The most beautiful aspect of this World Cup has been seeing teams that everyone wrote off before the tournament, exceed everyone’s expectations.
Whether in a boring fashion (Greece), in a exhilarating fashion (Mexico, Colombia) or in an absolutely surprising fashion (Costa Rica), all these teams have gone further than anyone expected and this weekend signalled the end of all the underdogs.
All the kings horses and all the kings men, couldn’t bring Costa Rica back in the World Cup again. Germany, Brazil, Argentina and my not so *beloved* Oranje team are the only ones left, this has really saddened me in a way that only football can, mainly because we’re left without a lot of new, exciting super star quality for these remaining games.
We’ll no longer see Neymar, James Rodríguez, Di Maria, Campbell, having already lost Agüero, Balotelli, Ronaldo and Reus as well as many others so early on. You almost feel as if the Germans are favourite to win right now because of the depth they have and the efficiency they’ve displayed.
The only footballer I can think of that will change the destiny of the Germans is a man eager to write his own, Lionel Messi.
Germany have a ridiculous amount of riches, but each game has made a new player step up: from Müller to Klose to Hummels and Schürrle, whilst Messi has been the best player for Argentina throughout. Carrying them to the semi-finals with all the growth medication in the world.
For Brazil, it had also been a mixture of great team performances, but Neymar is such a big player both on and off the field, you’d hope it doesn’t affect their change of style and mentality for the semi-finals, although it probably will. They’ll also be missing the world’s best defender in Thiago Silva for their semi-final against Germany, a man who is seemingly irreplaceable.
As for the Netherlands, they’ve been on edge in their last few games, scraping past teams they should have beaten more comfortably, but their final execution has been exceptional. There’s a lot of quality left in all these teams and at this point, I’d love to see all teams go for it and not hold back and foul each other for 90 minutes.
I’m going to miss being surprised, it wouldn’t surprise me if any of these teams won the World Cup because of the way its been so far.
And who knows, maybe a new star will be born, or we’ll see a star become a timeless legend.
Written by @The_Beck_