Thursday, June 22, 2006

U.S.A. eliminated

The U.S. lost to Ghana 2-1, and is therefore eliminated from the 2006 World Cup. Lisa, Meg, and I watched the game at the Phoenix Landing, which was packed with rowdy Team USA fans playing hooky from work. The U.S. fell behind early, when the one player on the team I can't stand, Claudio Reyna (he is such a Peyton Manning- scowling at his teammates whenever he messes up, like it was their fault), screwed up on defense and got the ball stolen from him, leading to a Ghana goal. Although he was carried off on a stretcher, I think the only thing injured was Reyna's ego. The U.S. did have a moment of brilliance, when Clint Dempsey one-timed a beautiful cross from DaMarcus Beasley into the back of the net to tie the game. However, the momentum was destroyed when a lousy call against American defender Oguchi Onyewu gave Ghana a penalty kick, which they scored. Replays demonstrated that Onyemu made a clean play for the ball and the slight contact with the opposing player was purely incidental, but once the referee makes the call, nothing can be done. During the second half, the United States had several scoring opportunities (like McBride's header that hit the post), but were unable to score. Ghana picked up some bad habits from Italy and did quite a bit of acting on the field, much to the annoyance of the American fans. For the next World Cup, I hope FIFA comes up with a way to cut down on the time-wasting fake injury theatrics; it's very unbecoming to the sport. Better luck in 2010, U.S.A.

Brazil finally played their joga bonito today, beating Japan 4-1. I was almost ready to jump on the Argentina bandwagon, but yesterday's 0-0 tie against the Netherlands was a snoozer, so I think I'm sticking with Brazil now that the U.S. is out of the running.


Kim said...

In hockey they have an unsportsmanlike diving call that is supposed to cut down on theatrics.

What I don't understand is whenever they make that call (at least in college hockey), they always also call the other guy for tripping or something. If the ref thought the dude was diving, how could someone have tripped him?

eileen said...

Yeah, that's dumb. Either the guy who fell is faking it, or the other guy tripped him, not both.

Kevin said...

That Ghana game sucked. That penalty was such BS and it's bad for the game. The Ghana team was diving all over the place. One of the guys got bumped on the torso and then went down grabbing his shin AND his foot (couldn't decide which fake injury to go for)! I try to support the African sides, but I can't support teams that play like that. Italy and Ghana are made for each other. But the fact is the US simply didn't show up to play in this World Cup and didn't deserve to get through to the next round. Hopefully Freddy Adu can deliver in South Africa in 2010!

LisaKate said...

I agree that the US did not deserve to move on for their overall poor play. But yeah MAN were the theatrics ridiculous!!

Reyna announced his retirement today, Eileen, so that should please you and the rest of the nation. He SO screwed up!!

Check this out to make you all feel better (Always Look on the bright side of life!)