Unbelievable

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‘Unbelievable Win for the Socceroos’ was how Michael Lynch  of the SMH expressed it, and  unbelievable was the exact  word on my lips  too when Tim Cahill’s  shot crashed off the post and back into the net, making the score 2-1.  We couldn’t find the game on any of  our 35 TV chanels, so my sons and I watched it in the Sherlock Holmes Pub (13th District, Budapest).  The only other person  in the room  was Nathan from Mudgeeraba, Qld; I only realised he was Australian when the equaliser was scored and he leapt up and punched the ceiling.

I’ll leave the  expert  technical analysis to the Stephen Hills of this world, except  to note that I was heavily struck  by  the contrast in the  styles of the two sides. Japan had no midfield game.  They would  launch a terrifying blitzkrieg  in the Australian half, and  then  ten seconds later there they were, all eleven of them,  defending their  fort like the  British riflemen at Rorke’s Drift.  The Socceroos, by contrast, were all playing midfield and none of them had time to either defend or attack properly –  at least  so it seemed, until the unbelievable happened. Hungarian TV didn’t show the  stats, but I reckon Australia had 75  percent of possession.

 

It  reminded me of the  Clash of the  Disciplines between Muhammad Ali and  Kannji Antonio Inoki, back in 1976.  I half expected the referee to call the game off, on the grounds that the teams were playing different sports.  By the end of the match the Australian  style was vindicated threefold. But  a very short time earlier –  in the eighty-third minute –  that conclusion  hadn’t been so  obvious  to me.  Nor to the hapless girls in the  top picture.    

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Amanda
15 years ago

Bloody amazing. They lost it and we won it in equal measure. Zico in the papers saying they tried to defend a 1-0 lead. Well, he’s a footballing legend and I’m not but IMHO that is a tactic you don’t want against the Wiley Park Under 12s let alone in the World Cup. Still, you have to have the class to capitalise and Timmy has it in spades.

I hope Ghana get something out of this match.

saint
15 years ago

Well I am glad Zico conceded that was his tactic because that was their downfall. Or should that be collapse.

(Mind you wasn’t too sure what Guus was doing tactically in the first half but hey, we’ll take the result)

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
15 years ago

We were the better side.
The Japs didn’t look like scoring even when we almost gifted them.
That hard training paid off.

Wiltshire? Why wasn’t Kewell on the left?
Is that Kennedy a good player!!

Ole, ole,ole oleo

I told you so

c8to
c8to
15 years ago

i was saying unglaublich as well…

japans game was excellent. the difference for australia was the three substitutions…

wooo!

Guido
15 years ago

And that Japan goal was suss….

Homer Paxton
Homer Paxton
15 years ago

Not sus it was a freekick to us.

observa
observa
15 years ago

I thought most of the game was like watching paint dry, or a pair of AFL cellar dwellers practising the flood and keepy off chip kicking in their back halfs. It got interesting in the last few minutes, but probably not very interesting for Japanese afficionados of the game. No doubt they would have preferred more paint drying.

Schwartzer was flat-footed in the wrong position and outpointed in the goalmouth ‘presence’ department Homer. As a result the goal should be legit, even if the refs often don’t see it that way.

Guy
Guy
15 years ago

Looking forward to seeing Brazil play. We took a while to capitalise but I agree with Homer’s comment – we outplayed them generally throughout the match.

They had a couple of very good chances that they should have buried.

dave
dave
15 years ago

Obby,
you don’t have to watch. I’m sure there’s a wall in your house somewhere you can add a lick of paint to.