East Bay View (a blog about several things)

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Saturday, June 17, 2006

State of play: 16th June

Players of the moment: Pick an Argentinian -- Riquelme, Messi, Maxi, Tevez, Crespo, Cambiasso. Best of the rest is probably Angola's Joao Ricardo: his distribution was shit but he made the saves. And also Holland's Van Persie, Ecuador's Delgado, Sweden's Ljungberg, Paraguay's Bobadilla and Costa Rica's Wanchope.
Goat of the moment: Sven was absolutely right to give Michael Owen a second early shower. When the guy who just broke his foot looks fitter than you, you shouldn't be starting.

Groups A and B: Germany vs Sweden and England vs Ecuador is the probable second-round configuration. If that's the case, expect England to win more easily than the press will suggest.

Group C: Let's not go nuts about Argentina just yet. Running up the score against an off-colour Serbia is impressive but isn't enough to make me change my final prediction. If they beat Holland on Wednesday, that's a different matter.

Group D: Despite today's embarassment Mexico are reasonably safe. Both Portugal and Iran will be playing for three points this morning; if Iran wins or it's a draw the group becomes much more interesting.

Coming up: Portugal vs Iran will be very important; Italy vs USA won't be as one-sided as the sides' opening games suggest (one hopes); Argentina have given Brazil something to prove against Australia.


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