The FIFA World Cup Thread #2/Sports Thread #3 For 6/24/10: No Stop This Honda......Japan Progresses With Holland To The Round of 16
Photo from Getty Images and Fifa.comQuick Final Analysis:
No question that the MVP of this group was Mr. Honda.
Despite his coach's conservative tactics, the Keisuke one showed that his rising star for the folks from "the land of the rising sun" will continue to elevate more and more.
Sensational with his smoothness on the ball, his drive in the midfield, and his left foot earning him officially a spot on the "world's most dangerous free kick list" clearly (as his strike against Sevilla in the Champions League opened our eyes to how dangerous from a free kick that he is).
Him and Endo show how talented this midfield he is, and they didn't even need to bring in arguably their most (now 2nd most) talented midfielder in Nakamura or their other renowned veteran Inamoto. And again, I'm not going to rehash the conversation about Morimoto, and how Okada will never play him since he can't stand him and Nakamura.
This is a moment of celebration for Japan, in the Round of 16 off home soil.
For Denmark, they just didn't do it today at all.
They couldn't break down Japan's sound defense when they had the assault going on in the first 15 minutes. And once Endo's brilliant free kick went in for the 2nd Japan goal, Denmark was deflated from then on. Tomasson's luck was not to be found in what could be the last game he ever plays for Denmark, becoming the all time leading scorer for his country after rebounding his penalty shot saved by Kawashima.
Shame for Martin Olsen, who I think had some of the more spot on managing for the tournament in my eyes. He put his players in winnable positions, and did not have any tactics that severely harmed them. Instead it was their midfield that let them down today, as Jorgenson and Rommedhal just looked old and didn't have anything left out in the park against that energetic five man midfield of Japan.
Oh, and just a word on the otherwise meaningless Cameroon-Netherlands game.......Cameroon showed France that even without a point, that you finish a tournament like this with dignity. They exhibited that to full exhibition today, especially Samuel Eto'o today. Hopefully this isn't his last match for his nation, through it feels a little like it will be.
And it sure was nice to see a man that surely played his last match for "The Indomitable Lions", Rigobert Song, make a swan song and become the 1st African player to ever play in four World Cup finals.
Photo from Getty Images and FIFA.comFinal Group F Standings (And the first Group to have a 9-6-3-0 ending) :
Netherlands 9 points
Japan 6 points
Denmark 3 points
Cameroon 0 points
The Match Archive #2 is below:
CSKA Moscow will have to fight very hard to make sure clubs understand that Keisuke Honda just got there and is here to stay in Moscow (unless someone wants him for now 20 million euros, haha). A terrific performances against an overmatch Denmark midfield and a disappointing Thomas Sorensen here.
The first group where only one match matches, so more focus on this thread is on Japan and Denmark here. No Kajer for the Danes, while Japan just has more possible incompetence with their manager.
Denmark: Sorensen, C Poulsen, SB Poulsen, Agger, L Jacobsen, Tomasson, Jorgensen, Bendtner, Kahlenberg, Kroldrup, RommedahlIt is underway here folks, this crucial Group E match as of this first post. I think Denmark get the result, only because of having the better manager clearly than Japan.
Japan: Kawashima, Abe, Komano, Tulio, Nagatomo, Endo, Matsui, Okubo, Hasebe, Honda, Nakazawa
1st half analysis:
Let's just say Denmark needs a hell of an effort to pull a win here. But with Okada as a manager for Japan, you never know folks.