Tag Archives: Cameroon

2014 World Cup Draw Set

6 Dec

Yeah, I know, it’s been forever and a day since I actually posted anything, but the World Cup makes a person want to blog again, if only to complain about how rough the US has it.  Anyway, the ridiculously drawn out official draw was today and while yeah, the US has it rough, spare a thought for the Aussies, who have an even tougher go.  And while almost everyone can complain about the groups right now, in the end it’s all about what happens on the field.  Anything can happen on any given day and that’s one of the things that makes the World Cup (and sports in general) so awesome.

Group A: Brazil, Croatia, Mexico, Cameroon

Group B: Spain, Netherlands, Chile, Australia

Group C: Colombia, Greece, Ivory Coast, Japan

Group D: Uruguay, Costa Rica, England, Italy

Group E: Switzerland, Ecuador, France, Honduras

Group F: Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iran, Nigeria

Group G: Germany, Portugal, Ghana, USA

Group H: Belgium, Algeria, Russia, South Korea

I’ll admit that my initial thoughts were that the USA was on the receiving end of a brutal draw (In fact I think my exact words were ‘holy shit’).  But after thinking about it a little bit, I don’t think it’s nearly as bad as it could’ve been.  I think it’s great that the US will open against Ghana.  It’s going to be huge for the Yanks to start the tournament well and if they can do so against a team that’s knocked them out of the last two World Cups, so much the better.  There’s no doubt they’ll have the motivation to take down Ghana.  Portugal is tough, even if they only qualified through the strength of one Mr. Ronaldo, but I do think they are beatable if the US can play an entire 90 minutes.  I believe that Germany is the top team in the group and probably one of the favorites for the tournament.  That will be interesting if only for the storyline of Klinsmann taking on his home country.  I’ll chalk that one up for a German victory.

As I’ve said in the past, the key to US success on the big stage is putting together a solid 90 minutes. They can’t afford to have lapses and give up early goals like they did against England, Slovenia, Ghana x2 last time around.  Coming from behind to win/draw is not a sustainable model for success. The US has been playing well in the past year and I think Klinsmann’s system is finally starting to click.  It’s just a matter of whether they can show up when it really counts and play consistent football.

Now for the extremely premature predictions.  Of course a team’s chances could go to hell in a handbasket pretty quick with a couple key injuries and we all know that there is a lot of football to be played before we get to Brazil.  But based on how things stand currently, this is what my gut says:

Advance to second round (1st, 2nd)

Group A: Brazil, Croatia

Group B: Spain, Chile

Group C: Colombia, Japan

Group D: Italy, England

Group E: France, Honduras

Group F: Argentina, Nigeria

Group G: Germany, USA

Group H: Belgium, South Korea

Knockout

A1 vs. B2: Brazil vs. Chile – Brazil

A2 vs. B1: Spain vs. Croatia – Spain

C1 vs. D2: Colombia vs. England – Colombia

C2 vs. D1: Japan vs. Italy – Italy

E1 vs. F2: France vs. Nigeria – France

E2 vs. F1: Honduras vs. Argentina – Argentina

G1 vs. H2: Germany vs. South Korea – Germany

G2 vs. H1: USA vs. Belgium – Belgium

Round of 8

Brazil vs. Colombia – Brazil

France vs. Germany – Germany

Spain vs. Italy – Spain

Argentina vs. Belgium – Argentina

Semifinals

Brazil vs. Germany – Brazil

Spain vs. Argentina – Spain

Final

Brazil vs. Spain – Brazil

Going with the home country in this one.  France was the last team to lift the World Cup in their home country, but I think Brazil has the talent to get it done.  Spain’s got the experience though and Brazil will be under mountains of pressure, so I anticipate this final going down to the last minutes.

