Ghana

First They Ignore You. Second... Wait, There is No Second.
June 28, 2010

Over at the World Cup Blog, Stefan Fatsis is again full of soccer triumphalism: A poster named “Irishman” puts it nicely: “The USA has the extraordinary luck to be both Germanic and Hispanic, black and white and brown, African and European and Asian, all in one driven national character.” Progress is uncertain for every national side, but it’s highly likely for the U.S. Irishman quoted Gandhi: “First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they fight you. Then you win.” To which JustinO replied: “First they ignore you (to 1989). Then they laugh at you (1990-2001).

Americans and Soccer
June 27, 2010

Every time the World Cup is on the same annoying question comes up: Will Americans accept soccer? Well, frankly, I could not care less. Yesterday I watched the US-Ghana game in a steakhouse in the suburbs of Nashville, with the game sound replaced by a country music selection so immaculately insufferable that they’re surely using it to extract bogus information in the Guantanamo Bay torture resort. Apart from me, there was a guy drinking alone, and some of the kitchen staff. Did I care less about the game because of that? No.

First They Ignore You
June 27, 2010

I was en route home from South Africa yesterday—and still haven’t made it to D.C.; I’m sipping a Jamba Juice and typing in the lovely JetBlue terminal at JFK—so I still haven’t seen all 120 minutes of USA-Ghana. The last 30, however, I did catch during a short layover in Dubai. I was drained, the U.S. seemed drained. Maybe it was sitting in a quiet airport lounge, listening to play by play in Arabic, with just a couple of American fans in a small group around a flat screen.

On the Map: The World Cup at Home, Abroad
June 24, 2010

Yesterday’s dizzying stoppage-time goal by Landon Donovan put the U.S. World Cup squad through to the next round of the tournament, and that dramatic finish probably created a new crop of American soccer fans in the process. Up next for Donovan and company is Ghana, a physical team that, despite an injury that sidelined their star midfielder Michael Essien before the tournament, should test the U.S.

Best of the Web, PM Edition
June 23, 2010

What is the "American" style of play? Sean Ingle: Germany weak at the back? 538.com: USA-Ghana at even money The BBC's "farcical hype" US vs. Algeria - in photos Zonal Marking on Germany vs. Ghana and England vs. Slovenia Sid Lowe: England survives despite Terry's antics Diego's reserves star

The Trials and the Elation
June 23, 2010

When Landon Donovan finally slammed the Jabulani into the net, 91 minutes after the kickoff, there was one part of me that wondered “Will it count? Will it count?” And not, Alex, because I think there’s been a massive anti-American conspiracy, but simply because the refs in this group stage have been terrible. Contrary to popular prognostication, Koman Coulibaly, according to FIFA's official report, called back Edu’s goal for a foul not by Bocanegra, but by Edu (who didn’t commit a foul); there's a reason FIFA gave Coulibaly a "poor" rating and dropped him for the second round.

The Draw Opens Up
June 23, 2010

Today's results have produced many interesting developments. Not the least of which is the fact that one of Uruguay, South Korea, Ghana and the United States will now make the semi-finals.

 I think Uruguay have been the most impressive of these sides thus far but frankly any of them could make it to the semis.

 Place your bets. 

Best of the Web, PM Edition
June 22, 2010

Could English failure against Slovenia reverse demographic trends? Cristiano Ronaldo embraces the role of villain Goal Post contributor Stefan Fatsis on New Zealand's delight Jonathan Wilson breaks down Argentina, Ghana, and Chile Speaking of Wilson: a review of his latest book, The Anatomy of England Brian Glanville: "Are Fabio’s birds coming home to roost?" Zonal Marking on Uruguay vs. Mexico Spain not happy despite win

Why The World Cup Has Been Crap So Far
June 16, 2010

Alex takes on the important question of why the World Cup has been crap so far. Or, if you want to stick to a proposition that's not debatable, why we've seen so few goals -- just 23 in 14 games, a clear drop-off from previous Cups. I agree it would have been better to have had Croatia for Slovenia, the Czechs for Slovakia, the Russians for Greece, and anyone for Denmark -- whose utter lack of anything resembling goal-scoring ambition against Holland I had the misfortune to watch live Monday.

Dunga, Diego, and Destiny
June 10, 2010

The World Cup is but a couple of weeks away, and, if you are not trembling with anticipation, now is the time to start. There has never been a World Cup like the one about to take place in nine South African cities: For the first time ever, the greatest soccer tournament is being held in Africa.

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