Evan O

Evan O'Callaghan

2010 FIFA World Cup Match Reports: Updated Daily

Posted by Evan O'Callaghan on 8. Jun 2010

The full match schedule can be found here. Match reports are below.

Knockout Stages State of Play:

Uruguay v Netherlands - July 7th 02:30 - Semi Final

Germany v Spain - July 8th 02:30 - Semi Final


 In order to live up to my title of weliveinbeijing.com sports correspondent, I think it is time that I gave a mention to something other than football.

Later today, the world's biggest annual controversy, the minefield of doping allegations that is Le Tour de France, begins with an individual time trial around the streets of Rotterdam.

Over the next 22 days, 198 riders representing 22 teams and 31 countries will ride the 3,642-kilometre course looking to be the one in control of the yellow jersey after the final stage to the Champs Elysees has been completed.

Cycling is a sport that is struggling to shed its image of a drug-infested sport. Such is the perceived image of doping in the sport, and in particular, in its marquee race, that there is even a Wikipedia page dedicated to doping in the Tour de France.

Eight of the 16 race winners since 1975 have either tested positive for drugs, or confessed after retirement to having taken performance enhancers.

On top of that, cycling's most famous face, Lance Armstrong has found himself constantly refuting allegations that he took performance enhancers during his run of seven straight Tour wins.

 However, cycling's governing body, the Union Cycliste Internationale(UCI), is doing a good job of attempting to stamp out doping in the sport. Their anti-doping policy has been recognised by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) as one of the best in any sport.

Doping is a problem that affects all sports, and the UCI are certainly leading the way in combating the issue. What they need now is for their most famous event to hit the headlines for the right reasons.

All of the race can be followed on the official Tour website.

UPDATE: BEIJING, JULY 3 - Uruguay and Holland set up semi-final clash after both come from behind to win.

Netherlands 2 Brazil 1, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth

Holland have booked their place in the 2010 FIFA World Cup semi-finals, after coming from behind to win against Brazil.

Dunga, not the most popular man in Brazil before the World Cup began, will surely come under pressure now that the team that he built upon defence lost, despite going a goal to the good through Robinho.

Edit: I've just noticed a story saying that Dunga has announced that he will leave his job as national team coach

Robinho opened the scoring in the tenth minute. Having had a goal disallowed in the 8th minute for offside, he made no such mistake when collecting Felipe Melo's through pass before slotting the ball into the Dutch net.

The remainder of the opening half was easier than a training match for the Brazilians. Holland offered next to no threat in attack, and Brazil could have been a couple of goals to the good at the break.

But Holland had a stroke of good fortune seven minutes into the second period. Wesley Sneijder attempted a cross, and as had been the pattern for the rest of the game, there was no Dutch forward on hand to meet it.

Luckily for Bert van Marwijk's team, however, Felipe Melo was on hand to score the first ever own-goal conceded by Brazil at a World Cup.

Holland were completely undeservedly back on level terms, but like the true Unofficial Football World Champions that they are, they seized this opportunity that Brazil had gift wrapped and handed to them.

Brazil endured a mini existential crisis after conceding the equaliser, as they seemed to question why they were even on the football pitch. At least that was the question that I was asking myself, as they were unable to string two passes together.

With just 22 minutes of the game remaining, Holland took the lead. From a corner (itself the result of another corner), Arjen Robben crossed the ball into the box. Dirk Kuyt flicked on, and Sneijder had the relatively easy task of heading home from point blank range.

Things went from bad to worse for Brazil. Five minutes after falling behind, they found themselves reduced to ten men.

Feipe Melo was deservedly shown the red card after first bringing down, and then stamping on Arjen Robben. After that, Brazil's ugly side came out to play as their players started to lose the plot.

Holland held on for the win that gives them what is only their fourth World Cup semi final. They twice went on to reach the final, but have never won the competition.

They lost in the final in 1974 and '78, and finished fourth in 1998. Maybe 2010 will be the year that the Oranje finally get to adorn their jersey's with the golden star of champions.

Brazil, on the other hand, head home. The Samba Boys didn't live up to their reputation, and played a lot of cynical football throughout the tournament.

Interestingly, this is only their second time to lose a World Cup match wearing their blue strip. The only other time was in 1974 against that Dutch side who came so close to lifting the trophy. 

Uruguay 1 Ghana 1 A.E.T., Uruguay win 4-2 on penalties, Soccer City Stadium Johannesburg

There was heartbreak last night for Ghana, as the last African representatives exited the 2010 FIFA World Cup in a penalty shoot out.

The game was there for the taking for Ghana, but Asamoah Gyan missed a penalty with the final kick of extra time.

Sulley Muntari gave the Africans the lead on the stroke of half time, when he fired a shot from 30 yards out into the bottom left-hand corner of the goal.

Ghana had started poorly, with Uruguay very much in the ascendancy early on in the game, but as Ghana came more into the game, the balance swung in their favour. While Uruguay may have dominated the opening 20 minutes, the rest of the first half definitely went to Ghana.

Ten minutes into the second half, Uruguay were level. Diego Forlan got the equalising goal after he curled a free kick over Richard Kingson and into the top corner of the goal.

In the final minute of the second half of extra time, Ghana were given the opportunity to book their place in the history books by becoming the first African team in history to reach a World Cup semi final.

Ghana were awarded a free kick from which Luis Suarez was forced to clear off the line. His clearance, though, only found another Ghanaian and this time Suarez was forced to use his arm to prevent the goal.

There were no two ways about it, and Ghana found themselves with a penalty in the final minute of the match, as Luis Suarez stalked off for an early bath. Gyan stepped up to take the penalty, but went for power over precision and fired it off the top of the crossbar.

That was the last kick of the game, and a penalty shoot out was the only way left to split the teams.

Gyan, having just missed one, stepped up to take the first penalty for Ghana. With Forlan having already scored for the SSouth Americans, the pressure was well and truly on the Ghanaian, but this time he got the goal.

It was to little avail, however. John Mensah and Dominic  Adiyiah both missed for Ghana, and despite Maxi Pereira missing for Uruguay, Sebastian Abreu won the shoot out for Uruguay with Ghana not even needing to take their final penalty.

Uruguay's progression is somewhat unfair on Ghana, having been denied a goal at the death by the illegal actions of Suarez, whose World Cup is now over.

Some will say though that any team who miss a penalty in play and then two of their five in the shoot out don't deserve to go through.

Uruguay, however, won't care. They have a World Cup semi-final to contest on Tuesday night and they know that they are within a hair's breadth of a chance of repeating their heroics of 1930 and 1950.


Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Image: Germany's Mesut Ozil celebrates his winner against Ghana. Photo: AFP/John MacDougall via Yahoo! News.


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