Tuesday, June 19, 2012


photo by rockcohenvia PhotoRee

More blathering from the Euros:

o How good is Danny Welbeck?  The Manchester United man's backheeled winner against Sweden Friday showed the type of imagination that only the greats can produce -- more commonly known as something from nothing. Theo Walcott's introduction into the action -- and the resulting speed -- may have changed the course of the game, but it was Welbeck's fanciful legwork that finally separated the two sides in a game that was remarkably open for a major championship.  It reminded me of a BPL game -- and that's a good thing.

o For my money, Nani is outshining his more famous countryman and former teammate, a certain Cristiano Ronaldo. While the latter man may have finally found the net against the Netherlands, it was Nani's footwork and passing that really caught the eye for Portugal.  More so than the fleet footed Real Madrid superstar, it's Nani who Portugal can thank for advancing into the knockout round of the tournament.

o Forget the Dutch team, I have a bigger question mark: What the hell happened to Wesley Sneijder?  Formerly one of the top players in the world -- an acccurate description as recently as the last World Cup -- the Dutchman has turned into a pale shadow of his former self, and was a total non-factor in the Netherland's brief cameo in Euro 2012.  The fervent object of desire for many United fans has turned into an object lesson: sometimes the best deals you do are the ones you don't do.

o Spain vs Croatia was largely a Euro-flop from the fans' perspective.  I tuned in hoping to see some attractive, attacking football, and instead was treated to a dour, defensive slim 1-nil victory for the Spanish.  Call me crazy, 'cause Spain won the group, but I don't see them being good enough to win the whole enchilada this time around. 

This is farlieonfootie for June 19.


  1. Spain got lucky in that one. The goal was the result of a handball by Iniesta AND it was offside. Why offside? Because our friend Jesus was definitely offside and definitely involved in the play -- as proven by the pass to him. I'm not sure why there was even any controversy about that. If only Croatia could score on a free header -- those saves by Casillas were aided by the fact that shots were aimed right at him -- then they win. Also, not sure why when playing Spain you don't man mark the passer at midfield after he makes the pass. 90% of the time it goes right back to them. Don't get it.

    -- Luka M.

  2. I read an interesting article about Sneijder somewhere suggesting that his brilliance a couple of years ago -- starting with Inter's run to the Champion's League title -- was a perfect example of Mourinho's genius at spurring good players to be great. That confidence carried over to the World Cup, but has since been in remission. Frankly, I hope he bounces back and is great again. I like the guy. Time will tell. One thing's certain, I never played at that level, so props must be given just for being there once.