## Today’s footie

It’s the consolation match between Brazil and Netherlands, starting at 2 p.m. Chicago time. Remember that tomorrow’s final starts an hour later: 3 p.m. Chicago time (4 p.m. Eastern).

I will venture a guess this time: Netherlands 1-0. Readers should also put their predictions below. Tomorrow, of course, the victor will be determined (hopefully by 6 p.m. Chicago time), and the prize will be awarded Monday.

For your delectation, here’s the team that football announcer Seamus Malin considered the greatest he’d ever seen. As I posted a while back when interviewing Seamus in 2012, he gave this opinion:

Best team ever:  The Brazil national team in 1970, which beat Italy 4-1 in the World Cup final. Seamus considers this the benchmark for any cup final game. This video shows some highlights of Brazil’s World Cup performance.

And the video, back from when Brazil was stupendously good (the game was in Mexico City):

(ignore the old but good Michael Jackson tune)

There is, of course a Wikipedia entry on this game:

With this third win after their 1958 and 1962 World Cup victories, Brazil became the world’s most successful national football team at that time, surpassing both Italy and Uruguay, who each had two championships. The third title earned Brazil the right to retain the Jules Rimet Trophy permanently.(However, it was stolen in 1983 while on display in Rio de Janeiro and never recovered.) Brazilian coach Mário Zagallo was the first footballer to become World Cup champion as a player (1958, 1962) and a coach, and Pelé ended his World Cup playing career as the first (and so far only) three-time winner.

1. Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:05 am | Permalink

Did you recognise England legend, the late Bobby Moore at start, Jerry?
Brazil have been humiliated on the world football stage, but will a win bring any consolation today? I haven’t a clue which way the match will go but will put a guess below.
Just the big one remaining tomorrow after this.
Cheers.

Brazil 1-2 Holland

2. Mal
Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:09 am | Permalink

Neither of the teams want to be in this meaningless game but Brazil have the most to gain. They can bring their captain back and play to regain a little pride. So I take Brazil to win 2-1 (though the thought of Robben running at the Brazil defence is scary!)

3. Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:15 am | Permalink

Holland 4-1 Brazil

4. Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:23 am | Permalink

A terrible idea from FIFA to have these meaningless games. Nobody wins, least of all the fans because neither team gives a dam. Hopefully they will agree to switch of the defences and go all out exhibition mode, but Brazil might be smarting from their drubbing and likely go on the deep lying defense and counter attack.

5. bonetired
Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:43 am | Permalink

That World Cup had what is frequently touted as one of the greatest saves ever: that of Gordon Banks against Pele no less…

• bonetired
Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:45 am | Permalink

Apologies for the embed ….

6. Jesper Both Pedersen
Posted July 12, 2014 at 5:34 am | Permalink

And the first mountain stage of le tour to pass time until footie.

The grass will not get mown this weekend.

Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:00 am | Permalink

The 1970 final has special memories for me – I wasn’t born, but my dad raved about it for years. In the 90s I remember watching it with him when the BBC showed it again. Two things stood out. Rivelino’s amazing moustache, and Carlos Alberto’s goal from that Pele lay off that for a brief second made you think, ‘What? Who’s he playing that to…oh….nice goal.’

A friend of a friend who I knew through supporting my local club in Belfast was big into collecting memorabilia, and at one point paid a handsome fee for a Jairzinho shirt.

8. Rob
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:07 am | Permalink

I think you’ll find that the final game starts an hour EARLIER (FIFA web page says 4pm local time in Rio).

• Draken
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:27 am | Permalink

Check. 21:00 CET, vs 22:00 for today’s match.

9. Mark Sturtevant
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:17 am | Permalink

Netherlands 3, Brazil 0.

• Draken
Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

• Posted July 12, 2014 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

Tip o’ the chapeau.

• Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

Good going. I thought it was going to be a win for Netherlands, 4-0.

10. Sami Tuomivaara
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:27 am | Permalink

Brazil 3 – 2 Netherlands

11. Jake
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:31 am | Permalink

Brazil 1 – 0 Netherlands

• W.Benson
Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:41 am | Permalink

Brazil 1 X Netherlands 0: I agree (and hope). It might go either way. Netherlands is certainly the favorite. The Brazilian players are stressed out, and this could make for an ugly match or another meltdown.

12. Jesper Both Pedersen
Posted July 12, 2014 at 6:54 am | Permalink

Brazil 4 – 4 Netherlands

Brazil 6 – 6 Netherlands ( post extra-time )

Brazil 3 – 4 Netherlands ( penalties )

Because none of them cares and they might as well score some goals….

I believe!!!!

13. Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:03 am | Permalink

I remember watching this live and marveling at the Brazilian team; their defenders were better footballers than our forwards! But it’s not all about being good footballers, as Germany demonstrate; this Brazil also had a wonderful team understanding. Pele’s delicious stroke of the ball to Carlos Alberto for the final goal is just beautifully weighted – it’s almost as if he was aiming for the bobble it got just before the ‘full back’ struck it.

Anyway, I know you love Messi, Jerry, as do I, but Gary Lineker is concerned that there’s something not quite right about him at this World Cup:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/football/28274470

This article also includes a comparison between Messi and Maradona, with some of the variables that confound the comparison. Maybe Messi is tired, but I think people underestimate how good Barcelona are, which means he has to do more, or feels he has to do more, for the national side.

