June 11, 2002

Defending champs France bounced in the first round,: losing all three matches without ever scoring a single goal- unless I'm mistaken, something that's never happened before (Brazil left with one win in '66, the closest I can think of). In related news, rookie sensation Senegal falters in the second half but still advances as the runner-up in Group A with an exciting 3-3 draw over Uruguay, despite that faked dive by the Uruguayan in the late minutes to set up the tying penalty kick.

posted by hincandenza to soccer at 03:39 AM - 18 comments

France draw 0-0 against Uruguay in the second match

posted by Zhu-De Loves Orchids at 03:58 AM on June 11, 2002

Italy also failed to reach the second round in 1950. Since they had to wait 12 years to defend their title, I think we can forgive them. Both Brazil in 1966 and Italy in 1950 managed to win a game, so this is the worst performance ever by a defending champion. If England and Sweden can qualify from Group F, that really opens up that side of the draw with the two pre-tournament favourites out. Brazil may find their path to the final clear. "rookie sensation Senegal", hehe. Americanisms like that, "goaltender", "offsides" and "cleats" are so cute...

posted by salmacis at 04:36 AM on June 11, 2002

Where on earth did the word cleats come from? Uruguay could have won if Morales hadn't missed that free header from 4 yards. Muppet. Forlan's goal was very, very sweet though - shame he'll never, ever score for Manchester United. And to think we were worrying about facing France if we came runners up in the group.. Good on Denmark and Senegal though, good organisation and counterattacking from the Danes, and entertaining stuff from the Senegalese (at least there's one French speaking nation in the next round - I wonder if Vieira could get a transfer? :)

posted by Mossy at 04:50 AM on June 11, 2002

If England and Sweden can qualify from Group F, that really opens up that side of the draw with the two pre-tournament favourites out. Brazil may find their path to the final clear Jeez salmacis, way to slag off our national team mate. England can beat any team in the world on our day, and Brazil are no exception. Let's just get the Nigeria game over first though.

posted by squealy at 05:02 AM on June 11, 2002

C'mon squealy, can you really see England in the World Cup Final? No, thought not. I still have difficulty seeing England in the second round, but I'm a born pessimist. A lifetime of supporting West Bromwich Albion can do that to a person!

posted by salmacis at 05:42 AM on June 11, 2002

Mossy: Forlan's already scored for united hasn't he? I thought he got a penalty. I'd be happy to be corrected though. I can see England in the world cup final. Between the ages of six and ten I saw them in the world cup final almost every night. Losing 2-1 in the style made popular by Bayern Munich against Man U in the European cup final a few years back. In many ways I don't want to see them in it again in case the same thing happens in real life.

posted by nedrichards at 07:04 AM on June 11, 2002

After doing something I never thought I'd do (surf the man utd website, urgh..), here's Forlan's factsheet: 17 appearances, 0 goals. Every time I've seen him in a match, he always misses by about half a foot with great regularity.. England vs Ireland in the World Cup final - come on everyone, believe :)

posted by Mossy at 07:24 AM on June 11, 2002

I'll settle for England-USA, Mossy!

posted by salmacis at 08:29 AM on June 11, 2002

France draw 0-0 against Uruguay in the second match See, that's my newbie American mind dealing with soccer- where every game, as they say, ends in a tie. I should have said, "without winning a single match", but to an American sports fan by nature, "not winning" is the same as "losing".

posted by hincandenza at 09:29 AM on June 11, 2002

with regards to that equalizing penalty, take a closer look at the lead up to the first senegal goal... forlan's strike was a cracker! what a shame he hasn't been able to reproduce that sort of form for man u :) all in all, what a great night of football! i even made it out to the pub (with a nasty cold, after an equally nasty long weeekend) to drink a pint or 7 of guinness and sing ireland into the next round with the draw the way it is, the upsets coming thick and fast, and the england team finally looking like a team - i can easily see them in the final - i'm certainly looking foward to the next couple of rounds!

posted by sawks at 09:41 AM on June 11, 2002

hincandenza: As much as I like the Senegalese team, I think Diouf dived, too. That first penalty looked like a freebie. Diouf never seemed to make any contact with the goalkeeper. Anyway, I'm glad to see they're through. Those final 3 minutes were harrowing. Datta really used his head (heh) when he blocked that last Uruguayan cannon-shot, and Morales will be kicking himself for missing the follow-up header in front of goal with the goalkeeper on the ground. Senegal v Brazil? Senegal for the Cup?

posted by worldcup2002 at 09:48 AM on June 11, 2002

The Danes wax sympathetic...

posted by adampsyche at 10:14 AM on June 11, 2002

salmacis: nah of course I can't see England in the World Cup Final. I too have my doubts whether we'll progress - pessimistic Birmingham City fan attitude. However, the way the big teams are struggling you never know. Don't worry, be happy :-)

posted by squealy at 11:32 AM on June 11, 2002

Looks to me like Brazil have the best shot now, but I think England can at least make the semis.

posted by kafkaesque at 11:43 AM on June 11, 2002

I'm surprised nobody's mentioned Germany (not that I support them) or Spain or Italy. Argentina's on the ropes, but those three have dominated their groups. I still would like to see a Brazil v Senegal matchup. Very open, fast, and flowing attacking soccer.

posted by worldcup2002 at 02:09 PM on June 11, 2002

I had 10 quid on Spain before the tournament started. I used the scientific method of trusting my gut instinct as this is the year of the underachiever, (shit, better get a tenner on Rusedski for Wimbledon, an underachieving Canadian?, money in the bank). Brazils form was woeful coming into the competition but they have looked good since, I do not believe they can sustain that level of performance though. If Argentina get through they will definitely be a threat, they had the best form of all coming into it and have had a very loud wake up call. The question is whether they have the humility to listen to it, I think perhaps not judging by some of their comments since Friday. Germany looked pretty crap today and won't go much further. Denmark, despite also having awesome pre tournament form just aren't good enough, neither are Sweden. The thing is wide open and completely unpredictable but I stick with my initial theory that Spain will beat England in the final. I feel I must confess at this point that I am bottom of every fifa pick em league I entered. Mind you only someone who knows nothing could have got half these games right. Four years ago France celebrated their tolerant multi racial society as much as their world cup win and were not slow in letting the world know about it. A little ironic then that they should perform so dismally in the year that the right has enjoyed a resurgence. Let this be a lesson for racists everywhere; it demotivates your footballers, don't do it.

posted by Fat Buddha at 03:53 PM on June 11, 2002

shit, better get a tenner on Rusedski for Wimbledon, an underachieving Canadian?, money in the bank Actually, I think Rusedski disavowed us Canucks a while past; I seem to recall some brouhaha when he came back here to Montreal to play in the Canadian Open some time ago. But I could be wrong. Back on topic: I'm surprised there's been no mention yet of the Portugese. Despite the US match, they've been in good form, and would have potted six goals v Poland if the pitch hadn't been a skating rink. Don't count them out...

posted by Cap'n Swing at 06:00 PM on June 11, 2002

The problem with Portugal is that I suspect many neutrals would want a result that allows them and South Korea to qualify. (Sorry, Americans.) And it's a shame that perhaps two or three of the eight groups will have rather, um, undeserving second qualifiers -- I'm thinking of Spain and Brazil's groups respectively here -- when there are other groups with undeserving departees. Anyway, hincandenza: the France-Uruguay 0-0 was, if anything, a demonstration that low- or no-scoring draws in the groups can be just as compelling as a game that ends in a victory for one side. And 3-3s are usually crackers.

posted by etagloh at 06:03 AM on June 12, 2002

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