World Cup 2018 Russia

(El Topo) #161

I always will support fight for Portugal in every thing, no matter the regime in command or against who, like my father did before me.

Regarding the game, in the end the most experience team won, strangely with their best player doing a medíocre game. England missed what Sir Bobby Robson called “killer Instinct”, I do believe as a team they have a brilliant future. England is one of those teams that plays whithout a big name (in the sense of a Ronaldo a Messi or a Griezmann), but as a all they are a very solid block, but in these big games you have to believe more in victory than the other team.

I hope Cratian can beat France, like Portugal did in the Euro, but France improved a lot since then, I got to recognized they are best team in the tournament so far.

(titoli) #162

Actually, although referee made several mistakes against England (I guess Perisic’s goal could have been disallowed because of the raised foot, but referees usually don’t blow that), the worst mistake was against Croatia in the last minute of the first half: Lovren was clearly held with two hands during corner, it was a penalty…

(Phil H) #163

Well done Croatia. England dominated the first half but from then on were always on the back foot and the better team won on the night.

I come out of this, like most Englishmen I think, feeling that our team did us and themselves proud. They weren’t fancied half as much as many of our previous squads but showed they have something about them. The key thing was they looked like a united group who gave their very best and that is all we ever ask of our team.

(scherpschutter) #164

True, that was a penalty. I think this ref was a disgrace, he made lots of stupid decisions and destroyed the flow of the game on several occasions (by not applying the advantage rule). Apart from all this he looked very arrogant, which is never a good thing for a referee.

(Wilco Vedder) #165

But in this tournament the referee is backed by the VAR (video assistent referee). I have not seen the game but if there was indeed a penalty they would have intervene.

(scherpschutter) #166

Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t, that’s the whole issue
I have nothing against a VAR, but they need to be consistent and I haven’t seen any conistency on this point.

(titoli) #167

I think in the first half there was a lot of space for counter attacks on both sides, there was a lot of space between lines and lots of long balls. England could have scored the 2nd goal if Sterling managed to escape in one of his runs. Croatia was applying very strong pressure up front, even in first half ball was forced back to Pickford at least 10 times and you could almost smell that some mistake is in the air (however, Pickford was great for the whole game). The pressure that the Croatian forwards and midfielders applied was the key, and after the Perisic’s goal it was only one team on the pitch. Young England team started to panick and lose the ball very early. Referee was bad.

This English team should have bright future in front of them.

(The Man With a Name) #168

I really hope England can improve. I’m proud of them.

(Asa) #169

I know many would suggest today’s third-place playoff is a dead match but I think there’s still quite a lot at stake for England. For me, it’s the difference between them taking something from this tournament about which we can be justifiably proud if they beat Belgium, or having had a good-not-great tournament blessed with a lot of luck in the draw and largely performing to expectation albeit with a disappointing exit to slightly lower-ranked opposition if they don’t. That this side have done better than any other England side in the previous six World Cup campaigns is as much - if not more - down to England’s frequent underperformances in years gone by as to any heroics this time around.

This time, England - ranked 12 by FIFA going into the World Cup - have so far had decent wins against the 21st and 24th ranked sides, thrashed the 55th ranked side, scraped past the 16th ranked side, but also lost to the number 3 team on Earth and crashed out to the world no. 20 side. Their progression was helped significantly by the drawing of the groups which gave them a gilt-edged chance at successfully negotiating the first round and a guarantee of avoiding any truly top teams in the second. Had Germany not f*cked up as spectacularly as they did they’d likely have faced them in the quarters. So, for me, this second crack at the Belgians represents their last opportunity on this stage to show that all of that fortune was neither here nor there, just a matter of England only being able to beat what’s put in front of them, and that this team really does have what it takes after all. That would be a much brighter note on which to return home, I think. Lose, and they’ll have a less-than 60% win ratio for the tournament (and a 0% ratio against higher-ranked opposition). Okay I suppose but not great by any measure, other than by England’s dismal recent World Cup form since 1990 of course.

Either way, I’m still optimistic for England’s chances of being genuine contenders at Euro 2020 (where iirc I think we’ll be hosting the final and maybe even the semis?).

