Joga Bonito is Back!!!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A few minutes ago marked the end of 90 minutes of the resurgence of Brazilian futbol as we know it: stylish, fast and very very entertaining.  Long gone are the days of Dunga's defensive and conservative minded Brazil that we saw in South Africa.  Tonight we saw a very new and fresh squad that seems to be a rough draft of the team that will take the stage in their home country in 2014.  If so, I will begin putting my pennies into my piggy bank because I am going to Brazil to witness this kind of futbol.

Talking Points of the match:

The U.S. came out very aggressively in the first half with Landon Donovan having a formidable chance at goal in the 3rd minute.  After this, the U.S. seemed to slow down and lost a great deal of composure.   I expected a lot more from a full U.S. squad that has collectively more experience than the entire Brazilian squad.  Michael Bradley was the best player in white, but seemed to have no support pushing forward.

A young Brazilian squad looking to impress on a massive stage put on quite the show.  Let's talk a little bit about the 'fro-haux'd-haired skinny kid named Neymar.  He was, undoubtedly, the star of today's match for me and I am excited to watch him again.  At 18yrs of age he showed a great deal of confidence on the ball and worked the U.S. defense like it was practice. It was a lot of fun to watch.  At first I thought, "here goes another pelada-wielding kid with nothing else to show" and then boom, the 'fro-haux puts the ball past Tim Howard's post.   But the build up was sublime. classic Brazil. classic Joga Bonito.

Jozy Altidore....what were you doing????? For someone with his size and speed I expected him to be much more dangerous and daunting against a Brazilian side whose heaviest player is probably 160lbs (20lbs of that being pure fat in the stomach. *cough* Robinho *cough*).  He looked very nervous and uncomfortable on the ball.  Add to that he sat in one position with his hands extended calling for a pass instead of giving the attacker an option by making a run into open territory.  He's young I guess, so he has time to develop.

Ederson pulls his hamstring on his first touch on the ball trying to dribble into the sideline. pure comedy.

All in all, it was a fun game to watch, and the 70k+ fans in attendance shows that futbol is really picking up some serious steam in the 'States, which is good.  Hopefully the increased interest will see us get better commentators who actually talk about the game being played and not how awesome every player is when he does something he is expected to do (when Gomez gets into the box for the header).  'Til later folks! Live Breathe Futbol.

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