World Cup Recap: Day #10
They call football the “beautiful game,” and Brazil always reminds us why. In the premiere match of the day we saw Brazil’s Kaka face off against Didier Drogba. Brazil played just another flawless, well-managed game in which the Ivory Coast had little chance of winning. Oh yeah, other teams played as well…
Paraguay defeats Slovakia, 2-0
Paraguay just continues to be one of the World Cup’s biggest surprises. They handled Slovakia relatively easily, scoring in the 26th minute of the first half and just four minutes before the end of the match. It was Enrique Vera’s goal in the first half that gave Paraguay the lead, as Slovakia just seemed unable to control Paraguay’s relentless attack on the goal. Slovakia won all of the measurables, but when it came to putting shots on goal, Paraguay had great shots while Slovakia challenged the Paraguayan goalkeeper just once.
New Zealand ties Italy, 1-1
This was apparently the most surprising result in recent World Cup history. I never thought that there could be such fervor for a tie, but as it was explained to me, this tie for New Zealand would be the equivalent of #16 seed tying a #1 seed in the NCAA Tournament. How did it happen? Well, New Zealand just played great soccer, assumed the role of aggressor and got a goal in the 7th minute of the match. Italy would respond later after earning a penalty kick for “favorable” foul call in the penalty box. Vincenzo Iaquinta would knock that in, and the rest of the game played out without another goal, despite Italy earning 14 corner kicks.
Brazil defeats Ivory Coast, 3-1
Well, we were hoping that this matchup would give us the scintillating offense that these two teams’ stars usually provide. However, it was Luis Pablano for Brazil that stole the show with two goals in a row, which put Brazil up 2-0. Luis Fabiano’s first goal came off a tight through-pass in the box, and he put the ball right by the goal with power to give Brazil the lead in the 25th minute of the match. Fabiano would score again in the 49th minute, and Brazil’s Elano would make it 3-0 in the 61st minute. The Ivory Coat did get a goal from their superstar Didier Drogba in the 78th minute. And Kaka made the headlines for the wrong reasons, as he got a questionable red card that will cause him to miss Brazil’s final qualifying round game of the World Cup.
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