Well that was quite an opening! Every new opening ceremony makes us realise just how good London 2012 was, but at least the terrible sound quality meant we didn’t have to listen to J-Lo and Pitbull. Feel better with this Guts sport bonus. That's the least we could do.
The football on show didn’t disappoint, even if there were a few gripes! We’re going to be starting a series where we reflect on the best and worst moments of the tournament
Neymar may have nabbed a brace with a couple of flukey finishes, but it was Oscar who grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck and dragged Brazil back into contention. Chelsea fans must be wondering where this Oscar has been hiding during the domestic season!
A special mention should also go to Brazil coach Luis Felipe Scolari whose nephew passed away just days before the tournament. Despite this tragic loss, Scolari has to manage the hopes and dreams of a nation and got off to a winning start on opening night.
Who would have thought that the home nation would get favorable refereeing decisions?!
Japanese referee Yuichi Nishimura has got the World Cup off to a controversial start with a couple of extremely important calls which benefitted Brazil and cost Croatia dearly.
Croatia’s Vedran Corluka was especially stinging in his criticism of the referee.
"It is embarrassing,” said the Lokomotiv Moscow man. “Everyone who was watching saw that nothing happens. I didn't see anything. I saw a touch on Fred but Lovren didn't even pull him. He was keen to give the penalty."
Not only did Nishimura award Brazil a soft penalty, he also disallowed what appeared to be a perfectly valid equaliser for Croatia late in the game.
A poor start, Mr Nishimura.
Is there anything more deliciously cheeky than a toepoked effort which creeps into the bottom corner? A deserved reward for a fantastic individual performance.
We should be talking about how wonderful the football was, but a poor refereeing performance has again stolen the attention from the sport itself.
Categories: world cup