Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Bloemfontein Tea Party

This evening, in Bloemfontein, in the FIFA 2009 Confederations Cup: The USA beat Spain, the top-ranked team in the world, 2-0. The USA played a very tactical--and it has to be said a very effective--game. Spain, a team with oodles of talent, had a frustrating night and missed out on setting a new record for the longest unbeaten streak in world football (36 matches, for the record, if you'll excuse the pun).

All hopes in South Africa are that tomorrow evening, Bafana Bafana, the national football team, will achieve a similar result against the mighty Brazil.

According to the current FIFA rankings, the relative positions of the four semifinalists are as follows: Spain (1), Brazil (5), USA (14), South Africa (72).

Clearly, on the basis of these rankings, any feat of giant-killing that will happen in tomorrow's game will far outweigh the giant-killing feat that happened in today's game. But we live in hope.

Incidentally: It's winter this time of year in the Southern Hemisphere and Bloemfontein was freezing--literally, with temperatures around 0°C. All teams that will play here in the World Cup next year should beware--the weather will definitely be a factor.

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