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WC 2006 Match Chat: Germany vs. Italy, noon PT
2006-07-04 10:00
by Bob Timmermann

Live from Dortmund!

Germany and Italy meet for the fifth time in the World Cup and for the second time in the semifinals. The last time they met at this stage was in 1970 in Mexico City and Italy won 4-3 in overtime in what FIFA has dubbed "The Match of the Century". The teams also met in the 1982 Final and Italy won that time 3-1. They have also played two scoreless draws: in 1962 and in 1978. The two sides have each won three World Cups.

Overall, the two national teams have faced each other 13 times, with Italy winning five times, Germany three times, and five draws. Italy beat Germany 4-1 in a friendly in Florence on March 1.

Each team will be missing one player. Germany will be without midfielder Torsten Frings, who was suspended for his postmatch actions after Germany's PK win over Argentina. Italy is without Daniele De Rossi, still serving a suspension for elbowing Brian McBride of the USA in the face.

Germany is a slight favorite in this match with the home crowd advantage. However, the Italians are not easily intimidated.

The road to here for both teams:

For Germany:

  • Germany 4, Costa Rica 2
  • Germany 1, Poland 0
  • Germany 3, Ecuador 0
  • Germany 2, Sweden 0
  • Germany 1, Argentina 1, Germany wins on penalties 4-2

For Italy:

  • Italy 2, Ghana 0
  • Italy 1, USA 1
  • Italy 2, Czech Republic 0
  • Italy 1, Australia 0
  • Italy 3, Ukraine 0

Comments (61)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2006-07-04 10:28:43
1.   Suffering Bruin
German starter Torsten Frings was banned from the game for punching an Argentine player. The powers that be saw it on videotape. And just where did they get such a tape? Hmmm?

German media reported Monday that the Italian soccer federation gave FIFA the TV footage that sparked the investigation, hoping to have the hardworking midfielder suspended for the semifinal. FIFA and the Italian federation denied the reports.

Granted that some German media make the Enquirer look like the Economist, I am still accepting this as fact and further proof that the Italian soccer team is the personification of evil, a satan with spikes.

Things I hope will happen:

1) The Italians will get three yellow cards for diving. I think this is likely.

2) The Italian coach, after 70 minutes of continuous whining, will spontaneously combust.

3) The Germans put five on 'em and then and only then do they start toying with them.

Is this too harsh? My friends, is this too much to hope for? Let us remind ourselves that this Italian team tied the US only because a referee decided to "get even." Let us remind ourselves that the noble Socceroos deserved to be here were it not for one of the most dramatic falls since Carmen.

Today, my friends, we are all Germans. God save sauerkraut, beer, weird movies and weirder haircuts. Viva Alemania!

2006-07-04 10:37:05
2.   Bob Timmermann
I forgot to mention that the Toaster contest would end today if Germany wins. Phil Birnbaum would win the t-shirt.

If Italy wins, the contest will go on to the final game.

2006-07-04 11:09:31
3.   Vishal
"make the enquirer look like the economist" brought a chuckle.

go italy!

2006-07-04 11:16:23
4.   yankee23
I believe Alessandro Nesta is also still out for Italy with an injury.
2006-07-04 11:26:08
5.   Bob Timmermann
Ahh, but Nesta has a soccer injury. He could come wandering out like an Italian Willis Reed!
2006-07-04 11:58:06
6.   yankee23
But wouldn't that undermine the flopping?
2006-07-04 12:01:53
7.   Borchard504
Unfortunately, I like the home team to advance - my daughter who lives outside of Zurich, was at a party with a houseful of Argentinians, when Germany beat them the other day. The folks, assured her that there was a conspiracy to get Germany into the finals, but I told her, home cookin is all it is. The crowd, the noise, all have a bearing on the teams and the refs. Winning a big game, on the road is never, ever, easy.
2006-07-04 12:04:03
8.   Penarol1916
I see Germany winning too. I've decided I don't really want them to not only because of the T-shirt, but also because they have far too many nationalized players for me to cheer for them. Have they even had someone actually from Germany score a goal yet?
2006-07-04 12:04:50
9.   Sandus
Conspiracy or not, Germany would lose the final, regardless of opponent.
2006-07-04 12:13:47
10.   Suffering Bruin
Luca Toni: "The Germans are afraid of us and even more so because we whipped Urkraine."

I hate them, I hate them, I hate them!

2006-07-04 12:22:16
11.   Suffering Bruin
Ballack has looked hurt for about ten minutes now...
2006-07-04 12:25:31
12.   Suffering Bruin
One of the things I'm noticing in this WC is how the absence of just one player can severely impact a team. The Italians clearly miss Nesta.

It was hard to type that last sentence because I was smiling so much.

2006-07-04 12:27:55
13.   Greg Brock
I see that Suffering Bruin is doing an outstanding job as Vice President / PR rep for the ABI.
2006-07-04 12:30:02
14.   Ken Arneson
This is a pretty entertaining game so far. Lots of creative passing attempts.
2006-07-04 12:35:34
15.   Suffering Bruin
It is Italy that is pressing the attack and the Germans that are counter-attacking.

Go figure.

2006-07-04 12:36:01
16.   Bob Timmermann
I think Germany should win just because they use all caps in the names on the uniforms. I don't like the lower case font that the Italians have.

Seeing ANY noun in German in lower case would be very very very wrong.

2006-07-04 12:38:14
17.   Linkmeister
This belongs to tomorrow's game thread, but I'll forget to post it.

Mike Lopresti on why he's rooting for Portugal:

2006-07-04 12:42:41
18.   Bob Timmermann
I would think that Linkmeister has probably eaten his fair share of Portuguese food living in Hawai'i.

