Sunday, June 20, 2010

Well Kempt Referee's 2 Socceroos 0: World Cup Ghana Analysis

There are not enough swear words in the English language to express the anger, rage and frustration of a Socceroos fan who was been watching Australia at the World Cup in South Africa.

Australia swept aside the memory of the Germany game and started their second World Cup game against Ghana like men possessed. With eyeballs popping out of their heads every Socceroo was pressing a Ghana player every time they got the ball. It would not be re-miss of me to say that some Australian players looked like they had taken the route of some members of the 1978 World Cup winning Argentinean team who were doped to their eyeballs in that tournament. Not that I am saying the Socceroos were doped up, but they just looked like it.

The first half was frantic, wacky and frustrating. A Mark Brecsicano free kick tamed the Jabulani ball, the Ghana keeper couldn’t handle and the most derided player in the history of the Socceroos Brett Holman scores the rebound and only goal so far for the Socceroos at South Africa 2010.  1-0 nil all up and it’s the perfect start. But then a few minutes later the Socceroos were conceding good position to Ghana, the verve and drive of the Socceroos had disappeared for a small moment and the most dangerous player on the pitch winger Andre Ayew beat two players down the right flank to send in a dangerous cross and then the swear words came out when Harry Kewell was sent off for deliberate hand ball on the Ghana goal line. After Tim Cahill’s send off in the first game it almost felt like I was getting used to this but Gyan struck the penalty, Ghana are level the Socceroos have 10 men and Gyan still dances like he has to go to the toilet real quick.

My friends and family were shouting at Half Time: “don’t worry; we are going to have two chances to score in the second half.” And we did.  Scott Chipperfield who was brilliant when came on missed a header with his first touch and Luke Wilkshire failed when he had a one on one situation with the keeper and Josh Kennedy disappointingly did a Peter Crouch air swing with the rebound.

The game was one of those unforgettable World Cup games and the final score of  1-1 sets up final game against Serbia needing the Socceroos to win big and other results to go our way.  We should believe Australia because anything can happen in this absolutely crazy and mental Group D.

It’s amazing that the Socceroos are still in with a chance to progress to the second round.  The World Cup has been a nightmare; most of the big refereeing decisions are going against the Socceroos. Our two best players getting sent off in consecutive games both appear to be very harsh decisions and technically you can say yes they are red cards but you can also argue that  the other teams have not been punished like Australia. Just like the Ghanaian midfielder who tackled Bresciano from behind, he only received a yellow card and you just wonder if Brecs had rolled around and milked the challenge and if the other players circled the referee he could have been pressured to give a red instead of a yellow but the Socceroos don’t play like that.

The sight of these well kempt referees with their little shorts, over elaborate use of hair product and their awful decisions during this World Cup makes me think we should let them have their own Nike commercial, that way they don’t have to feel like being the centre of attention all the time. It’s not enough for these sporting sociopath’s to be on TV and blow a whistle no they have to spoil a free flowing game.

After the game I indulged in some post match banter with Ghana journalist Gary Al Smith the Ghana football writer for
“Lucky Ghana what can I say. One of your midfielder's should have got a red card, Kewell's handball was not a red card and now I wait for Germany to kick your lucky Ghanaian ass.”I said.
To which he replied: “Well, tell Mr Kewell to stop handling balls in the vital area, then? And don’t forget that the Roos destiny is in GHANA's hands.”

So to the last game against Serbia, we need a miracle to happen and you have to believe it can happen considering all the unbelievable results that have occurred in South Africa so far.
Just like Serbia’s previous two games I’m sure they have a handball in the box waiting for us. It would be rude of them not to give Australia the same gift they shared with Ghana and Germany. I posed this thought to Nikola Burazer the Serbian writer for the website and he said:

“Yes, that would be polite from Serbia.  Do you have any idea who might be the next one to handball? Ivanović, Subotić, Stanković?  No, seriously, you should not expect a penalty from Serbia, only a red card. At every tournament, we concede two penalties and receive two red cards. So, expect some of our boys to go red.”

So make sure you look out your window you might see some pigs flying around this week,, at least the Socceroos are alive for the final game we get Timmy back and have a another few days of hoping ,worrying and dreaming.

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