Author Topic: World Cup  (Read 6086 times)

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Offline gozimm

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World Cup
« Topic Start: May 31, 2006, 09:38:03 PM »
Is anyone else looking foward to the World Cup this year?

Is so, post predictions.

I think Brazil will win it.
Even though the USA is my favorite team in it, they won't make it past the group stage.

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #1: June 03, 2006, 03:32:48 PM »
Not much soccer fever on this board...

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #2: June 06, 2006, 03:19:36 PM »
Yep!!  :lol:

I'm English and I live near Manchester, which is about as rabid a hot bed of soccer as exists anywhere on earth.

England has gone totally over-the-top World Cup crazy - I swear there can't be a house anywhere in the country or even a car on the roads that isn't displaying a 'Flag of St George' England soccer flag



It's hard to exaggerate how soccer mad England is, but basically it's THE big national obsession for the next month, so of course I'm going to be totally caught up in the tournament which is being held in Germany beginning Friday.

England's first game is against Paraguay on Saturday - the shops may as well shut down for the afternoon as it's estimated that around half the population will be watching (around 25 million out of a total English population of 50 million, which is the equivalent of maybe 150 million Americans tuning in for the Superbowl!! )

Can England win it? Mmmm, maybe, if all our key players are healthy (especially Beckham, Owen, Rooney, Gerard, Lampard, Ferdinand) there's no question in my mind that they can go all the way to the final, and maybe even win the thing.

But my money would be on Brazil, with Germany, Argentina, Holland, Italy and France all very strong.

USA? Not really. They have some fine players - Landon Donovan, Brian McBride, DaMarcus Beasley, but they don't have a realistic chance of winning the World Cup, put them down as about the same odds as the Brewers or Indians winning the World Series!

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #3: June 06, 2006, 04:10:15 PM »
Quote from: "Terry"
Yep!!  :lol:

I'm English and I live near Manchester, which is about as rabid a hot bed of soccer as exists anywhere on earth.

England has gone totally over-the-top World Cup crazy - I swear there can't be a house anywhere in the country or even a car on the roads that isn't displaying a 'Flag of St George' England soccer flag

(Image removed from quote.)

It's hard to exaggerate how soccer mad England is, but basically it's THE big national obsession for the next month, so of course I'm going to be totally caught up in the tournament which is being held in Germany beginning Friday.

England's first game is against Paraguay on Saturday - the shops may as well shut down for the afternoon as it's estimated that around half the population will be watching (around 25 million out of a total English population of 50 million, which is the equivalent of maybe 150 million Americans tuning in for the Superbowl!! )

Can England win it? Mmmm, maybe, if all our key players are healthy (especially Beckham, Owen, Rooney, Gerard, Lampard, Ferdinand) there's no question in my mind that they can go all the way to the final, and maybe even win the thing.

But my money would be on Brazil, with Germany, Argentina, Holland, Italy and France all very strong.

USA? Not really. They have some fine players - Landon Donovan, Brian McBride, DaMarcus Beasley, but they don't have a realistic chance of winning the World Cup, put them down as about the same odds as the Brewers or Indians winning the World Series!


England does get pretty crazy for soccer.  Unfortuanatley, in most World Cups, they come in and dissapoint.  I dont know the latest news on Rooney but i though he wasnt going to be healthy for the World Cup.  He'll be there, but not healthy.  
As much as i like USA it'll be very tough for them to get past Czech Republic and Italy.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #4: June 06, 2006, 06:25:49 PM »
Hi Gozimm -

Well I'd really appreciate it if at least you and I can continue this thread on here and debate the ebbs and flows of 'The Greatest Sporting Show on Earth' ~ which is basically what the World Cup is these days ~ as the tournament unfolds.

Rooney was back in training today and kicking a ball without too much pain, though there's virtually no prospect of him playing before the quarter-finals even if England make it that far. The problem with a broken metatarsal bone in the foot of a soccer player is that it is extremely vulnerable indeed to further damage even when healed given the nature of the game - basically 90% of the time kicking a ball, and the other 10% of the time having other players trying to kick you in the foot!! So my worry as an England fan is that even if he plays some enforcer on the other team will quite quickly tread all over him and put him back in hospital before he gets a chance to shine.

England need Rooney badly, he's something of a Boy Genius as you'll know.

I'll talk more about the excellent USA soccer team at the World Cup if you like next time I'm logged-on, they are these days formidable compared with the team they had say 10 years ago, and they did themselves and the USA proud in the last World Cup in Japan/South Korea.

As a matter of interest, do you ever see possible US success at the World Cup finally establishing soccer as a serious spectator sport in America, where your premier US soccer players become as big household names as the stars of other sports, or regardless of the success of the US national tea is soccer always destined to play second-fiddle (or even fifth fiddle!) to the NFL, baseball, hoops and hockey?

