Blog Entry

A great World Cup

Posted on: July 11, 2010 5:02 pm
When South Africa was awarded the World Cup there were vocal and legitimate concerns from around the world wondering if the country could indeed pull it off. South Africa was still reeling from decades of apartheid. Significant portions of it were poor and crime-ridden. There were debates if the billions of dollars needed for stadiums would be better spent on the country's infrastructure and social programs.

In the days before the games visiting journalists were issued dire warnings about potential holdups and extreme crime.

Then, the World Cup began and, mostly, in the end it was a rousing success.

The games were entertaining and while the country remains plagued by social ills like poverty the country still did itself proud.

Off the field, a nation that was once the scourge of the planet and stood for ugly oppresion welcomed the world as a free nation. That means something. That stands for something.

On the field, the United States had close losses, there was the anarchy on the French team, the Italian crash, and of course Diego Maradona, the Ozzie Guillen of the World Cup.

The tense Netherlands-Spain final game came down to the last seconds and there was, of course, the annoying vuvuzela.

The flopping in soccer is so disgraceful it makes the NBA flopping look good but let's not allow one dumb thing to ruin a solid World Cup.

Not bad. Not bad at all for a country some didn't think could make this work in the first place.

Category: Soccer
Tags: World Cup

Since: Jan 20, 2009
Posted on: July 13, 2010 6:55 am

A great World Cup

Sour grapes.  The very clearly best team won.  The Netherlands will go down as one of the dirtiest teams in finals history.  Don't just take my word for it.  All the experts in their post game analysis said the same thing.  The Netherlands had to resort to bullying, thug tactics to try and hang with the Spanish.  The only person that is the king of the dive is Ronaldo from Portugal.  You only made one correct point and that was that the game should have ended differently.  If the Spanish were allowed to play free, beautiful soccer without getting fouled half the time the score would have been at least 2-0.

Since: Jan 20, 2009
Posted on: July 13, 2010 6:49 am

A great World Cup

     You must not have watched the entire tournament or even the final game.  The Netherlands were clearly the inferior team and they knew that going in.  The had to resort to thuggish, bully tactics that really should have gotten them down to 10 men after the 30th minute of the game.  That challenge DeJong put on with studs up looked more like a karate or MMA move than a soccer move.  The referee was trying to get the game under control so the players could actually play.  This isn't WWF for goodness sake.  You clearly have some sort of hatred for Spain, who arguably have been the best in the world for two years. Your post was, well "Cheeky".

Since: Jun 21, 2009
Posted on: July 12, 2010 2:20 pm

A great World Cup

When I was about 8 yrs old I was bored and letting people know it. My grandmother told me then that only boring people are bored and I almost immediately understood the implications and have never been bored since, some 37 yrs. This whole discussion of whether soccer aka football, is boring or not is moot; how you feel about it reflects what kind of person you are. The activity itself is irrelevant. As a sports fan I can assure anyone that thinks soccer is boring that the alternatives such as American football or basketball or baseball are equally so given a close inspection.

That said, this World Cup was not the best. The finale was awful, as it was in 2006. The officiating problems are built in and are fundamental; it doesn't matter if the ref is the greatest of all time, he can't see everything from all the angles necessary covering such a large area, and the players take advantage of this. I' going to go out on a limb and predict the same result and complaints/problems will occur in Brazil in 4 years. That's how FIFA wants it.

Since: May 22, 2010
Posted on: July 12, 2010 12:32 pm

A great World Cup

Hey Derek its the greatest event and sport in the world...watched by billions
and tough skilled sport of football were you need athletic talent unliket those fat slobs
that play baseballl...enjoy watching those cubs suck for another 100 years LOL...

Since: Jan 5, 2010
Posted on: July 12, 2010 12:26 pm

A great World Cup

What a BORING sport!  Its a joke.  The field is too big and/or too many players do not allow for the talented to show off their talents.  I really tried to like this sport in the World Cup, but nearly every game is decided by the odd chance that the ball bounces near a goal when a mistake or fluke play happens.  Too many games end in a draw.  The rules change to allow for over time and free kicks in only the last 4 games.  A team can dominate a match but end up losing for drawing on a regular basis.  IT IS SO BORING.  I actually started painting my dining room during the 2nd half of the championship match because I was so bored.  I am guessing that the billion people that like soccer are the billion people that still believe that there is a god.  LOL.  Just goes to show how many sheep and stupid people their are in this world.