(scherpschutter) #170


In relation to the game: I have no idea how both teams will approach the game. Personally i don’t care who wins, i supported both Belgium and England and they both did well. Both most probably hoped for more once they reached the semis, but in all honesty that French team was stronger (especially smarter) and I also think that itit was a bit to soon for this young English team to go all the way. Their time will come. For many Belgium players it’ll be the end of the line. maybe players like Kompany, Verthongen, Witsel, Fellaini, Mertens and Anderweirelt will play on Euro 2020, but within four years Kompany will be 36, Verthongen 35, Witsel 33, Fellaini 34, Mertens 35 and Anderweirelt 33. It’ll be their last performance on a world cup stage.

(Asa) #171

Well, there we are. In finishing fourth, England become the third team in this tournament (after Egypt and Panama) to lose three matches. So, they kind-of came third in the end, didn’t they? :slightly_smiling_face:

Congratulations to België. Considerably better team on the day (full disclosure: I watched the first half entirely but only fleetingly glimpsed at the second whilst mostly enjoying a Godzilla movie).

(scherpschutter) #172

In the second half England were the better team for quite a while. in the final ten minutes Belgium took over the initiative again

(Phil H) #173

i think what we learned in terms of the England team is that they have promise but are still a long way short of being world class. We will need a major step up in quality in the final third if we are to be serious contenders for the Euros. We will also need to learn how to effectively move the ball quicker and more decisively. That, for me was the difference between England and the best sides in this tournament. France, Belgium and Croatia. All have real quality going forward and with their final ball but also are capable of passing quickly and decisively. England had far too much possession which went nowhere and gave good opposition too much time to organise against them.

(El Topo) #174

Great choice of music for the world cup final show

GBU main theme from the master

(El Topo) #175

France makes one shot at goal during the first half, and is wining by two

(Asa) #176


(The Man With a Name) #177

Croatia was the better team tonight but congratulations to France!

(scherpschutter) #178

2006: Italy
2010: Spain
2014: Germany
2018: France

The times that we alternately had a South-American and a European champion seem over. The European dominance becomes even clearer when you look at the top 3:

2006: 1. Italy - 2. France - 3. Germany
2010: 1. Spain - 2. Holland - 3. Germany
2014: 1. Germany - 2. Argentina - 3. Holland
2018: 1. France - 2. Croatia 3. Belgium

So Argentina is the only non-European nation winning a medal since 2002 (when Brazil became world champion)

Some commentators have sustained in the past few days that the good results of teams like France and Belgium, with their multi-ethnic selections, are a triumph of the multicultural society. That’s one way of looking at it, but you could also call it a triumph of colonial history, p. 2: players like Mbappe, Umtiti, Pogba, Kanté, Tolisso, Varane, Fellaini, Lukaku, Kompany, Chadli and many others have foreign (in most cases African) roots, and could have played for African nations as well, but they were asked by and chose to play for France/Belgium. We take the best football players and leave the lesser players to the Africans. And at the same time the success of our national, multi-ethnic team won’t do anything for the millions of young immigrants in the so-called ‘hell-holes’ of Nanterre or Molenbeek

(El Topo) #179

Yes in Portugal is the same, I watch that in first hand when I take my son to pratice and games, some of those kids from the suburb Lisbon regions most with African roots, took football a lot more serious than school, their parents work to buy football gear not books.
Actually my kid improves a lot playing in that cenario, he played twice with Sporting, and those kids with only 6 or 7 years old play like if there’s no tomorow…

Congratulations to France, they were the best team of the tournment, I just think the best player should have been Hazard, Modric is a fantastic player but he wasn’t in the best shape during the semis and the final

(scherpschutter) #180

I can live with Modric. Hazard wasn’t in the best shape during the semi-final (the most important game) either. Griezmann and Mbappé would’ve been possible choices as well, but all four had ups and downs. In my opinion Griezmann is the most complete of the four: you hardly ever see him giving a good header, but otherwise he is good at virtually ever aspect of the game: he’s smart, has great technical skills, has a great pass & shot, is fast and lethal in front of the goal. But he wasn’t at his very best in some games either so again, I can live with Modric.

No doubt that Courtois was the best goal keeper, with lloris as a good second.