Cheers - Terry

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #5: June 06, 2006, 09:46:41 PM »
England is lucky to have drawn an easy group (unlike the US).  Theyll compete with Sweden for first place.  How is Owen recovering?  I know he will probably be ready come tournament time but will he be fully fit?  Crouch looked great in his last game, do you think he'll start?
As for soccer becoming big in the US, I see it becoming a popular sport, but i dont ever see a World Cup final being as widely watched as a Super Bowl but i do see soccer becoming popular.  If the US team does well the whole country will grow a sense of national pride and people will start paying attention to the team.
The MLS is growing rapidly.  Some teals are building their own stadiums and every year new teams are added to the league.  That is a good sign for the future of soccer in the US.
Your right about the US not winning, but they have a great squad for the future.  Most of their key players (with the exception of McBride) have 1 or 2 world cups left in them.  Donovan, Beasly, Onyewu, Dempsey, and Convey are all playes that they can build a great team off of.  Not to forget Freddy Adu, who is only 17(?) now.  Although i admit, he is a bit overrated, he has potential.
The US isnt my favorite team though.  Belguim didn't qualify for the world cup and are going to have to go through a long rebuilding stage.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #6: June 07, 2006, 06:41:45 AM »
Quote from: "gozimm"
England is lucky to have drawn an easy group (unlike the US).  Theyll compete with Sweden for first place.  How is Owen recovering?  I know he will probably be ready come tournament time but will he be fully fit?  Crouch looked great in his last game, do you think he'll start?
As for soccer becoming big in the US, I see it becoming a popular sport, but i dont ever see a World Cup final being as widely watched as a Super Bowl but i do see soccer becoming popular.  If the US team does well the whole country will grow a sense of national pride and people will start paying attention to the team.
The MLS is growing rapidly.  Some teals are building their own stadiums and every year new teams are added to the league.  That is a good sign for the future of soccer in the US.
Your right about the US not winning, but they have a great squad for the future.  Most of their key players (with the exception of McBride) have 1 or 2 world cups left in them.  Donovan, Beasly, Onyewu, Dempsey, and Convey are all playes that they can build a great team off of.  Not to forget Freddy Adu, who is only 17(?) now.  Although i admit, he is a bit overrated, he has potential.
The US isnt my favorite team though.  Belguim didn't qualify for the world cup and are going to have to go through a long rebuilding stage.


Interesting again Gozimm, are you actually Belgian and living in Belgium, or just of Belgian extraction and living in the USA?

Michael Owen is fine, he's over his own injury problem and has come through the last couple of England 'friendly' pre-World Cup warm up games unscathed.

Nobody was sure about Peter Crouch a few weeks ago, he's basically only got his chance due to the Rooney injury, but boy has he ever grasped it with both hands. He's scoring regularly and looks the perfect foil for Owen up front.

You're right, England aren't in a tough group to begin with, but there are no easy games in a World Cup, every single participant apart from Brazil (the holders) and Germany (the hosts) have had to win arduous qualifying groups to even be there, so it's foolish to take anything for granted.

I actually quite like the USA's chances of progressing through to the 2nd stage. They seem to be talented, well drilled, experienced, and with no obvious weaknesses or injury problems. In their group (Group E) they should be able to defeat Ghana with no problem at all, which leaves the Czech Republic as the major stumbling block to them progressing. Italy are clear favourites to win Group E but they always make really hard work of the early stages of a World Cup, and so it wouldn't surprise me at all to see Italy struggle. If the USA can win the first game next Monday against the Czech's then they are well on their way. I'll certainly be watching.

Most English sports fans will be glued to their TV sets for the next 3 weeks or so, so there won't be much work done and there's a danger the economy could take a temporary turn for the worse!! It's going to be like the 1940's war years with the women running the county whilst the men-folk are off somewhere otherwise engaged!! :lol: England will also be the best supported team in the tournament apart from the German hosts, the estimate is that up to 50,000 English fans will be making the short trip across the English Channel to support the team ~ I just pray that most of them behave themselves and don't get too drunk, though let's face it would be the first time in living memory if they did!!

USA coach Bruce Arena seems very highly respected and he worked wonders with the team in 2002 so I really wouldn't underestimate him. I know he was coach at DC United for a time and had much success there, so all the more reason for Nats fans to get behind Arena and his boys!

I know D C United play their home games at RFK Stadium. Maybe I should adopt D C United as my MLS team (my team in England is Bolton Wanderers who play in the Premier League and had another good year, and I live about 10 minutes from their stadium). I think a lot depends on big performances from Beasley and Donavan in Team USA.

Anyway, look forward to chatting a whole lot more about the World Cup as we move along.

GO ENGLAND!!!!

