FanDuel - WFBC

July 02, 2010

Brazil-Netherlands Kicks Off World Cup Quarterfinals: The Netherlands, described by Yahoo Sports as "one of the best soccer nations never to win a World Cup," face a familiar nemesis in Brazil this morning as the World Cup quarterfinals begin. Brazil beat the Netherlands 3-2 in the 1994 quarterfinals and defeated them on penalties four years later. Uruguay plays Ghana in today's second game.

posted by rcade to soccer at 09:53 AM - 50 comments

That's an astonishing pass from Felipe Melo. Fantastic.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 10:12 AM on July 02

The shot wasn't too bad either. When will Americans develop that kind of finishing talent?

posted by rcade at 10:29 AM on July 02

I love Arjen Robbin's corner kick fakeout attempt. It's like the statue of liberty play in the other football. When it works it's greatness, but when it doesn't you look like an idiot.

posted by rcade at 10:41 AM on July 02

Looks like diving paid off for the Netherlands.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 11:11 AM on July 02

Melo not doing so well for the second goal there.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:11 AM on July 02

Felipe Melo's day goes from bad to worse.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:30 AM on July 02

And commence the evisceration of Dunga.

He's already said he was quitting after the tournament even if they won because of the enmity the Brazilian public has for him, but now they'll be sure to keep him warm on his way out.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 11:51 AM on July 02

Wow. I kind of hate the knock-out stages: even when the team I'm rooting for wins, I feel awful. I wasn't really pulling for either side (I like them both), but figured Brazil had won 5 to a Football Total of 0. And yet I feel a little sick after watching it end. Kaka had a better tournament than he'll be remembered for. Not amazing, but good.

posted by yerfatma at 11:55 AM on July 02

looks like diving paid off for the Netherlands.

I saw a lot of chippy play (elbows to the back, foot to the groin, etc.) by the Brazilians.

posted by cjets at 11:56 AM on July 02

It was a bit 1974 at times in its chippiness. The way that the Brazilians lost the will to win after letting in that soft goal was pretty remarkable, given that the Dutch had barely shown up before then.

posted by etagloh at 12:17 PM on July 02

Brazil really lost its composure in a hurry. It was ridiculous for Melo to intentionally cleat Arjen Robbin in the underside of the knee when he was already down.

As for dives, Brazil has no room to complain given the number of times they resort to it.

The own goal against Melo makes me wonder if that scoring is fair. If a ball was going to find the net even if a defender didn't touch it, should that really be an own goal?

Also, as Melo was being sent off, were the Dutch risking yellow cards themselves by putting their hands on him in an insincere display of sympathy?

posted by rcade at 12:18 PM on July 02

I saw a lot of chippy play (elbows to the back, foot to the groin, etc.) by the Brazilians.

I don't disagree, but the first goal came right after a Netherlands player went to the ground after barely being touched, if at all.

Both teams were diving all over the place, it ended up working out well for one team.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 12:48 PM on July 02

The ref did show yellow to van der Wiel for diving. I liked Efan Ekoku's suggestion that FIFA should make brandishing virtual cards to the ref a yellow-level offense.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:43 PM on July 02

I knew it was a mistake for Robinho to allow himself to be edited into the Nike Cup commercials.

posted by rcade at 02:12 PM on July 02

The message from the Nike commercials is that people who do not foul Ronaldo shall be punished.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:36 PM on July 02

Right up until 10 minutes ago, I had done a wonderful job of avoiding any information about the Brazil/Netherlands game.

I hadn't visited Sportsfilter, avoided all the TVs around the area where I work, and had convinced everyone not to talk about it around me.

Then *pop* into my email box is a message from FIFA.com with the subject line (paraphrased) "Dutch dump Brazil! Netherlands jerseys 15% off!"

Damn it!

posted by grum@work at 02:58 PM on July 02

Ouch.

posted by rcade at 03:02 PM on July 02

SPOILER ALERT: Netherlands won.

posted by yerfatma at 03:31 PM on July 02

Two rocking goals in the Uruguay-Ghana games so far.

Two entertaining quarter finals so far.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 03:54 PM on July 02

Wow, what an end to extra time in the second quarterfinal.

posted by holden at 05:03 PM on July 02

Oh my word. No idea how to feel about that, but what an amazing game. Love the announcers demanding to know what the Uruguayan player was thinking when he stuck a paw on the ball. He was thinking, "Here's our one chance. It's a 1 in a million shot, but it's a shot."

posted by yerfatma at 05:16 PM on July 02

People who take one-step run-ups on penalties need to be kicked in the nuts.

posted by Mr Bismarck at 05:17 PM on July 02

Amazing ending, but I kinda hate the fact that Uruguay advances because of an intentional hand ball at the goal line. Why isn't that a goal instead of a red card and penalty kick?

posted by rcade at 05:18 PM on July 02

Wow. That is all.

