Saturday, 12 June 2010

Greece 0 v 2 South Korea

I did warn that the omens for Greece's World Cup campaign were not good, that Greece's defence is hopeless and that they will struggle not to lose all their group games; and today's appalling display against a moderate South Korea team proved I know my onions when it comes to football and it was only a misplaced sense of patriotism that prevented me from putting a bet on Greece losing all their matches and making some money.

Just one more comment: it's pretty standard to suggest that the way national teams play football reflects the nature of the society they represent. Thus, Greece's performance today against South Korea was a shambles, lethargic, incompetent, lacking quality, creativity, imagination and intelligence – all characteristics of Greek society.


John Akritas said...

I forgot to add defeatist and pusillanimous to my description of Greece's display – and Greek society. I'm sure there are other adjectives I could use, but I don't want to rub it in.

Anonymous said...

It was a dismal and dissapointing start. Greece lacked verve and elan. When Samaras walked off the pitch to be replaced, he left the impression he was leaving the turf after a " training session" . We have a team with limitations; the coreans were no better than us, realistically speaking; they simply scored the two chances that came their way. The goals were disastrous defensive errors, literally gifts to the slit eyed yellow men. The group is rather strong for us. Against Argentina we run the risk of a repeat of 1994. All I am hoping for is a solitary goal from Charisteas to break the spell of Greece never having scored a goal in a world cup match. Against Nigeria we could pull a draw, if, if , if we play better than today. The Argenitnian should have steamrollered the africans, Messi the artful magician had more chances at scoring goals than the number of chances on goal from the previous three FIFA matches put together. Anyway, what matters is the sporting spirit. There were a lot of Greek supporters in PE; fans from Hellas ( the crisis does not seem to have affected them),and from the local Greek community. Plenty of suvla and crasaki after the match. Three Greek players had their moneys stolen from the 5 star hotel, and one Greek journalist was desperate at discovering his full studded equipment vanished into thin air from his hotel room. The hotel management promissed to make good the losses and swept the affair under the carpet. Against Nigeria Greece has to travel to bloemfontein. It is a peripatetic adventure jumping from city to city. Against Argentina Greece will even have to travel to Polukwane, further to the north. Too much travelling for my liking. You have to adopt the mores of a wandering gipsy. To Greek fans, don't stress yourselves, have fun and enjoy the moment, even though our team performs just as badly as the comedians and paliopustarades running the kleptocratic Greek government.

Hermes said...

Gents, much of the blame has to be laid at the feet of Rehagel. Why the hell didn't he play Ninnis? He is a creative player capable of holding the ball in the midfield. Last night were were incapable of string two or more passes together.

Also, why didn't he play Papastathopoulos rather than Katsouranis?

Finally, why didn't he start with Salpigndis?

Charisteas, Katsouranis and Seitiridis are rubbish players. They should only come on as subs.

Rehagel lost this match. I advocated he should have been replaced after Euro 2008. I also advocated he should have been replaced after World Cup 2006. He is too conservative. I bet you he will start the next game with the same set of donkeys as this one.

On a positive note, the Greek team was greeted with hundreds of South African Greeks and Greeks that travelled from Australia. There are hundreds of thousands of diasporan Greeks willing to do almost anything for Hellas. However, the Greek government is incapable of using this pool of talent for the future of Hellenism. No, they would prefer to facilitate the Turkification of Thrace. Of course, they are criminally negligent of Cyprus.

Sadly, the Greek government cannot even decide whether to give overseas Hellenes the right to vote. Most overseas Greeks are patriotic. Sometimes in a silly way but they are patriotic. It would be good for Hellas. But perhaps the government prefers it this way.

lastgreek said...

I don't want to rub it in.-

That's ok, J. Please allow me :)

To the pusillanimous Greeks on the pitch who bowed their heads before the Koreans...

ἄλοχοι δ᾿ἄλλοισι δαμεῖεν.

Btw ... the Nigerians may not have had Argentina's flair and grace, but their resilience and effort shined throughout the game--which almost paid off in a goal late in the game. I respect the Nigerian effort. Ditto the American effort against England.

effort [ef-ert]
Part of speach: noun

--exertion of physical or mental power: The "slit-eyed yellow men" took great effort to achieve victory against the effortless performance of the miserable Greeks


PS: Fuck!

John Akritas said...

Anon: you are dead right about Samaras and his demeanour throughout the match and when he was subbed – he was a disgrace. Also, Nigeria are beatable but only if, as H. says, Rehhagel dumps some of the players – Samaras, Charisteas, Karagounis and Katstouranis – and goes with some of the younger, hungrier players. But I don't think he'll do it either – maybe Salpingidis for Charisteas, who Rehhagel played thinking he would be too strong for the small South Korean full back. Generally, though, Greece looked shambolic and have done for the last few games – and it'll be hard for them to suddenly find form and beat Nigeria, especially now since they are almost certainly out of the tournament – they're not going to get anything out of Argentina.

