa the hosts versus Mexico who lost to England in the pre tornament friendlies. However proud the South Africans may be, none of them expected a win for South Africa, but it could happen. The players came out to the sound of 80,000 vuvuzelas. You could feel the tension between both sides. For South Africa they did not expect to get through to the second round but had to please the crowd. Mexico however still had a chance but they had to win upsetting the whole of South Africa. During the first 20 minutes, as expected, both sides were tense and made many mistakes. The first chance came to Mexico. After many missed tackles from the South Africans the ball was played in the box, Khune the South African keeper push it away but straight into Dos Santos who nearly scored an open goal but Mokoena gets an important block and sends it wide. The second chance also came to Mexico, showing there dominance to the whole world. A run by Aguilar came to a halt with an amazing tackle from number 15 Thwal which put the ball out for a corner. The corner was swung in to the head of Mexican Franco who hit it way over the bar. After an off the ball tackle by a Mexican on Tshabalala a free kick was awarded to South Africa in a great position. Pienaar got it up but couldn't get it down again. The first yellow card came to Juarez who commited hand ball. The resulting free kick was not good but found its way to the half way line where Mexico had time to break - it was 2 against 2. Dos Santos had a massive hit and missed. The biggest miss of the game so far came to the mighty Mexicans. Aguilar had the ball, passed to Vela who chipped it over defenders into Francos path who nearly scored if it wasn't for goalkeeping heroics from Khune. Mexicans were keeping the pressure on South Africa. From some classy passing a corner was given to Mexico. It was swung in the corner, a head of a Mexican hit pushed it over to Vela who put it in the net! But it was disallowed correctly.The Mexicans were fouled and had a brilliant free kick position to swing into the box. It swung into the box and number 9 Franco headered just over. Finally a chance for the South Africans! A lovely pass to Tshabalala who crossed it in and skimmed the head of a South African, just a slight touch and that could have gone in. South Africa kept the pressure with two corners following the near goal before a lovely head nearly went in. The last chance of the half and the team talk in each dressing room may be the same - just score!!!

Just ten minutes from the restart the South Africans have the ball, some classy passing finds its way to Tshabalala who hits it in the top right corner for a spectacular goal!!! The whole stadium goes crazy to the sound of roars, cheer ands vuvuzelas. Can South Africa keep this scoreline? Mexicans on the move again, Dos Santos has the ball near the corner flag, gets round a player and rifles it towards the goal and a world class save is pulled off by Khune. What a hit! A Mexican corner is taken short, some sloppy passes and then a cross is swung into the box, misses everyones head and falls to Marquez who places it in the net, superb finish, rubbish build-up.
In the final few minutes Khune, the South African goal keeper hits the ball long, over the defenders to the speedy Mphela who takes the ball down and hits the bar, so close. The final whistle blows. To sum up the game you have to look at the shot count. You could easily say that Mexico had at least double the amount of shots compared to South Africa and Mexico also looked the most likely to score. For most of the game they were dangerous and South Africa defender well. For South Africa they can only look at the positives. They got a point against a good side and were good on the break. I can't seem them getting any points at Uruguay or France so I feel they had to win this game which they didn't. Mexico 1, South Africa 1.

Petersocool 2010 ©