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The Darcmenace

2010 World Cup

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Is this an omen?:

The United States' preparations for their opener against England on Saturday were briefly delayed when an elephant blocked the team bus en route to a training session.

A team spokesman said the squad had to wait around five minutes while the elephant ate food from a tree on the side of the road.

Earlier in the afternoon, a bus carrying 10 players got held up behind another elephant at the entrance to the team's hotel in Rustenburg, the spokesman added.

Drogba Update: Elephants coach Sven-Groan Eriksson says that Drogba is feeling better and better, but is still doubtful for the Tuesday opener. He was expected to practice today.

USA striker Jozy Altidore will start against England tomorrow.

Italy could be without another midfielder, as Daniele De Rossi has suffered a calf injury. He could play against Paraguay on Monday. The defending champs are already short Andrea Pirlo, who may not play in the Group stage.

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For as good as South Korea was, Greece was just as bad. The Koreans played with pace and forced the attack, the Greeks looked like they just wanted it to be over.

Looking forward to Argentina/Nigeria, they have a little more motivation now that someone else in the group has earned a full three points.

Aaaaaannd we're only about fours away from the Big One.

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Argentina joined South Korea in taking a grip on Group A with a fine win over Nigeria, who had their chances.

We've got less than 90 minutes to go before the match we've been waiting months for......

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You can say all you want about the quality of the goal, but you can't say the Americans didn't earn the Draw.

Tim Howard was my Man of the Match. The goal he allowed was more on Ricardo Clark, who got abused by Steven Gerrard the same way Jozy Altidore abused Jamie Carragher.

Oguchi Onyewu and Steve Cherundolo did well in holding down the backline with Howard, and Clint Dempsey was all over the place. Carlos Bocanegra came close to heading in a corner in the 2nd half, but didn't get the right angle on the ball.

I thought the Findley>Buddle switch could have come a bit sooner; I would have liked to see him get a bit more time to find a way to exploit his speed.

They'll need to improve their start if they want to earn the expected points from Algeria and Slovenia (who play tomorrow), but it was a good start.

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You can say all you want about the quality of the goal, but you can't say the Americans didn't earn the Draw.

Tim Howard was my Man of the Match. The goal he allowed was more on Ricardo Clark, who got abused by Steven Gerrard the same way Jozy Altidore abused Jamie Carragher.

Oguchi Onyewu and Steve Cherundolo did well in holding down the backline with Howard, and Clint Dempsey was all over the place. Carlos Bocanegra came close to heading in a corner in the 2nd half, but didn't get the right angle on the ball.

I thought the Findley>Buddle switch could have come a bit sooner; I would have liked to see him get a bit more time to a way to exploit his speed.

They'll need to improve their start if they want to earn the expected points from Algeria and Slovenia (who play tomorrow), but it was a good start.

As weak as the Dempsey goal was, that Altidore near-miss could easily have subbed in as a legit score.

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Slovenia got a late goal from Robert Koren to beat Algeria 1-0. They move to the top of Group C with 3 points, ahead of USA and England.

The Algerians finished with 10 men after sub Abdelkader Ghezzal got booked twice within a 14-minute stretch in the 2nd half.

The Slovenians next face on the Americans on Friday at 10am Eastern, and Algeria will play England that same day.

I've already seen suggestions that the Slovenians will sit back and play for a Draw, trying to keep a two-point advantage over the Americans heading into the final match of group play.

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For the second day in a row, a hideous mistake in front of net will cost a team victory.

Serbia's Zdravko Kuzmanovic reached out and got a hand on the ball in his own box, allowing Ghana's Asamoah Gyan to plant the penalty.

Ghana now jumps to the top of group D, and will await the outcome of today's late match, Germany/Australia, to know where they stand.

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I think we can call the final match of the day, and in doing so, proclaim that "Der Mannschaft" is alive and well.

The second-youngest team in the tournament answered every German's prayers in showing that they're up for the pressure, and dismantled the Aussies. If Miroslav Klose can repeat his scoring output from the previous two WC's, he'll become the all-time leading scorer in World Cup play.

I'd like it noted that Tim Cahill's red card was an absolute travesty. It was a penalty, and he should have been booked, but showing Red was over-the-top.

The Germans get Serbia on Friday, and the Socceroos will have to come up with a response for co-group leader Ghana on Saturday.

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The Netherlands and Japan moved into a 1st-place tie for Group E, while the Italians had to come from behind to work out a Draw.

