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WC 2006 Match Chat: Switzerland vs. Ukraine, noon PT
2006-06-26 11:28
by Bob Timmermann

Live from Cologne

Quite possibly the MOST anticipated match in the round of 16 finishes up Monday's action. When the Swiss and Ukrainians get together, you expect a bloodbath. Tensions between these two nations are at a flash point over a border dispute. Or maybe it's over Crimea. People like to fight about Crimea. Makes for famous poetry.

Switzerland won its group with wins over Togo and Korea and a draw with France. Ukraine responded to a 4-0 beatdown by Spain in its opener with a 4-0 beatdown of Saudi Arabia, followed by a 1-0 snoozefest over Tunisia.

The Swiss have not allowed a goal in the tournament, but they will be missing defender Philippe Senderos, who scored the team's first goal against Korea. Senderos is out with a dislocated shoulder. When Senderos scored against Korea, I thought he had painted his face with a Red Cross symbol, but it turned out that he was just bleeding profusely.

Ukraine runs its attack through Andriy Shevchenko. That worked well against the Saudis, but in the other two matches, it was nothing but a series of misfires.

This is the first meeting between these two national teams outside of junior level play.

I think this match may end up being decided by penalties or possibly by having one team surrender after suffering through too much ennui.

12 of the 16 entries in the Griddle contest have Switzerland as the winner.

Comments (80)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-06-26 11:36:01
1.   Humma Kavula
Let's go, Oath Comrades!
2006-06-26 11:43:38
2.   das411
To watch or not to watch?

Or I could just be contrarian and make that 5 Gridd'lers rooting for Ukraine!

2006-06-26 11:50:38
3.   Bob Timmermann
I left out that the winner faces Italy in Hamburg on Friday.

The man in the middle is from Mexico.

2006-06-26 11:52:16
4.   Bob Timmermann
The referee, Benito Archundia, has a profession listed as "Lawyer and economist".

His interests include:
Playing football, video games, reading

Quite the renaissance man!

2006-06-26 11:53:21
5.   Penarol1916
The real question is, does anyone have the winner of this match moving onto the semifinals? I'd imagine that this is the only match in which noone picked the winner to advance any further.
2006-06-26 11:54:52
6.   Bob Timmermann
One person has Ukraine winning two matches and getting knocked out by Argentina in the semis.
2006-06-26 12:16:55
7.   Bob Timmermann
I'm guessing that "Andriy" is a popular first name among Ukrainians since there are five starters with that name.
2006-06-26 12:35:35
8.   Bob Timmermann
Told ya nobody was looking forward to this.
2006-06-26 12:38:27
9.   Mark T.R. Donohue
I'm here, Bob. I just can't think of anything to say about either of these teams.
2006-06-26 12:39:29
10.   Bob Timmermann
Is this match worthy of me going to a place with a TV to see the end of it while on my lunch hour?
2006-06-26 12:39:33
11.   D4P
My feelings toward Switzerland are neutral.
2006-06-26 12:41:27
12.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Well, there is a good chance it could end on penalty kicks and that's always fun, particularly when you have no rooting interest either way.

But if at all possible, avoid everything up to this point. This match makes me feel for Ivory Coast, South Korea, and the US.

2006-06-26 12:41:28
13.   D4P
Well, do you like yellow? If so, you might want to tune in and check out the Ukranian unis (yellow shirts, yellow shorts, yellow socks).
2006-06-26 12:41:42
14.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Well, there is a good chance it could end on penalty kicks and that's always fun, particularly when you have no rooting interest either way.

But if at all possible, avoid everything up to that point. This match makes me feel for Ivory Coast, South Korea, and the US.

2006-06-26 12:41:50
15.   Bob Timmermann
Who really hates Switzerland?

Except for families of people who died in the Holocaust who had their life savings embezzled.

