Saturday, 3 July 2010

Too late to bandwagon, early enough to predict!

So here we are with the first of what I hope to be are a number of exciting blog entries regarding the World's favourite sport as well as a few life lessons in between.

With the beginning of this blog coming at the end stages of the FIFA World Cup I'm a bit too late to comment on football fever gripping the nation, too late to comment on England's bitter, shameful, humiliating, effortless, pathetic, awful, and limp display in the 2010 World Cup. However I'm sure no-one really wants to be reminded of how bad England were, me especially.

Instead I'll briefly explain how great the Dutch are this tournament and how I think they've got the talent and experience to go on a win the whole thing.

First off they are a very good team, let's not kid ourselves, Kuyt and Babel may have had a mediocre Liverpool season but Babel's pace and Kuyt's work ethic are useful tools, even if they're left on the bench. Then we can look at the teams real stars; Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben. Two great footballers, the later of which I never really understood why Chelsea let go. I also hate Arsenal with a passion so it hurts me a little bit to admit RvP is any good.

The Dutch swept aside 5 times World Cup winners Brazil like they were nothing, whilst the Brazilians were left red faced (literally for Felipe Melo) and embarrassed as the samba spirit was replaced by most likely White Spirit by the end of the night.

The Dutch now face the Destroyers of African hopes, Uruguay who have taken out hosts South African and cheated pass Ghana, an easier opponent of the final three teams remaining for Holland.

Germany face European champions Spain who so far have failed to deliver much evidence of why they won the Euro Cup 2 years ago. Losing to Switzerland in the group stage and then really failing to impress against the rest of their opposition, Paraguay in particular today ,looking a far cry from the Germans who are banging in goals for fun at the minute.

Surely then the most likely outcome is a Holland - Germany final in which a long standing rivalry might just be settled between these two neighbours.

Whatever the outcome, I think we should note that the tournament's big names haven't really shone this World Cup. Rooney was awful, Messi was missing, Ronaldo is not Captain material, Brazil disappointed and all of France surrendered yet again. The real stars have been the talented players that don't let the success get to their heads. Higuain for example, 4 goals and making headlines based on merit rather than hype and scandal. Arjen Robben proving graft is enough to be a great footballer and Thomas Muller and Mesut Ozil. Two young German superstars who have the potential to sit alongside the Beckenbauer's and Kahn's of German football history. Muller in particular for me has stood out, this competition. Unlike many before this World Cup, I was aware of how good Ozil already was, but Muller for me, has been consistently brilliant throughout the tournament, scoring 4 goals as well.

If I was his club manager I would be a worried man indeed.