World Cup results – June 19

19 Jun

The Netherlands advanced to the second round out of group E today with a 1-0 win over Japan. Wesley Sneijder notched the game-winner in the 53rd minute. Meanwhile, Cameroon was eliminated after a 2-1 loss to Denmark. The African nation struck first with a Samuel Eto’o goal, but Nicklas Bendtner and Dennis Rommedahl tallied goals to give Denmark a chance of reaching the second round. In the day’s group D game between Ghana and Australia, the Socceroos saw red again as Harry Kewell (who was making his first start in forever) was sent off for a handball on the goal line. Despite playing a man down for over a hour, the Aussies were able to hold Ghana in a 1-1 draw.

Group D results
Ghana 1 (Gyan 25 – pen)
Australia 1 (Holman 11)

Group E results
Netherlands 1 (Sneijder 53)
Japan 0

Cameroon 1 (Eto’o 10)
Denmark 2 (Bendtner 33, Rommedahl 61)

Group D standings
Ghana 4 (+1)
Germany 3 (+3)
Serbia 3 (0)
Australia 1 (-4)

Group E standings
Netherlands 6 (+3)
Japan 3 (0)
Denmark 3 (-1)
Cameroon 0 (-2)

World Cup results – June 14

14 Jun

Today’s games were definitely less than impressive. The Netherlands defeated Denmark in the group E opener, 2-0, thanks to an own goal from the Danes and a late strike from Dirk Kuyt. In the group’s second game, Japan’s Keisuke Honda’s first half goal stood up as the game-winner against a lackluster Cameroon. Defending champ Italy took on Paraguay in the day’s finale. The Italians put Paraguay on its heels early, but the South American side struck first with a header from Antolin Alcaraz. Italian midfielder Daniele De Rossi notched the equalizer in the 63rd minute.

Group E Results
Netherlands 2 (Agger 46 – O.G., Kuyt 85)
Denmark 0

Japan 1 (Honda 39)
Cameroon 0

Group F Results
Italy 1 (De Rossi 63)
Paraguay 1 (Alcaraz 39)

Group E Standings
Netherlands – 3
Japan – 3
Cameroon – 0
Denmark – 0

Group E preview

7 Jun

Group E
Cameroon
Denmark
Japan
Netherlands

Cameroon is led by mercuial midfielder Samuel Eto’o, who threatened to quit the team after aformer star player Roger Milla made some disparaging remarks about him. Really?! You are a grown man and that might possibly be the lamest reason ever to quit a national team right before the World Freakin’ Cup. Anyways, as of right now, it looks like Eto’o will be playing which is good news for Cameroon as the team’s success will likely depend on Eto’o’s ability to orchestrate the offense. The team’s defense is solid, but not exceptionally fast and that could come back to bite them against speedy teams like Japan and Holland.

Denmark comes into the World Cup as a confident squad after winning a tough qualification group that included favorites Portugal. Arsenal’s pink-booted Nicklas Bendtner has the ability to score some nice-looking goals or totally muss things up, so it will be interesting to see which version shows up in South Africa. Liverpool’s Daniel Agger will help anchor the defense. Agger also has the ability to unleash some long range bombs.

Japan is in its fourth straight World Cup. The team will be aiming to pick up a win or two on foreign soil for the first time. Midfielder Yasuhito Endo’s performance will be key as he helps control the pace of the game. Keisuke Honda is also a potentially dangerous player out of the midfield. Despite finishing second in qualification behind Australia, goals were not easy to come by for Japan, so the question will be who can find the back of the net.

Netherlands is the clear favorite to win group E. The Dutch coasted through qualifying and have the potential to go far in the tournament. (But I thought that in 2006 as well and what happened? A four red card debacle against Portugal.) The strength of the Dutch team is in the midfield and the attack. Midfielder Wesley Sneijder is always dangerous and adds yet another potent option to an already speedy attack. Striker Arjen Robben suffered an injury scare in a 6-1 friendly win over Hungary, but he should be fit in time for the opening match against Denmark. The big question mark for the Netherlands is the man between the sticks. Maarten Stekelenburg replaced Edwin van der Sar and he’ll have to be at his best if the Dutch want to go deep into the tournament.

