Posts Tagged ‘Argentina’

USA versus Argentina – Live commentary 3.26.11

The best players on their respective teams. Unfortunately Dempsey hasn't got much opportunity to prove it.

Agudelo and Chandler were the difference makers in the second half and if not for Howard the score would have been embarrassing. Argentina played pretty football but their finishing let them down…that and Howard was immense.

TWEEET TWEET TWEET. Well a draw. Who would have thought after the first half. Typical US resolve and never say die attitude got them a scrappy goal.

91:00 – 2 minutes of extra time. US did well to equalize but i think it really masks the fact that their defense was picked apart time and time again. Thank heavens for Howard who per usual was magnificent. Also lost was Argentina’s woeful finishing.

89:00 – Chandler has a five head. Not even a forehead… A FIVE HEAD!

86:00 – Good playing by the USMNT as they ping the ball around. Altidore sends in a good cross but it’s headed out. Messi counters and is finally dispossessed by 4 defenders. US counter very well, but again Argentina counter. Messi’s final shot is woeful though.

84:00 – Nothing comes from the corner, but the US wins a free kick in a dangerous area.

83:00 – US win a corner. Good chance here.

81:00 – ARGY BARGY!

79:00 – Game getting a little chippier and the US playing a lot better in the second half, at least on offense.

77:00 – Argentina having their away again, but Chandler blocks well. A definite for the future.

73:00 – Gooch showing his skills from his younger days as he muscles Di Maria off the ball as DeMerit loses the ball in front of the box. Good play by the veteran from Twente.

71:00 – US playing a lot better counter football and it has all to do with Agudelo who comes back for the ball and attacks with a purpose. It’s infectious as Altidore is also playing better and working hard.

69:00 – Agudelo playing with confidence as he is giving the Argentine defense something to think about.

67:00 – Chandler has been a very positive addition. His forays up front have been the impetus for all positive US attacks.

64:00 – One way to showcase how good a keeper Howard is. He has been pummeled over and over again, due to swiss cheese like defense and yet has only let in one goal. US get one chance and get one passed Andujar.

63:00 – Messi wins a free kick but his kick is poor and goes over.

61:00 – The USMNT took advantage of what they are good at by scoring of a set piece but their defense is JUST ATROCIOUS!!! If it wasn’t for Howard, the US would be down 9-1.

59:00 – GOAAAAL Agudelo scores at home from sloppy defending off a set piece. Donovan sends it in that Bocanegra sends goal wards. It is blocked by the keeper but Agudelo pokes it from inches away to equalize. Argentina 1 – US 1

58:00 – Levezzi gets acres of space as he runs at Bocanegra. Once again Howard saves the day by parrying the shot up in the air and catches it.

56:00 – Bradley doing a good job as a midfielder destroyer as he breaks up a couple of promising plays. Equal to the challenge is Mascherano who is not letting anything go by him.

52:00 – Nice play by the substitutes as Chandler crosses it into the box and Altidore flicks it down for Agudelo who sends a weak shot wide. Better and more imaginative from the US.

48:00 – Altidore and Agudelo do a good job of keeping possession and the US charge into the Argentina half. A cross comes in from Donovan, but it is cut off before Altidore can get a chance to put it in the back of the net nice positive play by the US.

47:00 – Argentina take over from where they left off as Di Maria has a quick shot that goes just over the bar.

46:00 – Looks like Agudelo is coming in for Jones and Chandler on for Spector.

PEEE PEEP and the second half is underway.

TWEEET TWEEET Half time. Well if the US are going to play so many players behind the ball, they can’t just sit there. THEY HAVE TO CHALLENGE the ball. That way if they get beat, there is someone right there to challenge again. What they are doing right now is just waiting for Argentina to take it to them which they gladly  are doing.

On offense…well its hard to play offense when you don’t have the ball, but their brief forays up field do look positive. Dempsey and Donovan need to take charge.

45:00 – Argentina continuing to dominate as they ignore the fact the US has defenders. The US are playing their role as spectators well. CHARGE THE FRIGGIN BALL!

42:00 – GOOOOALLLL Cambioasso. Another display of ping pong passing as Messi gets the ball on the byline and slots into the middle, the first shot is saved but the rebound falls to Cambiasso and he hammers it into the back of the net. A wel deserved goal. On a positive note, the US defense was holding up somewhat up until then. Lesson to be learned. DON’T site back and wait. Argentina 1 – US 0

39:00 – US playing much better as they attack more, but lose the ball and it becomes the Messi show as he scampers through everyone and once again his shot is well saved by Howard.

37:00 – Deuce and Donovan show what they can do as Donovan holds the ball up and sends Deuce through, who shoots with his right, but its blocked, so he shoots the rebound with his left and that is well saved. Take note young US players…learn to shoot with both feet!

