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Brazil versus Germany
Maracanazo II. Who would have predicted *that*?

Also posted at Dreamwidth, where there are comment count unavailable comment(s); comment here or there.

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That was just *embarrassing*.

"it doesn't matter how much passion you have, ultimately you have to play soccer." (U.S. commentator)

Football is a simple game; 22 men chase a ball for 90 minutes and at the end, the Germans always win.

I'm glad I didn't catch the game at work; everyone in the office would have heard me muttering about the ongoing massacre.

I mean, seriously, that's like the definition of Curb Stomping.

On the plus side, I expect the Dutch to get a lot of support tomorrow from the Brazilians who'll be damned if they see Argentina get to the final.

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I'm not a football fan at all, but I was clued in by some rather flabbergasted posts on Facebook, and then checked my Twitter feed to find that most of my equally football-disinterested friends had got wind of the slaughter and had turned on the TV to watch. I followed suit just in time to see German goal #7.

Best comments seen on Twitter:

"If only the Germans had a word for taking pleasure in others' misfortune..."

"Find time travellers in our midst by seeing who bet on that"

"Nobody can convince me that this World Cup was not scripted by George RR Martin"

"At this point, Brazil’s only hope is that Germany starts another game against Russia and spreads their team too thin"

Ricky Gervais: "This won't be the first time that thousands of Germans will have to lie low in Brazil for a while for their own safety."

Edited at 2014-07-09 01:48 am (UTC)

Mick McAvoy: "The last time I saw a Brazil this bleak it was getting directed by Terry Gilliam."

Scalzi: "Pele died today specifically so he could spin in his grave."

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It wasn't close to look at, at least in the first half. The Germans were practically a cartoon of Germanness, all precision and organization; the Brazilians got the ball down the field about as much, but mostly by kicking it in that direction and running really hard, which doesn't add up to soccer. Germany scored four times in about ten minutes.

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The goalie get blamed if they lose because they mishandled a few of the shots headed their way.

When it goes from 1-0 to 5-0 in six minutes, that's a pretty damn porous defense to force the goaltender to have to try and stop those shots, even if he should have stopped some of them.

The Brazilian defense was appalling. And/but hilarious.

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I can't find the half-time stats, but they were much more one-sided. Germany sat some starters and relaxed at the half, confident that Brazil had no chance to get back in it.

The problem with raw stats is that they often don't tell you the character of the game.

I was working the television camera for a hockey game one time and during the second intermission I was talking to the play by play and colour guys and mentioned it was the most boring game I'd seen in a while.

The colour protested that there'd been something like 25 shots on goal or something up to that point by one team, and the other wasn't running far behind.

"Yeah, but can you remember any of them?"

As we talked, they realized I was right. Most of the saves were routine, non-challenging shots, some of them coming in so slow the only reason it was called a "save" was that it theoretically had enough momentum, if the goalie let it go, to barely slide over the goal line. Since it was their job to make the game sound interesting, they had fallen victim to their own efforts to make it sound a lot better than it really was.

If you looked at the stats, I'm sure you would have pictured a tight, exciting game when it was nothing like that.

I remember Bob Shaw giving a talk at a con once where he mentioned his experiences of being a reporter on a Northern Ireland paper. One day, his editor sent him to cover a hockey match. (This will be what is called field hockey in the US.) He protested he knew nothing about hockey and his editor told him it was easy, just like football. The editor disappeared before he could tell him he knew nothing about football, either.

He attended the game, and had absolutely no idea about what was going on. As he left at the end he was wondering what to tell his editor when he overheard two fans talking.

"O'Flaherty had a good game," said one.

"But O'Neill's passing was terrible," said the other.

Bob started taking notes and assembled them in to some semblance of a report. Within a few years he was winning prizes for All-Ireland hockey reporting.

But, he continued, he started to get cocky. He reckoned he could write a report without listening to the fans. As he was leaving the ground he noticed a group of fans looking glum, which surprised him as they were supporters for what he thought was the winning side. When he checked, he found he had got the two teams confused for the whole game.

At halftime, there was a comment that the shot diagram looked like a firing squad. Germany had made about ten shots at that point, most of which were on target, and 5 had gone in. Brazil had made two shots, one on target that didn't get far at all and one so wide the German goalie just watched it fly by.

The offsides kinda tell the tale - if one side NEVER offsides and the other is doing it repeatedly that means one side is being very controlled and coordinated, and the other is playing golf with their feet.

(note also that possession is an odd thing, as winning teams tend to not have the most amount by dint of football not being a game of slowly creeping up the field like in rugby - either you have the ball and are advancing past the defense and shooting, or you're spending a lot of time trying to get past the defense and failing. an almost even 51/49 split like that means either a close draw or this sort of absolute slaughter)

a lot of offsides can also indicate that a team is doing a lot of attacking - eg Holland 16 offsides to Costa Rica's 2
(possession 72:25, shots on target 12:1)

This chart is relevant:

(It's all the shots with their locations. All of Germany's are from good locations, except for the one a ways outside the penalty box. Brazil's are much worse. "xG" at the bottom means "expected goals"; there's a pretty good formula which takes into account shot location and type -- headed or kicked, mostly -- that gives you a probability that a given shot is going to turn into a goal.)

-Josh (fka creepyanonymous)

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The thing, is the numbers don't replace the video. The Brazil defense *wasn't*. They were routinely 5 feet away from the attackers when deep in their own goal zone. It looked like a random scattering of Brazilians across the field when they should have been clustered tightly around the attackers.

The ESPN commentator said at half-time, "They aren't going to come back unless they can bring in five more team members and play 16-11".

It was such a strange, sad experience to see a team disintegrate like that. Like shortbread in the rain.

And I think that I can't take it
'Cause it took so long to bake it

Four years in the oven? No wonder they were upset.

Somebody here (Korea) called it a "baseball score", I was thinking it was a Canadian women's olympic hockey score. :)

And today we've secretly replaced the Brazilian national team with the Denver Broncos.

I am laughing like a small child.

Also saw that on Twitter as "...replaced the Brazilian side with the Edmonton Oilers. Let's see if anyone notices."

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