When I ate dinner at a restaurant in Lisbon, the waiter offered me seconds. I have never seen that in any other country.

2006-07-04 12:45:29
19.   Greg Brock
This referee is my favorite person on the the moment.
2006-07-04 12:47:22
20.   Bob Timmermann
In North America, we know how to officiate soccer!
2006-07-04 12:49:00
21.   Ken Arneson
The Swedish announcers were just commenting on what a good job the Mexican ref was doing. Let's hope he keeps it up, and this game gets decided by the players.
2006-07-04 12:51:07
22.   Suffering Bruin
19 21 I've been very, very impressed with his work.

Totti jumps on a guys back, spikes high, looks for a foul and the referee just laughs at him. I'd buy the guy a beer for that alone.

2006-07-04 12:55:35
23.   Bob Timmermann
I've mentioned it before, but this is the background on the referee Benito Archundia:

Mother language: Spanish
Other languages: English
Occupation: Lawyer and economist
General interests: Playing football, video games, reading
Best memory: Friends made during tournaments in which I have participated

Quite the Renaissance man!

2006-07-04 13:12:18
24.   Suffering Bruin
With his general interests, he could socialize very well with me, my kid and my wife.

Wait a minute...

2006-07-04 13:28:45
25.   Linkmeister
18 Yep. Portuguese sausage, Portuguese sweetbread, malasadas; we don't get bacalhau out here.
2006-07-04 13:36:56
26.   Bob Timmermann
I have the feeling that if I ever tried a bicycle kick, my leg would come off.
2006-07-04 13:38:13
27.   Bob Timmermann
And that foul was?
2006-07-04 13:38:39
28.   Greg Brock
What is Balboa talking about? The Italian player jumped over the back and planted his elbows on the shoulders. That's a foul.
2006-07-04 13:41:39
29.   Bob Timmermann
Ahh, shades of Toni Schumacher there!
2006-07-04 13:41:57
30.   Greg Brock
Something tells me the Italian player will be just fine.
2006-07-04 13:42:11
31.   Bob Timmermann
The difference being that Schumacher would have ripped Perrota's head off.
2006-07-04 13:51:50
32.   Bob Timmermann
2006-07-04 13:56:17
33.   Ken Arneson
Germans got lucky there.
2006-07-04 13:57:21
34.   Ken Arneson
And again.
2006-07-04 13:57:24
35.   Bob Timmermann
The Germans got lucky again!
2006-07-04 13:57:25
36.   Greg Brock
And there
2006-07-04 13:58:40
37.   Greg Brock
Must have been a Rockne-like inspirational speech for the Italian side.
2006-07-04 14:00:09
38.   Bob Timmermann
Vittoria una per il Gipper!


Gewinn einer für das Gipper!

2006-07-04 14:02:36
39.   Bob Timmermann
Or for tomorrow:

Victoire une pour le Gipper !


Vitória uma para o Gipper!

2006-07-04 14:12:05
40.   Ken Arneson
How'd he miss that header so badly?
2006-07-04 14:12:32
41.   Greg Brock
It would be such a shame to settle this match in PK's.
2006-07-04 14:13:18
42.   ScoobyGoo
It's a shame to settle any match in PK's really
2006-07-04 14:14:15
43.   Greg Brock
42 Yes, this is true. Especially, however, in a Cup semfinal.
2006-07-04 14:21:34
44.   Ken Arneson
Boy, Lehmann got caught way out of position there. Germans lucky again.
2006-07-04 14:22:42
45.   ddger
Germany definitely has the advantage if this goes into PK since they never lost a PK match.
2006-07-04 14:23:10
46.   Greg Brock
Well, the famous German precision will be tested in about six minutes.

Where's Roberto Baggio when you need him?

2006-07-04 14:23:30
47.   ddger
5 minutes to PK
2006-07-04 14:25:26
48.   ddger
Why is Germany so good in PK and Italy or England so bad?
2006-07-04 14:26:40
49.   Ken Arneson
Never mind the PKs...
2006-07-04 14:26:50
50.   Greg Brock
Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2006-07-04 14:27:16
51.   ddger
WOW, unbelievable.
2006-07-04 14:28:16
52.   ddger
I was actually looking forward to PK contest but I guess it's only fair that this match is not decided in PK.
2006-07-04 14:28:30
53.   Bob Timmermann
The contest will come down to the Final!
2006-07-04 14:28:56
54.   fanerman
I haven't been keeping up... but what is this contest?
2006-07-04 14:29:01
55.   Greg Brock
SB, emergency meeting of the ABI at 5:00. Await further instructions.
2006-07-04 14:29:17
56.   Ken Arneson
That does it.
2006-07-04 14:29:56
57.   Bob Timmermann
If Italy wins Sunday, minxtscore gets the t-shirt. If Portugal or France wins, the shirt goes to Penarol1916.

Have a nice holiday!

2006-07-04 14:34:09
58.   Vishal
that was beautiful. what a great game.
2006-07-04 18:48:41
59.   mintxcore
man, all this hatred for the azzurri makes me feel like a jerk but man, how can you not love luca toni and his "crazy head" hand movement when he scores a goal (or two...or 31)?
2006-07-04 23:13:30
60.   Greg Brock
59 I'm booing you as you read this.
2006-07-05 00:14:55
61.   Bob Timmermann
1) Penarol1916 - 15
2) yankee23 - 11
3t) minxtscore, Phil Birnbaum - 10
5t) Los Longhorns, ddger - 9
7t) Abreck, humma kuvala, John Matthew - 8
10t) adg, Sam DC - 7
12t) jen, Ken Arneson, ravenscar, Suffering Bruin - 6
16) Mr. Customer - 5

minxtscore has Italy winning the final which is worth 8 points. Nobody else can earn any more points.

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