34:00 – Howard, per usual, is sparing the US’s blushes as he holds onto a ball as Di Maria waltzes through 4 US defenders who remain rooted to the spot. As good as Argentina is their finishing is poor.

32:00 – Now they’re giving a clinic on long range passing as Cambiasso brings the ball down and slots one for Di Maria to latch onto, but his shot is going wide as Howard pushes it even further wide. The US defense is looking slow.

30:00 – US gets a free kick, which they are always dangerous at, but Donovan’s (who has been absent from this game) delivery is poor.

28:00 – Spectacular passing all within 3 feet of each other as Messi’s shot flashes wide and no one in the middle to tap it in. Gorgeous stuff that.

24:00 – Messi goes down from a shot to the head from Gooch. Accidental but that has to hurt.

23:00 – Howard comes out bravely to deny Messi from a great bass by Banega. Argentina passing the ball at will.

20:00 – Bradley playing well as the defensive midfielder and has made several key blocks.

18:00 – Bocanegra gets hosed by i believe Levezzi as he waltzes through the defense and wins a corner. Nothing comes of it though.

17:00 – Would like to see that again, as that could have been a handball in the box against Argentina from a brief counter by the USMNT.

15:00 – Argentina playing an excellent job of keep-a-way as it is 5 against 10 in the US red zone. USMNT playing decent D.

12:00 – Messi shows his class and completely free’s up Di Maria in the box who for some odd reason decides to cross it back HARD, when a shot on goal could have produced better results.

11:00 – US work it well but Edu can’t get around 3 players and Argentina counter well. Spector does well to block a Rojo shot.

9:00 –  Gooch gets worked by Levezzi as his knee gives out or was it his ankle and he gets caught in possession. Nothing comes of it though.

8:00 – Messi’s first pass is not his best and it’s half cleared to Di Maria who has a shot straight at Howard who holds it well.

6:00 – Messi playing very shallow as cheers from the crowd as the ball is glued to his feet. Ball seems deflated.

2:00 – All Argentina in the opening up minutes, though Dempsey latches on to a bad pass and runs all the way into the box, but his shot is weak . Notice Messi playing D the whole way!

So cold out there that this simian is missing his....

PEEEEP. USMNT kicks it off in their shiny new tops!


A moment of silence for Japan. Classy call US federation!


Do they usually do anthems for friendlies? The place is packed!


Argentina: Andujar; Rojo, Milito, Burdisso, Zanetti; Mascherano, Cambiasso, Banega; Lavezzi, Messi, Di Maria

And now back to footie. Looks like a great atmosphere at the meadowlands. WOW that is a lot of kids to exchange!


So this might be blasphemous on this site, but am watching Butler versus Florida right now. I live, eat and breath soccer and it is by far my favorite sport, but I might say that the NCAA tourney could be the best sports tournament on the planet. No BS (except maybe the play in games), always upsets and cause its “amateur”, the players are playing for glory. They work their ass off and there is very little prima donna crap going on. Oh and go UCONN (when I moved to the states it was to CT and the Whalers were sent packing a few years later)


Still waiting on the official Argentine lineup, but as expected from BB, the US line up is probably their most experienced as well as their most predictable. Hope “sweats” experiments a bit. For me the big question is whether Deuce can replicate his club form on the international stage. Personally I think Dozy gets in his way.


USA: Howard; Spector, DeMerit, Onyewu, Bocanegra (c); Jones, Bradley, Edu; Dempsey, Donovan; Altidore



Back with lineups and kick off shortly


I hear it’s cold enough to re-configure the anatomy of a brass monkey out there at the Meadowlands. Our main man Matt Mathai is out patrolling the sidelines with “axe” in hand. Hopefully we will be seeing some of his stellar photographs in the up coming days. His brief current report from NJ is as follows “IT. IS. FREAKING. COLD!! I have on 4 layers of pretty sophisticated cold and wind gear and it feels like I’m wearing a tank top.”


Well we’re about 45 minutes from game time and there is not much to be said that hasn’t been said on our site or by our intelligent followers. This will be the first test (i see Brazil as a “lets push the USMNT hype a bit from the world cup” game) as to what we shall see in upcoming tournaments. They key is to see what Bradley senior does with what he learns today in the game against Paraguay.

Game 3 Group B – Argentina versus South Korea

Over rated or the genuine article? His scoring record for club is undeniable but is it more of being in the right place at the right time or a skilled player? I say a bit of both.

PEEEEEEEEP PEEEEEP PEEP – Argentina with an emphatic win over South Korea. Score was not kind to South Korea as they played well and will rue the chance they had in the 58th minute when they could have leveled at two all.

91:00 – Park Ji Sung tries a turn and volley shot that is well saved by Romero.

