Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Whalley On The Early Cup Action

UWM men's soccer coach Chris Whalley checks in with some thoughts on the first five days of the World Cup

On the United States/England match ... It was obviously a good game, although I think England was the better team. At the end of the day it was a tie and the goalkeeper didn’t play very well. Things happen. The good news is that both teams can still advance. I honestly thought that England could go on and score another goal. We had a couple of good chances and didn’t take them, but I think Robert Green also made a good save on (Jozy) Altidore towards the end that probably redeemed himself a little bit. But, I think if England would have played better, it wouldn’t have been an issue anyway.

England and the US from here ... I think England is going to win the next game and I think America will win their next game. I think they will both win their next two games and England will advance first in the group on goal differential.

Any big surprises yet ... I don’t think there have been any massive shocks yet. Italy disappointed a lot of people by playing very poorly against Paraguay. I was pleased for Ghana. I thought they played really well when they won, 1-0. It has been really exciting … the games have been great and there have been a lot of good contests and some good play.

The individual stars so far ... I thought Lionel Messi looked really good for the first half of the Argentina game. I really liked the Ghana forward who scored the PK, Asamoah Gyan. He looked really lively. And it’s nice to see (Didier) Drogba play today. He’s hurt and he’s not 100%, but it’s great to see the best players in the world playing on the biggest stage.

And on those vuvuzelas ... If people want to come out to Engelmann Field and blow their vuvuzelas all game long and be really annoying to the opposition, I would love them to do that. I have no issue with them at all. I think these guys are paid enough money and play at a good enough level that if they can’t play with a bit of noise, they need to grow up a bit.