Happy #followfriday readers! Today’s Blogger in the Spotlight (BITS) is Clare on the World Cup. Clare lives in South Africa and of course she has been getting the best seats to the games so far because, she is IN the stadium!
Check out her live shots.
Sound the vuvuzela!
Don’t forget your earplugs!
A beautiful day for Football!
The line up
GHA – USA
I’m on Your Team!
Heck, she practically lives there now.. Clare! are you there..? We fear we have lost you to the dark-side.. As tension mounts and nerves are strung out thin.. here are her World Cup 2010 favourite goals to date and why.
1. Siphiwe Tshabalala, RSA vs MEX, Johannesburg (11th June 2010)
This is one of my favourite 2010 World Cup goals for many reasons. In the week leading up to the opening game on the 11th June, South Africa was a hive of frantic energy and excitement. The world cup was at our doorstep and we could feel it. Our nation was pulling together and supporting Bafana Bafana and when Siphiwe Tshabalala headed down the left wing in the 55th minute to score the opening goal of the 2010 Fifa World Cup, an entire nation erupted into celebrations. This was truly a “We can do it” moment as the South African players shone on the world stage.
2. Steven Gerrard, ENG vs USA, Rustenburg
(12th June 2010)
As an England fan, this is a favourite for many personal reasons. I have always had a goal (pun intended) of watching England play live in a World Cup game, and what better opportunity than when the country you live in is hosting the 2010 World Cup? After much blood, sweat and tears (literally) I secured a ticket to the ENG-USA game which, for all intents and purposes was going to be a great game. England were in a group that, on paper, should have given them an excellent chance of progressing to the next round. So, when Steven Gerrard scored off a pass from Emile Heskey in the 4th minute, we really did think that it might have been another 1966 in the making. We could not have been more wrong!
3. Maicon, BRA vs PRK, Johannesburg
(15th June 2010)
Group G, the so-called “Group of death” featured Brazil, Portugal, Cote d’Ivoire and North Korea. If you were going to pick a whipping boy team it was going to be North Korea, yet, in their first match against Brazil, they played as if their life depended on it (actually, maybe it did) and they went into half-time with a 0-0 scoreline. It looked like it was going to take extra effort from Brazil to score in this game. Ultimately, it was Maicon who broke the deadlock in the 55th minute with a goal from an almost impossible angle. Indeed, this is why this goal is one of my favourites, the angle towards the goal was exceptionally tight, yet Maicon managed to curve the ball between the upright and the goal-keeper for a phenomenal goal, giving Brazil a hard-earned 1-0 lead.
4. David Villa, ESP vs CHI, Pretoria
(25th June 2010)
I’d heard a lot of talk about David Villa before the World Cup, but had yet to see him in action. After their shock opening loss to the Swiss, Spain had everything to play for in their last two group games and Villa certainly lived up to his billing as an outstanding player. In the last group game against Chile, a must-win game for the Spanish, the Chilean keeper came way out of his box to close the angle on an attacking Spanish player. The ball deflected off the keeper to the feet of Villa, who very calmly lobbed the ball over the stranded keeper and into the back of the net with amazing accuracy. Even Villa looked surprised that he’d got it right, but a phenomenal, phenomenal goal!
5. Carlos Tevez, ARG vs MEX, Johannesburg
(27th June 2010)
Argentina is one of the favourites to win the 2010 World Cup and, after watching them play, it’s easy to see why. In the round of 16 Match against Mexico, Carlos Tevez opened the scoring with a goal that caused instant controversy due to his off-side position. In one of many linesman and referee blunders of this World Cup, the goal was allowed to stand and Mexico took a 1-0 lead. But, this is not the goal we want to focus on. Instead, we forward the tape to the 52nd minute of the game where Tevez receives the ball just outside the penalty area, side-steps two flat-footed Mexican players and then drills it into the back of the net with amazing power and intent, leaving the Mexican goal-keeper stranded. If his first goal was debatable, Tevez allowed no doubt with his second goal.
So, as we move through the Round of 16 games and big names such as Italy, France and England have been eliminated, who do we favour to win the 2010 World Cup? It’s a tough question! Argentina have been almost flawless and, with one exception, Germany have been ruthlessly efficient, clinical and well, German really. Brazil have dazzled, if we ignore the hand-balls and dramatic diving and Spain have a line-up of players that can drive fear into the hearts of any opposition.
In the end though, I believe this could be Argentina’s year. So, my money is on Argentina. Who is your winner? Predictions please.. Ciki take bets.. (kidding! this is a wholesome, non-gambling site please, thank you!)
As of today (#arg – #ger match), GERMANY is the hot favourite to win! LOL
About Today’s Guest Writer:
Clare is a traveling entrepreneur living in Johannesburg, South Africa. She is a HUGE football fan! She tells me that she is utterly exhausted from watching the matches and that ticket prices have varied from ZAR140 to ZAR1120 (approx. USD 20 – USD 145) for different groups.
The Rustenburg Stadium is normally a 2 hour drive from where she lives, but it took her nearly 4 hours to get home after the game on Saturday night due to traffic! The other stadium, Soccer City, is only about half an hour, so that was much easier to get to!
Right now, she is down with the fever. Football fever! Oh Clare.. wake up clare.. are you there.. yoohoo.. ?
Follow Clare on twitter : @clareappleyard
Clare’s website: http://www.cappleyard.com