July 04, 2010

Four Days Until Germany Meets Spain: Wednesday's Germany-Spain World Cup semifinal has several intriguing storylines, including Thomas Mueller's suspension for yellow cards. Little heralded coach Joachim Loew has built a team with an average age of 25 -- one of the tournament's youngest -- into a creative juggernaut. For Spain, striker David Villa is closing in on the all-time goals record for his country, scoring 42 in 62 games.

posted by rcade to soccer at 06:07 PM - 20 comments

And one more from Klose will leave him tied for first all-time.

posted by yerfatma at 06:39 PM on July 04, 2010

Jogi and Hans-Dieter in a way that you've not seen before.

posted by owlhouse at 07:44 PM on July 04, 2010

Still can't quite believe Klose is closing in on that record - especially given that he couldn't have scored in a brothel with a blank cheque for most of this season. There's something appealing to me about the German team this time (as there was last time actually); they play very fast, attacking football, the object of which is to put the ball in the net as often as possible. Spain on the other hand look increasingly cut from the same cloth as this year's Barcelona team; lots of pretty passing and movement, but the end product doesn't match. I also like to think about Hitler (bear with me). I like to think about how he'd feel about the German team reflecting the modern multi-cultural Germany containing a couple of Poles, a Turk, a Tunisian a Ghanian...

I predict Germany to nick one early and Spain to lose their discipline (as they did against Paraguay a bit) and shape and subsequently to ship 3 more - Germany win 4-1 and go on to face Holland (who will beat Uruguay 2-0 in the other semi) in the final.

(Owly: that's just made for a great start to the week - thanks!)

posted by JJ at 04:00 AM on July 05, 2010

I just looked up what Joachim Low really looks like. OMG BLAGOJEVICH HAIR.

posted by ursus_comiter at 06:45 AM on July 05, 2010

And what's with SpoFi not being able to handle an umlaut?

posted by ursus_comiter at 06:46 AM on July 05, 2010

"And what's with SpoFi not being able to handle an umlaut?"

Much like the Euro and Pound Sterling symbols, umlauts are only used by dirty communists and so they're not supported.

Don't try any of those squiggly lines the French like so much either.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 08:00 AM on July 05, 2010

I need to make those foreign chicken scratches possible here.

posted by rcade at 10:09 AM on July 05, 2010

There's something odd about Mr. Bismarck protesting an umlaut. Next he'll expect us to believe he doesn't need elbow room.

posted by kokaku at 10:20 AM on July 05, 2010

I agree with JJ. Netherlands should come through against Urugauy - but I see a 1-0 game (I think Uruguay plays uber-tight, and gives one up in the second half from a free kick or corner). And it looks like the old definition of soccer is true again:

"Soccer is a game where 22 players fight over a ball and in the end Germany wins."

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 11:26 AM on July 05, 2010

I say Spain are the romantic favorites but, by Marlene's moustache, Germany have been the best team at this Cup. Disciplined organization, smooth movement, ruthless finishing. Everything done with a minimum of fuss. Still, I want to see Spain win, especially with that quick-passing move to create the winner against Paraguay. That's going to be the way to unlock Germany. Viva tiki-taka!

posted by worldcup2002 at 12:59 PM on July 05, 2010

I think Germany may beat Spain, maybe not if del Bosque uses a lineup that gives real width, but either way Netherlands will finally break through to take home the trophy, with Dirk Kuyt making or scoring the deciding goal.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:52 PM on July 05, 2010

I need to make those foreign chicken scratches possible here.

It's really that the Preview mode is different from the post mode; that is, previewing your comment returns the transformed HTML in the comment box, so stuff gets lost. But if you're comfortable going commando-style with no preview, you can write Löw. By writing Löw. And the line-breaks get eaten on preview/ post.

posted by yerfatma at 04:23 PM on July 05, 2010


posted by grum@work at 04:25 PM on July 05, 2010

with Dirk Kuyt making or scoring the deciding goal.

Sure that's not your Liverpool-colored glasses? I feel like they'd be better off not playing him. I agree with JJ that Germany is easy to root for and I hope their success has a greater positive effect on racial relations in Germany than France's "success" did there. But still have the Dutch win.

posted by yerfatma at 04:25 PM on July 05, 2010

I'm rooting for Spain to see David Villa in the final. Germany's a lot more creative than I expected, but Villa has been incredible throughout this tournament. Best player in the world.

posted by rcade at 04:33 PM on July 05, 2010

but Villa has been incredible throughout this tournament. Best player in the world.

And, according to my wife, the most handsome one as well.

posted by grum@work at 04:37 PM on July 05, 2010

The Germans don't like it up 'em. They looked lost when England enjoyed a 5 minute renaissance!

Not sure JJ is being entirely fair on Spain; they have played teams with no real interest in attacking, whereas Germany have played teams with no real talent for defending.

As for toothless Barcelona, they scored 98 goals in the league alone!

posted by Fat Buddha at 04:55 PM on July 05, 2010

Poll for the crowd: 1: Does Torres start for Spain? and 2: Should he?

I'm going with yes, del Bosque starts him, and no, he should probably come on as a sub if he's just going to get yanked off before the hour mark again.

posted by boredom_08 at 04:56 PM on July 05, 2010

Possible theory: "Maybe [Torres'] presence in the side from the start is part of a more complex del Bosque plan about how Spain should win games wear opponents down by keeping the play central and having the immediate Torres-Villa threat, before switching to wider, more fluid approach where Fabregas and Pedro/Silva/Navas can cause problems from different areas."

posted by yerfatma at 05:46 PM on July 05, 2010

Fatty, no, I think plenty of neutrals have praised Kuyt for his performance in the tourney. He works much harder than any of the other Dutch attacking players--unlike Robben he goes back on D every single time the other team has possession (except if its his turn to stay up top) and van der Vaart doesn't offer the same quality of service.

posted by billsaysthis at 12:10 PM on July 06, 2010

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.