The Games of Someone Else's Lives

Wait, there are entire nations who don't think the England-US game is the most important game of the tournament? I find this troubling.

I thought about calling this one "Group B for Bawful," but I think if someone had told Nigeria when the game actually started we could have had a classic.

We certainly had a goalkeeping classic. Vincent Eneyama kept Argentina from putting up a basketball score. The only goal was from a hilarious corner kick defense. Joseph Yobo should get an assist. At least wave at Heinze as he goes by you, Joseph. I still feel bad for Efon Ekoku - first he botches the offside call, then he gets to be a Nigeria homer. When Adrian Healey asked him who he thought would win between England and the US, I seriously thought he'd say "I don't give a crap! I got my own team, and they're stinking it up!"

Maybe there's something to this whole ball nonsense, because you never saw such awful passing. I thought I was watching the Wiz and the Crew in 1996.

And maybe there's something to this whole nerves nonsense - but I think I read somewhere that Diego Milito has played in big games at some point. Remind me to Google his name so I can double-check.

So once Argentina settles down and gains confidence, they will convert those chances and march grandly to the final. Yeah, because they have such a calming influence running the show.

But it does look like Argentina will get out of the group. Since Greece looks like they're going to be an ATM for points.

When Lee Jung-soo scored thanks to, surprise, lousy corner kick defense, I thought it was the best thing possible - now Greece would be forced to go forward, and we'd see an exciting game.

Well, to be fair, it was exciting. But all I could think about was what a Eurocentric racist I was for assuming that just because Greece won their group with a strong defense, they would have a strong defense for the World Cup. As an American, Park Ji-sung goals make me very happy. But as a fan, I'm sort of wondering at what point Otto Rehhagel coached weak square passes across the middle in the defensive third.

And I should really have not written off Korea - the good Korea - and I should have realized that if Park Ji-sung is still around, there might be a reason for that. Well, I thought the reason was "There's no one better" (cf., American forwards, 1998 and 2006).

So both Nigeria and Argentina should also roll Greece, so Korea is the wild card here. (Contrary to my bracket, which already lies in ruins. What is this, NCAA basketball?) The stats for teams who win their first game advancing to the next round are really daunting - roughly nine out of ten since the field expanded to 32. But it's nowhere near certain - ask the Czech Republic. These games could go all over the place. Including the Greece games, at least for comedy value.

So speaking of other games - Beau Dure of Sports Myriad has asked me to tag along for tomorrow morning's Serbia-Ghana game. Stop on by! It should be hilarious. Beau isn't ONLY doing the Serbia-Ghana game, of course - he's doing pretty much every game, with a rotating cast of sidekicks. I'm going to try not to make any genocide jokes, but I make no promises.