- By Whirly
Japan vs. Australia (1-0): Japan controlled much of the match but still had tendencies to be too cute. The Japanese have pin point passing until they try to cross the ball. Fans across the world like the US are waiting for a goal scoring breakout. The Japanese squad controlled most of the play throughout the match but had trouble finishing. This team has this system done pat; just now it needs to start paying dividends.
It was a great run for the Australian squad but in the end the fourth place team in world found a way to win. The Australian team started to press the Japans attack and it caused problems. There were some missed rotations by the midfield to help out the defense but then they sank back and wanted to slow the tempo of the game down. This was strange because the Australian side created deadly chances in the flow of the play. Opportunities will be there if you take on the Japanese side with pace. There just weren’t enough opportunities created by the Aussies to put Japan on their heels.
Whirly Knockout Record: 10-1
Score Result Comparison: Whirly Prediction: Japan Wins 1-1 (5-4) PKs Real Score: Japan Won 1-0: I knew there would be a late win type of situation but not in regulation. Finishing, finishing and well finishing needs massive improvement for Japan. Did not they not see the Germany/France game? Don’t put the game in the official hands.
Canada vs. England (1-2): There really isn’t a whole lot to say about this game. Both teams relied on individual effort than team. There many poor passes. The Canada side fell to England off a miss play by the defender, which turned into a breakaway goal and miss timed jump by Erin McLeod (sun may played a role in that). Canada now knows what the US felt like with the same official that refereed the US vs. Australia game. Definitely a game that displaced a battle of wills but not the best soccer.
Whirly Knockout Record: 10-2
Score Result Comparison: Whirly Prediction: Canada Wins 1-0 OT Real Score: England Won 2-1: Man I was on a role. If only Canada finished that breakaway in the early moments of the game.
Final Thoughts: Other than getting points on the board, “finishing” can create massive momentum as observed in the England match. Just a few moments after a missed breakaway, the English get a breakaway and finish. Man I like all these soccer lessons coming out in the World Cup. I’m bummed that the Aussie ladies didn’t move on and Canada doesn’t have a chance to play the US for the title (yes we have to get by Germany first).
This was an entertaining round for the most part. The US game was little better than expected but still lacked flare. There was some coach banter between England and Canada. My second rant for this round is, “what is wrong shooting far post?” There is so much concern for beating the goalkeeper near post. There must be film somewhere that can explain this though process to me.
The Germany vs. France and England vs. Canada games were the only games to really display what the goalkeeper diving ranges were. Here is a thought; far post dives create rebounds if not controlled(hence the Canadian goal). Settling for corners gets pointless after a while .Wow what a thought!!!!!