2 minutes of added time.

89:00 – Messi wants a goal so bad!

88:00 – Another mistake by Dimichelis leads to South Korea getting a ball in the box but their striker falls softly and Argentina clear. Argentina is amazing going forward but dodgy in the back.

87:00 – Aguero with a great run as he turns and weaves through the South Korean defense but a last second tackle saves the day.

85:00 – South Korea still pressing. The score is deceiving to their play as they have played well. What would have happened if they had scored that opportunity  earlier in the second half?

82:00 – And that’s it for the Real striker as he is taken off to loud and very deserved applause. Bolatti takes his place.

80:00 – GOOOOOOOAAAAL. HIGUAIN GETS HIS HAT TRICK. Great inter change of passing between the three forwards. Messi chips it to Aguero who sends a lovely cross in and Higuain runs into a great position at the back post and heads it calmly into the back of the net. That was the best of the three by far. Argentina 4 – South Korea 1

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Group B Match 2 – Nigeria V. Argentina

So far so good for Maradona

Well a disappointing game all around. Argentina were the better side but their final ball was poor. That had a lot to do with Eneyama who was spectacular and the best player on the pitch and the only reason Nigeria lost by a goal. South Korea will be happy with this result as they go top on goal difference.

4 minutes of stoppage time.

90:00 – Argentina showing off a little bit with a bunch of slick passes and chips. Pretty to watch!

85:00 – Di Maria off and Burdisso on. Argentina trying to protect there slim 1-0 lead. Typical from a newbie coach as Di Maria was dangerous. Hopefully they won’t rue this substitution as Yakubu’s shot goes over the bar.

81:00 – IS this going to be Messi’s tournament? He performs a lovely 1 -2 with Di Maria and is one on one with Edeyama but the keeper gets down low and saves well. On the counter Uche has Nigeria’s best chance but the ball bounces high in front of him and his tap goes over the bar. That was a lot harder then it looked but one would have hoped he could have done better.

79:00 – Martins tries his luck from out far and finally they get a shot on target but Romero parries it away. Odemwingie who has been poor since being introduced sends a cross high and wide. Higuain off, Milito on.

77:00 – All told aside from Eneyama, Nigeria has been pretty disappointing in this game. I expected a lot more from them. If it wasn’t for the keeper it could easily have been 3 or 4 to 0.

75:00 – Taiwo apparently hurt himself or Nigeria are looking to score as he goes off and Uche comes on.

74:00 – Messi gets fouled right out side the box. Before the free kick though Veron comes off and Maxi Rodriguez comes on.

71:00 – Taiwo sends a hard shot that just flashes wide of the Argentine post. Closest the Super Eagles have been to challenging Romero’s goal.

66:00 – Back and forth play here as Higuain has an open shot saved well by Enyeama and the immediate breakaway falls to Odemwingie but he gets caught in two minds kicks the ball out of for a goal kick.

65:00 – After a Nigerian corner, Argentina break away beautifully through Tevez who tee’s up Messi but his placed shot is just wide. Nigeria are just not showing any determination.

63:00 – Nigerian fans beginning to boo their own players as Taiwo sends the sort of rugby kick that is used to being seen at this stadium as his shot goes a mile high over the Argentine goal.

60:00 – Well this might be exciting for Nigeria as Odemwingie comes on. Wonder why he started on the bench as he is Nigeria’s most exciting player.

58:00 – Nigeria just don’t seem to be bothered by this game. If they showed a little more desire and determination they would win the 50/50 balls and who knows what could happen. Right now they look very disinterested.

52:00 – Nigeria’s defense is shambolic as Samuel gets another free header off a corner. Luckily Samuel’s heading has been poor. Meanwhile Obinna is off and Martins is on.

49:00 – Argentina coming fast right after the gates. Messi gathers the ball from Tevez, passes it out wide to Veron who sends a low cross back to Messi but his slight touch goes just wide of the goal mouth. Pretty stuff though

TWEEET TWEEET and the second half is under way.

So Lalas did entertain me with this quote “Greece were highly entertaining in their complete ineptitude”. Not close to winning me over but a start!

Well Argentine go into the dressing room up a goal. Nigeria have found weaknesses in their opponents defense but haven’t done too much to trouble the Argentine back four. Lagerback is going to have to bring on a goal poacher or two in the second half.

45:00 – Veron does but he sends it high over the Nigerian goal. Game has petered out a bit after an initial 15 minutes of fast paced football.

44:00 – Messi goes on a mazy run and is finally fouled right outside the box. Beautiful ball control by the 23 year old. who will take the free kick?

41:00 – Yellow card for Gutierrez. Taiwo takes the free kick but it’s well punched out by Sergio Romero.