Here’s a nice discussion of the Carlos Alberto goal by the scorer himself:

http://tinyurl.com/lgfo5wp

• Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:47 am | Permalink

It may not be dreaded treacle legs that’s the reason behind Messi covering less distance on the pitch at this World Cup:

“Sportsmail’s Jamie Carragher has suggested that Messi’s lack of running could be in order to protect his suspect hamstring, which caused him to miss a lot of the season with Barcelona. But Carragher also believes Messi is changing hisa game and becoming more of an old-fashioned playmaker.
‘He doesn’t seem to be running as much, he is waiting for the ball,’ Wrote Carragher after the last-16 victory over Switzerland. ‘His running stats were the lowest on the pitch against Switzerland, which is evidence of the change in his game – but he caused maximum trouble and won the match for Argentina.
‘The more I study his performances, the more I believe he’s in control and waiting for that moment to arrive when he can make a difference.’

Meanwhile speculation regarding Messi’s potential performance has to be influencing the relevant betting.

14. Kevin
Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:49 am | Permalink

$\mathcal{P}(\rm{Brazil (win)})=\mathsf{random}$

15. David Duncan
Posted July 12, 2014 at 8:14 am | Permalink

Netherlands 3 Brazil 1.

16. Reginald Selkirk
Posted July 12, 2014 at 9:54 am | Permalink

Nederlands 12 – 1 Brazil

• Reginald Selkirk
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

38 minnutes in, and Nederlands is only up 2-0. They’re falling behind schedule.

17. ploubere
Posted July 12, 2014 at 10:45 am | Permalink

0-0, with Netherlands winning 5-4 in penalty kicks.
Brazil must be hoping that they are respectable in today’s game, and that Germany equally humiliates Argentina tomorrow, so that it will seem that Germany is indomitable rather than their team incompetent.

• Reginald Selkirk
Posted July 12, 2014 at 10:57 am | Permalink

Mmmm yeah – just like Germany obliterated the Ghana team.

18. Richard C
Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

I think Brazil will bounce back. 2-0 Brazil.

• Richard C
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

Well, that didn’t take long to be proven wrong!

• Jesper Both Pedersen
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

Don’t worry. We’ve all been there.

19. Arne
Posted July 12, 2014 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

Brazil 2 – NL 1
Just in before the kickoff…

20. Jesper Both Pedersen
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:00 pm | Permalink

Here we go again.

Let it be a good one.

• Jesper Both Pedersen
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

Action right from the get go and a very orange yellow card…..the dude should’ve been outta there….

21. Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

Uh oh… another desaster for Brazil? But they don’t look that shocked this time.

• Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

0-2
Oy veh
And the refs suck too

• MR
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

On the positive side, it’s unlikely to be 7-1 or greater again.

• Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

Yeah, because the Netherlands isn’t really trying, with some real incentive to win the game, it might look different.

• MR
Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

True

22. Reginald Selkirk
Posted July 12, 2014 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

FIFA official sought on scalping charges, goes on the lam

23. MR
Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

If Germany beats Argentina tomorrow, will it be a sign from the almighty that they need to bring back Ratzinger from retirement?

24. Blue
Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

O NO !

Furthermore, the online media altogether is already destroying their reporting on The Beautiful Game’s final by way o’ this freakin’ muck: tinyurl.com/m5qdqsz

Blue

25. Richard C
Posted July 12, 2014 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

Holy hell, the players are fighting for third place but the referee squad’s dead set on fourth.

26. MR
Posted July 12, 2014 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

The nightmare is over. Now they can try to forget about it at least for the next four years.

27. nicky
Posted July 12, 2014 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

Clean victory for the Dutch. Brazil, even when the Dutch let them come having a 2-0 advantage, never ever looked threatening, toothless. The Dutch, on the contrary, on their few attacks always did (look threatening).
The return of Tiago Silva saw to the Brazilian defence being slightly more organised compared to the rout against Germany, but was still weak.
Arjen Robben may be a diver (the penalty in this match being a result), but there are three arguments in his defence as a player: he is indeed very much targeted, not all his dives are acting, he covers more distance than any player (he’s 30, looks like 40, but runs like a 20 year old), and thirdly, he hardly ever commits any fouls (contrary to say e.g., RVP). Is he a softy?
I have reviewed all (yes, all) matches of this tournament. The 2 best teams by far and I mean by far, standing out, are Holland and Germany. That *should* have been the final.

Well, one never knows about the Messi factor (I think he is unarguably the best extant player), but I do not think Argentina stands chance against Germany. But then, I might be mistaken, I did not think the Albiceleste would have a chance against the Orange men either.

28. Merilee
Posted July 12, 2014 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

Sub

29. religionenslaves
Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:55 pm | Permalink

I am Italian, so this comment is patently biased. When reminiscing about the 1970 World Cup final and drooling over Brazil’s amazing play, people forget the background of the game. Italy came to final after the strenuously-fought semi-final against Germany (4-3, 120 minutes of incredible football, played at altitude). Most the Italian team were totally exhausted and fresh legs were needed, but the Italian coach (a conservative, unimaginative strategist) stuck with his fatigued players, some of whom could hardly walk on the day of the final, let alone compete with Brazil. Probably Brazil would have won anyway, but at least it would have been a contest. As I said, I am biased.

• religionenslaves
Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:56 pm | Permalink

***… to the final …”

• religionenslaves
Posted July 12, 2014 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

“*** Most of the Italian team …”

• Mal
Posted July 13, 2014 at 12:22 am | Permalink

Ah Yes but the Germans came to the semi-final against Italy having just played the very strenuously fought quarter-final against England, which also went to extra time and in which they had to recover from a 2 goad deficit. 😉