More Good News For Uruguay As They Beat Russia. Spain And Portugal Are Both Fortunate Not To Lose + Anthony Martial To Spurs?

Posted: June 27, 2018 in Arsenal, Chelsea, Football, International Football, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Opinion, Premier League, The World Cup, Tottenham Hotspur, Transfers
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Everybody expected the Russian bubble to burst eventually, even the Russians. The positive aspect of their resounding defeat by Uruguay was that it was inflicted at a stage of the competition whereby they had already qualified for the last 16.

The question now is whether the players and coaching staff are good enough to raise their game when playing another top quality team. They managed it fine against Saudi Arabia and Egypt, both of whom have now exited the competition, then they failed their first real test when meeting Luis Suarez, Edinson Cavani et al.

Having lost that game 3-0 to goals from Suarez, a Denis Cheyshev own goal and Cavani, there are still some positives to be grasped.

Firstly, they played most of the game with ten men when Igor Smolnikov was sent off in the first half for two pretty quick yellow cards and his departure inevitably left the team somewhat disjointed.

They will also, thanks to not winning the group, play their next game in the Luzhniki stadium, which is the flagship venue of the tournament and is where they put five past Saudi Arabia.

Add to this the fact that they will, no doubt, spend a little more time in training learning how to defend set pieces and they have a chance.

They will also be reasonably happy to be playing Spain who, although they won their group, have been very underwhelming with only one win from their three games and coming very close to losing against Morocco.

They laboured to a 2-2 draw with the Africans in their final group game and were actually behind twice. Only a 92nd minute goal from Iago Aspas, which was first ruled offside by the referee then reinstated by VAR, saved them from a second place finish and a last 16 game against Uruguay in the half of the draw which would also include Brazil, Germany, France and, possibly, Argentina.

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Iago Aspas – Scores the goal which means Spain win their group, thanks to the intervention of VAR

They were also saved from this fate by another late goal in the game between Portugal and Iran when Iran equalised in the 93rd minute through a penalty scored by Siri Ansarifard.

This had also been a game of incidents with Cristiano Ronaldo firstly missing a penalty and then he could/should have been sent off for an elbow on Morteza Pouraliganji.

In the 95th minute, Iran should have won the game when a golden chance to score was put into the side netting by Mehdi Taremi.

So thanks to this draw it was Portugal who finished second in the group and will now go on to face Uruguay in the last 16.

Now the tournament is getting to the interesting stage and if you’d like a bet on the football then we’d recommend checking out Footy Accumulators. They provide daily betting tips and previews ahead of all of the biggest games and tournaments.

The other game to be played was the dead rubber between Egypt and Saudi Arabia which was of little interest to anybody outside of those two countries except a few watching scouts, coaches and Liverpool supporters with nothing better to do.

Saudi Arabia won the game 2-1 but, on the plus side for Egypt, is the fact that Mo Salah scored their first World Cup goal from open play since 1934!

So both countries can now fly home to be met by their joyous countrymen who will, no doubt, shower them with praise for their exploits at this year’s tournament!

And finally…..

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Anthony Martial – Almost manages a smile after scoring! Almost, but not quite!

In transfer news from home Exasperating Ed Woodward finally seems to be getting the hang of this buying and selling players malarky.

Apparently, Tottenham Hotspur want Anthony Martial. As is always the case, Dastardly Daniel Levy wants him for a monkey, (£500 to the uninformed), but Ed has decided he wants around £70 million for the player, leaving the two 140,000 monkeys apart.

Never mind, even Dastardly Dan can’t have expected to go through life with nobody exacting any retribution for the exorbitant valuations he puts on his own players.

This one will run for a while before the Frenchman leaves for PSG or Juventus or decides he will remain at United for another year or two after being promised the main striking role ahead of Romelu Lukaku, Alexis Sánchez and Marcus Rashford by José Mourinho, whose fingers will have been firmly crossed, behind his back, when making that promise.

Liverpool haven’t bought a goalkeeper yet. Manchester City haven’t signed either Riyad Mahrez or Jorginho yet and Chelsea still have Antonio Conte in charge.

There, we don’t think we have missed anything important but, if we have, please let us know below.

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Comments
  1. RedMe says:

    So we are not signing Ronaldo, Messi, Bale and Antoine Griezmann this season? De Gea is not going to Madrid, what a bore. Have the Sun, the Express, the Metro all lost it ? Not even gossip about Pogba ?????

    Like

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