After a scoreless first half, the Dutch got the lead on an Own Goal by Daniel Agger and sealed the deal with a Dirk Kuyt marker later on.

The Japanese got a late-1st half goal from Keisuke Honda and held on to win for the first time in the WC outside of their home country.

The defending champions got behind the 8-ball in the first half on a goal by Antolin Alcaraz and injury was added to insult when Azzuri keeper Gianluigi Buffon left early in the 2nd half due to a back problem. Daniele De Rossi saved the day in the 52nd minute.

Tomorrow's slate:

7:30am - New Zealand v. Slovakia

10:00am - Ivory Coast v. Portugal

2:30pm - Brazil v. North Korea

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The Netherlands and Japan moved into a 1st-place tie for Group E, while the Italians had to come from behind to work out a Draw.

After a scoreless first half, the Dutch got the lead on an Own Goal by Daniel Agger and sealed the deal with a Dirk Kuyt marker later on.

The Japanese got a late-1st half goal from Keisuke Honda and held on to win for the first time in the WC outside of their home country.

The defending champions got behind the 8-ball in the first half on a goal by Antolin Alcaraz and injury was added to insult when Azzuri keeper Gianluigi Buffon left early in the 2nd half due to a back problem. Daniele De Rossi saved the day in the 52nd minute.

Tomorrow's slate:

7:30am - New Zealand v. Slovakia

10:00am - Ivory Coast v. Portugal

2:30pm - Brazil v. North Korea

Watched every minute so far...love it. I just wish i would have followed the inter-league play more.

Fantasy World Cup league? thats awesome...how is it scored? do you start each position?

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Watched every minute so far...love it. I just wish i would have followed the inter-league play more.

Fantasy World Cup league? thats awesome...how is it scored? do you start each position?

Yes, you fill out a roster of players and pick a starting lineup using accepted formations. It's actually nearly identical to the game we use for the Rotoworld Cup competition.

You have 140 million dollars to fill out a 23-man roster, and pick a max of 2 players per country. Both the cap and the player allowance increase as the tournament goes along.

Points are given for minutes played, Goals, Assists, Goalkeeper saves and Clean Sheets (shutouts); there are bonuses for Attacking and Defending. Points are taken away for Yellow and Red cards, missing penalty kicks and fouls. You select a Captain for your team, and his points are doubled.

There's also an automatic scoring system that moves players into your lineup at the end of a round if one of your starters doesn't play; you also have the ability to make manual subs.

predator 05 and I have posted rosters in the World Cup Games thread, and I have mine ongoingly in my sig. Shoot me a PM if you want more details or some input on player selection....I'm sure predator is open to questions, too.

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This has been a terrible World Cup so far. Only the opening week, but i've been shocked by the poor quality of football on display - teams showing reluctance to attack, the pathetic atmosphere (those horns are driving me nuts) and a crappy ball. I've only enjoyed watching 2 games in all honesty - Germany's brilliant performance against an awful Australian side and the opening game.

I don't blame Americans for thinking this is a crap sport if they watch these matches.

Anyway, the Spanish play tomorrow and so do my dark horses - the Chileans - so we should finally see some decent football.

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New Zealand salvaged a Draw with Slovakia when Winston Reid scored in added time. He'll carry a Yellow Card into the next match after taking his shirt off while celebrating. Robert Vittek scored early in the 2nd half to give the Slovaks the lead.

Group F is now a four-way tie, with all teams having Drawn 1-1 matches. They all play on Sunday, with Slovakia taking on Paraguay and Italy facing New Zealand.

Ivory Coast and Portugal had their chances, but failed to score for a scoreless Draw. Didier Drogba played with a cast on his arm and was announced as part of the roster at the last minute. The Portuguese aren't pleased, as casts are usually not allowed.

Brazil took a second-half lead and then held on to beat WC newbies North Korea, 2-1. Maicon and Elano scored for the Brazilians, and Ji Yun Nam scored the first WC goal in his country's history.

The Brazilians now have the Group G lead, with Ivory Coast and Portugal two points behind. Brazil/Ivory Coast is on Sunday afternoon, and Portugal/North Korea is Monday morning.

Tomorrow is the last day that teams will be playing for the first time and later, South Africa and Uruguay kick off the 2nd round of Group play.

7:30am - Honduras v. Chile

10:00am - Spain v. Switzerland

2:30pm - South Africa v. Uruguay

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Guest ciderjack6

Booooring. B)

Hopefully teams will open up a little after the 1st matches of group play are in the books and they sort of know what they need to do to advance.

