Why do time passed so fast. World Cup was here before I realised it and it was now already over for two weeks. I only have a few more World Cups left in my life to watch.
I enjoyed this World Cup tremendously, but it didn’t have the agony and euphoria in the previous World Cup. It wasn’t the tournament’s fault, it is just that I no longer identify with a national team and its players so deeply. Even if Italy is playing in this World Cup, I would not feel the deep sadness and extreme joy ala 1990 and 1994. I felt happy when Italy won in 2006 but I knew that the joy would be more intense if it is in 1990 or 1994.
When England beat Sweden and through to the semi final, I thought of 1990. When Belgium beat Brazil and through to the semi final, I thought of 1986.
When Croatia went to the final, I thought of Euro 1996, and they were the losing finalist then.
When France won the World Cup, I thought of how they lose the European Championship in homeground, a bit similar to when Portugal lost the European Championship to Greece in the homeground but won in France.
There were some memorable matches like Germany 0 S Korea 2. The last time Germany conceded such goals was Italy 2 Germany 0 during the semi final in 2006.
Even if a national team knew that they would not go pass the first round in the next World Cup if they win the World Cup, I am sure they would gladly pay for the opportunity cost and win the World Cup.
This World Cup brought us VAR. I would prefer the old school refereeing system, as I love the controversies which is part of football. But I wasn’t greatly opposed to VAR too. Croatia lost the match when France was awarded the penalty after the referee took a long time watching and rewatching the replay.
The World Cup final is fantastic. Thanks to France and Croatia for this classic match.
For someone who grew up disliking Japan because of World War II, I was rooting for them. Such a heartbreak way to lose in the 2nd round.