Santiago or bust for Chile

It has been some years since Chile made any sort of impact on international football. In World Cup 2014, they pushed Brazil close in the round of 16 before losing on penalties. It’s a year ago this weekend that La Roja scared the host nation to death and let’s not forget they beat holders Spain in the group stage of that competition. Chile are capitalising on their host nation status in this year’s Copa America and are now in the semi-final after beating Uruguay 1-0 in Santiago. The last time they got this far was in 1999 when they finished … Continue reading Santiago or bust for Chile

South American Way: Colo Colo, Chile’s real thing

Chile won the hearts of many football fans with their attacking style in the 2014 World Cup, and they were unlucky to come up against a pre-implosion Brazil side in the round of 16. They were one of the dark horses in the competition but didn’t quite have enough in their tank. But at least two of their players, Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal caught the eye in the shop window. Sanchez has joined Arsenal already and Vidal will surely be on someone’s list soon. Chilean clubs are often overlooked when people talk about South American football. Colo Colo, Chile’s … Continue reading South American Way: Colo Colo, Chile’s real thing

World Cup 2014: Jeux sans frontieres

And so, two weeks into the greatest show on earth, 16 teams have gone home and the rest go into the business end of the competition. It’s been a good World Cup so far, not a great one, despite the plethora of young hacks claiming it’s the best since 1970 and in their lifetime. It’s partly been good because five of the last six have been [mostly] dire. It’s comparable to 1998, yes, but it is not a patch on 1970, 1978 and 1986, arguably the better tournaments since 1966. There is a pattern emerging. Modern World Cups in Latin … Continue reading World Cup 2014: Jeux sans frontieres

World Cup Day Two: No repeat of 2010, please!

Brazil may have given their fans the result they craved, but Croatia have every right to feel aggrieved after one of the worst penalty decisions seen in a World Cup. It could have been a far worse opening game, but the referee may have been suffering from the “Anfield factor” in giving Brazil a penalty and failing to see Fred’s theatrics. Neymar won the day for Brazil and looked like he could be one of the stars of 2014, but some referees would have sent him packing for his foul on Luka Modric. Nishimura-san was very lenient, however, and a … Continue reading World Cup Day Two: No repeat of 2010, please!