Sunday, July 09, 2006


France Vs Italy

So after a month of action we are down to one game. After some spectacular goals, lots of yellow cards, a tournament that started out so promisingly and lost a little bit of its bite is down to one game and one game alone. It is naturally a little sad that the World Cup is at its end, unfortunately I will have to focus my mind more on the tribulations of Leeds now. For whom incidentally I predict a tough old season finishing mid table - we really needed to win that play off final!

The World Cup Final is a replay of the Euro 2000 Final which France won by a golden goal from Trezeguet. Also a replay of World Cup 98 quarter final which France won on penalties. Previous matches at the tournament which have been repeats of earlier matches have all seemed to go the way that history suggested, is this to be the same?

France: Looking to finish off in style for Zizou. They have an average squad of 30 years and 10 days which is a helluva lot, one of the oldest semi-final squads for years. But with the likes of Thuram, Gallas, Makelele, Zidane, Vieira, and Henry down the spine no-one will write them off. Can Henry reproduce his club form? One reason he finds it difficult is everything goes through Zidane. The danger of this ploy is that they flop when Zidane is not on form. This is the World Cup Final though – expect him on form! Playing the lone striker can be frustrating too. And how will Domenech manage his troups. Only Saha is suspended but this may be a blessing in disguise. They are bound to use Trezeguet in the super sub role because of this, and given his prodigious abilities who knows if he can repeat the trick of Euro 2000!

Italy: Their whole squad exudes excellence. Buffon in goal and Cannavaro at the back, stupendous in defence thus far. Not to mention bulldog Gattusso in defensive midfield, and Pirlo who has been great. Totti on form would be scary too. Pity Nesta who is currently injured. Question marks over the attack in Luca Toni who has not quite been on song at this world cup. But they do have able players on the bench to score goals like Gilardino, Del Pierro, Inzhagi and Joaquinta. Italy have tended to play with one up front but they play with a lot of width and someone from the midfield invariably comes up into the front line.

It’s a huge game of course. I have a feeling Italy will win. I don’t mind who does, it would be nice to see Zidane finish a winner but they won it a lot more recently than the Italian success of 82, ironically when their league was again embroiled in scandal. Hopefully it will be a cracking game.


Emmy said...

Yeahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!! Go Italy!!

no.1 ref said...

the mafia paid off the ref and zidane lol

Jim Tully said...

they definately paid him off by making the referee 'an offer he could not refuse' (godfather fans)in the aussie game, Grosso dive, pen taken by Totti, Italy 1, referee's credibility nil

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