Confederations Cup after Second Round of Group Games
The scores of the second round of games were:
Brazil (1) – Mexico (0)
Italy (4) – Japan (3)
Spain (10) – Tahiti (0)
Uruguay (2) – Nigeria (1)
The Brazil and Italy wins mean that the only thing left to settle in Group A is whether Italy or Brazil faces Spain in the semi-finals. This makes me sad, because I was hoping to see Kagawa play more (I am a Red Devil, after all). He had an amazing goal in the game against Italy. The Japan/Italy game was fantastic. Japan went up 2-0, then gave up three straight, before tying it, only to let in a late Atom Ant goal. Honda, Balotelli, De Rossi, Okazaki all also scored. I’ll let you figure out which countries they play for. Sadly, from the Japanese perspective, Uchida also scored an own goal. If not for the “og,” the game would have been level. Of course, there was also a dicey penalty call.
Technically speaking, everyone is still capable of going through in Group B. Tahiti can’t win the group, but they could (theoretically) go through on goal differential. Considering Tahiti sits at -15 right now, that is highly unlikely. The most likely scenario for Tahiti going through is Spain beating Nigeria 5 – 0 and Tahiti beating Uruguay by 15. However, since Tahiti has only scored one goal in two matches, scoring 15, well, I’ve already expended too many words on Tahiti.
The Uruguay v Nigeria game didn’t offer a lot, except that there were two goals scored by players that have been out of form. Mikel scored for Nigeria, and Forlan scored for Uruguay. Lugano also scored for Uruguay.
On Saturday, both games (Brazil v Italy // Mexico v Japan) will begin at 3PM US Eastern. On Sunday, game times (Spain v Nigeria // Tahiti v Uruguay) are also 3PM US Eastern. I’ll be bringing you post-match analysis some time before the semi-finals, which begin on Wednesday the 26th. The second semi-final is Thursday the 27th. The final is Sunday the 30th at 6PM US Eastern. The final is blacked out on ESPN3. I’ll be in North Carolina for my brother’s wedding (as previously mentioned) but I’ll probably be on the flight back by the time of the final. Perhaps I’ll have someone else write the final recap for me. It won’t be my brother, because he’ll be on his honeymoon.