2006-06-26 12:43:30
16.   Mark T.R. Donohue
People with dairy and/or chocolate allergies.
2006-06-26 12:44:13
17.   Bob Timmermann
I think Hakan Yakin is what David Beckham was saying toward the end of the match against Ecuador.
2006-06-26 12:46:34
18.   Penarol1916
14. South Korea was deservedly eliminated by Switzerland, why does this match make you feel for them? It's not like they deserved to be in this match.
2006-06-26 12:49:10
19.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Well, if any of those teams had been in the Ukraine's group, they probably would have made it out and might even be the favorites in this game.
2006-06-26 12:49:55
20.   Bob Timmermann
The FIFA matchcast people corrected a misconception of mine.

A "shot on goal" in soccer is just like one in hockey, i.e., if it hits the post it's not considered a "shot on goal."

I had thought it was.

My apologies to those I had misinformed earlier.

2006-06-26 12:51:29
21.   D4P
So, does that mean the only possible results of a "shot on goal" are a "goal" or a "save"?
2006-06-26 12:52:46
22.   Bob Timmermann
Yes, that's what they mean. Just like in hockey.

So there can be some pretty weak "shots on goal" that just happened to roll up to the keeper.

But you can drill a shot off the post and it's just a "shot".

2006-06-26 12:54:48
23.   D4P
Oh, so they distinguish between "shots and goal" and "shots"? Evidently so.
2006-06-26 12:57:48
24.   Penarol1916
19. Well, you could say the same for Mexico, Sweden or Ecuador. All were in very weak groups, and again, bringing up South Korea, it's not exactly like they were in a group of death.
2006-06-26 12:57:51
25.   Bob Timmermann
I think there are other options than "save" or "goal". I think that some "shots on goal" can be saved by defenders.

My brother says that the stat sheets sent out to the press have a lot of useless stats.

2006-06-26 13:04:12
26.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Part of what sets soccer apart from "American" sports is how ultimately useless the stats are. There's corners, there's goals, shots, saves, and fouls, but none of those really say anything by themselves. There's no way of keeping track of chances prevented or excellent clears.
2006-06-26 13:14:12
27.   Linkmeister
"makes for famous poetry."

Just so you know that someone caught that allusion:

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley'd and thunder'd;

2006-06-26 13:16:20
28.   das411
26 - Something else that sets soccer apart from American sports can be seen in today's Daily QUickie cartoon:

I'ma go play some HALO 2 now...

2006-06-26 13:20:51
29.   Penarol1916
28. The fact that you read The Daily Quickie is an indictment on anything you could possibly write. I can't even bring myself to go to that website, I hate Shanoff that much.
2006-06-26 13:37:08
30.   Kayaker7
24 Not sure why you take every opportunity to hate on Korea. It's getting irritating. Korea is the only team with 4 points to not go to the knockout stage.

The second Swiss goal was very sketchy. Never saw a referee overrule a linesman like that. I did not see the match, but a lot Korean viewers say that there were at least two handballs in the box, by the Swiss.

2006-06-26 13:45:13
31.   Penarol1916
30. Because it's not a huge tragedy that they are out and Ukraine is in, I can see someone making a case for the Ivory Coast as they were in a difficult group, but South Korea's group was very winnable for them, they had their chance and failed. I just don't see what the big deal is.
2006-06-26 13:48:51
32.   Kayaker7
31 It's a huge tragedy for me.
2006-06-26 13:51:24
33.   Penarol1916
31. Well it's a huge tragedy for me that Australia is in the cup, but you didn't see anyone saying that they felt for Uruguay when the Aussies played their game this morning did you?
2006-06-26 13:56:52
34.   Bob Timmermann
I felt for Uruguay. I felt your pain.
2006-06-26 13:58:22
35.   Kayaker7
33 We all have opinions. I just find it irritating, from posts after posts, not just this thread, but other threads, you make it a point to downgrade Korea at every opportunity. It is as if the sore loser Italians hired you as their booster. Did you point out that it was no great tragedy that Cote d'Ivoire or the US did not make it? After all, they were also included in the comment.

Secondly, I didn't see anyone counter you and say that it was no great tragedy that the Aussie took Uruguay's place, given that the Aussies did well and got to the knockout stage, and that Uruguay probably would not have made it that far anyway. As a courtesy to you, who is an Uruguay fan, people don't say, it's no big deal that your team didn't make it.

