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Author Topic: World Cup 2018  (Read 1591 times)

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Zafer Kaya

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #75 on: July 11, 2018, 11:54:16 AM »

Tough break, euro. 

It was a well-played and entertaining game that really could have gone either way.  I guess some people will criticize France for parking the bus, but it wasn't negative football.  They knew Belgium's strengths on attack and were looking to draw them in and exploit them on counters.  It didn't really work that well in part because Belgium's midfield did a pretty good job holding the ball and getting back.  It may have only been a 1-0 score but there was a lot going on.

It was a chess match with both teams having tactics to win and trying to implement them, not just one team playing defensively for a shootout or the other team just passing it around and not trying to score.

Luka Modric has the potential to carve up England and provide an entertaining match.  But if not, I think its going to be pretty boring with England just looking to punt to Kane or score off a set piece.  I don't blame them.  I mean, as a relative neutral I demand entertainment.  But if I were England or an England fan, you do what it takes to win.  Which is not to dork around playing from the back against a team that has Modric and Kramaric in it.  You mess up even the tiniest bit, those two can put the ball in the back of the net fast.

Still, England should win.  Crotia's played a lot of minutes, and Modric is getting up there in age.  Also, Croatia still has Dejan Lovren in their back four.  It's a bad matchup with Kane, plus Lovren sucks anyway, plus Lovren is a massive choker.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 11:56:43 AM by Zafer Kaya »
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euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #76 on: July 11, 2018, 11:13:55 PM »

Watched the England-Croatia game tonight after work, not knowing the outcome. Holy cow! what a game. (So much better than the France-Belgium semi-final.)

England deservedly lost. One shot on target in 120 min! (their goal in the 5th min.) England hasn't had a good game in the entire WC other than the beating down of hapless Panama early on. They lucked out of the harder elimination games draw because of stupid Belgian's Januzaj brilliant score against them. England should be home by now. Instead, we get a Belgium-England rematch for the 3rd place game. I'm assuming that this time around it'll be the A teams.

I'll be rooting for Croatia all the way in the WC final. What a magical run it has been for them. And deservedly so. This is a country of all of 4 million people!

As an aside, I think I've mentioned it before, but I'll say it again. This has been a tremendous and super-enjoyable WC. And the refs have been superb for the most time. And the VAR has been a major success too.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 11:20:40 PM by euro60 »
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Cockney Rebel

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #77 on: July 11, 2018, 11:48:51 PM »

By contrast, I think VAR is a piece of shit that slows the game down and removes a massive element of enjoyment from it. For me, part of the fan experience IS those contentious decisions, even if they don’t always go my/our way. The surreal length of time it took to get free kicks and some penalties going was also something I hated. Just get on with the game of fucking football.

The game itself is in flux right now IMHO. Every team, everywhere in the world, plays exactly the same style of football. It’s ridiculously boring and predictable. This WC has seen far more goals from set pieces, so many in fact that you’ve come to expect them. Where’s the flair, the chance taking, the individuality? No-one’s got it. It’s all keep pass the ball back, try and draw the other teams out, do a few one two, take it down the wing, cross it into the penalty area and hope somebodys there to collect and slot it home. There’s very few skillful dribblers of the ball, very few players who take on defender after defender to get close to goal, only a limited number of players take shit from distance, it’s all pass/pass/pass/pass/backheel/pass/pass within 20/30 yards of the goalmouth.

For all their faults, the old schoool managers who liked the “hoof the ball from the back” approach at least understood the entertainment aspect of the game. It’s become ‘boring’, ‘samey’ and very run-of-the-mill. I’ll still watch and love it of course, I just yearn for some creativity, some originality and the return of good old “tackling”, taking a man on in close quarters and bringing the ball through the middle of the pitch instead of always down the fucking wings.

Personally I was expecting more entertainment value out of this WC, some flair and some varied styles from certain countried. Alas no, they all played the same way, with the same types of players all in the same position. Both calmly waiting for a break instead of creating one.

I’ll watch the final, root for Croatia but also hope Lovren scores an own goal. Nice to have a new country’s name engraved on the trophy. Especially one that is bigger than Modric himself.
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Zafer Kaya

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #78 on: July 12, 2018, 10:35:53 AM »

They lucked out of the harder elimination games draw because of stupid Belgian's Januzaj brilliant score against them. England should be home by now. Instead, we get a Belgium-England rematch for the 3rd place game. I'm assuming that this time around it'll be the A teams.

England definitely lucked out to get the semi-finals as I don't think they are that good of a team.  You can't really blame them as you can only beat what's in front of you and England acquitted themselves well.  And tbf, quite a bit of England's luck was shared by England.  Turns out Tunisia and suck, which wasn't that much of a surprise.  And the way the schedule worked out, the key game of England v Belgium didn't happen until both teams were already through.  If that had been the first game in the group, the draw would have been trickier.

In the end, it's not like Belgium hurt themselves by winning that group.  Belgium lost to France, and had England won they would have had to beat France to win as well.  I told you Belgium shouldn't fear Brazil, and they did win that game in regular time.  Having to play Brazil didn't cost Belgium anything, a combination of just not having the luck of the pitch and a good French team knocked them out.

Belgium will have their chance against England and they can settle things if they wish.  If Belgium win that game than they will have proved they are better than England, and that maybe the only team better than Belgium in the entire tournament was France.  "Better than England and Brazil but just shy of France" would be a fair result. 

