World Cup 2010 Netherlands-Brazil, Uruguay-Ghana: World Cup Buzz Podcast

The Netherlands have knocked pre-tournament co-favorites Brazil out of the 2010 World Cup, while Uruguay and Ghana upstaged the opening match with a unforgettable, never-should-have-been shootout. To talk about Friday’s two quarterfinal matches as well as preview Saturday’s I was joined by Kartik Krishnaiyer and Laurance McKenna for this edition of the World Cup Buzz Podcast.

23 thoughts on “World Cup 2010 Netherlands-Brazil, Uruguay-Ghana: World Cup Buzz Podcast”

  1. Isn’t the WC getting good? I thought so,
    after I was so down on the dull WC action and longing for the next Red Bulls match…

    So…Hey boys…Why so blue…and clinical?

    … IS there some Aristotelian ideal of the
    perfect football match that you’re looking for?

    Hell, there WAS DRAMA!

    … Diving is an integral part of YOUR sport, bizarre to me too…
    but a few shows ago you guys explored it to the natural conclusion
    that it is unavoidable and has evolved like any other aspect of the game
    …it is NOT to be judged on a moral/cultural level (Robben isn’t Italian as far I can tell),
    it is gamesmanship pure and simple (not immorality) like offensive lineman holding……The disallowed goals earlier TAINTED the World Cup WAY MORE outrageously than Robben’s bad acting…

    GREAT POINT ABOUT SUAREZ’s handball and this obvious glitch in the rules, a VERY VERY obvious to a neophyte and as well as every single member of my family!

    Cant wait for tomorrow!

    Thank god for the Jabulani…nil nil draws aint for me

  2. Regarding the accusations that Suarez cheated and was immoral, while not wanting to condone such behaviour, what about the clear, clear dive by the Ghanian player that set up the free kick in the first place? No player was within two meters of him! No free kick should have been given, the game should have expired, and Suarez never should have been placed in that position! Essentially, the referee created the situation and the sad ending for Asamoah Gyan. While I normally appreciate your collective insights and analysis, I was disappointed that you missed this important contextual piece!

    1. Hi Steve:

      Thanks for the feedback.

      There are always issues people feel we miss or don’t cover enough. Sorry we didn’t cover the foul more, but what’s there to add to it? And, in light of what happened in the ensuing forty-five seconds, it certainly seems lower on the priority list of topics.

      But again, people always feel we don’t cover enough. I wish I had a two-hour/day show and was able to interact with people. That funding, however, has yet to come through.

      1. My concern is that Suazo, an exciting youngster, is being made a villain for “swatting away” Ghana and Africa. In fact, the entire final scene of the game could be viewed as a rash judgement by the referee, leading to a final opportunity for Ghana. At the very least, it made for good theatre, if tragic for the Ghanaians and their supporters. (Maybe I am still smarting from a David Beckham free kick that eliminated Ecuador from the last World Cup.)

        I am in the Netherlands right now. I am amazed that know one here will acknowledge that Arjan Robbens took a dive or two on the pitch yesterday. I never fail to be amazed how people’s biases can blind them to certain realities. In this sense, football is highly instructive on how people think, do, and organize!

        I’ve greatly enjoyed the WC Buzz and look forward to following EPL in the future.

  3. i found this on the net….the last word on the topic for me

    The interplay of infringements and punishments is part of what the game is based on. Players break the rules all the time, strategically, calculating risk vs. reward. It is not against the spirit of fair play.

    What about a forward who makes an early run, knowing that he will likely be called offside? He might still make the run, because the reward of a goal is huge compared to the penalty of a free kick for the opponent. Yet every forward will make this run in the slim hope that the linesman will miss the call.

    If you think this is cheating, fine, but in that case every forward who makes such a run is a cheat, every midfielder or defender who tugs a jersey is a cheat, every goalkeeper who pulls down a forward on a breakaway is a cheat. Or, in other words, every single player is a cheat. At that point the word becomes meaningless. It’s like criticizing a footballer for having two ears and wearing shorts.

  4. the real issue is the mental difference between top level footballers like forlan and asamoah gyan.

    forlan im sure would have scored the penalty

    1. Yeah, I am sure Forlan never missed a penalty in his career! If you had any doubt about Gyan’s mental toughness, him taking the first penalty after this huge miss should erase such doubt, I think.

  5. I totally agree with Chaz … The onus is on FIFA to come up with rules to minimize effects of “cheating”. For example, the penalty for Suarez’s handball should be GOAL awarded to Ghana not a penalty kick.

