CW: ouch, Giroud, the French striker, had a really hi play on the ball and kicked a Swiss defender right above the nose. I’m surprised there wasn’t a card there. And the Swiss player had to be subbed off.
(and at least 5 minutes ticked off while getting the player off the field)
Sent at 3:10 PM on Friday
CW: France has had a couple of really poor tackles early on.
Sent at 3:11 PM on Friday
CW: France is having some really good play in the Swiss’s end, and the fans are doing the wave (i really despise the wave)
aaannnddd GOAL FOR FRANCE!
Nice strong header from Giroud
WOW GOAL AGAIN FOR FRANCE
The swiss defense is playing TERRIBLY
They gave up possession on a lousy pass, got outrun by the France offense, and then the goalie got beat near post.
CB: I’m here!
Damn Dallas traffic all to hell. But, I arrived at Dan’s Silverleaf, Denton, TX, just in time for the first goal. France looks incredibly dangerous–they may have buried the swiss just 17 minutes in
CW: and they’re looking for more. France is looking like the Netherlands did against Spain (although I think it’s just as much poor play by the Swiss as it is impressive from France)
Sent at 3:21 PM on Friday
CW: What do you expect from the rest of this group, especially if the play from Switzerland stays the same? Who gets out between the Swiss, Honduras, and Ecuador?
Sent at 3:23 PM on Friday
CW: (and as long as we’re giving shout-outs to our venues, I’m world cup blogging from Biddle’s Escape, a café in Regent Square, Pittsburgh, PA.)
That would have made it a game.
Well, the Swiss are actually a – okay in the group–they could easily beat a weak Honduras team
Sent at 3:28 PM on Friday
CW: But if Honduras can get the win against Ecuador (which wouldn’t be too surprising) then a tie w/ the Swiss could put them through on goal differential if the Swiss stay too down. Granted they’re looking to get a goal back and aren’t totally out of this game.
I should probably stop writing out the swiss from this game. one goal for them and they’ll be right back in the game, and they have plenty of time to get it.
oooooo penalty. seriously, swiss, you can’t go doing that.
CB: Oh wow. A foul in the box, and this may turn to a blow out.
CW: that’s a clear penalty
CB: btw, Biddle’s Escape, and Dan’s Silverleaf. it sounds like we are in a fantasy novel.
CW: the offensive player might’ve gone down easy, but that doesn’t matter much.
CB: The first penalty save of the tournament!
and off the woodwork for the follow-up!
CB: THAT is how you inject excitement to a game like this
CW: yeah. now can the swiss capitalize?
Sent at 3:33 PM on Friday
CW: and i didn’t take the walk that I said I was going to take in the interim, but instead read up on all the lovely speculation about Ronaldo’s injury (I say “lovely” sarcastically)
CB: Hah what are the rumor mills chruning out?
CW: he practiced w/ a brace on his knee today!!!
CB: As far as the equalizer–I can’t see the Swiss scoring two. They just gather the ball so rarely.
Sent at 3:35 PM on Friday
CW: I’d be interested to see what a single goal did for them. or maybe they can get a sub in that will change things? I doubt it, but I’m hoping the game can somehow stay interesting.
CB: As a skeptic, I will assume Ronaldo is more okay than Suarez–and look what Suarez did. US should be very careful defending Ronaldo.
CW: Eh. I mean, you’re right, but I think he’s always been better at the club level. He’s scored two goals in the previous two world cups.
but I really don’t like Ronaldo, either. I want someone to shave off his perfectly coifed hair.
CB: This game is actually making me excited for the West Hemisphere v. East Hemisphere showdowns in the knockout round. Netherlands vs Colombia, or France v. Argentina
CW: West v East, and North v South
CB: Ronaldo shoulder trade hair with Beckerman
CW: (are they actually eastern hemisphere?)
CB: Oh wow, there’s the blowout goal
CW: (i’ve been out of geography too long)
GOAL NUMBER 3
CB: 2 on 0 rarely ends up anywhere bu the net.
Sent at 3:41 PM on Friday
CW: (and yes, wikipedia says the prime meridian crosses through England, meaning NED and FRA are eastern hemi)
CB: France now has 6 goals in two games, and 4 different goal scorers? I’ll have to double check that-but everyone is chipping in.
CW: Do you think this game is showing the strength of France, the weakness of Switz, or both?
CB: Good! I still have those geography bee chops.
Sent at 3:43 PM on Friday
CB: I believe the Swiss are being exposed, but we’re not learning much about France here.
Like when Netherlands scored 5 against a sad Spain, then nearly tied Australia– France is merely taking what they’re given for the most part here.
What do you think the best game of the weekend will be, aside from US v. Portugal?
