Mexico vs Netherlands World Cup 2014

Till the end of the first half, neither Mexico nor Netherlands were able to score a goal. For a team like Netherlands which stood so strong in the previous matches it seemed a bit weird. There was something essential that the team lacked yesterday.

Within 5-minutes of the start of the second half Mexico had scored a goal. Now there was something really wrong about the Netherlands and something particularly good for Mexico. No doubt Mexico has been a good team in the World Cup but it could not be considered a real contender of the trophy. And then, if Mexico would beat Netherlands knocking them out of the World Cup, that would be something really mind boggling.

But hey, here they are, 5-minutes to the end of the match and still, Mexico led by 1-0. Mexico had played well and maintained its lead till the very end of the game. Suddenly, the power shuts down. But I am at peace, as I knew the result. I was so sure that Mexico would win. It was bound to win. What could go wrong for them in the last 5-minutes? Absolutely nothing! Really?

The next morning I see the newspaper to see what!!? Netherlands won by 2-1. Has there been some misprint? I read the whole report and then confirmed online. Really, Netherlands had won the match. In the 88th minute, Wesely Sneijder scored a goal for his team making the final score 1-1.

Ok, but 2-1?? How?? In the 5-extra minutes after 90 minutes of play, Huntelaar scored another goal getting the final score to 2-1. Its like snatching a piece of bone from the mouth of a dog.



Offside Memories: My First Encounter With Football

Football is a sport with not-so-great fandom in India. Of course, people know when there is a World Cup going on but they are least bothered to watch it. There are two reasons that account for:

1. Most of the people don’t understand football.

2. The match timings are always in nights in India.

But, the popularity is slowly gaining momentum. People have started to take more interest in football than before and the younger generation looks forward to moving on from traditional cricket to football. I remember I watched my first football match in 2006. The match was a World Cup Final in which France and Italy were the two teams.

The telecast was scheduled at 1.30 am, so I had to watch it discreetly. Sounds were kept low as everyone in home was sleeping. I was excited about this match because of only one reason-Zinedin Zidane. He had announced his retirement from football after this final match. All I knew about him then, and even now, that he was a great legend. I wanted to see how he played. No, I don’t want to become a footballer, but still I admire the game.

So with drinks and snacks I sat on the sofa in front of the TV to watch this legend. Within the first 5-minutes, or may be 10, he was shown the red card. Why? He had an italian footballer with his head. Everything seemed so dramatic then.

And this is what I like about football than cricket. Here, every team stands equal on field and so is every player unlike cricket. In cricket, there always dominates one team over the rest and that team is favoured unjustifiably on field in certain cases. There are times when one player is intentionally targeted in a match of cricket.

May be I am a novice when football is concerned, but even today I find every footballer being treated with an equal eye whenever I get to see a match.

However, the next day, it turned out in the media that the italian player who was hit by Zidane in the football match had abused him verbally in retaliation of which Zidane had hit him.

As we all know, France had lost that Football World Cup Final to Italy and as an early enthusiast of football and Zidane of course, I had been greatly disappointed. This was my first encounter with football.