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #7: June 07, 2006, 04:26:52 PM »
Terry,

My mother was Belgian and she grew up there, but i am American and i was born here.  I find the soccer league there much more entertaining then the MLS so i became a fan of them.

Just wondering, who do you think will go through in Group C?  That looks like an impossible group with Ivory Coast, Holland, and Argentina.  The only team i can decide for sure on is Argentina.  I just can't make a pick on Holland or Ivory Coast, but those will be some great games to watch.  And the pretty clear loser in the group, Serbia and Montenegro, aren't a bad team either.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #8: June 08, 2006, 04:43:24 PM »
I agree that is one hell of a group.

Argentina have the strongest team they've had in years - Riquelme of Villarreal and Messi of Barcelona could be two of the stars of the whole tournament - though they may meet up with England in the quarters so I'd hope that would be as far as they get!

Holland look awesome, I'm taking them to maybe get to the final, they look as strong today as they did 12-15 years ago in the days of Van Basten and Gullitt (Van Basten is their coach now) and they don't seem to have a weakness and they'll score a lot of goals as they play with 3 men up front, plus their defence will be rock solid.

Don't know much about the Ivory Coast and Serbian teams to be honest, except the Ivory Coast have some really talented guys most of whom play in Europe including Drogba who plays at Chelsea (England's best club side right now)

Some fans over here are tipping Ivory Coast to be the surprise package of the tournament and to go a long way towards the final.

But I think Holland and Argentina will be too strong for them, so I'd say....

Holland
Argentina
Ivory Coast
Serbia

This is how I reckon the Group C will finish.

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #9: June 08, 2006, 05:14:12 PM »
Well, bad news for France as Cisse is out of the tournament (and possibly his career).  

Tommorow starts the soccer madness.   I can't wait.  Even though Germany- Costa Rica isnt a great game, its just the start of the whole tournament that excites me.  On Saturday the REAL games start with Argentina-Ivory Coast.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #10: June 08, 2006, 05:27:28 PM »
Yes, I'm really up for it too - simply can't wait.

I'm going to try and watch most of the games, as work and family life permits...my wife is already accepting that for the rest of the month she is going to be what we call 'a soccer widow'  :lol:

Saturday is 'everything grinds to a halt' time when England take on Paraguay.

It's impossible to exaggerate the fanaticsm for the England soccer team this week, it's taken on an almost religious fervour, visitors from overseas must thing we've all gone into some sort of collective mass-hysteria, there are England flags literally everywhere you look down every street in every town and city, police estimate that over 5 million motorists even have one attached to or displayed inside their cars!

It's a bizarre sight. Tony Blair even has one hanging over the doorway outside No.10 Downing Street!! You will notice when England play their games that the fans will decorate the stadium from top to bottom with gigantic flags, it's quite a phenomenon!

God help us all if England fail, the national mourning will go on for months!!

Anyway I look forward to regularly talking to you about the tournament as we go along  gozimm...

Cheers - Terry

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #11: June 10, 2006, 10:33:47 PM »
Congrats to your England today Terry.  They didn't look that impressive to me though.  Argentina-Ivory Coast was a pretty good game although i thought the refereeing was terrible.  It was nice to see Trinidad and Tobago tie Sweden.  I always like to see the underdog do well.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #12: June 12, 2006, 04:19:08 AM »
Yeh, England won...but need to play better. The first game is always a nervous affair so I'm not too worried.

Some GREAT games so far - how about that Argentina v Ivory Coast game, really impressive stuff had everyone on the edge of their seats.

The Germans looked impressive in beating Costa Rica 4-2, and today's the big day for Team USA when they play the Czech Republic.

Some great soccer so far, should be a crazy month!

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #13: June 12, 2006, 04:21:31 PM »
UK World Cup Report!!  :lol:

Sorry guys, the USA lost their opening game in the World Cup today 3-0 to the Czech Republic.

To be fair the Czech's played well enough to suggest they could even win the whole tournament, they were an offensive juggernaut who could have scored 5 or 6, and their back-four in defence hardly gave the USA guys a sniff of a chance to score.



USA's next game is against Italy, which actually maybe easier as the Italians are presently not the force they once were, so all is not lost.

Also today, Australia beat Japan 3-1 in another great game, Japan were leading 1-0 with only 6 minutes remaining and then conceded 3 goals in 5 minutes!

What comes across most if the incredible atmosphere in all the stadiums at every game, it's a real soccer carnival.


Offline gozimm

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« Reply #14: June 12, 2006, 05:45:44 PM »
I missed the Australia game but it sounds like a thriller.  Ivory Coast-Argentina was a great game.

The US loss did dissapoint me but i was kind of expecting it.  I was expecting a much worse result after the Czechs scored with such ease on the first goal.  Hopefull they can beat Italy and the Czech's beat itlay.  So i hope Koller is ok, because he is a big part of their atatck.

