Tilting at Windmills: The World Cup Final

82 posts / 0 new
Last post
Catchfire Catchfire's picture
Tilting at Windmills: The World Cup Final

 

Issues Pages: 
bekayne

If Zzzzpain wins while scoring less than 4 goals, they will be the lowest scoring champion in history.  No team has ever become champion & scored less than 10 goals. Will history be made this year?

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

The amazing thing is not so much that Spain has only scored seven goals so far, but that David Villa has scored five of them. If I were the Dutch coach, I would tell Van Bommel to Van Pummel Villa into submission within the first fifteen minutes. Even if he ends up with a red card it would almost be worth it.

I don't think Span will be able to retain posession against this hardnosed Dutch side. As much flack as they are getting for abandoning the beautiful game, Robben, Sneijder and (gag) even Van Persie have some serious talent and flair and could provide a magical goal. I mean, what about Van Bronckhorst's goal? What a strike! And it's not the first time he's done that either--but this one was certainly the most timely.

al-Qa'bong

Sancho Panza has to be one of the most annoying characters I've ever read.  His clichéd homilies (well, I'll grant that at the time they perhaps hadn't become clichés yet) put me off the whole novel.

 

That said , is anyone really prepared for the Dutch to win a World Cup in South Efreca?

Fidel

I think Torres will score. And Villa.

Brian White

This is the worst Dutch team ever to reach the final. (Just ask a dutchman).  Hopefully, Spain's beautiful passing game will win and win big. Holland has a history of playing excellent exciting soccer.  If they win with this shadow of real dutch football,   it will set soccer in Holland and everywhere else  back 15 years. 

bekayne

Fidel wrote:

I think Torres will score. And Villa.

In the same game?

Caissa

I'll be cheering for the Dutch even if it might be Boering doing so in South Africa. Wink

My predictions: Spain over the Netherlands, Germany over Uruguay.

DaveW

I don't like jinxes, so after their flops of the 1970s, I would like to see the Dutch win now.

Tommy_Paine
Tommy_Paine

 

 

Oh, and you have to support the country, I think, that was not at all interested in fascism in the last century.

 

 

Caissa

Thread drift/ a Dutch Fascist party recieved 8% of the votr in 1935 and 4% in 1937 and 1939?end thread drift

Other info at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Socialist_Movement_in_the_Netherlands

Tommy_Paine

 

okay, the less interested in fascism.

 

Geesh.  

 

Besides, the Dutch supported Canada in saving the last lonely Turbot-- the only European nation to do so.   To back Spain now would be an act of supreme perfidiousness.

 

Spain?  What's to like?

 

 

DaveW

except, for crying out loud, after 40 years of dictatorship the country has entirely reformed, become a cultural magnet (film, painting, architecture, fashion), and developed pretty much the most liberal socio-cultural scene in Europe these days;

quite the voyage from the dank Iberian backwater of as recently as the 1970s

Tommy_Paine

 

 

Yeah, well, I hold a grudge.

 

Anyway.

 

Speaking of Cervantes, did you know he and Shakespeare died on the same date, ten days apart?

 

 

al-Qa'bong

Was it in a leap year?

Tommy_Paine

 

That wouldn't account for the ten days.    But I think leap year has a lot to do with it.

Caissa

Britain and the British Empire (including the eastern part of what is now the United States) adopted the Gregorian calendar in 1752 by which time it was necessary to correct by 11 days.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregorian_calendar

Tommy_Paine

One of my favorite trivia questions.

 

Speaking of trivia, now back to soccer.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Spanish communists were some of the bravest folk of the last century, Tommy. You should know that. Not to mention the fact (actually, I did, in the previous thread) that no less than seven of Spain's starting 11 play for the Catalan club F.C. Barcelona, most of whom came through their youth system. So did Cesc Fàbregas. Xavi Alonso is Basque. Franco was a Real Madrid fan and had the Barcelona president murdered in the 30s. During his regime, the Nou Camp, where Barcelona play, was the only place you could speak Catalan in the country. As you know Barcelona was the stronghold of the communists and anarchists who apposed Franco. Plus, they play some beautiful fitbah. When they're not boring you to tears with their tika-takka.

In their warm-up game they beat Poland, who could easily have qualified for this World Cup, 6-0! Their only goal yesterday gave them seven for the whole tournament! What the H?

