Thursday, June 26, 2008

Germany marches on


Just. Wow.

That was an absolute thriller. Germany manning it's entire first squad, Turkey so dilapidated that it's manager suggesting 'jokingly' that he might have to play his third-string keeper in the outfield, the result should have been more than obvious.

But wow.

Turkey finally showed their metal. Fast, attacking football that had the Germans over the burner all night. Absolutely thrilling football. The stuff Turkey is capable of playing. By the 30th minute or so, they'd had eight shots on target. Eight!! They gave up that "defend until the end of the match" bullshit and I'll finally give them a little respect for their performance. Mind you - their first goal should be credited to German keeper Lehmann, a seven-year-old could have kept that out.

Germany decided to show up for the match right after Turkey scored (taking a page out of the Turkish playbook, perhaps?) and really turned up the pressure. But once they got their second goal, it was all Turkey again. There was a 4-5 minute period where Turkey had absolute possession of the ball, no German could touch it, it almost seemed like they couldn't be bothered.

Turkey managed to draw level (taking their playbook back) in the 86th minute, and beer was spilled in beer-halls and German wannabe pubs across the world. Were we watching another bloody last minute demolition of a European favourite, courtesy the Turks? No. No we weren't. Philipp Lahm scored a gorgeous 90th minute winner, and the Germans progress.

While I think this is the Turks getting their kamuffins for such a shitty overall performance, you can't help but think that they should be coming out of this match with something. So here it is. An award usually reserved for England after they go out on penalties: the coveted You Maybe Should Have Won If You Didn't Waste So Many Chances You Wankers award. Congrats Turkey!

Roll on Spain v Russia, that should be fantastic.

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