World Cup Buzz Archives for January 2014

Costa Rica Advance to Semi-Finals over Greece on Penalty Kicks

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Whether it was the beginning of the match or the end, it was all about Keylor Navas.

The 27-year-old keeper added to his amazing year by coming up with the denial of Theofanis Gekas free kick to allow Michale Umaña to hit the winning penalty, sending Costa Rica through to their first World Cup quarterfinal.

One Man Team Uruguay Lives and Dies by Talismanic Luis Suarez

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Going into the 2014 World Cup, most analysts, pundits and fans alike picked Portugal as a one-man team— a squad dependent on one player, Ronaldo, to carry them. All this was said despite the fact that they have other quality players. Two of their defenders, Pepe and Fabio Coentrao, play for Champions League winners Real Madrid.

Netherlands Defeat Mexico 2-1 in Round of 16

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Mexico was two minutes away from advancing to the quarter-finals for the first time since 1986 but the final five minutes saw a thunderbolt from Wesley Sneijder and a controversial penalty from Klaas Jan Hunterlaar that were enough to see Holland into the quarter-final instead. The Dutch will take on the winner of Costa Rica vs.

Argentina Secure First Place in Group with 3-2 Win Over Nigeria

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Nigeria and Argentina have storied history at all levels of international football. They met at the 2005 U20 world cup finals with a Lionel Messi-led Argentina triumphant over the Nigerians. That game was sandwiched in between two Olympic Gold medal games, with Nigeria 2-1 winners in 1996 and Argentina 1-0 winners in 2008.

Dutch Cream Rises to Top In Netherlands 3-2 Australia Match

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Australia against Netherlands was football at its best, quality, drama, excitement, mistakes, fantastic!

Australia will be devastated that their efforts were not rewarded here.

They were superb, their pressing of the Dutch and forcing them to go long worked incredibly well, the Dutch could not find a rhythm and Australia had the upper hand for long periods.

Spain Are Swept Away In End Of An Era Performance

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It has happened to many great Empires, once mighty, all conquering, feared by all — and reduced to a mere shadow of itself, like an old, once magnificent building now crumbling and tired, you cannot imagine how it was ever beautiful.

Maybe a bit of an exaggeration but this is how it felt watching Spain's 2-1 defeat to Chile.

Chile’s 2014 World Cup Performances Are Unforgettable

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Jorge Sampaoli's men were not in a place 15 months ago to be the team that ended Spain's six year dynasty Wednesday. Fresh off their fourth straight loss in CONMEBOL's difficult qualifying campaign to Peru, questions centered throughout Santiago and the rest of the nation if Sampaoli was feeling the pressure in replacing his mentor Marcelo Bielsa.

Adios Espana – Two Defeats Spell the End of an Era for Spain

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Spain's six-year domination of world soccer came to an ignominious end in Rio tonight when they were unceremoniouslydumpedout of the World Cup by Chile.

First-half goals from Eduardo Vargas and Charles Aranguiz sealed a 2-0 victory for Chile in the cauldron of the Maracana and, with Spain having already been humbled 5-1 by the Netherlands in Salvador last Friday, tonight's result means that Vicente Del Bosque's men cannot progress to the competition's knockout stage.

Match Preview – Spain vs Chile

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Wednesday 18th June 2014 Maracana Stadium, Rio De Janeiro

Reigning World Champions Spain must look to recover from their incomprehensible 5-1 defeat to the Netherlands in their opening game against the formidable opponents of Chile if they are to progress from Group B.

Spain lost their opening game of the previous World Cup against Switzerland, and still recovered sufficiently to capture their first Jules Rimet trophy.

Chicharito Is Still Struggling to Find His Form For Club and Country

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Mexico's striker, Javier Hernandez, has had a very difficult season with both his national team and with his club Manchester United. The 26-year-old has not started a game this season, and was he again on the bench when Mexico drew 0-0 against World Cup hosts Brazil last night. So what will happen to the little pea, can he still have an influence for Mexico's success in the World Cup?

The Best and Worst of Germany vs. Portugal

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Portugal ensured in Salvador on Monday afternoon that their Iberian neighbors were not the only team thrashed in their World Cup opener. The ninety minutes could not end sooner for Ronaldo and company. Mats Hummels' injury was the only drawback on what was otherwise a perfect day out for the Germans.

Brazil vs Croatia: What Should Have Been

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In the end, it was a case of what should have been.

In some ways, Brazil's 3-1 win over Croatia in the opening match of the 2014 FIFA World Cup was wildly entertaining and exhilarating. But the final score-line left too much flattery and deception fluttering around the air in Sao Paulo. It was hard to swallow.

World Cup 2014: Brazil’s Home-Field Advantage

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Forget Neymar's wizardry. Forget Oscar's deft passing. Forget Hulk's cannon of a shot from distance. Forget Bernard's electrifying speed. Forget Thiago Silva's world-class defending. Forget all of that, because none of the things I just listed are Brazil's "X-factor."

The country of Brazil is, in fact, the football team's "X-factor.

England and the World Cup

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The summer of 1966. Soccer-mania gripped the world as it usually does for the World Cup. The difference that year was that the beautiful game had returned "home," to England. The host nation, enjoying their best cup run in the tournament's history, made it to the final at Wembley. The opposition, West Germany, had convincingly dispatched Switzerland, Spain, Uruguay and the then Soviet Union on their way to the final.

World Cup Stories “The One About Ronaldo”

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In room 290 at a Parisian hotel on the eve of the 1998 World Cup Final, Ronaldo Luís Nazarío de Lima was convulsing on the floor and foaming at the mouth.

