What an amazing result for Ghana! I missed the match entirely, listening to the Turkish minister of finance list statistics on economic growth rather than watching the best African performance in the World Cup thus far… clearly my priorities are in the wrong place. But I’m relying on the BBC’s excellent coverage… and emails and SMSs from friends around the world to get a sense for just what transpired.
(Obi’s got a good post on the game, and I hope someone will take his suggestion on overturning Asamoah’s yellow card… GhanaWeb has a wonderful story which reads, in its entirety: “YES YES YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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I got back to our hotel in Istanbul in time for the last bit of the US/Italy game. After DeMarcus Beasley’s offside goal was called back, I ran down to my room to throw on my circa-1994 Ghana jersey, which got me some congratulations from African friends and confusion from basically everyone else.
The US looked pretty bad, but playing 9 on 10, it’s hard to play anything other than a very defensive style. Props to McBride for playing on with what looked a lot like a broken nose… and no doubt that Kasey Keller deserved man of the match. Thursday’s game should be amazing. Ghana will be missing Gyan and Muntari, but they’ll have Essien and Appiah and should give the US midfielders fits. (The US will be missing Pope and Mastroeni, which is also a serious setback – Pope lends a lot of stability to the defense, who will be tested hard against Ghana.)
So, as promised, I’ll be pulling for Ghana on Thursday. To advance, the US needs a victory and an Italian victory – because of goal differential, a Czech victory or draw knocks them out, unless they’re able to shell Ghana. A Ghana win guarantees they go through, making them the only African team in the second round… and that’s an easy thing for me to root for.
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Well said, my dear Man. Who knows you might be down in Accra celebrating the winning of the world cup. That is, if all the stars remain aligned. A tall order!!! But then who imagined Communism would fall in the last century? Keep hope alive, Jesse J will say. Amen to that!!!
Hey now, if Togo beats South Korea tomorrow, it’s still possible to advance.
I recorded the Czech vs Ghana match for you on TiVo, so it’s here waiting for you to watch when you get home. :-)
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I missed that, Fontaine – my bad. Hope Togo is able to make it through the off-field issues and get past South Korea. And Rachel – that’s literally the best news I’ve had so far today…
The US looked vastly outplayed Italy 11 v 11. 9 v 10 was always going to be a case of holding on.
To an above noter: goaltenders are in hockey. Soccer has goalKEEPERS.
I happened to see the game despite having a million things going on over the weekend. It was such a well-deserved win! I hadn’t made the Accra connection, but it makes sense that you’d be especially excited.:)