9 Days to the Cup

I used to really dislike the Argentinian national soccer team. Maradona, despite all his talent, displayed an arrogance that was off-putting, especially when compared with the joyful exuberance of the Brazilian side I and just about every one else loved.  I also thought the team was prone to cynical, defensive football in 1990 and 1994.

Though this Maradona goal was ludicrous:

These were amazing:

I warmed to Argentinian football in 2006, when they played with an unbelievable team flair. This gem from the first round is an example:

And I’ve become a huge Leo Messi fan:

Argentina will be very interesting to watch in South Africa, as they have perhaps the most attacking talent of any side.  They have significant questions in the middle of the field (will they be able to get Leo the ball in dangerous places?) and at the back.  With Maradona at their helm, they may perhaps lack some emotional stability and discipline.

Argentina should advance out of a tough but not spectacular group that includes Nigeria, South Korea, and Greece, and I think they’ll make it to the quarterfinals where they’ll likely face England, setting the stage for another installment in a classic rivalry.

4 thoughts on “9 Days to the Cup”

  1. I’ve always been more of the UK style of playing soccer rather than the South American but I have to agree. Maradona is somehow able to do things with a soccer ball that just don’t even make sense.

  2. Soccer sucks, be an American already, would ya? Europhiles annoy me, and any red blooded American who blogs about the World Cup is obviously a terrorist of some kind, or at minimum a hooligan.

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