An unusual situation

I'm often inclined to support Mexico, which shows clearly that I am not a true US team supporter. I like the whole south of the border angle and I've forgiven them for ditching the shirts with the Aztec design scheme.

However, watching them play Angola and to a lesser extent Portugal put me off: a skilled team, but too much fouling and gamesmanship. The absence of Jarred Borgetti, of whom I think a great deal as a striker, didn't help either.

So today I actually found myself in the unusual position of supporting Argentina in their game against Mexico.

It was one of the most compelling games of any stripe that I have seen for some time. The Mexicans played a blinder, notwithstanding Borgetti's own goal, and had some of the most fearless, last-ditch, penalty-free defending in the box that I have seen in a long time. When I think about the number of Premiership games where desperate clearances just return the ball to the opposition and give them the chance for another goal.

However, the patience and the passing of the Argentines was a revelation. Mexico could plausibly have exected to be able to shut down the short-passing game and to some extent they did, but periodic games of pass-the-ball-around-midfield would suddenly shift into blazing runs into the area.

And then… Maxi Rodriguez's goal. Holy crap. That was almost as satisfying as watching Bergkamp score against Argentina in 1998, but even more spectacular.

Really looking forward to seeing Argentina play Germany next week.

POSTSCRIPT: has anyone else noticed that Sven-Goran Eriksson has already been road-testing the excuses for losing to Ecuador, just in case — it was hot, we were thirsty, and felt like crap that's been rewarmed?


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