As for Holland, they've only made the finals twice, in 74 and 78, losing to the host country both times, but both times enjoying by far the best national side in the world (in '78 they had to play without the world's best player Johann Cruyff because Argentina's junta threatened to kill him if he played! Argentina won in the final, speaking of fascists.) So it's no surprise that this squad isn't as good as the oranje from the 70s. I also agree that it's not as good as Guus Hiddink's side from '98 with Bergkamp, Kluivert, Overmars, Davids, Van Der Saar, Staam, etc. But they only made it to the semi-final. I think Robben, Sneijder and even Van Persie are good heirs to that legacy. And Van Bommel and Van Bronckhorst are tough, ball-winning players that flatter the side, not demean it. They've changed their style from two years ago when their attacking flair was undone by Russia's superior flair in Euro 2008--so they changed their tactics and lo and behold, they are in the World Cup final.

It's a worthy contest. I don't know who I want to win but I'm leaning towards Holland partly because I have a very dear friend who is Dutch, and partly because their orange kits just look so nice.

DaveW

 ..."Guus Hiddink's side from '98 with Bergkamp, Kluivert, Overmars, Davids, ..."

 

............

 

some great names, Davids was always bouncing around midfield with his hair swinging side to side, and I still remember the British announcer's call of a Bergkamp goal: Dennis BE-E-ERG-kamp!

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

You mean, this one? What a goal!

ETA. I also love his reaction--putting his hands over his face as if to say: "I can't believe I just scored a goal like that in a World Cup quarterfinal against Argentina."

DaveW

cannot use YouTube at the office, but if he wedges it in on the right side of the goal with the slightest thrust of the foot, that was the one....

BERRRRRg-kamp!

he's retired and gone, eh? played at Arsenal and .. Ajax ? does he coach?

.............................

oh great god Google, nothing escapes your embrace:

http://www.bergkamp10.net/stats.php

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Sid Lowe from the Guardian pointed out on a podcast recently that the Spanish game is a continuation of Holland's famous "Total Football" which debuted in 1974 (interestingly, against Uruguay, for whom Diego Forlán's father Pablo played!). The difference is that then, all positions were interchangeable and now, only the middle players: Iniesta, Xavi, Xabi Alonso and Busquets. The link Sid pointed out is that the Spanish game in its current form is based on the Barcelona style, whose founding ideologue was none other than Dutch-best-ever Johann Cruyff!

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Catchfire wrote:

Franco was a Real Madrid fan and had the Barcelona president murdered in the 30s. During his regime, the Nou Camp, where Barcelona play, was the only place you could speak Catalan in the country.

The Camp Nou wasn't built until 1957. You're thinking of the Camp de Les Corts.

Tommy_Paine

It's a worthy contest. I don't know who I want to win but I'm leaning towards Holland partly because I have a very dear friend who is Dutch, and partly because their orange kits just look so nice.

 

Never figured you for an Orangeman, Catchfire.  Remember the glorious 12th.

 

I, of course know about the communists in Spain.  However, I should have prefaced that in sports (unless it's some technical aspect) I abandon all logic and civil convention when discussing the emotional merits of one team vs. another.   It's like a catharsis for all that's nationalistically or jingoistically silly remaining in me.

 

But of course, here I should be expecting the Spanish Inquisition.

 

AH.  Another reason to support the Dutch.

 

Laughing

 

Brian White

I think Van Basten was a far better player than Cruyff.    Watch clips of them playing.  Cruyff screwed up a lot.  A lot of dribbles to nowhere. He also had superb teammates right throught that dutch team.   I heard  no mention of death threats at the time.  I do remember the dutch being angry at him for letting them down but I also remember that they did not need him.   I think he said something pissy about the team that they sent in 78 too (before they reached the final). Its hazy, I forget exactly what.

  Van Basten won a european championship with holland.

Catchfire wrote:

Sid Lowe from the Guardian pointed out on a podcast recently that the Spanish game is a continuation of Holland's famous "Total Football" which debuted in 1974 (interestingly, against Uruguay, for whom Diego Forlán's father Pablo played!). The difference is that then, all positions were interchangeable and now, only the middle players: Iniesta, Xavi, Xabi Alonso and Busquets. The link Sid pointed out is that the Spanish game in its current form is based on the Barcelona style, whose founding ideologue was none other than Dutch-best-ever Johann Cruyff!

RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

La Furia Roja.

Diogenes Diogenes's picture

Once I mention to the locals that I'm from Canada, I'm inevitably asked about football soccer in Canada. It's embarassing to have nothing to say on the matter, so I went on the net to confirm 2 things that I was vaguely aware of. Number 3 was a bonus.