2006-06-26 14:01:56
36.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Well, it was my initial comment that got the ball rolling on this whole little rhubarb. Here's how I feel: the South Koreans, Australians, and Ivory Coast-ers were fun to watch. These two teams are NOT fun to watch. I wish it were otherwise. I don't know anything about Uruguay one way or the other.

Wake me up when the penalty kicks start.

2006-06-26 14:05:28
37.   Bob Timmermann
One good thing about Korea's matches was that you were almost guaranteed to have something weird happen. Always an odd play or event.
2006-06-26 14:07:41
38.   Bob Timmermann
I think it's also indicative of how entertaining this game is that we have ended up with a mild disagreement between people rooting for two countries that aren't even playing.
2006-06-26 14:10:32
39.   Penarol1916
35. I imagine the post in the other thread you are talking about stems from my irritation with the hypocracy of Korean fans. In 2002, I laughed along with the Korean fans at the gnashing and wailing of the Spanish and Italian fans, saying that this is just something that happens in the game, it is too bad that most Korean fans couldn't do the same when something similar happened to them. And instead engaged in behavior that was as infantile as that which they derided 4 years before. And I did point out that it was no great tragedy that the US didn't make it, in fact that part annoyed me more than including South Korea, it's just that South Korea was a more direct example because they could have very easily been in this game and thus was an easier team to refute.
2006-06-26 14:10:52
40.   Kayaker7
I'd like to see this match end with a goal on a run of play.
2006-06-26 14:13:23
41.   Bob Timmermann
Remember, gentlemen, this is the World Cup this is no opportunity to exhibit nationalistic tendencies!

Oh wait, maybe it is.

Just be nice about it. I have a strict "no hooliganism" rule here. I don't want to have to cut off beer sales!

2006-06-26 14:17:09
42.   Kayaker7
39 That's your opinion. I've seen infantile behavior from some Korean fans, but I've also seen more mature, "let's move on" attitude. Unfortunately, as the most internet connected country in the world, the idiotic behavior of the young netizens of Korea has hi-lited the negative aspects of the reation to Korea's elimination.

I'll let you in on a secret. Most Korean soccer fans are not really soccer fans at all. They are ultra-nationalists. They don't give a $*&@ about the domestic soccer league, but everyone's cousin and uncle will turn up for the NT matches. So, expecting them to react like savvy soccer fans who've seen it all before, it probably expecting too much.

2006-06-26 14:18:27
43.   Kayaker7
Probably the only fans less soccer-savvy than the Koreans are the Japanese and the Americans.
2006-06-26 14:18:32
44.   Penarol1916
40. That would be for the best, I'm not being sarcastic when I say that I have would have more confidence in the Koreans being able to do it than either of these two teams.
2006-06-26 14:21:34
45.   D4P
In a game such as this, is it typically assumed that the lack of scoring is a result of (1) bad offense, or (2) good defense?
2006-06-26 14:25:37
46.   Penarol1916
45. Switzerland appears to have a good defense but little offense, while I believe Ukraine is average at both.
2006-06-26 14:27:28
47.   Bob Timmermann
Shevchenko looks like the only Ukrainian with any sort of improvisational ability on the field.
2006-06-26 14:28:45
48.   Kayaker7
PKs it is.
2006-06-26 14:30:54
49.   standuptriple
Perhaps the Koreans emptied their naitonal pride tanks at the WBC. They were, by far, the most enthusiastic group there.
2006-06-26 14:30:57
50.   D4P
Mark Donohue! Paging Mark Donohue! The penalty kicks are starting!
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-06-26 14:32:20
51.   Bob Timmermann
That was putting it mildly. The Korean fans at the WBC were a cacophony when I saw Korea play Japan in Anaheim.

I was told that they were even louder in Germany.