    When a defender commits a foul against an attacker in the box a penalty is given in the sense of giving the attacker another chance at what should have happened which is a 1 on 1 opportunity.

    If you want to give a penalty kick for a handball on the line, then it should be a penalty without the goal keeper !

    In any case this is football and worldcup history is filled with events like these.

    On another note, I don’t understand why Uruguay has become the darling of this podcast and other media ! They are not that impressive and they have not played against a powerhouse yet (France doesn’t count!)

    Don’t get me wrong they are a very good team with a world class player. But they were outplayed convincingly and looked very shaky at the back even before Logano was out.

    I was surprised when two of the podcasters said that would, with any doubt, favor Uruguay against Holland if only Suarez was’nt suspended ! This is not Messi you know, Suarez is a very good striker … that’s it.

    If Uruguay with Suarez struggled and lost against Ghana, then how can they, without a doubt, beat Holland. Who just eliminated the strongest team in the cup and must be on a high ?

  6. Three quick points:

    * To narrow it down to just Robben, etc. is ridiculous because just about everyone, and I mean everyone dives. I can’t name a team among the 32 that I haven’t seen go down easily. I will say that some are better than others, I saw a South Korean (forget who it was) try to dive, and it just didn’t look natural at all, it looked contrived. And I don’t want to get into a whole cultural argument, but it is a skill, taking minimal contact and making it look like more than it is.

    (As Kartik correctly points out, Robben was ridiculous not because he went down, but because he feigned serious injury after he had gotten calls, with the only intent to get opponents booked. Every time he stays on the field for more than a couple of seconds, he should have to come off the field for a while to get treated. The first place FIFA can start legislating is people staying down to try to get opponents booked).

    * I would argue that Clint Dempsey and Jozy Altidore are two of the best “divers” at this World Cup. Thankfully, they don’t stay down as long as Robben, but they do embellish and it helps their game.

    * Wouldn’t Manuel Neuer be considered the biggest chest in this World Cup? He saw Frank Lampard’s goal a yard behind the line, and not only didn’t say anything, but quickly grabbed the ball to make it look as if it hadn’t gone in. Just saying.

    1. Good points Ray. Culturally, cheating is more acceptable in some football cultures than others. That’s my real grievance here. Had the shoe been on the other foot, I doubt a Ghanaian field player would have stuck two hands out to deny a winning goal. Sense of fair play is lost, when some cultures manipulate the rules more than others. Maybe that is what the competition is based on and how traditional winners (Italy, Argentina) are separated from traditional losers (England, and countries with the Anglo ethic about fair play).

      That is what irks me.

  7. Estimado Ray, You are right that others take dives, but in recent time Robben has won a special place among the divers, a fact to which my friends here in the Netherlands seem to be blind. Provided Robben’s wonderful talent and explosiveness with the ball, I find that a shame and tarnishing to his legacy. Fortunately, other traditional winners in WC history, such as Germany, Brazil, France, and Uruguay, do not have a reputation for diving. I have hopes that Robben will dedicate himself to football rather than theatrics in the coming week.

  8. Implicit in your message is that Uruguayan and Latin cultures in general are predisposed to cheating. I find that statement shockingly prejudiced.

    Unfortunately, cheating has become a central feature of modern football, seamlessly crossing cultures and boundaries. Tragically, football stars have a strong influence in shaping attitudes on what is acceptable behavior in our societies, in particular among youth and children. I strongly agree with the comments you guys have made about FIFA’s complicity in this situation and responsibility in demanding a new standard of fairness and integrity in sport. Right now, the situation is disgraceful.

  9. I found the podcaster who was defending Suarez incredibly annoying. Suarez commited a foul and cheated Ghana out of a clear goal, plain and simple that is why he got booked. I don’t see why you think “cheat” is a strong word to use when it’s so obvious that is what he did. Saying his 22 other players would kill him if he didn’t swat the ball away is asenine. Many goals are scored with defenders on the goal line, but I’ve never heard those players being crucified for not using their hands and take the penalty.
    How many goal happens that happen with field players on the line, and those players did exactly what Suarez did? I’ve seen more people try to jump and head balls out, I’ve seen people desperately try to use their feet in awkward position, I’ve seen people timidly handle balls but still with their hands barely moving from their side, but field players actually turning into a goalkeeper and blatantly swatting the ball away? Very rarely does that happen in games I’ve watched. I can’t even remember one from memory right now. So no, not every player would have done the same thing in Suarez’ place

  10. Wow i am shocked by the shortsightedness of some of the panel members about robben. Did they not see Brazil had 4 beasts in the back, kicking and hitting at evevrything that moves… Maybe watch the game again, as I did and see that Robben was fauled more than 5 times, sometimes hardly perceptible, and very cunningly!
    Gongrats to robben who made the maximum of the fouls commited on him.

