Matches & Results - page 6

Match & Result: Ivory Coast vs Portugal (15 Jun 2010)

in Côte d'Ivoire/FIFA World Cup/Matches & Results/Portugal/South Africa

Match & Result: Côte d'Ivoire vs Portugal (15 Jun 2010)Winner: Draw
Score: Ivory Coast(0) vs Portugal(0)

Recap

This was an evenly matched game where two of the worlds greatest footballers in Didier Drogba and Cristiano Ronaldo are playing against each other. I was disappointed however that the game ended with no goals scored. A draw is fine given the matchup but at least both of them should have scored.

Ivory Coast showed a great attacking side anchored on the combination of Gervinho, Salomon Kalou and Aruna Dindane. Portugal on the other hand relied heavily on Cristiano Ronaldo who was defended very well by Ivory Coast.

Key Takeaway

This is one of the strongest and most difficult group and if any of them one then it would them an advantage going into the next round. Nonetheless, it was best that both teams ended up in a draw which would just make the group a lot more stronger.

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Match & Result: New Zealand vs Slovakia (15 Jun 2010)

in FIFA World Cup/Matches & Results/New Zealand/Slovakia/South Africa

Match & Result: New Zealand vs Slovakia (15 Jun 2010)Winner: Draw
Score: New Zealand(1) vs Slovakia(1)
50′ Robert VITTEK (Slovakia)
90’+3′ Winston REID (New Zealand)

Recap

I wrote the first line saying that Slovakia has won the game as I have said in my pre-game analysis (New Zealand vs Slovakia) about the teams advantage other the other when Winston Reid suddenly hit the miracle shot of the game.

New Zealand didn’t show they were the underdogs in the tournament as they played with confidence and flare. Early on New Zealand Chris Killen
streaked past the Slovakian defense to shoot towards the goal which went above the bar. A few minutes later Killen had a header which just shot wide. These two instances in the first five minutes made the Slovakian team up the tempo with their players attacking New Zealand.

Key Takeaway

What could have been an easy win for Slovakia turned out to be a competitive match much to the surprise of Slovakia. To worsen things for the European team, New Zealand waited for the last few seconds before tying the score as the two team finished with 1 point each.

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Match & Result: Italy vs Paraguay (14 Jun 2010)

in FIFA World Cup/Italy/Matches & Results/Paraguay/South Africa

Match & Result: Japan vs Cameroon (14 Jun 2010)Winner: Draw
Score: Italy(1) vs Paraguay(0)
39′ Antolín Alcaraz (Paraguay)
63′ Daniele De Rossi (Italy)

Recap

Marcello Lippi came back from retirement to coach Italy where he has kept 9 veterans in the team to the dismay of a lot of people.

The game in Italy was crucial in determining if Italy can defend their title but the game clearly showed how many steps Cannavaro has decline given his age of 36. Buffon allowed a header goal which is you did not often see in the early stages of 2006.

Paraguay came with guns blazing and they did not disappoint as they had better rhythm and fluidity throughout the game both in offense and defense. Antolin Alcaraz scored a header goal on the 39th minute.

Italy had a number of chances and good looks to score a goal but could not deliver most of the time until De Rossi got one very late in the game.

The best Italy could do was draw a game against a lesser competitor and if Italy doesn’t regroup they would not be able to defend their title.

Key Takeaway

Italy is favored to win his match or even the World Cup as they are the defending champions. Marcello Lippi came back from retirement to lead Italy where he was criticized for his decision of keeping 9 veterans in the team including Buffon and Cannavaro. Italy didn’t have a convincing win and they have a lot to catch up in offense and defense.

