WORLD CUP! (day 2)

This is your Day 2 comments post. We’ve got some sweet games on tap. South Korea – Greece, Argentina – Nigeria, and USA! USA! USA! vs England. May the wonderful football rain down on us today!

Published
Categorized as World Cup

By Isaiah

Isaiah is a co-founder and lead writer for Barcelona Football Blog. He currently lives in the greater New York City area with his wife and daughter.

146 comments

  1. ARGENTINA!!!! I hope messi scores a hattrick. those are extremely common for him nowadays

  2. South Korea fully deserve this 2-0 lead they have. Greece has been horrendous for almost the entire match. Funny, in a way, that the goals came from a set piece and a midfield mistake while most of the game has been Korea bombing through the middle with beautiful moves.

  3. Bartra signs until 2012.
    *http://www.fcbarcelona.com/web/catala/noticies/futbol_base/temporada09-10/06/11/n100611111539.html

  4. Messi is the best player in the world. He’s being discussed as having a chance to be perhaps the greatest ever – if he dominates a world cup. That’s a requirement.

    Despite his status, it’s remarkable how relatively little attention and focus is being paid to him.

    And much of that has to do with Maradona’s insanity. He’s made himself into a lightning rod and such a figure for attention that the players – even Messi – have become something of a secondary story.

    That maybe a very fortunate set of circumstances for Messi and the team. The pressure and attention on Messi should have been unbearable were it not for the circus Maradona.

  5. VAAAAAAAAAAAMOS MESSSSSSSSSI!

    Ugh, Heinze is starting (why? WHY?)… Veron predictably starts as playmaker but can he last the 90?

    Match is about to start! (Where’s Hector?! 😀 )

  6. 3 min in and Messi’s looking good (and working hard pressuring the defense).

    HIGUAIN MISSES FROM POINT BLANK RANGE! MESSI AWESOME!

  7. Argentina are playing a very different way then they have for much of the run up to the cup.

    Much more attacking with Guttierrez at RB rather than Otamendi while also playing Tevez with Messi and Higuin.

    It’ll be interesting to see if Guitierrez is allowed to move forward and where Tevez will occupy space.

    1. Yeah, I was just thinking that. Still, Gutierrez at right back is interesting. He’s good going forward but he gets exposed defensively too easily for my liking. At times, he looks a little lost IMO.

  8. my friend finally got his electical power on as his government cut the electricity supply in order to save for the argerntina match lol. apparently they are argentina and brazil mad in bangladesh lol.

    messi is on fire.
    who said he was too tired???
    however i do feel that messi will be like ronnie in 2006

    1. spot on about the brazil-argentina part … i am from bangladesh and there people is just crazy about brazil or argentina … you can see flags all over the country for this month …

      these are some common sites of the country for this month:

    2. sorry the photos did not come the first time:

      *http://www.flickr.com/photos/36096782@N06/4694355454/

      *http://www.flickr.com/photos/36096782@N06/4694355488/

  9. Holy crap! Argentina are looking good! Nigeria could also be nervous and that’s why they look better..

    …and Nigeria dangerous on the counter attack almost score! Samuel manages to put it out for a corner! Veron clears though…

  10. Maradona said over and over that his team doesn’t need fullbacks. Most of the run up he played 4 CM’s on the back line. He also siad he didn’t want defenders to be involved with the attack. He even went so far as saying why would defenders ever need to cross the midline. That’s part of why they were only playing one holding mid.

    And in the first game of the cup Maradona plays Guittierez on the right and so far he’s been making runs up the flank. It’ll be interesting to see if that continues, especially up 1-0.

    It’s really hard to know how Argentina is going to line up and play in this cup.

  11. Crap! Wonderful ball from Veron almost finds Messi, but Nigeria’s goalkeeper intercepts at the last min.

  12. Nigeria not pressing at all past the midfield line. They are giving the deeper mids on Argentina a lot of time on the ball. This is going to really help Veron who plays very slowly in build up and has limited pace now.

    1. Would YOU have? I feel that anyone would have. Including Higuain. He has the yips in big games, it seems like…

    2. I wonder as well, but it’s easy to say that in retrospect. If it were Milito that missed those two chances, we’d be wondering the reverse. He tends to miss sitters as well, Milito

      Luckily Maradona has the luxury of having both though…

  13. With Messi, Higuain, and Tevez all tending to cluster and make runs into the center and DiMaria playing curiously deep and remaining uninvolved Argentina is struggling for width and space.

    Also, Veron is passing well but he tends to play deep and that’s leaving a break between the midfield and the attacking players. Tevez and Messi are dropping back in turn but I wonder if Palermo could help bridge that gap.

  14. I feel Argentina’s been very, very good going forward (Yaaay, Messi!) but I though defensively, they got panicked a bit, especially on the counter attacks. However little Nigeria attacked, it caused problems for sure.

    I thought Nigeria looked a little nervous and that the early goal really put them off their game… Nigeria’s goalkeeper impressed me as well.

    Interesting how Nigeria and Argentina will lineup in the second half.

  15. In a game like this Cambiasso would have been a particularly valuable holding midfielder.

    1. Messi can’t SCORE with Argentina is what you meant, right?

      He’s had a really good game IMO

  16. With Veron out and Rodgriguez in Argentina functionally don’t have a playmaking midfielder.

    That’s going to have to come from Messi or Tevez now.

    Higuain finally out. He had a poor match.

    How could Messi miss that?