It was shortly after dinner time, and Roberto Carlos, Ronaldo's hotel room-mate, had just finished shaving his teammates head for the final.

If The World Cup Were Set In The World of Harry Potter…

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Aragog – Fellaini. Incredibly awkward on his feet. But, can hurt you with his size.

Sirius Black – Mascherano. A hero for his team. Will be appreciated more after he's done.

Barty Crouch Junior – Janujaz, underestimated by those around him until it's too late.

Cedric Diggory – Stevie G.

3 Things We Learned From Croatia Against Brazil

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1) Croatia look fine without imunić...

A nation collectively held its breath when veteran defender Josip imunić was handed a ten-game ban by FIFA in December that effectively ended his international career, following his use of a neo-fascist salute after November's qualifier against Iceland.

Italy vs England Preview

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In the blistering heat and humidity in the Amazonian city of Manaus, Italy will take on England to open up their 2014 World Cup campaign.

The Italians will be looking to rebound after a disappointing performance in the 2010 World Cup where they earned only two points against a weak group, consisting of Paraguay, Slovakia and New Zealand, and failed to advance past the group stage for the first time since 1974.

Chile vs Australia – Match Preview

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La Roja v The Socceroos! This is an interesting match up because Australia come into this group as major underdogs while Chile's hopes are higher than they have ever been yet 2010 finalists Spain and Holland will be expected to advance. I reckon Australia are a little underrated and in a couple moments we will look at the key battles in this match which will most likely be the difference maker.

Brazil vs. Croatia Observations: Job Done For The Seleção But Plenty of Work Still To Do

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The score reflects a victory for Brazil but Coach Luiz Felipe Scolari will not be fooled by the result. Brazil was nowhere near their best, their attack didn't quite click and there were worrying signs that the backline could be got at.

Whilst Scolari won't admit it he would have recognized that Brazil benefited from some questionable decisions by the Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura.

Chile Are Ready to Take Risks and Gamble in World Cup 2014

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While a lot is being said about England's ‘group of death', as the 3 Lions prepare to face off against 2010 semi-finalists Uruguay and 2012 Euro Finalists Italy. The toughest set of matches arguably lies in Group B. This kicks off very soon with Spain vs the Netherlands followed by Chile vs Australia.

Mexico 1-0 Cameroon: El Tri Overcome Controversial Referee Decisions to Get 3 Points [GAME HIGHLIGHTS]

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All the drama surrounding Mexico's stressful qualification period went away with a dominate display in a 1-0 victory over a rather listless Cameroon side.

Oribe Peralta's rebound winner in the 61st minute was the difference in the game, as El Tri should have been up 2-0 at halftime as two Giovanni Dos Santos efforts were incorrectly ruled offside.

Spain v Netherlands Line-Up Predictions

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Reigning World and European champions Spain start their tournament the same way their last World Cup campaign ended – against the Oranje.

Defence: There should be little doubt about Spain's back four. Juanfran had an impressive outing against El Salvador, but del Bosque would likely favour Cesar Azpilicueta's workrate.

2010 World Cup Rematch in Brazil With Spain v Netherlands

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Four years on from one of the feistiest World Cup Finals to date, much has changed for both Spain and the Netherlands as they reunite in Salvador for the Group B opener. The World Champions begin the tournament behind Brazil and Argentina as favorites, despite having a near identical squad to 2010, many believe their intricate tika-taka style has been found out.

Mexico vs. Cameroon Match Preview

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Brazil 2014 is finally getting started and tonight's opening game of the World Cup between Brazil and Croatia will surely be an entertaining one. While many people favor Brazil as the favourites to go through, I can see Mexico finishing second in the group. I know, you might be shaking your head right now and wondering why I'm not choosing Croatia.

Mexico vs Cameroon Preview: Will Eto’o & Cameroon Be On Song Against A Trying El Tri?

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Four years ago before the world turned its attention to South Africa for the 2010 World Cup, Manchester United announced the purchase of a player from Chivas de Guadalajara named Javier Hernandez for the meager transfer fee believed to be around $8m. While many who monitored only Europe's elite leagues had heard little of the Mexican forward, his performance at the World Cup helped amplify his announcement on the global stage.

Starting XI Predictions: Brazil v. Croatia

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Here are the starting XI predictions for Brazil vs Croatia:

Brazil:

Julio Cesar, Dani Alves, Thiago Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo, Luiz Gustavo, Paulinho, Oscar, Hulk, Fred, Neymar

The Brazilian starting XI is pretty cut and dried. Luiz Scolari has pretty much shown us the lineup he's going to use and how he's going to use it.

World Cup 2014: Brazil vs Croatia (Match Preview)

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And so begins the "Big Show" once again. Tonight's opener, Brazil vs Croatia, seems like a very intriguing first game.

The pressure on Brazil is enormous. When you factor in the political situation on the ground, and the enormity of the occasion, this really is a tough first assignment.

To assess Brazil, it is necessary to dissect their performances in their last competitive matches last year's Confederations Cup.

Why This World Cup Will Be The Most Watched In US History

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It's finally here. In less than 24 hours, the 2014 FIFA World Cup will kick off with a match between Brazil and Croatia in São Paulo, Brazil. By now, we've read most of the previews, filled out our brackets and are preparing to look over our shoulder at work, hoping our bosses don't ask "What are you doing?

Could the World Cup Be in Germany’s Hands This Year?

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FIFA caused controversy recently by releasing footage of its FIFA 14 videogame, showing Germany beating Brazil 2-1 in extra time in a special simulation.

The demo shows Brazil's Neymar scoring the first goal, before Germany's Per Mertesacker scores a late equalizer, followed by an extra time goal from Miroslav Klose.