  1. Canada was actually in one world cup (1986), qualifying as 1 of 32 when they beat Honduras in a a match played in St. John's Newfoundland. The climate of St. John's provided for an interesting twist to the game. Canada lost all 3 world cup matches in group play. Hey - at least we were in it. The Dutch failed to qualify that year.
  2. Owen Hargreaves - born in Calgary (my hometown) - was a soccer wunderkind who was playing for Bayern Munich (under-19) at the tender age of 16.  He had a great career with BM and now plays for Manchester United.  His family heritage allowed him to play nationally for either Canada, England or Wales. Awarded England player of the year in 2006.
  3. Canada has won a an Olympic gold medal (1904 - though hardly a masterly triumph), the Dutch have only won bronze, although on 3 separate occasions.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Van Basten better than Cruyff? You're having a laugh. Although I take your point that he did win something (with Holland--Cruyff won loads with Barca).

Hargreaves's father was English and took him to train in Germany when he was very young--I want to say 11? He also doesn't play for Manchester United--he has severe tendinitis and played only a few minutes in the penultimate game last year, and he's about to undergo surgery again this year and will miss the beginning of the season again. He may never play again, in fact. But he was such a good player--two Champions League medals with both Man U and Bayern!

Are you in Holland right now, Diogenes? Hup!

ETA. I see that you are! Hup! Hup!

P.S. Canada didn't even score a goal in 1986! But then again, neither did returning champs France in 2002!

al-Qa'bong

Quote:

Spanish communists were some of the bravest folk of the last century, Tommy. You should know that. Not to mention the fact (actually, I did, in the previous thread) that no less than seven of Spain's starting 11 play for the Catalan club F.C. Barcelona, most of whom came through their youth system. So did Cesc Fàbregas. Xavi Alonso is Basque. Franco was a Real Madrid fan and had the Barcelona president murdered in the 30s. During his regime, the Nou Camp, where Barcelona play, was the only place you could speak Catalan in the country. As you know Barcelona was the stronghold of the communists and anarchists who apposed Franco.

OK, now I have a reason to cheer for someone in the Final.

 

And here's a song ...

 

Viva La Quince Brigada

bekayne

Catchfire wrote:

Sid Lowe from the Guardian pointed out on a podcast recently that the Spanish game is a continuation of Holland's famous "Total Football" which debuted in 1974 (interestingly, against Uruguay, for whom Diego Forlán's father Pablo played!). The difference is that then, all positions were interchangeable and now, only the middle players: Iniesta, Xavi, Xabi Alonso and Busquets. The link Sid pointed out is that the Spanish game in its current form is based on the Barcelona style, whose founding ideologue was none other than Dutch-best-ever Johann Cruyff!

Another difference was the Dutch back then scoring more than one goal per game.

Diogenes Diogenes's picture

Catchfire wrote:

Hargreaves's father was English and took him to train in Germany when he was very young--I want to say 11? He also doesn't play for Manchester United--he has severe tendinitis and played only a few minutes in the penultimate game last year, and he's about to undergo surgery again this year and will miss the beginning of the season again. He may never play again, in fact. But he was such a good player--two Champions League medals with both Man U and Bayern!

I was citing from the wikipedia page on Hargreaves. They say age 16. Good career move gov!

I won't argue with you about Ballick. I have only seen him play a few times, the first time being in the last world cup. I thought he was great. Same goes for Cristiano Ronaldo.  To my eyes, in a charge down the field, his feet never seemed to actually touch the turf, they were always an inch or two above it. That was in 2006. I know he's a prima donna and a drama queen and not the player he used to be - but that goal he scored in that rout on Uruaguay, rolling the ball off his back onto his foot for a light tap into the net - is there a Harlem Globetrotters team on the football world that he can retire to?

This world cup I have been delighted by Kaka(?), MessiForlán, and (of course) Wesley Sneijder.  I really like Van Persie too and hope he finally pots a goal. He's a favorite of mine, mostly because he bears a striking resemblence to my oldest son.

The only Spanish player I was familiar with was Ramos, but Spain's passing game against Germany was incredible. It's certainly reminiscent of some of the best playoff hockey I have ever watched.  At times it was like viewing a pinball game, with the pinball wizard doing everything except letting the ball fall between the posts. That seems to be an issue with Spain.

They reached the finals by scoring a grand total of 7 goals - and they did lose their opening match to Switzerland - the first big upset of the tournament.

I'm really pumped about this match - it could be an excellent one!  It's going to be close. It's going to be a nail-biter.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

M. Spector wrote:
The Camp Nou wasn't built until 1957. You're thinking of the Camp de Les Corts.

Quite right--in fact, after further research I can further correct my apocryphal info with the historical facts: it wasn't actually under Franco's regime where Barcelona's stadium became such a bastion of Catalan nationalism, but under one of Franco's predecessors, Primero de Rivera, who first prohibited public speaking of the language.