37:00 – A training ground free kick which is a give and go with Messi has the little Barcelona striker trying to chip Eneyama but the keeper is equal to the task and pushes it out for a corner. Nice save.

31:00 – Both teams seem a little tired as Argentina lazily pass the ball around the back line and Nigeria are content to let them do so.

28:00 – Nigeria showing more intent as they are attacking in waves. Lots of inviting balls in the box but the final touch is either lacking or not there.

23:00 – Am impressed that Veron is still a key figure in his national side. After being one of the bigger names in Europe for many years, he has disappeared to a kind of world football obscurity by playing for Estudiantes in the Argentine league. Still can thread the killer pass though.

21:00 – Higuain doing what he does best and misses a a very good opportunity as he shoots directly at the keeper after being beautifully set up by Tevez. Milito would have put that away.

19:00 – Each team is looking for that killer pass but neither is succeeding. Nigeria need to pass the ball on the ground in order to beat Argentina. Unfortunately they are trying to do it in the air.

15:00 – A very open game happening here as balls long and short are being strung all over the field by both teams.

10:00 – Sloppy defense by Walter Samuel gives Nigeria a 2 on 2 but Samuel makes amends and conceededs a corner. Nigeria really pressing now.

6:00 – GOOOOOOOOALLLL Heinze. Poor marking of the corner as Heinze has a free header that he thumps into the back of the net. Argentina 1 – Nigeria 0

6:00 – Big mistake by Nigeria sets up messi who sends a chip shot that Enyeama does wonderfully to save.

The Liverpool hard man will be the key in this game to protect a flimsy Argentine back line

2:00 – And Messi is already off and running as his Obasi. Both teams seem to be foregoing defense.

TWEEEEEEEET and its off.


OHHHH that’s exciting. The game ball is on a little pedestal outside the tunnel that the referee picks up as the teams walk out. Very ceremonious. As the national anthems are being played its time for a ceremony here at TSG headquarters. The making of a fresh fruit smoothy. BRB


Argentina look to be going 4-3-3 and why not! Nigeria are also fielding a pretty attacking line up going 4-3-3 as well or possibly a 4 -1 -2 – 3. I predict lots of goals…Hopefully i am right!


So I thought that Kanu was named captain this past monday? Guess maybe in spirit as he is on the bench

Argentina – Romero; Gutierrez, Demichelis, Samuel, Heinze; Mascherano, Veron, Di Maria; Messi, Higuain, Tevez.

Nigeria – Enyeama; Odiah, Shittu, Yobo, Taiwo; Kaita; Etuhu, Haruna; Ogbuke Obasi, Yakubu, Obinna.


These are the favorites to go through in Group B though South Korea’s earlier will suggest otherwise.

How will Nigeria be able to stop the attacking force that is Argentina and will Nigeria, possessing good forwards themselves be able to expose the weak back line of Argentina?

Recap Day 1 – June 12th Preview

Soccer City

The sound of the vuvuzela could be heard as early as 5am as South Africa woke up in anticipation for the first ever world cup to be held on African soil.

Tragically Nelson Mandela’s great granddaughter, Zenani Mandela was killed in a drunk driving accident after coming from the welcoming concert so the great leader could not be present at the first game.

Sepp lead things off with a standard speech and not long after that, the game was under way. South Africa were very nervy in the opening minutes and almost conceded an early goal.

Mexico maintained an early dominance in the game but couldn’t break through. As the half progressed, the Bafana Bafana began to gain composure but still El Tri attacked. Dos Santos was the main culprit and looked dangerous every time he had the ball.

Twice in the first half Franco could have put the Mexicans ahead with unchallenged opportunities with a free header, but he put them over both times.

In the 36th minute, the ball was in the back of the South African net but the goal was correctly ruled offside.  As the half died down, South Africa pressured the Mexican goal but both teams went into the dressing rooms goalless.

He unleashed an stoppable shot for the Cups first goal

The second half was a different story as Bafana Bafana showed an attacking intent and spurned on by the crowd started to play with more confidence. One could clearly see the beautiful and effective Brazilian playing style installed into the South African players by coach Carlos Alberto Parreira. A great through ball released Tshabalala and he sent an unstoppable shot into the top right corner of the net.

It was a tremendous goal and one that deserved a great dance celebration from Desmond Tutu. South Africa continued to attack and was pressing for more, but a basic defensive error of a corner in the 79th minute gifted Marquez the ball and he calmly shot the ball past Khune.

South Africa had a chance to win it in extra time but Mphela’s shot hit the outside of the post.

A couple of hours later in Cape Town, France met Uruguay. I thought this would be an attacking game with lots of goals as the quality of attack minded players possessed by both nations was very high.

From the outset though, it was obvious that Uruguay were going to play for the draw. Domenech got his tactics wrong or just didn’t care and left two of his most creative players on the bench.

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