Friday, July 2, 2010

Why Brazil lost and why Holland is making me rethink things.

So as I sit here I've just returned from The Point Bar where I watch Ghana lose in heartbreaking fashion to Uruguay more on that in the next post. As for this post I'll be looking at the sudo upset that took place earlier today as The Netherlands defeated Brazil 2-1.

Scanning the headlines it seems the world has been rocked by the fact that the 5 time world champions were defeated by Holland. It seems that most of the world has forgotten that the Dutch are a world class side as well, in fact they are currently riding a 23 match unbeaten streak. They are also ranked fourth in the world by FIFA and contain a squad full of players just as good and skillful as Brazil's.

The issue for Brazil was not the lack of attacking football as many in the Brazilian press have stated. It wasn't really even the formation or team selection by head coach Dunga as he picked his best 11, and the formation had worked up to this point. The real issue as to why Brazil lost was their lack of discipline when things started to go The Netherlands way. After the tying own goal by the now vilified Felipe Melo, Brazil seemed to lose its focus and allowed the Dutch to carry the majority of the play. This was in stark contrast to the first half, in which Brazil had the lead and looked in complete control. The go-ahead goal was set up by poor defensive decision making by Brazil's Juan as he put the ball out for a corner when he could have kicked it into touch. The goal was scored from said corner kick. The surprising lack of discipline shown afterward was their downfall, Melo's insane stomp on Robbin's leg left Brazil down to 10 men and virtually out of the match.

As for Holland, they showed in the second half a team unity that has been missing in past World Cup campaigns. Whatever was said in the half time talk by manager Bert van Marwijk seemed to spark the team into action, and they bossed the game after that. Looking ahead to the semi final match with Uruguay, you would have to make the Dutch the odds on favorites; provided they can carry the form they showed in the second half into the semi final match. Once again mid fielder Wesley Sneijder and forward Arjen Robben were the trigger men in the "Oranje" attack. Sneijder especially as he control the link up between the rest of the midfield and the forwards.

Given they way the Dutch responded after being a goal down to the best team in the world, Bert van Marwijk's side is making me think twice about my world cup winner.


No comments:

Post a Comment