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Spain =Epic Fail. Also I think the ball is becoming a serious storyline. Time and time again no one can keep the ball down or turnover on the ball on shots. I am going to my local soccer shop today to pick up a ball and see how it plays. Big game for S. Africa today.

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Spain =Epic Fail. Also I think the ball is becoming a serious storyline. Time and time again no one can keep the ball down or turnover on the ball on shots. I am going to my local soccer shop today to pick up a ball and see how it plays. Big game for S. Africa today.

I can't believe that Adidas is saying this ball is so accurate, but so many players and coaches dislike it. Another thing I don't understand is that Adidas released the ball for practice in February, but yet all these guys seem to have not used it enough to complain about it until right before the World Cup.

All I know is if I play a sport where they have a big competition once every four years and I know what ball I'm using for it, I just might practice with it enough to figure it out a bit before the big competition. Some of these guys are coming off like they used it for the first time the week before the World Cup.

It's possible that they just weren't being interviewed by international media several months ago so their complaints were going unheard, but it seems like a lot of people should have prepared a little differently. I guess on the other hand if the ball truly flies that much different it's a huge mistake by Adidas to release it this close to the World Cup.

Edit: Also good luck on the purchase. I hope you really like the ball for $150 retail. WOW!

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Jean Beausejour scored almost by accident as Chile won its first WC match since finishing 3rd in 1962. The Chileans out-shot the Hondurans, 20-7, as they put the pedal down and never looked back.

Diego Forlan scored twice as Uruguay routed the host nation, 3-0. With a -3 goal differential, South Africa needs a virtual miracle to advance now, especially after goalkeeper Itumelenge Khune was shown Red in the 79th minute.

Tomorrows slate:

7:30am - Argentina v. South Korea

10:00am - Greece v. Nigeria

2:30pm - France v. Mexico

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Oh I didnt purchase that overpiced piece of crap. I merely played around with an opened ball in the store for 30 mins. Its a recession man! B)

I can't believe that Adidas is saying this ball is so accurate, but so many players and coaches dislike it. Another thing I don't understand is that Adidas released the ball for practice in February, but yet all these guys seem to have not used it enough to complain about it until right before the World Cup.

All I know is if I play a sport where they have a big competition once every four years and I know what ball I'm using for it, I just might practice with it enough to figure it out a bit before the big competition. Some of these guys are coming off like they used it for the first time the week before the World Cup.

It's possible that they just weren't being interviewed by international media several months ago so their complaints were going unheard, but it seems like a lot of people should have prepared a little differently. I guess on the other hand if the ball truly flies that much different it's a huge mistake by Adidas to release it this close to the World Cup.

Edit: Also good luck on the purchase. I hope you really like the ball for $150 retail. WOW!

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Oh I didnt purchase that overpiced piece of crap. I merely played around with an opened ball in the store for 30 mins. Its a recession man! B)

That's what I was thinking. Have to be a pretty serious soccer player to pick one of those babies up!!

Hope the US can pull a win out tomorrow morning. You know Slovenia would be quite content with a tie so the US will have to go from the defensive underdog to aggressive favorite and do it quite well.

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I had to listen to the match on the radio, and nobody could understand why the Maurice Edu goal was waved off.

Anybody see it, that can offer an explanation?

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I had to listen to the match on the radio, and nobody could understand why the Maurice Edu goal was waved off.

Anybody see it, that can offer an explanation?

It looked like Bradley, Altidore, and Edu were all being held to some extent (Bradley was getting bear-hugged). Edu broke free as the ball came straight to his feet. He knocked it in. At first it seemed like it must have been called offside, but it clearly wasn't. Then the only other option was a foul on the US. It clearly wasn't that either. If anything the US should have gotten a penalty kick for the hold on Bradley. Quite a rip-off, but I still can't help but feel fortunate that the US can advance now with a win over Algeria.

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It looked like Bradley, Altidore, and Edu were all being held to some extent (Bradley was getting bear-hugged). Edu broke free as the ball came straight to his feet. He knocked it in. At first it seemed like it must have been called offside, but it clearly wasn't. Then the only other option was a foul on the US. It clearly wasn't that either. If anything the US should have gotten a penalty kick for the hold on Bradley. Quite a rip-off, but I still can't help but feel fortunate that the US can advance now with a win over Algeria.

We got hosed. Bad.

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We got hosed. Bad.

It was ridiculous...It seemed like all the calls were against the US. We should've won despite the hole we got ourselves into. Having said that, that needs to change. We can't keep falling behind.

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