Today brought even more stats, the only one of which I bothered to memorise was that Australia had never scored in the World Cup. There was a borderline obsession over the US-Czech game, and listening to the commentators during Australia-Japan one would almost get the impression that it's the most important game in the tournament. Endless speculation, dissection, examination, over and over. Oh, and the stats. Oh, the stats. The US is 0 and some really high number against teams in the World Cup when they give up the first goal, so therefore it's vital they score first.
Missing the point, much? It's bloody vital to score, period. It's how you win games. Scoring first performs an action called, in technical terms, "putting you ahead", and failing to score the first goal "puts you behind", and - I'm fairly sure - any team's stats will show that when they are ahead, they tend to win more than when they are behind.
Just a thought.
Australia 3-1 Japan
I'm writing this whilst watching the game, it's currently 1-0
Well, that was a nice little cheating goal that put the Japanese team ahead. Where was the ref? This tournament is starting to look like it's going to be another that's characterised by bad refereeing. Admittedly, the goal against Germany didn't change anything, but the Japanese goal may still decide the match.
84th minute - Australia just equalised. First World Cup goal - ever!
Sweet. Still five minutes plus stoppage to play. This could go either way.
88th minute - 2-1 Australia!
Japan had been hanging back, pulling everyone to defend, which is why the Aussies couldn't get close. But when they equalised, Japan had to start spreading out. End result? Goal in 4 minutes.
3 minutes of stoppage. Australia must win this because they've got Croatia and Brazil, so this is an absolute must-have victory.
92nd minute - Well, so much for playing the game out - Australia just slotted a third home.
Full time, it's over. 3-1.
Okay, that's one Doombreed prediction down, can we make it three out of three?
Back later to see.