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Match & Result: Japan vs Cameroon (14 Jun 2010)

in Cameroon/FIFA World Cup/Japan/Matches & Results/South Africa

Match & Result: Japan vs Cameroon (14 Jun 2010)Winner: Japan
Score: Japan(1) vs Cameroon(0)
39′ Keisuke Honda (Japan)

Recap

Japan coach Takeshi Okada received so much bad press and pressure for his resignation given his decision on the team lineup to leave off more high profile players in key positions and build a team lineup not accepted by the Japanese people. Japan has never won on foreign and people are skeptic of their ability to provide a run for the money of their opponents. I myself never expected that Japan are going to the FIFA World Cup; but I am rooting for them against Cameroon as I am an Asian.

Cameroon was favored to win not only because their are an African Nation but because they have one of the best African players in Samuel Eto.

Samuel Eto was shutdown as Japan were like flies on defense closing down passing lanes, challenging in droves to stop Cameroon and Samuel Eto to go into a rhythm. The only brilliance Samuel showed was when he blew past three guys by the corner flag and setup Choupo Moting for a good shot to the goal.

Japan’s goal came in the 39th minute when Keisuke Honda shot a short range left side goal.

Key Takeaway

Japan’s reputation if any at all on international stage is a grey area given that the Asian country has never won on foreign soil. Their win puts them on top of Group E alongside Netherlands. Their next opponent is Denmark who lost to the Dutchmen which means Japan can win the game and could go on the next round. Japan coach Takeshi Okada should be a happy camper.

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Match & Result: Netherlands vs Denmark (14 Jun 2010)

in Denmark/Group, Team & Standings/Matches & Results/Netherlands/South Africa

Match & Result: Netherlands vs Denmark (14 Jun 2010) Winner: Netherlands
Score: Netherlands(2) vs Denmark(0)
46′ Simon Poulsen (Denmark) * own goal by denmark
84′ Dirk Kuyt (USA)

Recap

A lot of people were surprised with the pre-match decision of Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk to make Bayern Munich experienced star player Arjen Robben a substitute.

The early stages of the game saw both Netherlands and Denmark tight on offense and defense exchanging possessions back and forth. The first goal chance only came 20 minutes after from Wesley Sneijder and Thomas Enevoldsen who was way off the goal.

Netherlands had a slighter edge in the aggressive department especially Rafael van der Vaart who is proving to everyone why is the starting player instead of high profile Arjen Robben. Rafael had two scoring opportunities shooting slightly off target on the goal.

Denmark goalkeeper Thomas Sorensen almost made a costly mistake like the one committed by Englishman Green on a shot by Dutch Dirk Kuyt.

As half-time approached both teams are yet to score and the pressure is bigger for Netherlands who came into the game with a record of 19 straight wins. The half ended with both teams still looking for a goal.

Just a minute after the second half started, Netherlands scored courtesy of Denmark Simon Poulsen who was trying to head away a cross from Dutch Robin van Persie. People are going to blame Simon Poulsen for this but Dutch goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg is also to blame who should have met the cross in front of him and deflecting it simultaneously. Nontheless, Simon is going to take this one on his record.

The defensive formation of Denmark could not hold with the attacking Netherlands’ offense as shown by Van Persie who had a clear shot of the goal only to be beautifully saved by Sorensen.

Five minutes left into the game and because Netherlands’ only goal came from Denmark Simon undermine the win by Netherlands, the Dutchmen continued to be aggressive which was rewarded quickly when Dirk Kuyt easily kicked the ball into the goal since goalkeeper Maarten forwarded to deflect an attack and could not back right away.

Key Takeaway

Netherlands is known for their attacking style and they did just that during the game having a lot of clear shots to the goal. The score could have been bigger if it wasn’t for the save of Denmark’s goalkeeper. Denmark needs to look at their defense as it opens up a lot of clear shot to the opponent.

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Match & Result: England vs USA (12 Jun 2010)

in England/FIFA World Cup/Matches & Results/South Africa/USA

Winner: Draw
Score: England(1) vs USA(1)
4′ Steven Gerrard (England)
41′ Dempsey (USA)

Recap

England was supposed to win this game given their exposure, skills, and experience in World Cup. The last time USA came close giving England a competitive game was around 5 decades ago.

