Thursday, October 08, 2009

Egypt 2009: The rundown for the quarters.

Egypt 2009 is shaping up nicely indeed. The fixtures for the quarter finals - starting today - read as follows:

Germany - Brazil
The Europeans got here by the skin of their teeth at the expense of Nigeria. Many people think Brazil would continue their winning streak when they meet. Some have even said the Sele├žao are not operating at full power. When they do, i dont want to be the opposing team. But dont discount that fighting spirit that has seen Der Mannschaft come this far.

Italy - Costa Rica
If I were Italian, the fact that the CONCACAF champions have come this far would put the fear of God in me. With a healthy run in the tournament, Italy may yet be stopped by the slick counter-attacking football of the the Costa Ricans as well.

Ghana - South Korea
Kicking off at 1430GMT, this is a game of two teams that have got this far by contrasting means. Ghana started nicely with two wins against Uzbekistan and England, then stuttered to wins over Uruguay and South Africa.

The Taegu Warriors of Korea came out of the blocks badly with a 0-2 loss to Cameroon but came back strongly to draw with Germany and sped their way to two wins in their final games.

Ghana have never lost to Asian opposition at this level and indeed it's the first time the two sides are playing in any under 20 championships. All this - plus the fact that Korea's only defeat in Egypt came from an African team - gives us what should be a fantastic game of football.

More on the other games later.