World Cup Disappointments

Despite being entertained overall and enjoying some matches, there have been some huge disappointments with this year’s world cup. Firstly, some of the referees have been terrible. Take the Ukraine – Tunisia match. Not only did Tunisia carry the bulk of the play, but with 25m left to play a Ukranian handled the ball in the box. No call. Then about 2 minutes later Shevkenkov tripped over himself in the box and was awarded a penalty. Ukraine wins 1-0. Then there was the Dutch-Portuguese game…. Not much needs to be said about that one.

Secondly, there have been some terrible performances from teams that you would expect better from. England comes to mind. They haven’t played one good game yet, and they are in the quarter-finals. Other under-performing teams include the Netherlands, France, and Sweden.

The biggest problem in mind is that there are too many teams in this competition. Here are some revised numbers for qualifiers:
Concacaf: let’s face it, all the teams suck except for Mexico. I guess concacaf needs to send two teams though.
Asia: they pretty much suck. Saudi Arabia? Iran? Japan? Give them two places, not four.
Concacaf and Asia can then play-off for one more spot.
Africa: poor bastards. In a continent that just can’t get it right, it’s not surprising that great talent often leads nowhere. Give them 3 teams because they need something to brighten their day. And they usually play entertaining football
South America: wow, check out that gap in talent between the top two teams and the bottom two. Maybe this year is an anomaly. Give them 3 places
Europe: Europe needs a shakeup. No-one in the world wants to see Croatia, Serbia and Ukraine play. I would suggest that placings are decided on wins and goals, not goal difference. Give Europe 12 places, and make them fight a bit harder to get in.
Host nation gets one team.

I guess that leaves just 24 teams. Perfect.

5 comments on “World Cup Disappointments

  1. Anyone who knows me, knows that I know (that’s a lot of knows)shit about soccer, but here is my two cents. I have been hearing about how terrible England has been playing and Michael Owen is hurt, but yet they find them selves into the final 8. Could it be that they are playing to the level of their competition and are about ready to step it up and win this whole thing. Man those will be some great riots.

    It seems that 100% of the people who have participated in your poll seem to think like me…coincidence?

  2. 24 is not perfect. It means flaky round robins or first round byes. 16 or 32 it has to be; you have to be able to divide the number by 2 a bunch of times and wind up with an answer of 1. Plus, inclusion is not a bad thing. The Cup would be just fine with weak teams, if they weren’t somehow accompanied by weak officials. And don’t berate Africa – without inclusion you wouldn’t get Ghana, who have been good to watch and whom also have suffered from bad officiating.

    Go back to work.

  3. Yes, there were some bad calls, and there will be more. That’s a part of soccer that all of us part-time enthusiasts are reminded of every world cup. Hand of God etc. Running time and no instant replay re-calls are a couple of things that make soccer a non-Americanized game and I’m happier for it.

    Yes, some teams have hot or cold streaks depending upon a variety of factors. I thought France sucked and Spain was going to run rough-shod over them, but the opposite occurred. Again, a part of the game. Brazil has been barely getting by in every game so far, but everyone still knows that they are the team to beat (I was begging for a goal by Ghana in the first half last night but turned the TV off in disgust after Brazil got their second).

    Cut down on the number of teams from lower talent areas such as Asia and N.America? Sure, and why not cut it to 16 and call it the UEFA Euro?

    Those are my two bits. Anyway, I chose Holland to win it all and they let me down (again). Now I have to burn all my orange shirts…again.

  4. I chose Holland to win too, and I’ll lose $20 because of those freaky deaky dutch. As for Africa, I’m a big fan of both African soccer teams and African music. I’ve noted over the years that Africa usually sends 2 good teams and 2 fillers. That’s why I really think that the last 2 African slots should be allocated to African bands and they can give concerts in the large soccer stadiums. Wouldn’t that be better than seeing Ukraine play Tunisia?

    What’s the deal though? Is the World Cup a tournament that showcases the best soccer in the world, or is it a showcase of world soccer?

  5. Well, at this stage it’s pretty much the Euro anyway..haha

    Brazil and England getting beat has almost closed out the 24 person pool I’m doing here in Korea. One person has Italy winning but other than that all the predictions for winner have been knocked out. England/Portugal was an exciting game, eh? I didn’t watch France/Brazil b/c it was on too late.

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