Since: Aug 4, 2009
Posted on: July 12, 2010 11:12 am

Who leaves an American football game

It was best summed up while watching BBC during the lineups in the tunnel before the English-USA match.  The commentator stated "That surprisingly both countries aren't really rivals.  It's just thier team sports aren't our team sports."

Soccer isn't going to become a major professional sport short of a players' strike of NFL, MLB and NBA occuring at the same time (ironically it still wouldn't help NASCAR's ratings).  All this world cup has proven is that a 1-0 match can be considered a blowout, a 0-0 draw is exciting,  teams get hosed regularily by the ref on the international stage and the MLS is maybe the same level of competation as a lower second or higher third tier English league.

In another four years, nothing will change.

Since: Aug 4, 2009
Posted on: July 12, 2010 11:02 am

A great World Cup

A great World Cup? Second final in a row where a man disadvantage determined the outcome. The state of the beautiful game is woeful where the officials that can actually control the game are few and far between. To be considered world class, a player needs a high diving attribute.   It's the Tom Brady rule taken to extreme, the Paul Pierce flop-a-matic taken up a notch and Eric's Gregg's strikezone combined.

As far as fake injuries to waste time, egads, just stop the bloody clock, walk the player to the sidelines and don't let the player back in until the next dead ball stoppage.  Get rid of "injury" time.

For offsides calls, use instint replay or add another official to each sideline.  Even rugby uses a TMO to check for try or no try and to see if any infractions led to the try.  Why can't FIFA do that? Oh yeah, they don't want to ruin the integrity of human error.

South Africa did a wonderful job in hosting the finals. It's unfortunate that FIFA ruined it.

Since: Sep 25, 2006
Posted on: July 12, 2010 10:43 am

A great World Cup

I don't understand why everyone complains about the guys flopping rather than the guys who force them to do it. Iniesta and Robben are both brilliant players with loads of skill, but other teams reduce their brilliance by making the game ugly. THEY HAVE TO FLOP in order to make use of their obviously superior talents.

Everyone complaining about Spain flopping should go back and watch all their World Cup games. They did not flop against teams that didn't turn the game into a slugfest. Rather, Spain used their world's best ball skills to play a brilliant form of soccer - predicated on ball handling, movement and possession. The Dutch came in with the game plan to be overly physical because they couldn't match Spain's skill. They even said so.

Complain about the lesser players who even things up by being brutish, not the masters who have actually worked and developed their skills. there are some bad floppers in soccer, but Iniesta and Robben are not two of them. Both players discarded numerous opportunities to flop in order to carry through potential plays despite being fouled through the entire tournament. Christiano Ronaldo on a bad day and any Italian outdoes them by a long shot.

What soccer really needs are many more Webb's officiating - throwing out tons of yellow cards until the players are forced to play the game with skill. I thought this game was incredibly well officiated - except for the missed corner kicks, which were obvious bad mistakes. The De Jong kick should have been a red card, but I was glad it wasn't, so I didn't have to watch 60 minutes of 10 v 11. Thank you for only giving a yellow! The Robben breakaway with Puyol's foul was a good no-call too. Robben broke through the foul and had a one on one with the keeper, putting the advantage rule into effect. Robben just flubbed the finish. If the ref had called the foul, Robben would have complained just as much, saying an opportunity for a goal had been denied him. The Dutch would have had free kick close tot he goal and would have likely not scored on it (who's to say?).

Soccer is a campaign and winning the officials through the course of the entire 90 minutes is an unfortunate part of it because very few players are so good to be able to overcome being consistently fouled. When all officials start calling that stuff, we'll see more quality soccer.

Nobody complained about Spain flopping against Germany, because the Germans didn't ugly things up like the Dutch.

Since: Mar 24, 2007
Posted on: July 12, 2010 9:40 am

A great World Cup

What if a touchdown in American football was worth one point instead of 6?  Or a world football goal worth 6 instead of 1 point?  A field goal in American football is worth 3 points and is only exciting if it is blocked.  In American football more time is spent standing around in the huddle than actually playing.  That, amigo, is boring.

Since: Apr 11, 2007
Posted on: July 12, 2010 9:24 am

A great World Cup

I totally agree. I am not a big soccer fan nor was I rooting for either team but after watching Spain flop around and whine and cry the entire match I spent the second half trying to hold my lunch in. What a bunch of babies.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or