Sunday, June 27, 2010

Going, Going, Ghan-A

A little after five yesterday afternoon, here on the East Coast, closer to the midnight hour in South Africa, the World Cup 2010 adventure ended for Team USA a little short of the desired destination, but maybe more deserved than we should think.

In comparison to a lot of the nations in this year's tournament (and a lot more nations NOT in the tournament, and yes, France, I'm talking about Ireland (and maybe there is a God since your ticket was punched and your luggage was packed as quickly as all the other luckless, lunchless, first-round losers)) Team USA may have been more lucky than good but no one gets style points for how they get to the round of sixteen, just for winning once you get there.

Team USA played another first half as if they were still on the bus (but hoping to get to the match site soon) and this time the opponent scored in the first five minutes. I had barely settled my haunches down on the living room couch with my sparkling beverage and it was Ghana, one and USA, none. A lot of controversy in this tournament has been about the ball being used, the Jabulani world ball, but for TEAM USA, the major difficulty with it has been how often Tim Howard, the US keeper, was fishing it out of the back of his own net. Turned out, it was once too often.

But if experience is what you get when you didn't get what you wanted, my experience might include that Team USA has more talented players than just Jozy Altidore, Maurice Edu, Clint Dempsey and Landon Donovan-the players the media talked about almost non-stop for the last year. I might wonder why Feilhaber, in light of the liestung he showed in the Algeria match, didn't start against Ghana-especially as he sparked the surge that led to the equalizer yesterday, but in the end, my applause and congratulations are for Ghana for a great tournament, so far, and with disclaimers that I will develop AFTER the conclusion of the Germany-England match this morning, I wish you all the best for the rest of The Greatest Sports Event Americans Have Hardly Ever Heard Of. Wave Your Flag!!!
-bill kenny


Ira Misenheimer said...

Now England knows how the Germans have felt since 1966. However, that was a missed call that has huge implications, in a World Cup that has been filled with missed/bad calls. While certainly having made comments in past World Cups about the officiating, I do not beleive I recall seeing it this bad for quite some time. All that being said I am quite pleased that Germany continues it's march.

dweeb said...

It was an horrendous (missed) call and had the game ended 2-1, we'd be talking about it for months but....that's not what happened.

The Brits were by and large, simply awful throughout the tournament. For the second straight WM I waited for Wayne Rooney to show me something, ANYTHING...but in vain.

The German team was smarter, fresher had better ideas and they deserved to win. They had a poor ten minutes in the first half, from about the 35th to the 45th minute, but then wrested control of the game away from the UK to triumph.

But to return to your original point--FIFA absolutely has to adopt a goal camera--even the NHL uses them!

As it is, only the World Soccer Federation and the International Roller Derby Consortium are holdouts and the Derby dudes meet next week......