Sunday, July 02, 2006

France Just Too Ribery For Kaka Brazil

Zidane was at his majestic best today to lead France into the semi-finals. Almost every highlight of the game involves him doing something amazing. Brazil didn't really perform. They turned the style on towards the end, with Ronaldo reminiscent of his old self at times, but it was too little too late and France deservedly went through.

We watched it in The Pontefract Castle on Wigmore St. It gradually became apparent over the course of the game that there was a large French contingent there. In the second half the crowd got gradually more vocal - and the give away was that they were speaking French - but it was still a surprise at the final whistle when the whole place erupted.

I wonder when the last World Cup was with all four semi-finalists coming from Europe. Anyone?

Comments:
Did anyone see the England game?
 
We all did.

We thought it best not to say anything as we're quite literally gutted.

Maybe next-time eh?

Meanwhile I'm preparing a piece on Evil Ronaldo who, as far as I'm concerned, should be sold to Accrington Stanley and made to suffer in the lower leagues.

Watch this space, well, not this one...
 
I hate to be controversial but surely it's Rooney's fault he can't keep his temper rather than anyone else's?? It is fairly obvious an opposing team will try and exploit his weakness...
 
Watching England lose on penalties is like splitting up with a long-term partner - the first four times are the hardest. I've seen it all before now so I'm not too bothered about the whole debacle.
 
And if it's any consolation, I've extrapolated England's recent penalty exits, and have discovered that we won't be going out on penalties again until Euro 2012. Sadly, we will do again in 2014.
 
Leah,

you're making the assumption that he stamped on Carvalho deliberately or are you referring to the push.

If it's the latter then that's surely no more than a yello card and considering there was a FIFA edict to caution players who were seen to be hectoring referees then Ronaldo should also have received one.

If it's the former then I'm not suprised, I doubt I would have kept my temper in that situation either, he'd clearly been fouled for about ten seconds right in front of the referee and received nothing.

Scandalous.

Like others such as Cantona, Keane, Viera etc. If you took the anger out of these people you would make them less of a player.

They are like a force of nature, they play from the heart.

The fact remains that Ronaldo played a large part in getting a club team-mate sent off, no doubt in a ploy to expediate a move to Real Madrid. My only hope now is that United get rid of him to some no-name club which provides the twin benefits of restoring harmony to the United dressing room and not giving Ronaldo what he so clearly wants.
 
I've watched it about thirty times now on the BBC sport site and I'm fairly sure the stamp was deliberate. The referee has confirmed that the card was for the stamp, not the push, and so I can't really argue with it. I would add that anyone in his situation would find it hard to stay calm after two opposition players had repeatedly fouled him over the last five or so seconds. It may have cost us the game but I don't hold it against Wayne and I still love him.

I don't believe that Ronaldo played any part in the sending off and Rooney himself has even said as much. He added, "I bear no ill feeling to Cristiano but am disappointed he chose to get involved", which is probably fair enough.

All Ronaldo did, however, was see his Portuguese team-mate receive a stamp to the groin and go and remonstrate with the ref. Rooney himself did the same thing in the first half, as you'd expect. In the following game, Zidane, Ribery and Kaka all waved the imaginary card when their team-mates were fouled, yet none of them find themselves vilified. It is a shame whem players try to get the opposition sent off (and we don't even know what Ronaldo said to the ref) but it's more of a shame that players elbow their opponents in the head or stamp on their groins.
 
"From what I've seen in the World Cup, most players would have gone to ground at the slightest contact but my only thought then was to keep possession for England."

So true. Bless him.
 
In this morning's paper the boy himself says...

"I want to say absolutely and catagorically I did not intend to put my foot down on Ricardo Carvalho. He slid in from behind me and ended up in a position where my foot was inevitably going to end up as I kept my balance."
 
The last World Cup with all four semi-finalists coming from Europe was 1982, when East Germany, France, Italy and Poland made it to the last four in Spain.
 
Referee Horacio Elizondo insists Portugal winger Cristiano Ronaldo did not influence his decision to send off England striker Wayne Rooney in Saturday's World Cup quarter-final. Elizondo has confirmed Rooney was dismissed for the original foul, telling The Times: "It was violent play and therefore he got a red card. People can say what they want (about Ronaldo), but this had absolutely no influence."
 
A few months ago we were all talking about how Rooney's temper could be his undoing at the World Cup. Then he got injured so we all forgot about it for a while.

Until he grows up he will always be a liability. I don't know if the stamp was deliberate but it's irrelevant really, he would have been sent off for the push anyway.
 
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