Italy are slow starters, but I always felt that they would find form at the right time to defeat Spain. But that wasn’t the case yesterday as Italy missed Pirlo and Gattuso due to suspension. It was like Chelsea FC missing both Lampard and Makelele for a important match. It showed throughout the game as Italy were struggling to create and major chances apart from the few scattered ones. If there is going to be any award for the best diving performances then most probably the team would be full of Spanish players and Iniesta would be the captain. Villa tried to outshine him in that department but ended up getting booked for the dive..!! It was a pretty boring match to be honest and there is nothing to write about except the result in which Spain beat Italy 4-2 on penalties to meet Russia in the semi’s.
Coming to Russia, it is really surprising the fact that the arrival of one player back to the team can totally change it. That player is Ashravin. He produced a superb display against the Swedes in the group stage and an even better one against the Dutch to beat them 3-1. Nobody expected the Dutch to go out in the Quarterfinals after their superb performances in the group stages.
Turkey again rode the luck to beat Croatia 3-1 on penalties. Croatia looked to have won the game in 119th minute, but Turkey came back for the second time in the tournament to score in the last kick off the match to take it into penalties.
Micheal Ballack is the only Chelsea player left in the tournament and I am going to support Germany from here on in. Surely the Turks must be out of luck and late goals now. So I expect a Germany, Russia final. Yes, I think that Russia will beat Spain.
I liked the game. Yes after 30 minutes it was predictable, Spain going forward, David Silva shooting off target, Chiellini clearing the ball out of the area.
I just couldn’t believe how much possession of the ball Spain enjoyed in the midfield- and how many goal opportunities Luca Toni missed. If only Camoranesi was in the starting lineup it might have been a different story.