Tuesday, June 22, 2010

World Cup Day 11 Report

Portugal 7 - 0 DPR Korea

Who would've thought? The Korea DPR was brought back down to earth after a performance which made many sat up and took notice. Up against Brazil, the North Koreans looked well-organised and managed to frustrate the hell out of Dunga's Samba stars until Maicon came to the rescue. Still, they managed to find the net and losing the game 2-1 seemed to be an encouraging result for DPR Korea as they faced Portugal last night.

But lo and behold, they were torn to shreds by the Portugese.

Many likens this tie to be as exciting as the 5-3 win by Portugal back in 1966 where Eusebio came to Portugal's rescue after being 3-0 down. But the only similarity this time round is it being a high scoring game. DPR Korea had no answer to Portugal's play style and with a goalkeeper who looked shaky and a defence that was non-existent, Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. showed no mercy.

7 goals and 6 different scorers. On the hindsight it might seem like a case of DPR Korea totally losing it rather than Portugal playing really well. Put this performance in comparison with the one they had with Brazil a week ago, many must've wondered if it was the same 11 who was on the field.

The North Koreans were battered. With relative ease. The Portugese never seemed to get out of gear 2 yet took full control of the game and by the 75th minute, it seemed as though the players were already queuing up for the shooting gallery.

Jong Tae-se, dubbed the Rooney of Asia had a fantastic chance but failed to capitalise. It turns out it was the only one he had and after Simao put them to the sword, the rest was history. A cakewalk which I do not think the Glorious Leader back home will be happy about.

For Portugal, it's one step closer into the last 16 with a comfortable +7 cushion. They'd be delighted to see their captain finally on the score sheet as well. A huge morale booster for the team, no doubt.

Chile 1 - 0 Switzerland

A header from former Liverpool winger, Mark Gonzalez, was all that was needed for Chile to take a huge stride towards the last 16. A match marred by overzealous refereeing and torrents of yellow cards, the game was tense and at times, out of the referee's control. 

After some brilliant defensive work and a tinge of luck against Spain last Wednesday, the 'Swiss Alps' faced the Chileans knowing that another win would propel them into a comfortable position. But the plan was in tatters early in the game as referee, Khalil Al Ghamd, sent West Ham's Valon Behrami to the showers.

With 10 men, the Swiss showed little innovation in attack and had very little control of the game. The Chileans took advantage and the only thing that kept the scoreline at 1-0 wasn't down to the goalkeeper of Diego Benaglio but of poor finishing from the Chileans, namely Esteban Penedas.

With this win, Chile is within touching distance of the last 16. Up against European Champions, Spain, in the next game, they'll have full confidence that a point is all that they need for them to advance. But just like Spain, they'll need to work on their finishing.

Spain 2 - 0 Honduras

Barcelona-bound striker, David Villa, struck twice as Spain shrugged off their disappointment in their 1-0 loss to Switzerland last week. Yet Spain's profligacy and at times, over-elaborated play, seemed like their biggest problem. Villa himself could have gotten a hat-trick from the penalty spot but he squirmed the shot just wide while Fernando Torres seemed subdued and when called upon, disappointed.

The Liverpool striker was clearly out of form or more likely, lacking sharpness and match fitness. A couple of chances were presented but he was unable to put Honduras to bed.

Spain controlled the game with Xavi and Alonso whipping passes and dictated the tempo of the game well. Yet with majority of the possession, Spain was unable to do what their fellow Iberians did earlier with the 7-0 thrashing.

At times, Spain looked just like how Arsenal played in the Premiership. Nice passes and fantastic movements. But they seemed to miss the main point of the game, which is to put the ball in the net.

Thankfully, David Villa showed all of us why Barcelona are willing to pay €40 million for his service. Cutting in from his favourite left flank position, he skillfully skipped past 2 defenders and managed to put a shot into the top corner of the net.

Again in the 2nd half, prowling around in the danger area, he unleashed an unstoppable shot, making it 2-0.

Then, he was presented with a golden opportunity for a hat trick through a penalty but fluffed it wide. The Spanish striker could've joined Gonzalo Higuain of Argentina at the top of the scoring charts.

Despite this win, Spain will have a difficult task at hand against Chile. With much expectation on their shoulders, Spain needs to be sharper and have no room for mistake. Offensively at times, all style no substance while defensively, seemed abit flimsy.

The Chile vs Spain match will be quite a spectacle indeed.


LeX said...

o.0 you actually REALLY went to regurgitate a mini write-up of all 3 matches!?

=D hats down bro! nice writing!


haha I can still remember most of it la.. so not too bad ;) I know if I procrastinate till tonight I won't write as such..

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