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  Reply # 1088410 14-Jul-2014 11:15
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joker97: Hang on ... they've given the player of the tournament aka golden ball to the guy who did nothing over 7 hours of knockout footy ... Surely a political gesture


No goals maybe, but certainly still displayed great skill and set up plenty of chances for his teammates. His final penalty attempt was a bit of a fizzer, but it looked like it came from a player exhausted by carrying his nation's expectations on his shoulders.

Germany were deserved winners. Is it just me or were there some incredibly hot WAGs that came on to the field after the match to celebrate with the German players? Such is the lot of the professional football player.




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  Reply # 1088542 14-Jul-2014 13:38
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joker97: Hang on ... they've given the player of the tournament aka golden ball to the guy who did nothing over 7 hours of knockout footy ... Surely a political gesture


Precisely my thoughts. Truth be told, Argentina probably were the better team today but Higuain, Messi and the substitute who missed another sitter will be having nightmares for the rest of their lives. Huguain and Messi's chances were extremely presentable and should have been buried, along with Germany.

I thought the referee had an average game too. Hewedes (and I support Germany) should have been sent off for that studs up challenge. Overall, Argentina killed itself and Germany got lucky. And I think this tournament has yet again reminded us that there's a difference between playing for clubs where everything is set up for superstars and where they get to pad their stats against teams with no spending power or ability frequently. Established guys like Mueller and Robben really enhanced their reputation, whilst Ronaldo, every Spanish player, Rooney and a few others (I'd probably include Messi) showed themselves up as either overrated or not having it in these cut-throat games.



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  Reply # 1088708 14-Jul-2014 15:37
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Dingbatt:
joker97: Hang on ... they've given the player of the tournament aka golden ball to the guy who did nothing over 7 hours of knockout footy ... Surely a political gesture


No goals maybe, but certainly still displayed great skill and set up plenty of chances for his teammates. His final penalty attempt was a bit of a fizzer, but it looked like it came from a player exhausted by carrying his nation's expectations on his shoulders.

Germany were deserved winners. Is it just me or were there some incredibly hot WAGs that came on to the field after the match to celebrate with the German players? Such is the lot of the professional football player.


eh? you haven't seen chris froome or mark cavendish or peter crouch's WAGs eh

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  Reply # 1088710 14-Jul-2014 15:42
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didn't look like anyone was playing for the win. they were playing not to lose. if that's true, the number of one-on-one chances were incredibly high. sloppy play. however i have to say - if anyone was playing with more drive, it was germany - maybe the fact that they didn't commit numbers to attack made them appear more defensive than their game plan was. argentina - i couldn't see any plan in their game. but then again with south american sides you can rarely see structure to their game, they play with "flair". but they didn't make much effort to go forward, it was give it to somebody (not necessarily messi) and see what happens. and i read somewhere that messi doesn't say anything at any time. maybe they needed a different captain.

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  Reply # 1088721 14-Jul-2014 16:01
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Dingbatt:
joker97: Hang on ... they've given the player of the tournament aka golden ball to the guy who did nothing over 7 hours of knockout footy ... Surely a political gesture


No goals maybe, but certainly still displayed great skill and set up plenty of chances for his teammates. His final penalty attempt was a bit of a fizzer, but it looked like it came from a player exhausted by carrying his nation's expectations on his shoulders.

Germany were deserved winners. Is it just me or were there some incredibly hot WAGs that came on to the field after the match to celebrate with the German players? Such is the lot of the professional football player.


What? After the group stages Messi was absolutely terrible. He was a passenger in that final. Watch him in a replay, unless the ball is GIVEN to him he doesn't work for the team. Doesn't chase back, doesn't pressure the opposition. He does NOTHING if it doesn't personally benefit him.

I am glad he got shown up. We can finally put this rubbish to bed of him being the best ever. Isn't even the best of the last 20 years.

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  Reply # 1088774 14-Jul-2014 17:41
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I regret not wishing for netherlands Germany final. Would have been 10x more interesting

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  Reply # 1088797 14-Jul-2014 18:38
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Argentina should have won it in the 90min.  They will be kicking themselves.  I was surprised Messi did not impose himself more.  The stage was set for him but he failed to take it.

