The Oz Blog View about stuff while living in the Land of Oz

29Aug/11Off

Teal Bunbury called up to USMNT?

SKC-Teal-Bunbury

The latest Men's National Soccer Team roster was recently posted and one of the names listed that came as a surprise to most people was Sporting Kansas City's Striker Teal Bunbury.

My first reaction was that is awesome and he deserves another chance at it and what could be better for his confidence right now then something like this. Most people's first reactions were that of surprise followed by congratulating him. I can easily see how most people are surprised that he got called up based off how he had kind of been playing, but I also think they failed to remember that this team is going to be changing a ton in the next 3 or so years. With J├╝rgen at the helm now he probably wants to check out every person that Bob Bradley has recently used despite their current form because it is not like Bradley was a freaking idiot or something. Hence the recent call up of Teal Bunbury.

Everybody should also view this an excellent training experience for Teal because how often do you get to train with a coach that has not only played on a national team but has coached a national soccer team in a World Cup and did well. Yes Germany didn't win the 2006 World Cup but when was the last time USA did that well?

In my opinion I think Teal has actually been playing pretty well. Yeah it might not be as good as he has been but for the most part his form has looked pretty good. The main problem that be has been having and naturally the main thing that people look at when it comes to strikers is how many goals have they scored. Yes obviously scoring is what wins games and that is jus what everybody looks at but you have to look at other things that he provides for the team and that is the chances that gives the rest of the team so many of the goals they have scored and obviously if he is driving at the goal and holding onto the ball then that is less time that the over team has the ball and could potentially beat Sporting KC.

Having him get more goals would be nice though for Sporting seeing that they have been beaten twice recently after having the game seemingly won.

22Aug/11Off

Two and Two: Brazil – Mexico U20 World Cup (Semi-Final)

2-2-Mexico-Brazil

Brazil vs Mexico should almost always be a good match up or at least sound like it on paper and speaking from one person to another. You would think that, but this game was actually quite dull if you ask me besides the end result which was not an indicator of the game, especially with the 2 goals being within 5 minutes of each other and that wasn't till the 80th minutes. The only other thing that really seemed of interest was the Brazil Goal Keeper taking a boot to the face and somehow managing to finish the match. Even with his eye seeming to get worse and worse as the match went on. It is also not like he didn't have to make any saves because he actually ended up making a couple really good saves. Well lets see what my other thoughts are on the game.

BRAZIL
- Didn't really control the game. Brazil might of won the game, but if I had to say that one team controlled the game then I would have to say it was actually Mexico that seemed to control the game, but they just didn't seem to make anything of being in control of the game.

- After finally getting a goal, went and got another. Brazil had some really good counter-attacks from the little that Mexico did though, but just wasn't able to get the ball in the net. That was until the 80th minute and then again not even 5 minutes later and that was more then enough to seal the trip to the final game for Brazil.

MEXICO
- Didn't really control the game either, but did better then Brazil. I said that Brazil didn't really control the game, but it wasn't as if Mexico was lighting anybody up. The game was more or less just kind of back and forth between mid-fields not even really pushing the defense's much. Luckily Brazil was the first team that decided that they wanted to win this game and in the 80th minute Brazil finally put a goal in the back of the net. Now obviously this lit a fire under Mexico's asses and the proceeded to push to try and get the equalizer, but they pushed against a good team just a little too much and Brazil made Mexico pay for it in the 85th minute. After that goal it was pretty much all said and done for.

- Just couldn't get a goal, but that isn't to say they didn't try. Mexico had a few drives at goal here and there but couldn't get anything to find the net, which is kind of bad because if Mexico would of beat Brazil then it would of been a pretty big upset. Brazil is a top team and the U20 team apparently has never gotten anything less then 2nd place I guess. Well I think I heard they came in 3rd like once or twice, but it is freaking Brazil and they almost always have a good team, so I am actually quite impressed with Mexico's performance against Brazil. Especially after Brazil scored that 80th minute goal. Mexico realized that they had to equalize to send the game into extra time, but just like all their other shots couldn't get the ball in the goal.

22Aug/11Off

Two and Two: Portugal – France U20 World Cup (Semi-Final)

2-2-Portugal-France

Portugal vs France was actually a fairly good match up, but where one team couldn't seem to score anything despite how much they tried the other team seemed to score whenever they drove to the goal. Which surprisingly was only like two times. Now of course Portugal made more then two runs at goal, but not many. They only had maybe one shot at goal the second half. Well I guess I shouldn't be getting into all the details right here otherwise why would I of bothered to write everything below this. Still I thought it was a great game, and it probably would of been better if France was able to score one or two goals and make this a real game.

PORTUGAL
- Pretty much controlled the entire game. So much so that this was the first game that Portugal had scored more then one goal in a game. The second half wasn't as controlled by Portugal, but that probably has a lot to do with the fact that France was down 0-2 and was obviously trying to win the game. I guess you could say that they obviously still controlled the game because they were up by two goals and if France was really that good then they would of been able to score, but France simply couldn't seem to get a goal to save their lives. Goal keeper had to make some incredible saves though and he has set a new record for most minutes in the U20 World Cup without allowing a goal.

- Let France make runs at goal far too much. This game could of easily gone down completely in France's favor, but Portugal lucked out. Most of the second half seemed to be France just driving at the goal time after time after time. I was really surprised that France didn't score at least one goal. Granted Portugal do seem to have a good Goal Keeper.

