What surprises in the quarterfinals ! Who would have thought that Brazil and Argentina would both be knocked out of the tournament ? Or that Ghana would be out after they had been awarded a penalty shot at the very end of regulation time in their match against Uruguay ?
With the manner of Uruguay’s win over Ghana , it makes it easy for me to root for the Netherlands in the this afternoon’s semi- final. I understand that Luis Suarez’s goal line deflection with his hand was most likely a reflex action and I also know that Ghana has only itself to blame for missing the penalty shot and , later, the penalty kicks but still… I can’t help feel it’s an injustice for Ghana not to have advanced. Not that I will be rooting wholeheartedly for the Dutch. It’s true they are one of the best teams never to have won the World Cup and that they play a very attractive , skillful brand of soccer… but I can’t stomach Arjen Robben’s flopping. Between the two teams , I prefer the Dutch. With Uruguay’s Luis Suarez and Jorge Fucile on the sidelines because of suspensions , and captain Diego Lugano out with injury , it will take either a miracle or a complete meltdown by the Dutch for Uruguay to make it to the final.
I can’t wait for other semi-final which has two of the best teams in the tournament with the winner is likely to win it all. Before the tournament I’d said I wanted Spain to win and that I hoped Germany would not make it to the semis. My negatavity about Germany was based on the feeling that they play an efficient but mechanical game , not at all entertaining to watch.Well, that may have been true in the past but it certainly is not true of this German team which has displayed an attacking style while still featuring a rock-ribbed defense. One other thing that I love about them is that they don’t flop and never question the referee’s calls. They will be without Thomas Mueller ( out with 2 yellow cards) but in Podolski and Klose they certainly have enough firepower.
Spain , on the other hand , has gone down a bit in my estimation. Inspite of all the pretty passes , their attack doesn’t seem to be able to put the ball in the net as much as one would expect. David Villa is superb of course but he will have to shoulder the burden of the offense as Fernando Torres has been a disappointment. Perhaps Cece Fabregas can do his magic and propel Spain to a win.Whoever wins , whether Germany or Spain, I’ll be rooting for them in the final.