Great tournament overall though, the withdrawal symptoms are already kicking in.    

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  Reply # 1088809 14-Jul-2014 18:48
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Messi didn't look interested throughout the tournament. just contrast him with say, Arjen Robben, who despite the touch-me-and-i'll-dive attitude, was at the other scale of being interested - very dynamic. both didn't win.

yes argentina could have won. you could say the same for any team at footy, since the score is only ever one point difference usually. today the gods favoured the machines. the German machines.

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  Reply # 1089133 15-Jul-2014 10:25
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I'm curious. How serious/organized are international football fixtures outside of the WC?

Are there annual international tournaments where all (i.e. best) players are available or is it only really during WC time?

I found this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_association_football_competitions

Just wondering if there was a 6 or Four nations type championship?

Just noticed the comment earlier regarding players not doing so well at international level. I vaguely recall a commentator saying that a top UEFA cup team could (easily?) win the WC.

Test rugby is a very very different beast from Super/Provincial/Club rugby. Often players who've looked wonderful at provincial level get shown up in a test. Test rugby is about not making mistakes, doing whatever (your) position requires. If you've got subtle deficiencies at provincial level, you can be sure they'll be exposed (sometimes embarrassingly) at test level. Not necessarily looking flash, scoring all the tries etc. It'd be fair to say it's more about the team goal (no pun intended) than any individual.
In some ways Germany mirrored what I would've expected in a strong "test" team.

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  Reply # 1089190 15-Jul-2014 12:10
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Each confederation has its own National tournaments held at various times.  The main two are the European Championships also held every four years (the next one is two years away) and Copa America also every four years with the next one next year.  It has the South American nations and a couple from Central and North America by invitation (I think).

For the European nations qualifying for the next Euro champs will now be the priority and will start soon.

Yes you would expect club teams to do well against nations as they play more together.  Major countries play maybe 10 matches a year tops whereas a club side can play upward of 40 or more.  FIFA for all their faults manages the international game far better than the IRB.  Players must be released to play for their country in set international windows by their clubs so you do get the best players playing internationals.   

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  Reply # 1089206 15-Jul-2014 12:22
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In theory, yes.

That's because club footy is normal life. The players usually live at home, train at the home ground, have a life afterwards. The team mates would be brothers in arms.

International footy is a major disruption. Hop on a plane one weekend after a busy club week. Jet lagged. No girlfriend. Stay in a hotel. Some random superstars all around you. Man I'd hate to be the coach.

In terms of player skills and team work it all depends. At one stage Brazil had Ronaldo rivaldo the best midfield, Roberto Carlos, top goalie, who had played many many times together in qualifying and copa America etc ... I'd say they'd be better than the top clubs at the time.

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  Reply # 1089214 15-Jul-2014 12:38
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The top 5 National teams would dismantle any club team. Outside of that, I wouldn't be surprised to see some club teams do well at a WC.

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  Reply # 1089234 15-Jul-2014 12:57
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In rugby, yes. In soccer, well Germany was nearly defeated by ghana (depending on a ref decision) and usa came close (well if they took their chances which they didn't). Anyone decent can beat anyone decent. I'd sit on the fence on top club vs top national.

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  Reply # 1089289 15-Jul-2014 14:19
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Interestingly the agreement between FIFA and clubs that allows for the release of players for international fixtures expires at the end of July and it seems there is a high level of intransigence among the clubs not to renew it. Sources such as England's Daily Mail newspaper saying it will be the end of the FIFA World Cup as we know it.
A similar thing already happens in rugby where players were held back from the the French tour of Australia and the English tour here to complete club fixtures. Pretty evident that money talks and the rich clubs in Europe hold much greater sway over the governing international bodies than is healthy for the sport.
Compare Germany's result with England's in Brazil, and then look at how many home grown players there are in the Bundesliga compared to the EPL.




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  Reply # 1089293 15-Jul-2014 14:25
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It won't be the end of the fifa world cup surely. It has been around for as long as civilization.

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