Tommy_Paine wrote:
I, of course know about the communists in Spain.  However, I should have prefaced that in sports (unless it's some technical aspect) I abandon all logic and civil convention when discussing the emotional merits of one team vs. another.   It's like a catharsis for all that's nationalistically or jingoistically silly remaining in me.

Ha! I'm the one saying that a vote for the Spanish national team is a vote against fascism. I wonder how well that would stand up in the courts of babble, if it were chased from the sheltered comfort of the footie thread and exposed to the harsh full light of proper leftism, stripped of its halo and all that.

Diogenes wrote:
I was citing from the wikipedia page on Hargreaves. They say age 16. Good career move gov!

I was mistaken again--still I find it almost impossible to believe that such a player came out of the Canadian youth system anywhere! I do remember reading an interview when his father bemoaned the lack of decent football training facilities and programs in Canada (despite the fact that more Canadians play soccer than any other sport, including hockey), and so was forced to move to Germany where he had a friend in recruitment. But 16! That's incredible.

By the way, the unparalleled augur German octopus has picked Spain to win the final. Perhaps he's a commie as well.

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

I'm with the "Tilters" and less with the "Windmills". The only worry is a Suarez-like windmill arm movement that stops a goal and serves to demoralize the Knights of the Sad Countenances. Perhaps Panza, I mean Pujol, will once again use his head and show that one does not have be a Knight, or a Striker, to score.

Or something like that.

Brian White

I was hoping for Spain to  make the final all along but was disappointed by the German team.  Was it just tactics to allow Spain to have so much possession?

After the spanish goal, I think the real germany came out to play but its a bit late.

I know it is intimidating to see a passing game as fine as that but I thought they would have more fire in their bellys.  I hope both teams go for it in the final and not just play the "wait for a mistake" game. Lots of times the best game is the one for 3rd place.

Fidel

Tommy_Paine wrote:
Never figured you for an Orangeman, Catchfire.  Remember the glorious 12th.

I, of course know about the communists in Spain.

I never liked king Billy. He was a deformed inbred who had no right to the throne in England. I don't even think the marriage was consumated.

And didn't socialists in Spain have other political allies against the fascists? I know a family from there who some of are here in Canada. They're all professionals with good jobs in government, medical fields etc. Most are politically liberal, but the one of them I've met is a real anti-fascist when you hear him speak in English, which is one of several languages he's fluent in. Good people with too much money.

 

N.Beltov N.Beltov's picture

The Germans were at their best in the counterattack, I think; they just didn't have the opportunity to execute very often. There were a few near misses, however. IF the Germans had scored first, then the Spanish would have had to change THEIR game and press - possibly too much - as previous teams did against the Germans. This is where the Germans could have racked up the score.

But really, what is better? A 1-0 victory, well defended, or a 4-0 rout built upon the flimsy ediface of who scores first? The Spanish deserved the win in every way: better play, brilliant passing over great passing, more possession, and, ultimately, better coached. That's a remarkable accomplishment against the well respected German coach.

Of course, there was help from an octopus, the result in Euro in 2008, and the absence of a great German striker (Muller?) by red card from a previous game. At this level, the differences are not that large.

Brian White

Catchfire wrote:

Van Basten better than Cruyff? You're having a laugh. Although I take your point that he did win something (with Holland--Cruyff won loads with Barca).

Correction, as a player,  Cruyff won very little with Barca.   Sure he was in a great ajax team but put that in perspective. That was a great team with or without Cruyff.  There are 3 good teams in Holland. Rarely 4. The rest are cannon fodder.  Very like the Scotland situation.   So half of those Cruyff goals on youtube are against very poor teams.

Van Basten  played just over half as many games as Cruyff and he won in Europe with 2 different teams.   He was finished as a player at 28 due to injury.

In Italy he scored 90 league goals  in 147 games, Cruyff scored 48 in 143 league games for Barsa before going back to Holland to finish his playing career.

So, it seems to me that when Cruyff was in the big league playing against genuine defenders, he did not do so good.

Brian White

There was more than one  billy of orange in Holland and at least one of them was big on religous freedom.

  And as far as i am concerned, nobody is royalty.

Fidel wrote:

Tommy_Paine wrote:
Never figured you for an Orangeman, Catchfire.  Remember the glorious 12th.

I, of course know about the communists in Spain.

I never liked king Billy. He was a deformed inbred who had no right to the throne in England. I don't even think the marriage was consumated.

