Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Brazil's implosion is their "Kennedy moment"

Brazil 1, Germany 7.
Read it again. Astonishing.

Brazil's implosion in last night's World Cup semi-final will be a "Kennedy moment" for many people. They will always remember where they were when this happened. If you watched it , you will always remember where you were. For the poor Brazilians, both in the ground and watching on TVs around the country, they will never be able to forget it.

This was a Sunday morning park scoreline - in a World Cup semi-final (WCSF). Not since 1930 has a team scored six in a WCSF (both Uruguay and Argentina managed it their in 6-1 wins). Not since 1958 has a team scored five in a WCSF (Brazil 5, France 2). No team has ever scored seven in a WCSF.

Between 11 and 29 minutes Germany rattled in five goals against a Brazilian defence with about as much cover as a Copacabana bikini for an eponymous wax. It all got a bit embarrassing, unless you were German. The BBC commentators were amazed that Germany didn't sit on their 1-0, then their 2-0, then their 3-0 ... lead. Why go and score more goals? Good for Germany, I say. Attack, attack, attack. Let's hope this catches on. In the second half Germany added to their tally, making it 7-0 before Oscar scored what commentator Guy Mowbray scored "the most pointless goal in World Cup history" to make it 7-1.

Germany's tally now makes them the top scorers in World Cup tournament matches (223 in 105 matches to Brazil's 221 in 103). Germany might not win the World Cup (surely a stiffer test will meet them in the final), but they will always be remembered as the team that smashed Brazil.

Brazil were utterly humiliated. The nation must be in shock. Apparently there were some arson attacks in the aftermath, and maybe they'll get a bit angry tonight when it begins to sink in. I hope not.

They need to be realistic and take stock. This is a poor Brazilian team, which lost its two best players (Neymar and Thiago Silva) for the semi-final. Without them, they were a shambles. But having them in the other matches only disguised the truth.

In 2001 England beat Germany in a World Cup qualifier 5-1. The Germans had to beat Ukraine in a qualifying match to get to the 2002 World Cup. They did so and reached the final, losing 2-0 to Brazil in the countries' only other World Cup encounter. But they also went back to the drawing board to rectify problems with the national team. Spectacularly, they have achieved this.

Brazil now need to do the same.

As a footnote, so do England (but we all know that won't happen - reference 1-4 defeat to Germany in 2010 World Cup).

No comments:

Post a Comment