A Game of Two Halves

First, let’s start with the Germany v Serbia game.  Many people are saying it is a shock result.  But I don’t see it that way.  Germany are okay but not as strong as the last two World Cups.  They are young as well.  I don’t see them as a threat to win the whole thing and am not surprised by the Serbia result.  Nor would I be surprised if they advanced pretty far into the competition.  I just don’t think they have the quality or the experience to play consistently at the level required to win the whole thing.

The USA v Slovenia game was interesting.  I was a littel shocked by the first 30 minutes.  I expected more from the U.S.  But they looked nervous, out of ideas and played too many long balls forward.  Credit Slovenia for a great goal though.  Then in the last 15 minutes of the half, USA really started playing and taking it to Slovenia and should have leveled.  But then again, Slovenia scored another well taken goal to put the U.S. in an even greater hole.

I do want to comment on the quality of the referee.  Or should I say the lack of quality?  I know FIFA like to have officials from all corners of the world represented at the World Cup, and I don’t know this guys background, but he was a joke.  Some of the calls were incredulous.  Giving a yellow card to Findlay when the ball hit him in the face was a real head scratcher and at that point, you just knew that further ridiculous calls were going to happen.

One of the good things about any team going 2-0 down, is it forces them to be more attack minded.  It opens the game up and makes it a more interesting game.  And this is exactly what happened here.  The second half was much more interesting and exciting and the U.S. deserved the draw.

Does anyone know why the late goal was called back?

As a coach, I have to wonder the feeling that Bob Bradley had when his son scored the tying goal.  Just think about it – playing for your national team, in a World Cup game where your team needs a goal otherwise they are out of the tournament. And your son pops up and scores the all important goal…priceless.

Now to get ready for the England v Algeria game.  My prediction.  Another poor performance by England but they are good enough to win by 1 or 2 two goals.

3 Comments

  1. Steve says:

    I read on the BBC website that the late goal was called back for an alleged pull, which the commentator said was a harsh call.

  2. Mike Saif says:

    Almost as bad as the “Hand of God” goal.

  3. JPolito says:

    It was hard to reach many conclusions from the Germany game, because the red card changed everything. Germany, while they played well the 2nd half with a man down, could have done better tactically (like not having Ozil sitting way up the pitch). Perhaps the biggest take away was that you can shut Germany down quite effectively by stuffing the central midfield.

    The refereeing for the USA game was a travesty. The disallowed goal was ridiculous, especially since it was from a set play and Coulibaly was right there, with presumably a perfect view that somehow saw something that no other view caught. The fact that he *saw* something vs. not seeing something, and has not explained what it was, makes it all the more infuriating. With all the talk about match fixing, one really wonders…