Steve Sidelnyk's Football Blog 19th June 2014....The BIG One!

We are here again ………make or break?……….boom or bust?……….glory or shame?
In a few hours England take on Uruguay in a game the realistically has to be won for them to stay in the FIFA World Cup 2014…………..NO PRESSURE : O )
After a plucky match against the Italians on Saturday which saw England manager Roy Hodgson play many young players mixed with some experience and the team perform well only to be un-done by a Mario Balotelli goal, it seemed to be the same old story. BUT given the fact that current World Cup Holders were sent packing by firstly a brilliant Holland side and then truly served by a red hot Chilean team last night it seems like its anybody’s cup right now!
A little side-note when Daniel Sturridge scored the England goal from a great build up from Raheem Sterling and a much criticised Wayne Rooney, the team’s physio Gary Lewin in celebrating the goal in the technical area, managed to dislocate his ankle and was stretchered off!!!!!……..Get well Gary! : O )
Headline news really is Spain out and Australia with them and then Cameroon so its the earliest exit ever by any current World Champions……... even beating the French.
NOBODY is safe and Brazil have given less than a perfect account of themselves by firstly beating a great Croatian side with the aid of some dubious decisions by the referee and then being held to a 0-0 draw by a very impressive Mexican team with their goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa pulling off some magnificent saves and opening that group wide.
Chile were amazing against the Spanish but Holland seemed to falter against the Aussies and had to come from behind to win. Holland and Chile through to the next round.
Colombia beat Greece and the Ivory coast came from behind to beat a formidable Japanese team.
In the group that really matters to us the total underdogs Costa Rica dominated a less than impressive Uruguay team and a 3-1 win saw the on loan to Olympiakos from Arsenal man Joel Campbell score a truly magnificent goal and a well deserved win. Uruguay without Luis Saurez….. but looks like he’ll play tonight and the Premierships top scorer could be a thorn in England’s side…fit or not! Italy looked very good and some very impressive youngsters and the experienced 35 year old midfielder Andrea Pirlo defying age with some class and precision passing that undid England.
The easy group had an impressive French team beating Honduras and Switzerland coming from behind to beat Ecuador a mighty fine display from the Swiss!
Argentina took a while to get going and then Messi flexed his goal scoring muscles and produced magic at the Maracana stadium in Rio to win against Bosnia.
The first goal-less draw between Iran and Nigeria saw only 5 shots on target between the two teams and Nigeria really need to pull their socks up to stay in the running.
Then the old enemy the Germans completely dominated and neutralized both Christiano Ronaldo and a Portugese team that show no form and 4-0 to Ze Germans……..Watch Out!
Ghana v USA and after a wonderful start with Clint Dempsey giving the USA a very early lead Ghana came back only to be beaten by a superb header from the US in extra time and cue Jurgen Klinsmann another German VERY happy to see his Landon Donovan-less side battle till the very end!
Side-note number 2, Delta Airlines were forced to apologise after congratulating the US team on its 2-1 victory with a picture of a giraffe, despite there being no giraffes in Ghana!
African American website, Bossip, tweeted : ‘There are no giraffes in Ghana you idiots!’ and Ghanaian Ato Ulzen-Appiah added : ‘Delta to launch giraffe riding package to Ghana.’
Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooo Delta Airlines : O )
Belgium got into their stride and finally despatched a very fit looking Algerian side and old England manager Fabio Capello managing to pick the oldest side in the competition for Russia drawing in a very scrappy and boring match with South Korea……..a real snoozefest.
Anyway I’m off to the shop to get loads of beer and some hankies just in case.
Lets hope that the bookmakers favourite to score first the Shrek-like Wayne Rooney can silence his critics and inspire the lads to get this party started : O ) Now theres optimism for you! 

Steve ‘Panini’ Sidelnyk X


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