June 2010

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World Cup 2010: Mexico 0-1 Uruguay

My first memories of Uruguay as football team – and quite possibly of their existence as a country at all – came from the World Cup in 1986. They were in Scotland’s group then, and were portrayed as thugs, a bunch of big cheating, spoiling, fouling, cynical bruisers who would – if the ref let them – hack Scotland’s magnificent collection of creative wizards out of the tournament. In the event, of course, Scotland did get some help from the ref; Uruguay played the last 89 minutes with ten men, but a Scotland side who had in any case already lost to Denmark and Germany weren’t good enough to break them down.

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June 22, 2010
Ian

World Cup Group Phase: Your Guide to the Permutations (Part 1)

Twohundredpercent will be bringing you, each morning this week, your handy guide to the permutations in each of the groups to finish that day. There really shouldn’t be any need for such articles, even if you can’t be bothered checking it yourself the commentators and pundits who are paid for this sort of thing should…

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June 22, 2010
Ian

John Terry & English Expectations

On Friday night in Cape Town, the England 2010 World Cup team played as if they had passed into the spirit world. All but invisible, they made an absolute mockery of their pre-tournament hype (which, in spite of everything that we know about know about them and the realism of the ordinary, everyday supporters, ended…

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June 21, 2010
Ian

World Cup 2010: Spain 2-0 Honduras

The part-timers from Honduras took on the mighty European champions Spain with it all at stake: a loss for the Spanish side would see the tournament favourites eliminated at the first hurdle. What could possibly happen? Well, naturally enough, Spain won at a canter. However comfortable the performance, though, the margin of victory could yet cause some furrowed brows and frenzied abacus work come this Friday evening’s Group H deciders.

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June 21, 2010
Ted

World Cup 2010: Portugal 7 (SEVEN) North Korea 0

It was a transformation more complete than a Doctor Who regeneration. “North” Korea went from “well-organised, but more than that, they can play” just before half-time to “this lot” by the end of the BBC’s coverage, by-passing “plucky” completely. In fact, the transformation was quicker than that. In between Portugal’s second and fourth goals, seven…

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June 21, 2010
Mark

World Cup 2010: Chile 1-0 Switzerland

Well if I’ve only got one pre-tournament prediction right so far, I’ve got it right even more convincingly than I imagined – that the South American teams would all do well. Their combined record for the first two rounds of games reads Played 10, Won 8, Drawn 2. (Compare and contrast with the combined records of Europe’s big five: England, Spain, France, Germany and Italy can boast Played 9, Won 1, Drawn 5, Lost 3 – with Spain still to play this evening.)

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June 21, 2010
Ian

Mungo in Africa, part 4

The final group games in the 2010 World Cup are imminent and results are getting critical.  Like all good television channels, Clack TV is not afraid to stick its bloody nose right in and make all manner of useless suggestions for how any of the 31 teams still mathematically in the competition can secure their…

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June 21, 2010
Ted
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