  17. Odenwingie for Nigeria has been impressive since he came on; he’s had a good impact for them.

    1. Well, his control wasn’t the best, and decision making wasn’t all that good, but at least he got himself into dangerous positions and threatened the Argentina goal.

      I thought the Nigerian attack was subdued until he came on.

  18. Burdiasso for Di Maria (who was poor IMO).

    Looks like Maradona is going for the 1-0. Nervy moments for Argentina; Nigeria are pressuring and are really trying to finish the match strongly.

  19. Argentina are playing with fire in this match. To not have scored that second goal is asking for trouble.

    Very strange match. There is something missing in their attack. Width was clearly one of them. But I think they need a more coherent creative passing player who plays in a more advanced position.

    That and for their number 9 to actually finish great opportunities.

    1. The one good pass from Veron led to the goal.

      From then on he was quite poor IMO. Argentina suffered as a result.

  20. GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH1 MESSI!

    He’s doing everything right, except for his finishing and an inspired performance from the Nigerian goalkeeper!

  21. ARGENTINA DESERVEDLY GET THE WIN!

    1-0 but should have been more. Messi played as well as someone can without scoring a goal. Nice!

  22. Messi didn’t suck, Eklavya. He should have scored a couple, but other than that, he was by far Argentina’s best player. His movement, passing… everything.

    1. Agreed. Messi was clearly Argentina’s best player today. DiMaria looked lost and Higuain just played poorly in his role. Messi was very good but just didn’t score.

  23. Argentina haven’t finished well. But on the whole they played a disciplined, well organized match.

    They looked well drilled, fairly cohesive and coordinated.

    They did look like a team that was still trying to figure out how to play together. But you can see the potential there if they can figure out the dynamics between them.

    In particular, I think they are going to need to figure out how to play with Tevez acting in more of a play making role.

    Maradona’s tactics today were innovative and surprising given how Argentina have played in the run up and how Maradona has said he wants to play. Defensively they played very differently. That may have been why they were vulnerable to the counter some but the defenders also pushed up more than expected.

    With all of the concerns about Maradona and his craziness – none of that translated into the play on the field.

    Just compare how Argentina played vs. how France played under DomDom yesterday.

    Should have been more than 1-0 but it was a very interesting match from Argentina.

    Hopefully Messi next match will finish the way he usually does. He played very well but just couldn’t find the back of the net. It happens. Enyeama the Nigerian keeper was very good.

    Messi and Milito had some nice 1-2’s.

    1. Euler, Maradona didnt do lot of bad things today, but lets not get carried…The team still has issues Nigeria didnt expose. Other teams will. But as I mentioned below, Maradona exceeded my drastic expectations in this single game.

    2. Ramzi- I agree with you and was largely making my comments in terms of the context running up to the Cup. It’s been said widely that Argentina would turn into a chaotic disaster because of Maradona – who really is crazy.

      Argentina were far from perfect. They clearly have work to do. As I mentioned – width, creativity in the advanced midfield, and defense on the counter were all issues.

      But it’s not unusual for squads to have those kinds of problems early in the world cup. This is particularly true of a team like Argentina where the players really do come from many different club teams.

      They didn’t look chaotic or disorganized. They generally looked organized. They seemed to be searching and trying to figure out how to play together. That was my primary point.

  24. messi had one of the best games for argentina i’ve seen in a long time but he’ll be considered a flop unless he scores :S

  25. Veron tried hard but hes too old for this level, from the start atleast.I cant help but wonder how fluid argentina would be with banega pulling strings.Anyway atleast theres pastore who i beleieve will shine when he gets his chance.Some guy called Messi had a decent game 8)

    1. Veron passes well but doesn’t offer much past that. He lacks pace and plays relatively deeply. If they don’t want to play Pastore they’ll need Tevez to adapt and excel as an advanced creative player.

  26. I love Messi, but Argentina not so much…I was really hoping for a Nigeria comeback there for at least a draw. South Korea & Nigeria for me, but I’m realistic enough to know that Argentina will most likely go through instead of one of those 🙂

  27. whaat???
    the gk played a great game.if not messi would have at least have 2 goals.
    and the other clear cut chance, it was a really tight angle.
    perhaps he shouldve chipped it like he did on casillas.
    he was the best player for argentina definitely!

  28. Vincent Eneyeama (Nigerian ‘keeper) got MOTM and I agree. Best player for Nigeria by far. Kept the score down and Nigeria in the game.

    Messi MOTM for Argentina no questions asked. Awesome, really awesome. Did everything but score. Once he scores his first goal, expect the flood gates to open, because this is obviously something psychological.

    Di Maria was very poor as wss Higuain.

    Tevez worked like an absolute dog. Whoa!

  29. Yeah, when I say “he sucks” I mean he can’t score. Isn’t that obvious? 😛

    I only watched the 2nd half so I’m not going to evaluate anyone… although Messi should have scored with so much space.

  30. I will give some credit to Maradona. In my world cup preview I was critical regarding his selection (Especial the fullbacks structure and offense duet), he fixed that in this game moving Jonas back and using Tevez to avoid Messi being isolated.

    But still, he has issues especially using not starting Milito. His subs were all right, but a bit too late. Better than I expected, but he still need to win me over. I dont believe he has the quality when things get tight.

  31. Messi played great but really left his shooting boots at home.

    Higuain was terrible. Di Maria was so anonymous I thought he had been brought in as a sub at the start of the second half.

    Mascherano had a good game, as someone who isn’t a fan of his, I was impressed.

    Argentina’s big problem is that they don’t have any midfielders. When they took Veron off they only had one true midfielder, and they suffered for that reason.

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