FRANCE
- Besides the initial run at the goal didn't really have many other runs at goal. That is until the 2nd half, but by then Portugal had already scored twice and it was a little too late. So if they wanted to try and win, and it seemed like they did, France had to push as much as they did. Portugal could of possibly scored another goal with as much as France was attacking with a good counter-attack, but Portugal seemed quite content with having a 2-0 lead.

- The runs that France did have seemed really good. If any of there shots would of made it into the net, then this would of easily been a really good game, and could of possibly even seen France winning this game convincingly but simply that was just not the result. Like I previously mentioned Portugal seemed to pretty much stop pushing all together and just went into a defensive stance. A defensive stance that Portugal's Goal Keeper mostly help stop because their defense wasn't really that convincing. Maybe that is something to be said about France's offense, but again France just couldn't get the ball into the net.

21Aug/11Off

Two and Two: Spain – Brazil U20 World Cup (Quarter Finale)

2-2-Brazil-Spain

I again am way behind on getting some of these post done, but I've had a busy week and my work recently blocked my website so I can't post on the internet from my work during lunch time, which is when I did most of my blogging. I will still make sure to get the important post out, but since this post is more about the U20 World Cup I figured you wouldn't mind me being a little delayed with the release of post.

If you have read any of my other post you would notice how I like to follow Spain quite a bit, so with that being said I don't really know how Brazil has done. Brazil is obviously a good team and not just because they made it to the quarter-finals, but because they are Brazil and they usually have a good team. If there was a U10 World Cup, Brazil would probably have quite a lot of World Cup wins, but the last time I checked they don't.

This match up was shaping up to naturally be a very good match up and neither team disappointed.

SPAIN
- Outstanding job at the beginning of the game by just completely dominating the ball. Spain did what Spain does and just held onto the ball as much as they could working it down the field and if they get pinned up somewhere they have no problem playing the ball backwards and restarting their attack.

- Defense seems to be the thing that killed the team, well that and the PK shooters. What the offense did great the defense seemed to lack, and when Brazil got the ball they did what Brazil does and attacked wisely and exposed Spain's defense and almost seemed to walk right through it.

BRAZIL
- Did good at the few chances that they got in the first half. Brazil was even able to sneak a goal in before half time to out them up 1-0 at half. Spain obviously controlled the ball because that is what Spain does like I said before, but Brazil did a very good job at not going into panic mode. Which meant that when they did get the ball they just did what Brazil does and attacked smartly and was able to get the upper hand before half time. Spain obviously knew to push back and the game ended up being 2-2 after extra time forcing the game into PKs. I am not sure if Spain collapsed or Brazil just did that good, but Brazil was able to win on PKs 4-2

- Probably let Spain control the ball to much and could of easily lost the game. Regardless the game went to PKs and Brazil was able to come through. Brazil is probably seriously lucky that they didn't go into half time being down 2-0 (or 2-1) and just letting Spain roll over them, but it just seemed to not be Spain's night for scoring goals and Brazil was able to get the victory and move onto the Semi-Finals

14Aug/11Off

2 and 2: Spain – Korea Republic U20 World Cup (Round of 16)

2-2-spain-korea

If you are unaware that there are more World Cups played besides the typical one that everybody hears about and acts like they get excited for then you are missing a lot of extra world soccer/football. So far this year alone there has been the UEFA U21 Cup, Women's World Cup, U17 World Cup, and U20 World Cup. I'm sure I missing some other major ones, but I don't want to make this post too long. U20 stands for players under 20 (depending on when their birthday is, some of the players could possibly be 20, but made the cutoff date before turning 20.) and the U20 World Cup is happening right now. The only match I've been able to watch so far, and I will apologize for being a couple days late on this but most of you probably didn't see the match, is Spain vs Korea Republic in the round of 16. Korea Republic put up a very good fight, but fell just short.

Something else you should know about this other youth World Cups is that the top 2 teams that were not the top 2 teams in their group get to advance. So they are called the third place teams.

KOREA REPUBLIC
- Seemed like Korea was lucky to even be there. Having only won one match in group play and that was good enough to move on in the third place spot. So you would think a team like this against a team like Spain wouldn't put up much of a fight right?

- Looked to make the most of it. They didn't perform lights out, but they absolutely did the best they could and had several good goes at the goal. I think that had something to do with the fact that Korea didn't really have much to lose so why not go for broke. So much so that they took Spain through a scoreless draw through 120 minutes and into a PK shoot out where they fell 7 to 6. Typically PK Shoot Outs don't go past 5, but Korea was determined to advance to the Quarter-Finals, but fell just short.

SPAIN
- Looked to put the game away quickly. The almost did several times, but Korea just kept holding them off from scoring. Spain started out pretty much the way any Spain team does and racked up quite a few shots within the first several minutes and pretty much dominated the control of the ball. So much so that the GK for Spain didn't even touch the ball till 15+ minutes into the game.

- Think that they might of underestimated Korea Spain being Spain though were able to easily manage the game. Well for the most part. Spain is one of my favorite national teams because of their technical skill and the U20 team teams showed much of that same brilliance for the most part, but I think because they are younger had quite a few missteps and on a couple occasions almost slipped up enough to let Korea Republic score.