Zafer Kaya

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #79 on: July 12, 2018, 10:51:57 AM »

On VAR... I think that it was a success in the sense that it proved the potential value of the technology.  But I think it was kind of a failure in terms of this tournament because it showed that refs can still make plenty of terrible rulings by either failing to review plays or by reviewing them but still being incompetent boobs.

On the refs... they were crap as they always are.  I was happy that they were actually much less crap than I feared they would be.  That's a plus, I suppose.  But it's still a major problem that too many matches have a big call in which a decision can easily change the outcome and that the refs don't get those calls right. 

I didn't find it that disruptive to play, and IMO there were no plays that were wrongly reversed by VAR.  So the plays that got through VAR with incorrect decisions would have gotten through anyway, while there were several key plays where VAR fixed mistakes.  So VAR can only do so much to fix the fundamental problems of not enough eyes on the pitch, stupid rules that incentivize diving, and biased incompetent refs.  But it hopefully called some attention to that while making things at least slightly less bad than they were before.

Honestly, so much of this would go away if they just got rid of the automatic PK for any foul in the box and make a player offside anytime they are in an offside position when the ball is played.

euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #80 on: July 12, 2018, 10:59:22 PM »

"Better than England and Brazil but just shy of France" would be a fair result.
agreed... but of course they still need to beat England (again), and this time it will be the A team, on both sides (I hope)
« Last Edit: July 12, 2018, 11:44:29 PM by euro60 »
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euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #81 on: July 12, 2018, 11:02:02 PM »

On VAR... I think that it was a success

On the refs... they were crap as they always are.
Agreed as to VAR

Disagreed as to the refs, I thought they were superb for the most part.
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euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #82 on: July 12, 2018, 11:51:52 PM »

Personally I was expecting more entertainment value out of this WC, some flair and some varied styles from certain countried. Alas no, they all played the same way, with the same types of players all in the same position. Both calmly waiting for a break instead of creating one.

I am sorry for you that you feel this way, I've watched a LOT of the WC games, and simply feel differently. This has been one of the most enjoyable WCs I've watched.
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"A blind faith in authority is the worst enemy of truth" - Albert Einstein (1901)

The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra is one of Cincinnati's underappreciated treasures

Zafer Kaya

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #83 on: July 13, 2018, 10:13:54 AM »

I think England is fairly representative of this year's WC.  They were not really that good overall and sorely lacking in individual talent.  But they were pretty solid in most places.  They got the fundamentals right:  good set pieces, kept their shape, worked hard.  I don't think they should have gotten as far as they did, but they played well. 

Would it have been more entertaining if England had imploded due to some crazy off-the-pitch tabloid incident and/or a comically bad mistake?  In my book, yes.  But if you're a fan of the game probably not.

I thought Russia played some very entertaining soccer.  Mexico (surprisingly) as well.  But I do feel like things were overall a tad too button-down and staid.  Salah and Rodriguez not being 100% hurt.  It was a lot more exciting when we didn't know the players and it was like watching legends to turn life.  All the players from South America or not Western Europe who you had never seen play but had this buzz attached to them-- "He's the Pele of the Macedonians!"  "He's Cruyff, but as a striker!"  Once every four years you'd finally get to see these guys and find out if it was true.  And the Swiss team would be really Swiss and the Icelandic team would have been really Icelandic with gigantic dudes with huge beards.  Now we know everyone and the players are better but blander and sort of interchangeable.  It's like the Derek Jeter-fication of soccer.  20 years ago watching Luka Modric would have been amazing.  Now it's like "Yeah, we already know he's awesome.  We've been watching him for 10 years."

I mean, I guess for me it's not a major complaint.  It would have been nice if there had been more a little more flair in this WC in terms of some player going crazy with goals or juicy match-ups.  But it didn't ruin the World Cup for me or anything. 

Overall, I'd still say this has been a better than average World Cup, just not a classic.  And we may not ever have a classic again.

MissKitty

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #84 on: July 13, 2018, 01:15:38 PM »

I have a general question about the refereeing for the World Cup that maybe someone knows to save me the trouble of hunting for it in the Googles. Are refs randomly chosen for matches or do they need to be familiar with the languages for the teams they are refereeing? I'm kinda guessing it is random and sometimes they do not know the same languages of the teams but wanted to know if that is truly the case or not.

Anyone know?
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Zafer Kaya

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #85 on: July 13, 2018, 04:58:42 PM »

All the refs are required to know some kind of basic English.

I don't believe they either purposely assign or avoid assigning Spanish speaking refs to games where there is a Spanish speaking team or anything like that.  Not positive though.

 

euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #86 on: July 14, 2018, 12:18:03 AM »

CBS Sports announced their WC all-star team. Seems pretty on point to me

https://www.cbssports.com/soccer/world-cup/news/2018-world-cup-best-starting-xi-kane-hazard-lukaku-among-cbs-sports-all-tournament-team-ronaldo-mbappe-on-bench/

Yes, Belgium has 3 of them, and rightly so IMHO
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euro60

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Re: World Cup 2018
« Reply #87 on: July 15, 2018, 11:56:12 PM »

"Better than England and Brazil but just shy of France" would be a fair result.
agreed... but of course they still need to beat England (again), and this time it will be the A team, on both sides (I hope)
and so that is how it played out.

Kudos to France.... but so proud of the Red Devils. They were the most attacking team in the WC and the most enjoyable to watch.
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The Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra is one of Cincinnati's underappreciated treasures
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