Saturday, June 19, 2010

Here We Go

Just over one week in, time to look at the World Cup good, the bad and the predictions ...

Good: Slovenia's Charlie Brown shirts, England's failure to get it up on the big stage (twice), Ally McCoist sounding wise and knowledgable alongside the rabidly partisan Martin Tyler, SBS's coverage (it is worth emigrating just to avoid the awful BBC and ITV pundits), German red cards, German penalties being saved, France's blanket for their subs bench, Maradona in a suit and The Guardian's Lego match recreations.

Bad: getting North Korea in the work sweepstakes, the Coca-Cola and Macdonalds adverts every ad-break, Australia's away strip, Australia's home strip, trying to explain the concept of a draw to number one son, Maradona's suit, bad puns about Honda being Japan's engine, Harry Kewell's groin and all the bollocks about watching games in 3D.

Predictions: Still on track for the final (wish I had put money on Argentina).
Group A – France can still qualify, but it looks like Uruguay will accompany Mexico into the knockout stages.
Group B – Again, mathematically Nigeria can still qualify, but at this stage you have to think that it will be Argentina and South Korea.
Group C – I am sticking with England and the USA, but that won't stop me cheering on Slovenia on Wednesday morning.
Group D – Yup, still Germany and Ghana.
Group E – Cameroon and The Netherlands. Check.
Group F – Italy and Paraguay. Check.
Group G – I'd like to see Ivory Coast go through, but suspect that Brazil and Portugal will make it.
Group H – Chile and Switzerland? I just can't see it, I'm afraid. Chile and Spain as predicted.

And the 64 million dollar question: can Australia beat Ghana? I actually think they can. And will. I am still not convinced they can get any points from the Serbia match, but with everyone in the group apart from Australia on three points at the moment who knows what will happen.

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