In the second of his columns on the winners and losers of the day from the World Cup, Dave Hanratty aims his sights at Robert Green and co.
Torn apart after five minutes, it looked like it was going to be a very long night for the Americans, but a combination of their determination and Rob Green’s stunning incompetence saw them deservedly take a point from proceedings. Tim Howard, Oguchi Onyewu and Landon Donovan stood out in a team that grew in confidence as the game went on. Solid but not spectacular, they should advance from the group with little difficulty.
Often pigeonholed as “workmanlike” and often dismissed in turn, the South Koreans combined their impressive workrate with skill and flair, cruising to an easy two nil victory over a pathetic Greece side. The scoreline flattered the 2004 European champions and in truth really should have been much more. South Korea are out to prove that their semi-final appearance in 2002 was no fluke, and while that might be a touch optimistic, they should not be underestimated.
Gabriel Heinze’s header on six minutes seemed to invite the floodgates to open. Were it not for the heroics of Nigerian goalkeeper Vincent Enyeama, it could have been an embarrassing day for the African side. While Enyeama won his personal battle with Lionel Messi, it was Maradona’s men who won the war, although they will need to produce a better performance against more credible opposition.
“When I looked at the teamsheet I had to ask if it was THE Veron!”. An all expenses paid trip to the World Cup and an easy commentary gig without doing any homework. Good job Mick.
It would be tragic if it wasn’t so funny.
Whether or not Milner’s 30th minute substitution was down to illness or a fear that he may get sent off, the possibly Man City-bound midfielder was given a huge opportunity and promptly blew it.
You get the feeling that they would be content to suffocate teams to 0-0 draws until the end of time. Thankfully the South Koreans were able to find away around their disgusting anti-football tactics.
Hats off once again to Peter Drury of ITV for coming out with faux-xenophobic rhetoric. Remarking on the “bench full of Kims” wasn’t enough for the gormless commentator. On half-time he declared that it was “a walk in the PARK” for South Korea. Because Park is a common Korean surname you see? Genius.
NB: I didn’t see ITV’s coverage of the England/USA game, so if anybody can shed some light on what I missed, feel free to add a comment.