Saturday, July 01, 2006

Workin' for the Man Every Night and Day

00:46 Saturday morning. Most people awake at this hour in the Greater Tokyo area are likely either happily drunk, or relaxing in front of their widescreen LCD TVs with a fine domestic brew, watching Germany play Argentina. I am, alas, at work. Luckily, the nature of the work that requires me to be here from 20:00 Friday night to 08:00 Saturday morning is also of a hurry-up-and-wait nature, which allows me the privilege of stealing more than a few glances at a nearby TV (well, nearby after I moved it there), ice cold o-cha in hand.

The match has been goal-less thus far--as of the half-time break, with the best chance going to Argentina when Hernan Crespo took delivery of a nice long ball deep in the penalty area at around minute 25. He fought for position with the German defender, backing in and getting ready to make some magic, when the referee's whistle stopped play prematurely--Crespo indicated for the foul. From the subsequent replay, I really did not see that Crespo had more of the defender than the defender had of him, and it was a shame that the referee saw it otherwise, because frankly, when Hernan Crespo is one-on-one with a German defender, he is going to make something happen that ends in the announcers screaming "GOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAALLLLL!!!!!!!"

I hope there is a bit more offence in the second half. Argentina has had all of the ball (67% possession as of the last stat I saw, ten minutes from half-time), but has only generated one real chance from it. Germany's defence is tight and physical, but methinks the Argentines can break it down with just a little more patience. Oh yeah, and a little more Messi. Why he does not start is beyond me, as he is the finest young player I have seen in this tournament so far, and that includes Christiano Ronaldo's overrated ass.

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