Pierre Boisrond has followed soccer and the World Cup
closely for many years and also writes for other websites. We at PWC are proud to have him as
a columnist. He will share his views about the past, present and future of
the World Cup.
Read earlier columns
The underdogs in style
Started with the win of Mexico against Croatia, then proceeded with the win of Costa Rica against China, and finally the
shocked defeat of Portugal against the United States of America, proved that the CONCACAF zone started to send a
message to the world of Football. The pundits might have ignored the CONCACAF to focus on the South American and
the European and the African giants. Again, we must all know that the ball is round for the twenty-two players on the field.
Thus, unless a team is focused on this tournament, this team will be defeated. We have seen what happened to France
and we have just witnessed what happened to Portugal. Both teams are picked by the pundits to win this World
Cup, but both of them are started pretty bad.
On June 1st, I was an invited guest in “Another 90 Minutes” talk show hosted by “Bomber’ Harris of
Teamtalk Radio 252 LW, a Britain's first dedicated non-stop sports station. The question to me by Harris
was: “What do I think about the US chances in this World Cup?” My answer to Harris was that if the USA could control
Figo and Rui Costa in the first game by managing to get a tie, the men of Bruce Arena can manage to go to the second
round. Well we know the results now, USA shocked the world of of football by beating a Portugal squad with some of the
best players in the world. The pundits now are asking themselves, what is happening to the giants of football? France was
shocked in the opening game and now Portugal. Well, France and Portugal came to play without the motivation needed to
win a game. They took their opponents lightly and therefore they paid the price.
In the World Cup, there are no such things as easy wins. Underdogs or not, teams come to play. Any giant national team
that is not focused is going to lose a game against the underdogs, because the underdogs will be ready to make history.
Senegal and France have already made history. South Korea as well have managed to put away Poland in front of their home
crowd. Japan earned a valuable point against Belgium. At the exception of Saudi Arabia that was destroyed by Germany, the
underdogs have responded; thus the giants needed to be very careful in their next game, if not the same scenario will happen
and they will have to pack their bags to go home.
This World Cup is getting very interested every day as the underdogs continue to do very well. We shall see how far this
process will go, but it sure makes the whole tournament a joy to watch. This is why the World Cup is the world's biggest
tournament, since the underdogs can prove their points to the pundits who always seem to be on the side of the giants such
as Brazil, Argentina, Germany, France,England, Portugal, etc. Perhaps, the pundits will learn a clue for their next prediction.
Today the United States of America have proved that they are up there. As I said in my previous articles, it is time for the
USA to show that they belong to the big dance. Today’s performance demonstrated that this USA team is ready for the big
dance. Beating Portugal with the FIFA world’s player of the year, Luis Figo, is not an easy task, but Bruce Arena managed
to get the team ready despite not having the USA talented play maker, Claudio Reyna. I hope the Americans do know the
importance of this monumental win. If it were in any other country of the world, at this point, the country would have been in
a big celebration. Schools would have been closed today to give the kids a day off to celebrate this historic win. Employers
would have shut their doors for the day; the country would have been in a festive atmosphere. This is what the World Cup is all
about. We have seen how the Senegalese celebrated when Senegal shocked France. The same atmosphere had happened in
Costa Rica; the scenario repeated in South Korea, South Africa, and in many other parts of the world.
From my sources in Haiti, the Haitian fans took the streets when Senegal shocked France. They took the streets when Brazil
beat Turkey as well, and Friday the Haitian-Brazilian fans will take to the street if England manage to beat Argentina or vice
versa if Argentina manage to win. Thus Friday will be a big day in Haiti if Argentina wins for the Haitian-Argentine fans. If
that happens, then many place of employment will shut their doors, and many parents will keep their kids at home to savour
any win. This is passion, this is the World Cup, and I hope some day to see that celebration in the USA, I can only hope.
Let’s continue to enjoy the World Cup, a tournament that unites the whole world and a tournament where the underdogs are
ready to make a statement to the giants.
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