Jorge Larrionda strikes again!

June 27, 2010

Do we have a new worst call of the World Cup? Yes, Virginia, perhaps we do. England gets victimized by error-prone ref Jorge Larrionda.

In case that link dies, here’s another:

I really don’t understand why Jorge Larrionda continues to get games from FIFA. And yes, certainly his linesman share quite a bit of the blame. But before the replay, I was screaming, “goooooal, wait…what? No way that wasn’t a goal.” How the refs could miss that is beyond me. As the guy just said on Argentine TV “To not call that a goal, it’s not that the refs don’t know anything about reffing. It’s that they don’t know anything about football.”

It goes without saying that that call massively changed the course of the game. With a correct call, it’s 2-2 and Germany is going to find it significantly more difficult to score 2 counter-attack goals to end the game 4-1. One of the least deserving 4-1 results I’ve seen in awhile.


Ivory Coast v Portugal

June 15, 2010

Who knew Ivory Coast would “fall apart” the moment Didier Drogba was introduced as a substitute?  Until that point, Ivory Coast had the better of the scoreless draw.  Afterwards, Portugal had the better of the game.

And Jorge Larrionda?  Well, he didn’t give out any stupid red cards or penalties, so while he made a number of strange calls, and he fell for a couple Cristiano Ronaldo dives… for his standards I think you judge the game a success.

Drogba really should have scored in the first minute of extra time.

Portugal gets North Korea next while Brazil takes on the Ivory Coast.  I think that’s advantage Portugal, because if Brazil wins, they will have already advanced and have a little less motivation against Portugal in their final game.

US v England thoughts

June 12, 2010

1.  If you were to tell me before the game that the US would get a tie out of this game I’d have been satisfied.

2.  I am not satisfied by the result.

3.  Pobrecito, Robert Green.   That’s not the way anyone wants to get a point, even with an unpredictable ball and a wet field.

4.  England had weaknesses, some of which I mentioned in my preview post.  We knew that coming in.   Glen Johnson is better going forward than defending, central defenders haven’t played together much and Terry is slowing down, Lampard and Gerrard don’t link well, lack of an obvious #1 goaltender, who is the second striker, etc.  One of those bit them in the backside quite painfully.  That said, they do have some phenomenal players.

5.  Capello’s starting lineup.  Emile Heskey assisted the England goal, validating Capello’s choice to start him, and surprising me.  I found it surprising, as I’d have started Peter Crouch against the Americans.   And I remarked to my wife as the game started, “I expected to see James in goal.”

6.  Us Yanks could have had a few goals in the air in the first half.

7.  We were extremely lucky to escape with a point, let’s not forget that.   Yes, there was a long stretch of the first half where we played better, as if we were the favorites and England counter-attacking underdogs.  And yes, we could have won the game.  But all in all, football is a capricious game, decided by who takes their chances, and we were significantly luckier than our elder brothers today.

8.  England will overreact, but they still have a good team.  Italy tied us in group stages in 06 and went on to win the Cup.

9.  I thought this was the worst refereed game of the World Cup to this point; fortunately, it was still a reasonable game for the ref.  I disagreed with several calls, and I think England did experience some luck not to get some red cards pulled out.  Still, given that the Brazilian ref has experienced quite a bit of controversy in the past, we are awfully lucky not to get Jorge Larrionda or Valentin Ivanov, who had the worst two refereeing performances of World Cup 2006.   Larrionda may or may not be biased against the US, but he certainly has had bad performances against them.  I like all the Uruguayans I know, but I don’t like his reffing.

10.  Findley as a starter?  I thought to myself as the game started.  Has to be a tactical move, we’re going to be sending it long alot.  And indeed we did.

11.  I’m happy with the point.  It makes us much more likely to advance.   It still wasn’t very satisfying for me though.

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