Friday, June 23, 2006

World Cup Update
Last night, Solar Plus showed the Ghana vs USA match live at 10 p.m.
It wasn't the game I wanted to see live but I stayed glued to the TV. Nowadays my TV is permanently on Solar Plus and my little condo unit is buzzing with the drone of the commentators annontating the games.

It was an exciting game. Ghana scored twice against the USA. Woohoo!
The first one was a legit goal passing through American goalkeeper Keller's hands. While the second was a dubious penalty that referee Markus Merk from Germany awarded to Ghana. Stephan Appiah, the Ghana captain scored on behalf of this west African nation whose teams goes by the name "Red Devils".
It is refreshing to see other football obsessed nations aside from the usual European/South American teams go through the final 16 round.
Way to go, Ghana!

Since the Italy vs Czech Republic match was also on, I had my computer logged on to the Internet to monitor the live match play by play on the official World Cup website.
I ran up and down the stairs to my bedroom, every 20 minutes to check if Italy had scored against the mighty Czech goalkeeper, Petr Cech.
They did! Marco Materazzi and Filippo Inzaghi netted the ball, twice.
Pavel Nedved with his curly blonde mane from the Czech Republic had his numerous efforts thwarted by Gianluigi Buffon.
The Azzurris, as usual played their defensive game. But Nesta was replaced due to an injury within minutes of the first half, while Francesco Totti only found his bearings in the second half of the game. Italy still won by two goals to zero goal effort by the Czech Republic.

So Italy and Ghana are in for Group E.
Italy whose team members are currently embroiled in a very controversial illegal betting/game fixing scandal would play against Australia on June 26. While Ghana will battle the giant Brazil, the next day June 27.

Later at 3 AM (Saturday) local time, three teams will battle out for the top two positions in Group G. Switzerland, South Korea and my beloved France. Switzerland vs South Korea would just need a draw to reach the next round. While France who plays Togo NEEDS to definitely score at least 2 goals if they want to level the field.
Gosh I'm amazed how lackluster France's performance is in this World Cup. A team composed mostly of aged players who aren't delivering the goods as they are expected to. France are currently in third place in their group standing. It all boils down to how both matches play out later. Very nerve wracking night. Quel horror if France doesn't qualify for a place in the second round.

But my friend Philippe said:
"Attend ce n'est pas fini pour la France, j'espere qu'on va gagner"
("Wait it isn't over for France, I hope we will win." )
How's that for some positive wishful thinking, huh?

Allez les Blues!!!

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