  11. All that talk about Holland playing casual show some members dont understand the psychology of winning or losing. Eveybody must understand that 2 yrs ago at the european chamionships holland beat the world champions and runners up, and then lost, an incredible traumatic experience. You must understand that Van Marwijk is determined not to be the loser once again, at what ever cost, including playing beautiful games which english and americans love so much to see, but their own teams are incapable of playing.

  12. Adrian,

    In reference to all of the play acting and in support of the podcast panel, here’s what Gareth Wheeler of the Toronto Sun had to say about the sad state of play acting in the World Cup:

    “The tipping point was the Brazil-Netherlands quarterfinal. The match official lost control of the game because of the play-acting. It wasn’t entirely his fault. Once again, blame the players for resorting to desperate tactics. The worst of the worst was Dutch winger Arjen Robben. He’s a pleasure to watch, except when he’s diving and hitting the ground. Earning the call is one thing. Hurting the integrity of the game is another.

    Robben’s actions have been deplorable and not suited toward any player with any self-respect. His cheating — and I’ll call it cheating — is nauseating for a player among the brightest talents in the tournament. Yet his flopping leaves a sour taste, not only for the non-soccer fan but also the devoted supporter. Brazil’s Felipe Melo certainly deserved a red card for his stamp, but Robben’s dishonesty deserves likewise.

    Stand up and play the game the way it’s meant to be played. Face up against your opponent and win one-on-one battles. For a lack of a better term, play the game like a self-respecting man. Anything less is a disservice to the sport and those individuals who had sacrificed so much more to bring integrity to the game.”

    Mind you, I am a big fan of Robben’s football, that is, when he decides to play football, but you may be in the minority on the issues of his pathetic barking and rolling about… But alas, Robben has no monopoly on theatrics in modern day football, which is why I won’t let my children watch it.

  13. Listening to this podcast I still hear people talk about england. Who remembers them? The games they played were painful to see. 10 millionaires who could not pass the ball to eachother over 5 meters.
    WHat happened to england and where are the young players who must undoubtedly be there.

    Why holland beat Brazil; The holland players dont wear tennis shoes as Terry did. How this burnt out person can represent England is still a mystery to me.

  14. Hi steve ,today, watching the game again online I saw again how Robben was always surrounded by 3 or 4 players who made it almost impossible to play normally. Yes he made the most of it but he was touched on almost every time the defenders got near him. Even so he managed to play bastos out of the game and forced other to commit fouls on them. Then he used the same tactics as the bRazilians did themselves all the time. But it was not deplorable as said in the comment. Evevry time robben was running he was attacked physically. It was amazing to see that despite the opposition Robben was still able to flash through now and then, and he was attacked and harmed at least 8 times! Just watch the brazilian defenders and you see they are ruthless and like wild animals, no samba there… On the other hand I thought holland wa s playing elegantly and samba like at the end, beautiful control by van der wiel, and artistic defending by heitinga!
    All the talk about the casual style of holland is amusing. The fact is that van Persie, Sneijder and van de Vaart are not at their best. The team feels this and is falling back on this reliable play because the best players are not in form. It is always a bad sign when Kuyt is the hero of the team cos he is merely a mediocre worker with very low technique and the real talent is with Persie en Sneijder.
    That they managed to get to the semis in spite of the lack of true form of the main players is significant and shows that they are not so bad at all. We are waiting for the fireworks to begin.

  15. BTW good thing you dont let your kids watch, like this you spaired them the gruesome stampping on Robben´s thigh by some butcher called melo, malo or mulo, in my mind mucho malo!

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World Cup 2010 Netherlands-Brazil, Uruguay-Ghana: World Cup Buzz Podcast

The Netherlands have knocked pre-tournament co-favorites Brazil out of the 2010 World Cup, while Uruguay and Ghana upstaged the opening match with a unforgettable, never-should-have-been shootout. To talk about Friday’s two quarterfinal matches as well as preview Saturday’s I was joined by Kartik Krishnaiyer and Laurance McKenna for this edition of the World Cup Buzz Podcast.

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