2006-06-26 14:33:35
52.   Kayaker7
Ooohh...what a start for the Ukrainians.
2006-06-26 14:34:09
53.   D4P
LOL! They can't even score in penalty kicks.
2006-06-26 14:34:15
54.   Humma Kavula
Dios mio. They can't even score on penalties!
2006-06-26 14:34:27
55.   Kayaker7
OMG...the offensive stinkitude continues into the PKs.
2006-06-26 14:34:58
56.   das411
!!!! that's one!
2006-06-26 14:36:01
57.   D4P
Bob, you want this one?
2006-06-26 14:36:17
58.   das411
2006-06-26 14:36:38
59.   Kayaker7
The Swiss miss.
2006-06-26 14:37:05
60.   Bob Timmermann
The next one sends Ukraine through
2006-06-26 14:37:14
61.   Humma Kavula
It looks to be over for the Oath Comrades.
2006-06-26 14:37:51
62.   das411
2006-06-26 14:37:57
63.   Bob Timmermann
If you have a fondue pot, smash it in disgust!
2006-06-26 14:38:10
64.   Kayaker7
Odd fact. This game is still recorded as a draw, with the PKs deciding who moves on.
2006-06-26 14:39:02
65.   D4P
I do (have a fondue), but my wife wouldn't appreciate me smashing it (in disgust or otherwise). I don't, however, have a sombrero...
2006-06-26 14:39:44
66.   Humma Kavula
63 ...and if you have Chicken Kiev, eat it with relish?

...yes, I know that Chicken Kiev isn't really a Ukrainian dish.

2006-06-26 14:41:44
67.   Bob Timmermann
And the win for Ukraine means that just one contestant picked the first six matches correctly.

Los Longhorns!

2006-06-26 14:41:53
68.   Mark T.R. Donohue
Geez, even the penalty kicks were boring.
2006-06-26 14:43:15
69.   Kayaker7
I'd like to see a different way to decide who moves on. Maybe a 3 on 2 drill, so that it resembles a run of play. Maybe a dribble and shoot, like a hockey penalty?
2006-06-26 14:45:35
70.   Kayaker7
Maybe, FIFA should allow extra substitutions if the game goes into overtime, and let them play until someone scores. Keep going to extra overtimes until both sides have to empty the bench.
2006-06-26 14:46:20
71.   Ravenscar
Gods -

this whole sweet 16 thing isn't going well for me now anymore.

2006-06-26 14:52:04
72.   Kayaker7
I love this pic. It looks like Superman swooping in to save the day.

2006-06-26 15:25:31
73.   Bob Timmermann
Five people got 5 out of 6 right.
2006-06-26 15:27:38
74.   Humma Kavula
I can only hope that los longhorns picked Ukraine to go all the way.
2006-06-26 15:54:03
75.   tmurase
Team Crossbar wins!
2006-06-26 15:56:05
76.   Bob Timmermann
Los Longhorns picked a South American country that shares part of Tierra del Fuego.

I think he can run the table.

Which of course means that I've jinxed him.

If Ghana beats Brazil tomorrow, then it's up in the air. Even the people who picked the Dutch to win are back in it.

2006-06-26 16:08:12
77.   Kayaker7
72 Dammit, they change the location of the pic.
2006-06-26 16:20:32
78.   Kayaker7
7 No wife, before she met me of course, use to date a Canadian guy whose mother is Ukranian. His name is Andriy.
2006-06-26 16:44:37
79.   Bob Timmermann
Standings: current points - possible points
1) Los Longhorns 6 - 32

2T) Humma Kuvala 5 - 31
John Matthew 5 - 31
yankee23 5 - 31
Phil Birnbaum 5 - 31
Penarol1916 5 - 31

7) Abreck 4 - 30
8) ddger 4 - 28
9) mintxscore 4 - 24
10) Mr. Customer 4 - 16
11) Sam DC 3 - 29
12T) Ravenscar 3 - 27
adg 3 - 27
14) Suffering Bruin 3 - 25
15T) Jen 3 - 13
Ken Arneson 3 - 13

2006-06-26 18:45:49
80.   Los Longhorns
My three year old daughter was cheering for the Swiss the entire game because red is her favorite color. After they missed the second penalty kick, she traded teams with me. She was cheering louder than me when her team won!

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