Cult of Brasil

I wish the BBC commentators wouldn’t be quite so uncritically fanboy when they talk about Brazil. Yes, they have produced some brilliant players; yes, Ronaldinho is the world’s best player at the moment; yes the current squad is extremely talented and deservedly favourites to win the tournament. But they aren’t superhuman. Today, they looked pretty ordinary, and if the commentators had stopped drooling long enough to actually watch the game, they would have noticed that much sooner.

No wonder England looked so intimidated by them in 2002 – all the players have been brought up on a diet of pro-Brazilian propaganda that even Nike’s marketing department would be hard-pressed to equal.

Togo vs. South Korea – live blogging!

With their glowing pink shirts and white shorts, the South Koreans look like they’re starring in a washing powder advert. The dazzle effect hasn’t stopped Togo taking the lead, though.

EDIT: the Rutherford kiss of death comes into play: almost immediately the Togolese have a man sent off and the Koreans score with a cracking free kick.

EDIT: SK won it pretty comfortably in the end. I was vaguely supporting Togo as underdogs, but I was very impressed by the number and volume of the Korean fans. It’s a long way to come.