And didn't socialists in Spain have other political allies against the fascists? I know a family from there who some of are here in Canada. They're all professionals with good jobs in government, medical fields etc. Most are politically liberal, but the one of them I've met is a real anti-fascist when you hear him speak in English, which is one of several languages he's fluent in. Good people with too much money.

 

Ripple

John Greyson on football

 

http://vimeo.com/12834884

Fidel

Brian White wrote:

There was more than one  billy of orange in Holland and at least one of them was big on religous freedom.

  And as far as i am concerned, nobody is royalty.

Oh aye, Brian. No argument from me here, except to say that I think all of us everywhere are very important nonetheless.

Should be a good game.

DaveW

read some newspaper background piece on Spain's football history today, and the fact that they won a Euro back in 1964, but that in 1960 under Franco the team had been forbidden to take the field against ... the USSR;

in fact, after researching it, Spain refused to travel to the USSR:

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UEFA_European_Football_Championship#History
from Wikipedia entry on the Euro :
History
The idea for a pan-European football tournament was first proposed by the French Football Federation's Henri Delaunay in 1927, but it was not until 1958 that the tournament was started. In honour of Delaunay, the trophy awarded to the champions is named after him. The 1960 tournament, held in France, had 4 teams competing in the finals, out of 17 that entered the competition. It was won by the Soviet Union, beating Yugoslavia 2-1 in a tense final in Paris. Spain withdrew from its quarter-final match against the USSR due to political protests. Of the 17 teams that entered the qualifying tournament, notable absentees were England, West Germany and Italy.

1weasel

As long as the Dutch don't go to extra time like they did in their war of independence from Spain (80 years!).  Willem van Oranje had to be substituted following his assaination in the first half.  No red card was awarded since it was a French intruder that entered the pitch.  The intruder was removed to face intense torture and eventual beheading by the Dutch supporters.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_the_Silent

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eighty_Years%27_War

Brian White wrote:

There was more than one  billy of orange in Holland and at least one of them was big on religous freedom.

DaveW

In other World Cup history/social science I did not know, China it seems really WANTS to participate, but just cannot make it:

 

from an Olympics-era 2008 link:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/24/AR2008072402162.html

..

The World Cup strikes Chinese as the most meritocratic, the most (gasp!) democratic, of competitions. Every nation, rich or poor, strong or small, has a real shot at winning. No country or regime, regardless of its wealth or power, can manufacture a victory the way that, say, East Germany used to during those dreary Cold War-era Olympic Games. On the soccer field, China is forced to test itself against the family of nations. It's social Darwinism as sport.

No wonder millions of Chinese fans link soccer to their national sense of honor. But when your team just isn't very good, that linkage between nationalism and sport can mean tumult and even tragedy. Think back to May 19, 1985, when Hong Kong and China faced off in Beijing. Had China won, it might have gone on to the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. The team was heavily favored, and nearly 80,000 fans eagerly poured into the Workers' Stadium to watch the long-awaited triumph.

China, of course, lost.

N.R.KISSED

Suarez dove at the end trying once again to cheat his way through.

Erik Redburn

This should be a great final, almost too close to call.  And I'll be happy for whichever team wins, so I can just sit back and enjoy the game.   

This has been a weird World Cup though.  Argentina and Germany both looked almost unstoppable to me then they get totally dominated.  Uruguay losing by a crossbar only added to the overall irony.  Would have been nice to see Ghana get through to the playoffs at least, but in the end they too choked.   Maybe if Essien was there they could have made the next step, but then most the teams were missing at least one star.  If only Canada could lure Hargeaves back home...

cruisin_turtle

bekayne wrote:
If Zzzzpain wins while scoring less than 4 goals, they will be the lowest scoring champion in history.  No team has ever become champion & scored less than 10 goals. Will history be made this year?

Another history has already been made.  No European team has ever won the World Cup on non-European soil.

Or has it?  Maybe the Dutch still consider South Africa "home turf".

DaveW

 

 

come on, everybody, sing along with Holland:

http://thestar.blogs.com/twoguysonecup/

Erik Redburn

Critical reading from usually uncritical source...

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/football/world-cup-2010/teams/england/7...

 

Now lets see which collectivity can end their hex first.

 

500_Apples

Canada recently held Venunzuela to a 1-1 tie in soccer. It was our first goal scored in about 1 year.

We have a better than usual chance of qualifying in 2014 since Brazil is hosting. The 4th best CONCACAF team will go up against the 6th best COMEBOL team, whereas it usually goes up against the 5th best team... Brazil is automatically qualified as the host.

Unfortunately, I don't think we've been top-6 of CONCACAF since 1994... when USA was automatically qualified.

Pages