CW: I agree, but I know I’m a bit biased against France.
Sent at 3:46 PM on Friday
CW: Ghana really impressed me against the US, so I’m eager to see how they stack up against Germany. I thought the US had a great job (and and some good luck) keeping them at 1, and I think Germany has let in quite a few goals against weaker offenses in the lead-up to the WC.
Besides that, I’m interested in Belgium v Russia. Is Belgium getting hot, because if so, they might be really dangerous in the tournament.
CB: France is doing what England hoped they would this World Cup–use a younger, fresher squad to surprise the World. How well known are any of these French players?
True, and Germany has traditionally had a let down second match after their first match blowouts.
Sent at 3:49 PM on Friday
CW: I really can’t speak to this French team’s roster. Benzema plays for Real Madrid, but I don’t know how much time he gets.
Sent at 3:50 PM on Friday
CW: Benzema scored two goals in the three lead-up games to the WC (against finland and Ukraine)
CB: Germany v. Ghana will definitely be something to see tomorrow. I might be more interested in Argentina’s game than Belgium’s. Even against a weak opponent, I’d like to see if Argentina looks a little stronger. They were cautious and imprecise against Bosnia
So he’s their main guy. But a majority of their goals are being scored by players not named Benzema–that balance could carry them deep in the knockout round.
CW: I expect them to get stronger. I think they have a lot of pressure on them, and so the first game was shaking loose some nerves. Although the same could be said for Brazil, and they didn’t look much stronger (if any at all) in their second game.
Sent at 3:52 PM on Friday
CB: Do they have Alexei Lalas on the Univision broadcast?
CW: Giroud is also a goal scorer for Arsenal, getting 17 goals is ’12-’13, and 22 goals in ’13-’14.
No, thank god. I seriously hate Lalas so much
(I think half of my twitter feed the past week has been me bitching about Lalas)
Sent at 3:55 PM on Friday
CB: Hah, he’s so smug. He looks assured and disinterested in all his own commentary. It’s bothersome for certain.
CW: Oh, interesting, have you heard anything about the players union asking for the possibility of a “temporary sub” in the event of a player having a head injury, so the player can be diagnosed before determining if he can go back in?
CB: I haven’t, but I did hear about the controversy of the Uruguayan defender staying when he almost definitely had a concussion.
Sent at 3:58 PM on Friday
CW: great tackle by Sakho
CB: Well, we start the 2nd half and the crowd at Dan’s (all 9 of them) is going crazy for Le Bleu. An exciting time for the French fans here…
CW: I think I’m the only one watching the game here…
CB: True on the tackle. All ball, killed an early chance by the Swiss.
Did you play soccer?
CW: Yeah, growing up. Started when I was 4, but quit before high school.
I was a goalkeeper
Sent at 4:07 PM on Friday
CB: I didn’t really, maybe a year or two when I was young. I’ve been a fan for the last three World Cups–but I did play a lot of pickup in the park—which of course gives me an unwavering expertise about the sport…
CW: haha. I really understand a lot more about the sport now than I ever really did when I played.
Sent at 4:10 PM on Friday
CW: With Costa Rica winning, they’ve assured themselves of advancing, becoming the first team from CONCACAF who isn’t Mexico or the US to advance to the knockout round.
CB: That’s great news–and Mexico stands a good chance of advancing also. If the US joins them, it could be a banner year for CONCACAF.
Sent at 4:13 PM on Friday
CW: I would really love to see Ghana and the US advance out of group G
screw traditional European powers.
CB: There was a good shot from Swiss– they desperately need one, for the sake of the people watching this game….
CW: although i don’t really have anything against Germany.
shoot, i just want more goals, no matter which side scores them. give me a beautiful play to talk about. The second half of Germany v. Portugal was sooo boring.
CB: That would be extraordinary if both European teams fail to advance. But Germany is a favorite for a reason, they’ll find a way to advance.
CW: I think that’s the game that this compares to best (GER v POR).
Sent at 4:17 PM on Friday
CW: France is playing pretty impressively.
Sent at 4:18 PM on Friday
CB: Subtle things to notice during quiet second halves in blowouts: no vuvuzelas. Thank goodness.
Also, did you see how Vegas is losing money because of how high scoring this Cup is?
CW: No I didn’t. That’s great.
Who dod you think gets out of group f (besides Argentina)? Between Bosnia, Iran, and Nigeria?
The second place team will get (more than likely) this France squad.
CB: Exciting chance there at 64 minutes! terribly wasted though.
I bet Bosnia is good enough to win that. I watched them play a couple of games recently, and they are defensively tough, and dangerous on set pieces.
Iran and Nigeria are not impressive to me.
