July 2, 2010
As much as a younger version of myself could fall in infatuation with Uruguay's Diego Furlon, I think I will have to go with the Black Stars on the merit of their performance against the USA and their 2009 U-20 world championship. Here's my prediction:
Here are my picks for tomorrow as well:
I think Argentina and Germany will end regulation at 2-2 and Germany will win by one in extra time. I am not confident about this prediction at all. It could be just the opposite.
As much as I would like Paraguay to win, I think Spain will win this one 2-1.
I took some time off from blogging the game to have lunch with my lady friends. In the knock out round, the second half is often quite exciting. Suaraz, who is in the running for the golden boot, just looked quite dangerous. It makes me wonder if this brash young Ghana team can hold it together under the onslaught that will no doubt come over the next half hour.
This foul (67th minute) looks like a get back even call for not calling the short pulling, push from behind in the box a couple of minutes ago. Ball over the frame.
In the meantime, here are some of my fan picks:
Here was the first fan I captured. Although, sadly, Brazil is headed home, we thought that this fan won the "Best Use of Country's Flag" category:
These Chilean fans also won in a flag category. When we found them in the Sandton Center (a Galleria-style urban mall) they had a great difficulty posing, leading them to win the "I Love My Country, but Can't Tell the Top of Its Flag from the Bottom." Luckily, Davis is a flag afficianado and helped them out so they didn't embarrass their countrymen. I'm pretty sure the man to my left was not pleased with Davis's assistance.
With fewer than ten minutes remaining, nerves seem to unraveling. So far, it is looking like extra time. Will Ghana keep their cool or will Uruguay just chip away at their confidence. Forlan just had a really good chance, but couldn't quite catch up with the ball (in the replay he looks off).
Wow, the Ghana goalie's face looks frustrated and concerned (his eyebrows are stuck in that perpetual surprise position). I'll bet he is wanting the ball down at the other end for a while. Whatever happens, he's better off now than he would be if this goes on for another half hours and ends up in PKs.
901st minute. The Ghanans look like they remember how the USA game ended. They are really pressing.
If it goes another 30 minutes, you have to wonder whether athleticism or experience will win out.
Are you up for some more fan shots?
Here are fans from our play group. I think we combine to win the Best Overall Group Costumes (though Group A with Mexico, South Africa, France, and Uruguay came close, and Group G, with Brazil, Ivory Coast, Portugal, and North Korea would have been the big winner of this prize if Kim Jong-il had let ANY fans out of North Korea. . . instead he hired 100 Chinese to go to South Africa and pretend to be Korean fans).
We also had the opportunity to take pictures of fans whose teams did not make the World Cup (I suppose that comes from making your airline reservations and buying your game tickets before your team actually qualifies). They win the Fans Without a Team Award.
Here are a couple of Polish fellows:
And here are some French-hating Irish:
Fifteen more minutes on the field. Then more drama.
The final couple of fan awards go to Fans Who Exceeded Their Team's Efforts. Cameroon and Honduras ended up at the bottom of their play groups, but their fans we met were really FANTASTIC.
Wow!!!! Suarez! Red! Hand on the ball at the goal line! In the last seconds!
Gyan shoots for Ghana. And he missed it. . .
On the third kick, Ghana opens the window for Uruguay.
Uruguay wins. Cheeky final goal.