Sabtu, 12 Juni 2010

Group C: US hold England

In the Group C opener England drew the USA one-all.

(to be updated after the second game)

England 1-1 (1-1) USA
Goals: 1-0 Steven Gerrard (4'), 1-1 Clint Dempsey (40').

A disappointing England were held to a one-all draw by a spirited USA in their opening Group C match in Rustenburg. After this match Fabio Capello will have to do some soul searching as in this form England surely aren't amongst the favourites, while the USA could become a real threat to other sides if they use their chances better.

England took an early 4th minute lead as captain Steven Gerrard scored a class goal when the US defence opened up due to a Emile Heskey pass. If you thought that it would be an easy passage for England thereafter one would have been disappointed as the US had their moments in the game. An old English tradition came to the forefront in the 40th minute when Robert Green couldn't collect a weak shot from Clint Dempsey and allowed it to cross the line. It remained one-all at the breather and Fabio Capello made some necessary changes to strengthen his team, but it didn't bring the desired results. Everton keeper Tim Howard had an outstanding game tonight always taking care of the few England chances, while the US could have taken the match away from England in the second half when Josie Altidore broke free on the left beating Jamie Carragher, taking a shot on goal with Robert Green getting his hand to the ball which hit the post and went wide. Wayne Rooney had a rather quiet game as the striker didn't get the necessary support from the midfield.


Algeria 0-1 (0-0) Slovenia
Goals: 0-1 Robert Koren (78')

Slovenia overcame ten men Algeria 1-0 to register their first ever win in a World Cup in their Group C opener at Polokwane.

The match between Algeria and Slovenia was the weakest match in this World Cup so far. The two sides seen as underdogs against England and the USA in their group and they proved it in the match. Slovenia with the three points have a chance of moving on, but it will be difficult from this group.

Both teams had few chances in a match in which they both wanted to ensure safety at the back first rather then go out for a win. Algeria had the first chance of the match in the 4th minute through a Belhadj freekick. Slovenia had their first chance in the 43rd minute when Birsa's shot was cleared by Fawzi Chaouchi.

Things didn't change much after the break. But it did get a little more interesting towards the end of the match. Algeria were reduced to ten men in the 73rd minute when substitute Ghezzal handled the ball in the area his second offence and off he had to go with a second yellow card. The match seemed heading for an unimaginative draw, when a rather weak shot from captain Robert Koren was let in by the Algerian keeper Fawzi Chaouchi in the 78th minute. And thereafter Algeria didn't seem capable of getting the equaliser, while Slovenia was happy with the win.

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