England did not disappoint when Steven Gerrard scored a goal with just 4 minutes into the game. England continued to attack aggressively and look poised to score another goal. Wright-Phillips run the field smoothly with Ashley Cole while Rooney at the receiving end had a number of chances at the goal.

USA had a chance to score when Donovan delivered the ball accurately towards the head of the Oguchi Onyewu but the header went past the goal.

What looks like to be a long game for USA suddenly turned around when England goalkeeper made a key mistake allowing the shot of Dempsey from the top of the box roll off his hands into the goal.

The second half had a series of runs from both England and USA but the closes chance came when Altidore had a breakaway shot from the left inside box when England goalkeeper Green made the beautiful save. It was a redeeming move for Green.

Key Takeaway

This is a very bad result for England who came in heavily favored but failed to get 3 points off USA. Algeria and Slovenia are happy campers who are hoping to get ahead of the pack with a win on Sunday. England showed fluidity running the offense but any of them could not finish off with another goal. England should have scored at least 2 goals in the game.

Match & Result: Argentina vs Nigeria (12 Jun 2010)

in Argentina/FIFA World Cup/Matches & Results/Nigeria/South Africa

Winner: Argentina
Score: Argentina(1) vs Nigeria(0)

Recap

This is a historic moment for Diego Maradona who once led Argentina to winning the FIFA World Cup on perhaps one of the greatest goals scored in FIFA World Cup history. Diego who was thrown out in disgrace in USA ’94 followed by a series of issues and problems, no one thought he would be back in the Finals leading the country once again (now as a coach).

When the game started, Lionel Messi showed why he is today’s greatest footballer by making a first run at Nigeria in just 40 seconds of the game. The first crack of a goal was with the Nigerian side however when Obasi shot wide after leaving Gutierrez behind.

Messi continued to be on the aggressive side during the first 5 minutes of the game which boosted his teammates to score the first goal on the 6th minute of the game where Gabriel Heinze shot a header off a corner right kick from Veron.

The remaining minutes of the first half saw Argentina and Nigeria exchanging possessions where the only real chance of another goal came in the 44th minute where Lionel Messi was just outside the left area box when he was sent to the floor. Veron’s free-kick was way over the mark. Could this be the complain of footballers on the new Adidas’ ball dynamics where it changes direction in midair?

After the half time Nigeria didn’t show any signs of concern for Argentina other than a number of substitutions that could provide surprises. Instead, Argentina surprised Nigeria on the 66th mark with a four on two breakaway but the pass given by Tevez did not arrive to Messi for a powerful kick but had to improvise shooting wide.

Nigeria showed some life on a Odemwingie possession in the box but shot above the goal.

On the 81st minute Nigerian goalkeeper Enyeama made the biggest save of the game when Messi had a clean shot to the goal.

From here on Argentina took time holding possession while Nigeria didn’t have a sense of urgency until the game ended.

Records Books:
Gabriel Heinze’s score on the 6th minute became the eight goal for Argentina within the first seven minutes of the game. Currently they are on third place behind only to Italy with 9 and Hungary with ten.

Veron became the second Argentine with most World Cup assists (5) against Diego’s (nine) dating back to 1966.

Lionel Messi made six goalscoring chances beating the previous record of four. There should be another record – the most number of unconverted goalscoring chance by a player.

Key Takeaway

Argentina showed a lot of aggressiveness throughout the game but they only made one goal against the less than impressive defensive formation of Nigeria. Argentina should be able to finish with a goal via Lionel Messi.

Nigeria on the other hand didn’t show enough aggressiveness and urgency in the game. For crying out loud, this is the World Cup.

Match & Result: South Africa vs Mexico (11 Jun 2010)

in FIFA World Cup/Matches & Results/Mexico/South Africa

This is the placeholder page for the Matches & Results between South Africa vs Mexico scheduled on June 11, 2010.

We will update this after game time. For the meantime, proceed to FIFA World Cup for the latest news, information, pictures, videos.

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