Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Spain still top European team?

The Spaniards would still be ahead for me. The Germans are improving with every game, but Ecuador put out a weakened team yesterday and 3 - 0 is therefore not such a flattering score.
The Spanish team did struggle against Tunisia especially in the first half, but they still kept the ball and passed it with assurance.
The introduction of Joaquin and Raul had the same effect as Lennon and Rooney the other day for England. On both occassions the winger had the greater visible impact, but the strikers both added a new dimension and seemed to lift the players around them. Without Joaquin, however they had no width and were running around like a bunch of schoolkids chasing the ball. At times you could have thrown a blanket over the midfield.
But they had the desired impact, and while I was actually enjoying Tunisia leading and hoping for an underdog upset, they cam through with 3 goals in the end.

With the Italians struggling against the USA and looking more as I expected them to, the Czech Republic having no strikers left at all, and England ... well being England, I have Spain out in front, with the Dutch, well I am waiting until this evening for my verdict, and those cagey Germans looking like, well like they always do ...

Argentina v Brazil

Before the competition, I doubt many would have had Argentina ahead of Brazil, but 2 games in for each team and they are playing in different leagues, and that is no exaggeration.

Argentina are playing around Riquelme and, not only is it working, but there isn't even room for the wonder boy Messi, who incidentally came on for a cameo appearance as sub and scored!
Meanwhile, in the other camp, Ronaldo is still ruling the roost and nobody has the guts to stand up to the porker and tell him he's out. While he insists on playing, or should I say strolling, Brazil have no pace or change of pace and have as much chance of reaching the final as .... {insert your chosen losers}

So at the moment there is no contest, they won't even meet to slug it out at this rate, as they are due to meet in the final and Brazil will get knocked out long before that.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

England are ... Discuss

Only just been able to put 'pen to paper', so to speak.
The Blog would probably be censored if I did it any earlier, but come on ...
How can we possibly have any pretentions to being world champions?
Have England turned into Wimbledon?
If our midfielders are such world class players, how come we are missing them out?
Dare I also say how out of touch and sharpness is Michael Owen (big fan!) ?
I know Crouch is supposedly the in form striker as he has scored goals, but with him in the team England just seem to have reverted to type and launching long balls at him, and is he actually that good in the air anyway?
With a 6' 7" defender marking him at set pieces, why did Beckham not aim for Terry?
Terry is a better header of the ball anyway.
How bad was aour finishing? What were those volleys and overhead kicks, apart from embarrassing?
Need I go on, or do you know better ?

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Is this Spain's Tournament?

Well with the first round of matches out of the way, Spain have emerged as the top European team following their 4 – 0 thrashing of Ukraine.
There was a couple of unfortunate goals, and a very harsh penalty and sending off, but they looked good and the 4th goal was top class.
It’s always a matter of timing the bet with Spain, they have always looked great on paper, but I had a feeling this may be their time, but then again I didn’t bet on them to reach the semis …
The problem for me is that, whoever wins that group gets Brazil in the quarter final, and despite the relative performances I’m not sure they want to...
But I can’t deny that on the basis of 1 game from each team Spain looked the best European outfit, while Argentina topped the South America contingent.

In terms of the Predictions Competition Mike Ray has been caught by Dave Thomas and Julie Ralph (Dave will never hear the end of it if …) while Dave Bickerstaff has joined Ben Mynott at the bottom of the rankings. The question is, who has tipped Spain to win it? Has anyone? Well I can tell you that one man has …

For the full list visit

Tony E.
PS. It’s not me.

WC Update 2006 - First round of group matches

First round matches draw to a close (last group tonight) and what conclusions can we draw?

1. The World Cup has got off to a great start with some great matches and some great goals.
2. Except that it is, for England’s game. Crap game and a pretty fortunate goal I’m afraid to say. Great cross and all that but …
3. Most of the top teams have started with a win (and that’s about all you can say about England really).
4. Argentina look good (sorry guys, but they do) and Italy looked better than I thought they would. That guy up front may have a girls name but …
5. The Czechs looked good, but for those (like me) who tipped them for the semi’s, the loss of Koller and Baros …
6. Ronaldo is a lazy tub … France are past it or not focused or … and England have a lot to do and they surely can’t throw Rooney in yet, it’s a disaster waiting to happen.

We have a new leader in Mike Ray with 13 after accumulating 5 points yesterday with 2 correct scores predicted. Ben Mynott is bringing up the rear with 5
The Average score (and the Mode for those of a mathematical disposition) is 9 so it’s still all to play for.

Don't forget my website for the current scores which is

Tony E.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

World Cup 2006 Kicks Off!

The big day is upon us. Very shortly the 2006 World Cup will kick off with Germany v Costa Rica.

At the end of the first game if Costa Rica win, every single one of you, except one competitor, will have a minus 1 points total!
But will it happen? The bookies think not, and have Germany at 1/4, with the draw as a 7/2 shot (the only other prediction), and Costa Rica at 9/1.

There is obviously quite a spread of results, but Brazil are definitely the favourites amongst you, as they are with the bookies.

To those who have tipped England to go all the way, and there are some, I salute your patriotism and your optimism.

The biggest predicted win is a 7 – 0 thrashing of someone in the 1st round, and I will leave all, bar one, of you to guess who that is.
(And Michael didn’t even enter : Ed)

We have a total of 20 entrants so there will be a total of £100 up for grabs. I did have an idea to give a small prize for the person who gets closest to the total number of goals scored in the first round. There are some wild variations. In any event I would like to use this as a tie-breaker in the freak event of a tied competition.
If anyone has any objections please let me know.

I have added the competition to my website and will update it periodically with the scores, so if you want to see where you are in the running at any time just go to:

Please pop along to the website and have look, it is there now and funnily enough you all have nil point.

I will send out a few update emails if I get time during the competition.

Tony E.