World Cup
« Reply #15: June 12, 2006, 07:01:23 PM »
I love the World Cup and football (soccer).  

Bad luck for USA today.  They looked completely lost at times.  Hopefully they give the Italians a good fight.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #16: June 13, 2006, 02:12:18 AM »
Nice to see another soccer fan here NatoftheLivingDead ( that surely has to be one of THE GREAT usernames on any baseball board! )  :lol:

So that makes at least three of us!

Italy will be a tough nut for the USA to crack, though I feel the elegant Italian style of play will more suit the USA, who are a high energy/high work rate team and maybe able to out-last the Italians in the 30 degree heat and force them into mistakes.

So I'd give the USA more of a chance against the Italians, though on paper I'm afraid they still start the game as underdogs.

Today we get to see both Brazil and France for the first time. These two teams are probably many people's favourites to win the World Cup, Brazil in particular are peerless in every single area of the game and play with such skill and style.

Offline ncg1983

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« Reply #17: June 13, 2006, 01:53:45 PM »
It now looks like team USA is in a very bad position both on and off the field.  Arena and Beasley are now pretty much in a shouting match and Beasley could very easily be benched against Italy.  That could be a good thing though after seeing how bad he looked yesterday.

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #18: June 13, 2006, 05:16:35 PM »
France just can't seem to beat the Swiss.  Haven't beat them in 3 (?) matches straight now even though they are the much stronger side.

Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #19: June 14, 2006, 04:00:58 AM »
France were pretty hopeless and may have even lost to the Swiss but for a few lucky breaks.

And even Brazil last night were playing way over-par and never really got into gear and were lucky to beat Croatia 1-0. The great Brazilian Ronaldo looked almost a parody of himself, overweight, lethargic, uninterested, they even took him off after an hour and replaced him.

None of the big pre-tournament favourites have looked too comfortable in their opening games, though this is what normally happens and some of them will undoubtedly step up next time out.

I've most enjoyed watching the Czechs, Croatia, and even South Korea and Australia have been great fun. South Korea are going to be a huge headache for whoever they play against, they are small, very energetic, skillful, and never stop running. They seemed oblivious to the heat which is clearly draining a lot of the European teams. Their opponents yesterday Togo were hugely entertaining also, after they scored their players to a man did this weird little dance, quite bizzarre ~


Offline AuRevoirExpos

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« Reply #20: June 21, 2006, 04:56:45 PM »
Better bump this up since we're nearing the end of the Groups stage, and by the weekend we'll be at the last 16 teams knock-out stage, which is where it all gets a little bit tense  :?

Group Results

Group Standings

It would surprise me if the eventual winners didn't come from Argentina, Germany, Holland or Spain.

USA have to beat Ghana in their final Group game, and then hope that Italy beat the Czech Republic in order for the USA to go through to the knock-out stage.

My team England? Well we won our group pretty easily, but for me there's still too many question marks over the fitness of key players, especially potential goalscorers. Michael Owen is now out of the tournament with a knee injury, and Wayne Rooney clearly isn't match-fit yet and had to come off the field exhausted after only an hour yesterday. But with a bit of luck England can still surprise everyone. They only have to beat Ecuador on Sunday and they would then be through to the quarter-finals (last 8 teams) at which point anything can happen. So we millions of Englishmen with our St George's flags hanging from every vantage point and waving from every orifice are still wildly optimistic!


Offline UMDNats

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« Reply #21: June 22, 2006, 12:36:47 AM »
USA vs Ghana in 9 hours over here in DC!!!

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #22: June 22, 2006, 01:03:37 AM »
Well, i'm excited for the US' game tommorow, or today i guess.  I actually think the US has a chance.  Ghana is good but i think the US can pull off a win.  Italy isnt quite through yet so it's not like they will be playing like they have nothing to lose.  Unfortunaltey the US is having trouble scoring this World Cup.  They dont have a goal yet.  The only goal in their name was an own goal, and they have only one shot on goal this whole tournament.

Terry, you say that you think the winner will be one of these teams, Argentina, Germany, Holland or Spain.  Even though Brazil hasn't looked good so far i still think they have a good chance to win it.  I think that one they bench the fatass Ronaldo and start Robinho they will look much better.

England has a very easy round of 16 game against Ecuador but i think they will probably lose to Holland in the quarters.

Offline UMDNats

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« Reply #23: June 22, 2006, 10:39:44 AM »
USA losing to Ghana 1-0 in the 39th minute.

Offline gozimm

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« Reply #24: June 22, 2006, 01:01:44 PM »
Markus Merk is a horrible ref who cost the US the game.  There is no way that was a foul on Onyewu.  The refs have screwed the US over in two crucial gamed this WC.  Bruce Arena has coached horribly, Donovan dissapointed, and even though not many people will say it, i think that McBride has dissapointed.