...before the game, it was clear that coach Bob Bradley was not exactly a bad coach, but he's been getting some flak for some of his tactical decisions in the past couple of games.
It's been uncharacteristically rainy in Accra over the past several days. Global warming, ozone layer? Hmm....
I'm in a buoyant mood this morning following what has been a so-far-so-good 2-days of television punditry for me. The Tv3 guys have done much to make me feel comfy and ok despite the obvious fact that the so called 'big boys' wanna put me down.
But, you know how I do, right? I fear no effing wankers and I'm not intimidated by nobody.
The punting I did was on the Italy - USA game. From the research I'd done before the game, it was clear that coach Bob Bradley was not exactly a bad coach, but he's been getting some flak for some of his tactical decisions in the past couple of games.
So, I suggested that the Americans would have a good first half and scupper it in the second. The other guest on the show, Elloeny Amande, vehemently disagreed with me and said he did not see how Italy would have a problem in defence as I had intimated.
Well, Chiellini did me proud by bringing Landon Donovan down - and I'm even shocked he wasn't red carded. Before that we'd seen a dubious red card given to Clark.
"The red card made all the difference," Donovan said. "Eleven guys from each team were prepared and ready to play the game, and the guy in the middle with the whistle wasn't."
So, at the end of first half, I'd been right.
So, then second half. I'd expected Bob Bradley to bungle it and felt that he should have either closed the game down in midfield or brought on a more attacking option to run at the Italians. I'd also expected Italy to have someone to 'stand up and lead.' Pirlo did that to perfection.
When Italy went 2-1 up, USA should have started ringing in the changes. On the bench was Freddy Adu. The Benfica man knows a thing or two about holding the ball. He also knows something about hitting the ball, something the others were not doing.
Donovan lost it because Gattuso was marking him out. Well, in the end Daniel de Rossi and Giuseppe Rossi did the damage.
See the highlights below:
And that, was that. Now for the reactions.
Four goals were scored by American-born players. Two of those goals counted for Italy. New Jersey-born Giuseppe Rossi scored twice.
"I dedicate the goals to my family, who are watching the game on TV in America," Rossi said. "This is a dream, I'm playing for the world champions, and I also hope to become a world champion next year."
And in the final analysis, USA's players conceded that world champions wasn't gonna be a walk in the fields.
"It was a little harsh that we didn't get something out of that game," midfielder DaMarcus Beasley said. "But Italy are world champions. You have to do a little extra to beat them."