Saturday, June 19, 2010

Netherlands grab win and Australia draw with Ghana

Two matches which weren't as exciting as I expected them to be, especially the Netherlands match, but I look forward to seeing Cameroon play Denmark later today.

June 19, 2010 - Durban, SOUTH AFRICA - epa02211108 The Netherlands Wesley Sneijder (L) scores against Japan during the FIFA World Cup 2010 group E preliminary round match between Netherlands and Japan at the Durban stadium, Durban, South Africa, 19 June 2010.
Netherlands - Japan

In this match, the Dutch showed a bit more fire and movement than the last match they played against Denmark, we saw more movement from all the players as they kept possession like few can. Little by little we also saw Japan emerge a bit, but nothing truly substantial, Honda was isolated and had trouble with the Dutch back-line. It was quite the dead-lock in the first half, although they had the majority of the possession, the Netherlands were unable to create anything thanks to Japan's good defending all over the field.

In the second half, the Netherlands came out with more conviction, and in the 53rd, they found the goal which broke the stalemate. It was Inter Milan's star midfielder Wesley Sneijder who drove the ball at Kawashima who just couldn't hold the shot as it bounced into the back of his net.

The rest of the second half was Japan pilling on the pressure creating plenty of opportunities, but in the end, the Netherlands were able to hold them off and take another three points rather unconvincingly, but it's the results that matter.

June 19, 2010 - Rustenburg, S  dafrika - epa02211354 Australia's Harry Kewell (C) is booked with the red card by Italian referee Roberto Rosetti as his teammate Lucas Neill argues during the 2010 FIFA World Cup group D match between Ghana and Australia at the Royal Bafokeng Stadium in Rustenburg, South Africa, 19 June 2010.
Ghana - Australia

Things began well for Australia, they seemed very convinced and determined as they went out without their star player, Tim Cahill, because of his sending off last match against Germany. It was Harry Kewell who took Cahill's place up front, and it seemed like he had a very positive effect on the team. Australia scored in the 12th minute, Bresciano hit a free kick which Wigan's 4th goal-keeper Kingson couldn't contain, Holman followed up to give Australia the lead.

While things seemed all well for Australia, they suddenly turned into another terrible scenario in the 24th minute as Ghana had the ball in their penalty area. Then Harry Kewell who was on the Australian goal-line was hit by a shot, first on the chest and then on the arm, producing a direct red card for himself, and a penalty for Ghana.

Ghana's Asamoah Gyan (3) celebrates his goal from a penalty kick during the 2010 World Cup Group D soccer match against Australia at Royal Bafokeng stadium in Rustenburg June 19, 2010. REUTERS/Christian Charisius (SOUTH AFRICA - Tags: SPORT SOCCER WORLD CUP)The decision was harsh, but Roberto Rosetti the prestigious Italian referee had few doubts as the Australian players pointed at the large TV screen for proof that the arm was attached to the body. It was Gyan who converted the penalty, just like he did against Serbia to give his side the equalizer.

But the second half was different than what we might've expected, instead of opportunities for Ghana, we saw opportunities for a very determined Australia. Wilkshire was unable to score 1 on 1, and Kennedy had a great chance to score from a rebound but he somehow missed the ball.

The match ended 1-1 giving both sides a bitter-tasting point.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts with Thumbnails