I dont have any step anything so the title is not from experience, but just my thoughts. Totally torn on the result of the USA vs Italy game, the USA was the much superior team, and things looked great from the Ghana drubbing of Czechs earlier keeping the USA hopes alive, to the much better early start to the game. The Italian red card in the 28th minute only added to my hopes. Yet in the end it was 1pt for each team. The USA is still alive, on Thursday with an Italy win vs Czech republic and a USA win vs Ghana the USA would move on to the next round. The chances of this happening, well Ghana totally whipped the ass of the same Czech team that whipped our ass, so i am not too hopeful that we can compete with Ghana. They will be missing one of their better players due to yellow cards, but I have a feeling there are more good players on their bench willing to fill in and become a national hero.
Overall performance of the USA team was much better than the past game, I guess coach Arena ripped everyone a new asshole and it worked. Benching DaMarcus Beasley could have been a wakeup call as he had a goal disallowed by one of the diving italians as the foul was called a few second before he shot. Not starting Eddie Johnson or even bringing him into the game shocked me, he was one of the few signs of life during the Czech game. Eddie Lewis should have played instead of Pope, Pope has been just simply horrible, I have yet to se him complete a pass. John Obrien, i guess not fit enough to get in there, he is a good passer and would have liked to see him in there. Claudio Reyna, total stud, despite age and potentially not being 100% he was able to control the game at midfield and gave his full effort. Landon Donovan, hmmm tough call on this early in game he had many chances to shoot and was looking for cute little passes that didnt pay off, later in the game he seemed to be in the flow. Yet I still have to argue that if Donovan wants to improve his skills he needs to leave the comforts of his dog, beach house, girlfriend, family and friends in california and play in europe. It doesnt have to be germany which he hates, it could be another country but he is never going to get any better playing in the MLS. He is at the age, 24, where if he doesnt improve soon, he might not make the 2010 WC Roster.
The Italians, we were outnumbered in the stands again as always. And even people from other nations were cheering for them. I have yet to see anyone from outside the USA cheer for the USA team, the germans were cheering for Italians, i even saw some Norwegians wearing norwegian jerseys with italian flags on their face. If u nkow the history of the Norway vs Italy in the winter olympics cross-country skiing this is the LAST thing I would expect to see. I guess no one really does like America... see what you have done Mr. G. W Bush... The Italians are a bunch of cry baby bitches, simply put. I love Italy, i love the food, the people, but their football players are better divers than the swim team. They would go down, and while not saying it might not have hurt, 2 minutes later after being taken off on a stretcher they were back on the field running around again. I would hope to never see an American player resort to those tactics.
The Refs, oh my gosh it appears the Italians have the influence to buy referees not only in their own country in Serie A league, but also in the World Cup. Just horrible performance in terms of calling fouls, the red on Mastroeni while I have not seen the replay I was told was red cardable. The first yellow and then second yellow on Pope, no way either one. While I dont want Pope on the field again this tournament for the USA this is not the way I want to see him go off.
Anyway its a lazy sunday, another beautiful day with temps probably near 30 degrees. Going to spend a few hours on the internet catching up and uploading pictures to my Fotki site and then head to Frankfurt and watch the Brazil vs Australia game on the Rhine river viewing area, I hope the hot brazilian fans show up.