World Cup 2006 – Jogo Feio

Another World Cup is over and that only means that we have four boring years ahead!

Today the Italians won their 4th World Cup 24 years after they won their last one back in 1982. I must say that the Italian team was very compact and well organized in defense. They played very good as a team and they had their top match against Germany. I think Germany, Argentina and Spain were better teams but Italy had other elements playing in their favor like the referees always favoring them and the luck of playing weak teams in the finals (Australia and Ukrania).

If the Brazilians are the masters of the ‘Jogo Bonito’, Italians are the masters of the ‘Jogo Feio’. It is sad that they use so many cheap tricks when they have enough talent to win games fair and square. Today in the final Materazzi used his big mouth to insult Zinedine Zidane and the french lost its cool and attacked the Italian with his head like a bull. None of the four referees saw the incident and the Italian goal keeper Buffon asked the 4th referee to check a video replay of the situation. Then the 4th referee explained the incident to the main referee Horacio Elizondo and he pulled a red card on Zidane. FIFA has never allowed the use of video replays during soccer matches to make decisions, so I think it is terrible that they allowed this rule to be changed on the fly on the most important game of the World Cup. Shame on FIFA! I think it was horrible what Zidane did, but since none of the referees saw the incident nothing should have happened.

Anyway, I have this feeling that neither Italy, nor France deserved to win this World Cup. I think Germany should have won it. But again, Italy beated Germany fair and square, so I guess they did deserve it at the end.

Update [07/10/06 – 11:52 a.m.]

FIFA is now claiming that video replay was never used to pull the red card on Zidane. I hope this is true.

See the story on BBC News.