55. The Aftermath…

So it’s been over a week since the World Cup ended.

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Bye bye Fureco…

The streets of Salvador are back to normal, (mostly empty, rain-covered, and half-finished), although Continue reading

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47. Quarter Finals Reviews and Previews…

So Brazil are one step from actually getting to the final, which is either totally predictable or a complete miracle given how they have played most of the tournament.

This time they deserved the win, brushing aside a desperately disappointing Colombia who never really got going, and (with a little help from the referee, for a change), won their quarter final 2-1 and sparked the biggest party yet in the Salvador Fanfest, where thousands of people spent the entire night either dancing the night away, or staring at me attempting to do the same.

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Fanfest festivities…

Standing in their way will be Continue reading

42. World Cup Day 17: Ding Ding, Round 2…

After yesterday’s relaxing day off, we are back and ready to go with the meat of the competition: the knock-out phase.

The last sixteen as us boring English speakers call it; the ‘oitavos’ to the locals.

Today’s pair of matches is a strangely South American affair: due to an irony of the draw, (or a complete cock-up, depending on your view of FIFA), there are four South American teams all battling it out for a single semi-final spot.

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Two of those teams will take the Continue reading

37. World Cup Day 13: Brazil find their bling…

Whooomp, there it is.

After two damp squib matches marred by diving, awful officiating, and Brazil just not being particularly good, the hosts finally arrived last night despatching the feisty but not particularly impressive Cameroon to their third straight loss and propelling them into a knock-out match against Chile, (which should be a rip-snorter, given their South American neighbour’s form so far, despite a harsh 2-0 loss to Holland yesterday afternoon).

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The seleção even has Ronaldo dancing again…

The first of Neymar’s two goals was the 100th of an already Continue reading

32. World Cup Day 7: hasta la vista, campeones…

Well, that all happened rather suddenly.

Spain, World and European champions and many people’s bet to win the whole shebang, will be on the next flight back to Madrid, and they still have to go through the motions of a match against Australia, (also out of the cup), in a match as meaningless as most people thought but for reasons not many people can have expected.

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Won’t be needing this shirt again this World Cup…

Spain almost went 1-0 down to Chile in the first minute in a must-win game, and Continue reading

31. World Cup Day 6: Draws, Dives and Disappointment (for Brazil)…

The rain which hammered down all morning here both woke me up and kept me indoors, meaning I had time to completely organise both my photos,  and my Panini sticker collection.

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Brazilian weather is…unpredictable…

In case you’re wondering, I need 173 stickers, and have already Continue reading

29. World Cup Day 3: a four match kind of day…

Colombia 3 Greece 0

Uruguay 1 Costa Rica 3

England 1 Italy 2

Ivory Coast 2 Japan 1

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The view from my morning jog…

 These were the results on Day3, and in case you weren’t counting, that’s 13 goals in 4 games, a ridiculous tally considering at the past few World Cups it felt like every other game in the group stages ended either 0-0 or 1-0.

I thought teams would be too scared to lose games to make the early rounds exciting: either due to the heat, bad defending or managers saying Continue reading