LG: it looked to me as if the Greeks had no self-belief or belief in what they were doing, which, as H. says, is largely the fault of the manager – although I also think that, for some reason, Greece just does not produce talented footballers. Portugal, Serbia and Croatia have similar size and smaller populations than Greece, but have always produced top quality players. Greece never has. 2004 was a freak. Perhaps it never really happened.

lastgreek said...

As you can tell, J, I am still livid about Greece's performance today. I am sure I'll have calmed down by tomorrow. Please excuse all the "f" words. Delete the posts if you wish. I am letting out some fu--ooops--steam. :)

lastgreek said...

Πάντως, θέλω να πω ότι όποιος και να έπαιζε σήμερα, η Εθνική με την εικόνα που είχε, θα έχανε.

--Νίκος Νιόπλιας

lastgreek said...

Another thing...

The dressing down of Vyntra by Tzorvas was inexcusable. I like Tzorvas; he, along with Gekas, played well ... and of course none of the goals was his fault. But, you simply don't dress down a teammate, no matter how much he fucked up on the field, for the entire opposing team to see (not to mention the entire world). You save it for the locker room where it belongs.

lastgreek said...

I am not finished--it's not officially Sunday yet.

I agree that Rehagel has to go, for the obvious reasons--he can't pick a lineup for shit, for one (though that wasn't the reason for today's defeat, mind you).

He also can't motivate his players. But in fairness, shouldn't having the opportunity to represent Greece be motivation enough? You're wearing the Greece jersey, for bollocks' sake, you bollocking bollock, not some barbarian one! Also, how do you motivate a millionare? The promise of more money?

lastgreek said...

What if the Greece team were represented by the diaspora Greeks, you know...the real Greeks? :)

lastgreek said...

It's officially Sunday. I am cool now. Thank you, J, for letting me use this thread to vent off some steam.

On to more serious matters, folks!

From the online financial times the other day: Shipping tycoons party while Greece struggles.

Of course, if Greece were to tax their revenue the shipowners would threaten to move their management operations out of the country. Well, in that case, I suggest that the Greek government expropriate all the vessels and then kick the welfare bums out of Greece. Let's see how the welfare bums like London's climate.

lastgreek said...

Now it's all perfectly clear to me. Read what Tzorvas had to say to reporters after that dreadful game.

It's not nice to hear criticism. Let us just enjoy World Cup 2010.

The boys, it seems, are in South Africa to have fun. I think Tzorvas and the rest of the party animals need to be reminded, again, that they lost Saturday to a bunch of midgets. Midgets.

It was a beautiful day this past Sunday. Had a lot of making up to do considering the shitty mood I was in on Saturday. So to make things good, I took the family to a country fair--the Ormstown Fair, located about 40km south of Montreal. What a wonderful day we had--even saw my first demolition derby. Wild. Btw, lots of folks wearing Italy, Portugal, and Germany jerseys there. Need I say that there was not one Greece jersey to be seen?

PS: Greece's benefactor, Germany, had the smarts to play Ozil on Sunday. While we kept Ninis, who is as good if not better than the Turk, on the bench. LOL

Anonymous said...

One has to recognize strength and weaknesses. Otto has done a splendid job with the material at hand. Our group, ( we are 16 in the group, half from Tesalia) is now in Bloemfontein, near the Maluti mountains where a heavy snowfall ocurred last night. We visited the team's training ground ( one has to get special permission, and even then we were not allowed to approach them at close quarters. The boys are in high spirits, and training hard and being looked after by our community in Bloemfontein. There is a hot chick, her name is Tsiklas, a bountisome and hard lady, use to own a local football team, wealthy woman. She is always around the team, special permission ? and provides the necessary hospitality to our players. Otto will wall out the discombobulated nigerians, whose fans are as obnoxious as gorillas on heat, blowing those devilish trumpets of lucifer, called vuvuzelas, an aberration , a sign of raucuous disorder, noise. The sound resembles the zooming of a thousand beehives. The cacophony can burst your ear drums. The temperature is going to be 0 degress come tomorrow night at 20.30hrs local time. There is heavy disgruntlement in the nigerian camp following their bashing by Argentina , they know full well they can't be lucky a second time. Last Saturday to their benefit, the ball refused to go in, what could otherwise been a large score against them. Our boys will compete as best as they can, within their own capabilities. With a bit of luck, who knows ???. With Argentina we'll have to travel to Polowhwane, another frosty night awaits us there, weather wise and play wise. Yesterday, our group went to Soccer city to watch Denmark -holland. It was a match for insomniacs. Players of the caliber of Van Persi, Bretner, Aggar went unnoticed. The main attraction of the match were the female fans of the dutch and Danes teams. The Danes won the prize, slim ,beautiful and ravishingly dazzling, the dutch were also pretty but a little on the overweight side.

John Akritas said...

A. I'd admire your optimism, but don't share it. Greece's performance last Saturday was so woeful that I find it hard to believe that the boys will turn it around so soon after. It's good to hear that the Nigerians are in disarray – though I didn't think they played that badly against Argentina, and I thought it was our lot who were falling out with each other, especially over Rehhagel's decision to drop Kyrgiakos.