And all commentary on cheating aside, the Uruguay keeper made two great saves in the round of penalties.

Also, that last penalty may have been the coldest way to finish a team off I've ever seen.

posted by boredom_08 at 05:19 PM on July 02

I am married to a Brazillian and they are taking this very hard. They're in shock. I am going have some consoling to do.

posted by Atheist at 05:22 PM on July 02

Why isn't that a goal instead of a red card and penalty kick?

Because weird shit happens on penalty kicks. Let's be honest: one of the reasons sports is so fascinating is the chance to see the best at what they do potentially shit themselves on a world stage.

posted by yerfatma at 05:26 PM on July 02

People who take one-step run-ups on penalties need to be kicked in the nuts.

Seconded. Why reduce the number of possibilities and simplify things for the goalie?

posted by yerfatma at 05:28 PM on July 02

Why isn't that a goal instead of a red card and penalty kick?

Why isn't deliberate pass interference in the end zone a touchdown?

80 years since Uruguay won the first World Cup; 40 years since they last made it into a semi-final. Gutting for Ghana, and I'd have loved to see Gyan end the match with that penalty, but so many missed chances came back to haunt them. (And in spite of the ESPN commentators' pooh-poohing, Abreu was clattered down in the box before that.)

Not sure who the Dutch would have picked to face in the semis, but they're probably feeling okay about it.

posted by etagloh at 05:37 PM on July 02

Let's be honest: one of the reasons sports is so fascinating is the chance to see the best at what they do potentially shit themselves on a world stage.

True. You couldn't ask for a finer line between agony and ecstasy than the way Ghana lost.

I've never seen an intentional handball at the goal line before. Always wondered about that.

posted by rcade at 05:50 PM on July 02

What an unsatisfying ending to a brilliant match. Here's hoping the karma kicks in against the Dutch.

posted by tron7 at 06:18 PM on July 02

In my heart of hearts, the handball was so blatant on the part of Uruguay, that I felt it just had to be called a goal. Devastating stuff for Ghana. They had it, then had another chance at it - then still another chance, then nothing.

If I'm Uruguayan, I'm thanking the futbol gods for that one. Feels a bit hollow, though.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 07:26 PM on July 02

Although there's a lot of talk around the web of Suarez being a cheater, breaking the rules for tactical gain and facing the penalty is part of sports. His choices were to lose the game or to commit a handball and have a slim chance not to lose. It was an epic moment, and I can't imagine he'll ever have to buy another beer in his life back in Uruguay.

The Netherlands got some more good luck by not having to face him in the quarters.

posted by rcade at 07:50 PM on July 02

If I'm Uruguayan, I'm thanking the futbol gods for that one. Feels a bit hollow, though.

I thought it was a bit classless for Suarez to be allowed back onto the pitch after the penalty kicks, and then to parade him around (briefly) on one of their shoulders was a bit much.

If there is justice, then the Netherlands will stomp them (5-0?) in the semifinals.

posted by grum@work at 09:41 PM on July 02

I've never seen an intentional handball at the goal line before. Always wondered about that.

Neither has Harry Kewell. And he's still wondering.

Ghana? Ha. Couldn't beat us with ten.

posted by owlhouse at 10:31 PM on July 02

I thought it was a bit classless for Suarez to be allowed back onto the pitch after the penalty kicks, and then to parade him around (briefly) on one of their shoulders was a bit much.

For real. Utterly tasteless.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 10:47 PM on July 02

Feels a bit hollow, though.

Yeah, I don't like the rule. It seems logical to me that if a shot is definitely going in the net it should be a goal. It would be similar to making the penalty for goaltending in basketball two free throws instead of counting the basket (I realize comparing the two sports is a huge stretch and the comparison not perfect for many reasons).

The interference call in football doesn't really work. There's no guarantee, no matter how easy it looks, the receiver will catch the ball.

I mean, for all practical purposes, the game is won at that point. Ball going in, nothing legally can be done about it, then HAND. I guess if I watched more than just the world cup I might see the wisdom.

posted by justgary at 10:53 PM on July 02

Not a stiff enough penalty leads to people intentionally breaking the rules for their own profit.

Please assign to the disaster of your choice.

posted by tron7 at 11:45 PM on July 02

In defense of the referee, it happened so fast, he might not be sure Suarez's arm wasn't in front of his face when it struck.

In any case, Ghana can only blame themselves for failing on 3 of 5 penalty kicks. That sort of failure rate (including that TERRIBLE one-step shot*) should result in a loss.