The Soccer Wall’s picks to advance: Netherlands, Denmark

World Cup draw is set

4 Dec

The groups are set for the 2010 World Cup. Host South Africa will open the tournament on June 11 against Mexico. At first glance, group G looks like the toughest one of the bunch with Brazil, North Korea, Ivory Coast and Portugal. The US ended up with a pretty good draw in group C – it’s definitely a group they can get out of. The Yanks will open with England and also play Algeria and Slovenia. Only 188 days to dissect all the possibilities…

Group A                            Group B
South Africa                      Argentina
Mexico                                Nigeria 
Uruguay                             South Korea
France                                 Greece

Group C                          Group D
England                             Germany
USA                                    Australia
Algeria                              Serbia
Slovenia                           Ghana

Group E                        Group F
Netherlands                  Italy
Denmark                        Paraguay
Japan                              New Zealand
Cameroon                     Slovakia

Group G                      Group H
Brazil                              Spain
North Korea                Switzerland
Ivory Coast                 Honduras
Portugal                       Chile

World Cup latest

2 Dec

FIFA has decided that there will be no extra referees in World Cup matches, although bungling president Sepp Blatter said there are plans to add more officials and/or technology later on. FIFA, why are you waiting?! If you want to keep the integrity of the game intact, you need to make some changes now. Heaven forbid you do something out of the box. Like I said yesterday, if anything like the Henry incident happens in the World Cup itself, there will be hell to pay.  If it weren’t for the Henry handball, this wouldn’t be a big deal, however since it did happen, the refereeing will be scrutinized even more than usual in 2010.

FIFA has also announced the top eight seeds for Friday’s draw. Host South Africa, along with Brazil, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Argentina and England are the seeded teams. FIFA used their October rankings to determine the seeded teams, although there has been speculation that France was denied a seeding based on their controversial qualification. However, France was ninth in the October rankings, so they wouldn’t have been seeded anyways. Each group will have one team from each pot.

As far as the U.S. goes, it’s looking like they could be in for a tough group. However, they’ve shown that they can play with anyone (Spain, Brazil in the Confederations Cup) and if they can use that confidence and play a solid 90 minutes, they could do good things.

World Cup pots for final draw
Pot 1 – South Africa, Brazil, Spain, Netherlands, Italy, Germany, Argentina, England
Pot 2 – Australia, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, New Zealand, Honduras, Mexico, USA
Pot 3 – Algeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay
Pot 4 – Denmark, France, Greece, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland

Nine World Cup spots still up for grabs

13 Nov

23 teams are in. Nine more to go before the field in South Africa is complete. There’s going to be a lot of drama this weekend. In Africa, this weekend’s games will determine the three country that will advance to the finals. New Zealand and Bahrain will be playing a winner take all game since the first leg ended in a 0-0 tie, while European qualification begins the two-legged playoffs. Costa Rica and Uruguay will also kick off a two-legged playoff.

Teams already in: Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay, United States, Mexico, Honduras, Denmark, Switzerland, Slovakia, Germany, Spain, England, Serbia, Italy, Netherlands, Australia, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, South Africa, Ghana, Ivory Coast

Saturday’s qualifiers (11/14)
AFRICA
Mozambique vs. Tunisia
Togo vs. Gabon
Morocco vs. Cameroon
Rwanda vs. Zambia
Kenya vs. Nigeria
Burkina Faso vs. Malawi
Côte d’Ivoire vs. Guinea
Egypt vs. Algeria
Sudan vs. Benin

EUROPE (1st leg)
Russia vs. Slovenia – 10:55 a.m. ET/Setanta (Live)
Ireland vs. France
Greece vs. Ukraine – 1 p.m. ET/Setanta (Live)
Portugal vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina – 3:25 p.m. ET/Setanta (Live)

NORTH & CENTRAL AMERICA/SOUTH AMERICA PLAYOFF (1st leg)
Costa Rica vs. Uruguay

ASIA/OCEANIA PLAYOFF (2nd leg)
New Zealand vs. Bahrain – 2 a.m. ET/Fox Soccer (Live)