CW: yeah, I agree.
I have a good friend who’s half Iranian, so I often root for them, but with very little satisfaction
CB: Wow! what touch again there. 4-0
CW: He’s getting hot, and can really power them through this tournament w/ play like that.
CB: Benzema sounds like an ointment, but in reality, he’s a top-notch goal-scorer for France.
CW: although that defense continues to be lackluster (to put it nicely)
France is +7 in goal differential?
Sent at 4:26 PM on Friday
CB: And it’s doubtful Ecuador adds a minus to that
CW: I’m going to go ahead and begin to root for Honduras. None of the other three teams in this group seem that intriguing, so I’ll root for another CONCACAF team.
Sent at 4:27 PM on Friday
CB: This afternoon’s matchup will tell us more.
There it is! 5-0, this World Cup’s biggest blowout
CW: So, what do you think, is this a “prototypical” France win?
I’m asking in reference to how people often talk about world cup games. They said the US win against Ghana was a “very American” win. And I know what I think of when I think of Italian soccer, or Brazilian soccer, etc.
weeeeeeee another goal
France is really getting into a groove. Yes it’s terrible defense, but this will continue to only build their confidence.
Sent at 4:31 PM on Friday
CB: Confidence is huge for them. They tend to do great every two World Cups–so look for them to make the semis at least. But no, I don’t think any 5-0 win can be prototypical. The is a France I’ve never seen–they’re riveting offensively. Very creative, unselfish–using everyone.
CW: Do you have any future blog-posts in the works? (not to poach any ideas, just wondering)
Sent at 4:34 PM on Friday
CW: I have one that’s more of just a question right now. I was talking to my boyfriend about how I like Dutch soccer, and he was like, “How can you even say that? How can you like a country’s style of play?” And he’s asking because he knows I only pay sporadic attention to soccer, and so how can I have any real idea about something like that.
But we do talk about a country’s style as though it’s unchanging (to a certain extent). And I want to ask things like what it means to say the American win was “very American” especially in regards to nationalism and rhetoric.
but, it’s already starting to sound more like an essay than a blog post.
Sent at 4:37 PM on Friday
CB: Wow! the clean sheet is gone, on a spectacular thread-the-needle free kick.
CW: GOAL! and a lucky one at that.
Sent at 4:39 PM on Friday
CW: well, good job to France and Switzerland for keeping this second half somewhat watchable.
even if there’s been no drama to it.
CB: Yes, and whoever bet on there being 6 goals in the game, just won a significant prize
France needs one more to stand out–the Dutch have already got a 5-1 win.
Sent at 4:42 PM on Friday
CB: Hey, I like that essay/blogpost idea. He asks a fair question–you have 23 players, many of whom change every four years. How can a style of play consistently exist for any country?
Sent at 4:43 PM on Friday
CW: And I think there’s a bit of an answer for some teams (particularly NED), where they have such a youth preparation system, that I think they can have a style of soccer that they try to maintain. But I also know that even that is a lot of nationalism that doesn’t quite fit when really actually examined. So I’m trying to actually examine it, but I also don’t want to do all the work.
if the swiss score another goal a minute, they might yet get a tie! (ha!)
CB: They talk about a similarly preposterous idea with franchises-
Boston Bruins style hockey, Pittsburgh Steelers football- there is something to the idea of a place retaining a style despite their rotating casts of participants.
CW: this is really just making me a bit concerned about France’s goalkeeper, more than anything.
yeah, that’s a good point. Ugh, Pittsburgh football… (this place is craaazy about their Steelers)
Sent at 4:46 PM on Friday
CW: Do you have any plans w/ the rest of your day? More soccer?
Sent at 4:47 PM on Friday
CW: (also, I think the announcers just said there have been 17 goals scored in this stadium thus far!!! #Don’tTrustMySpanishSkills)
Sent at 4:48 PM on Friday
CW: BENZEMA! Does 6-2 beat out 5-1?
CB: Hah, we ought to check if one stadium allows more than others. The rest of my day is spent driving back to Dallas, then going to a number of formal occasions with my wife. Tomorrow though! Im watching the first two again.
CW: oh, boo, the score doesn’t count?
CB: Did that count!? I think it does.
CW: i don’t know, they’re not showing the final score on my screen
CB: Er–it must not count, but if it had, it would have beat 5-1
CW: Heading to the public pool for me, then pizza and whiskey-cokes for dinner + mario party (it’s the boyfriend’s birthday tomorrow, so we’re having friends over).
I’ve made him sit here through the two games with me, so we’re going to head out.
Good talking to you, though!
CB: Awesome man, We should re-hash this for an appropriate, schedule-accommodating day
CW: yeah, that sounds good to me