Thursday, July 13, 2006

'54, '74, '90, 2010 + München

Now that the World Cup is officially over, it seems like I have absolutely nothing to do with my life. I'm estimating that I saw between 52 and 58 of the 64 games that happened between June 9th and July 9th. As you can see, I became slightly addicted (ok, "slightly" is an understatement) to football. To say the least, I now have a bigger appreciation for the sport.

In the quarter-finals, Germany beat Argentina in a penalty shoot-out after overtime. I'll admit it: I was pretty nervous the day of the game because I felt that Argentina had a better chance of moving on. After making all of their penalty shots, it felt like the whole country broke out into one huge party that would continue until the semi-final game. We all know how the semi-final ended. Germany unfortunately lost to Italy (who plays dirtier than flies on a pile of poo) in the last two minutes of overtime. If only they had held out, they probably could've beat the Italians in a penalty shoot-out.

Even so, Germany managed to place third after beating Portugal in a game that was probably better and more interesting than the final itself. Third isn't bad at all, considering there were 32 teams at the beginning of the World Cup. And the Germans have acknowledged that, praising their team, thanking Jürgen Klinsmann (the coach), and essentially, being a graceful third place winner. On the day of the final, the whole team came to Berlin to the Fan Mile in front of Brandenburger Tor to thank their fans. Ashley, Mike, and I went because we all have our favorite players (Podolski, Friedrich, and Ballack, respectively) and thought it would be a once in a lifetime thing. Indeed, it was, but it was hot as all hell.

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