5
Jul

World Cup Day 21: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

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Netherlands. Argentina. Brazil. Germany.

These four juggernauts, who’ve reached 21 World Cup finals between them and won 10 of the 19 previous titles, make up the semifinal field in Brazil. Even without the injured Neymar in the fold, this has all the makings to be one of the greatest “final fours” in World Cup history.

Oh, and we’ve got an absolute cracker of a final promised for next Sunday.

Getting excited? Us too.

So, how did we get here? Skim through Saturday’s top storylines in our latest World Cup social media roundup:

THE GOOD
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First up on Saturday was Lionel Messi and the Albiceleste taking on Belgium, a rematch of the 1986 semifinals. All tournament long it’s been Messi who carried his side from win to win (his back must be killing him!), but on this day he got a little help from his friend Gonzalo Higuain:

Too soon, Men in Blazers, too soon…

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After Argentina’s narrow win, it was time for a goalkeeper duel (sorry, truel) between the Netherlands and Costa Rica. Actually, it was mostly just 120 minutes of Keylor Navas making save after save, rescuing the Ticos to their second straight penalty shootout …

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17
May

América, Cruz Azul in control as Liguilla semifinal second legs beckon

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By: Kyle McCarthy

Mexico will once again turn its attention toward the capital as the Liguilla semifinals conclude over the weekend.

If everything unfolds according to plan, then the attention will remain there through the conclusion of the final next weekend. Club América (2-2 at Monterrey on Wednesday) and Cruz Azul (3-0 at Santos Laguna on Thursday) submitted assured displays away from home to place themselves into position to progress with similar performances in the second leg.

América faces the trickier of the two challenges with Monterrey still in the tie after the stalemate at Estadio Tecnológico. It isn’t beyond Victor Manuel Vucetich’s side to engineer the required victory (or a draw of 3-3 or greater, though that result hardly seems likely) in this decisive affair, nor is it out of the realm of possibility for América to buckle under the weight of the heavy expectations.

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30
Apr

Sky Sports Germany felt so confident that Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund would march on to the Champions League final that it came out with this outrageous advertisement mocking its Spanish opponents ahead of the semifinal second legs.

The ad opens in a Spanish bull-fighting arena with a matador screaming in agony. We then see the matador, fat, disheveled and defeated, with a Bayern and a Dortmund flag sticking out of his rear end. The words then appear on the screen: “Adios Amigos! The road to Wembley” (translated)

Cheeky? Arrogant? Maybe, but who can blame Sky after the two Bundesliga squads outscored Spain’s Barcelona and Real Madrid by a combined score of 8-1 in the first legs.

The ad hasn’t jinxed the German teams yet, but it certainly came close. Borussia Dortmund held off a spirited Madrid rally on Tuesday, losing 0-2 but squeaking by on aggregate, 4-3.