*Remember how in an earlier post there was the discussion of fixed games? When that player only took one step back for his shot, and then proceeded to shoot it only 3 feet wide of center, it flashed through my mind that something wasn't right. I don't think it was fixed, but if someone were to announce that there WERE players on the Ghanian team on the take, he'd be the first one I'd suspect.

posted by grum@work at 12:42 AM on July 03

It's safe to say it was an intentional hand ball -- it wasn't quick, there was enough time and distance to react to block the ball --but don't expect any changes, such as allowing the referee to credit a goal. Sepp Blatter has enough things to worry about without asking him to multi-task.

posted by jjzucal at 01:16 AM on July 03

I agree with rcade. The guy knew the rules (I'm sure) and did what he had to do and stopped the winning goal. He also gave Ghana a 90+% chance to win the game at the same time. I believe any player, given the moment, would have done the same if he had the chance. Is he a cheater, no, he did it in front of the world and by doing it gave his team an opportunity to win. The penalty was called, he's out for the next game, but the "team" is in. Would you not want him on your team? I would.

posted by gfinsf at 07:50 AM on July 03

I thought it was a bit classless for Suarez to be allowed back onto the pitch after the penalty kicks

What's he supposed to do, feign contrition in the tunnel after his team had a miracle comeback due to his actions? Maybe put on a hair shirt and live in the mountains for the rest of the tournament?

posted by yerfatma at 09:57 AM on July 03

Suarez certainly isn't feigning anything...

posted by Goyoucolts at 12:02 PM on July 03

gfinsf, PK success rate is only around 78% (ESPN did a piece on saving PKs vs. hitting MLB pitching, batters have slightly more success than goalies) and so I agree that penalty for an intentional handball inside the six yard box should be a goal--this is goaltending pure and simple, the ball is going in the net otherwise, whereas an NFL receiver still needs to make the catch.

posted by billsaysthis at 01:05 PM on July 03

Suarez probably should have kept his mouth shut. FIFA may extend his suspension to the final.

posted by rcade at 01:31 PM on July 03

I agree that the rule probably should be an automatic goal, but I'll also credit Suarez for doing what he did. It may have been purely a reflex reaction as opposed to a premeditated one, but either way, he did save his team.

in addition to that rule change, I'd like to see two others:

1) Post-game review to allow rescinding of yellow cards (such as Robbie Findley's "hand ball" yellow card, or Muller's one today), or tacking on yellow cards for obvious diving/overacting (insert Italian reference here).

2) Get rid of offside on corner kicks and any kick from inside the penalty area. The defense should be back in both situations, so if someone gets in behind them, reward him. I get why offsides makes sense in general, but it's annoying in those situations.

posted by TheQatarian at 01:39 PM on July 03

In rugby, if you prevent a certain try by deliberately breaking a rule, the referee can give a penalty try (and then you get the conversion under the posts, regardless of where the certain try would have occurred. A similar rule in football would have avoided the slightly galling-for-the-neutral and utterly-devastating-for-the-Black-Stars end to that game. It won't happen though - the deliberate handball-to-prevent-a-goal scenario comes up fairly seldom. Probably too seldom for Sepp to get out of bed and change the rules.

Gutted for Ghana, but hope and expect Holland to deck Uruguay. Germany looked so tasty in the first game today. Would love to see them play Spain next and Holland in the final.

posted by JJ at 02:01 PM on July 03

You already can't be offside from a corner kick.

"Regardless of position, there is no offside offense if a player receives the ball directly from a goal kick, corner kick, or throw-in."

posted by Mr Bismarck at 02:23 PM on July 03

You already can't be offside from a corner kick.

Oops, my fault. You are correct. But I think that should be extended to any play directly resulting from a corner kick. (That would probably be covered by the "ball in the penalty area" thing.

posted by TheQatarian at 02:39 PM on July 03

Probably too seldom for Sepp to get out of bed and change the rules.

Twice in this World Cup so far.

/Still thinks Harry's wasn't deliberate, though.

posted by owlhouse at 07:38 PM on July 03

PK success rate is only around 78%

Thanks. I was curious about those stats. Definitely worth taking the penalty.

FIFA's disciplinary committee ruled Saturday that Suarez was guilty of "denying the opposite team a clear goal-scoring opportunity" as it imposed the one-match suspension.

Denying an goal scoring opportunity? How about simply a 'goal'? How about the 'win'?

I've tried to look at this from several angles since my first comment, and I understand it happened quickly, and doesn't happen that much, and I'm a fan that watches once every 4 years, but if I'm Ghana I feel cheated, and if I'm Uruguay I feel as if I'm lucky just to still be in the world cup.

I guess at the very least it gives me a rooting interest in Uruguay's next match.

posted by justgary at 01:08 AM on July 04

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