As the dust settles on the historic South Africa 2010 FIFA World Cup, this year’s edition will no doubt be remembered as one of the tournament’s that provided immense excitement and surprises right from match day 1.
An African World Cup has been the dream of Current FIFA President Sepp Blatter and LOC (local organising committee) CEO Danny Jordaan for the past 16 years and last night’s final was the icing on the cake for their tireless efforts.
A tweet on Mr.Blatter’s twitter page captures the mood of all those involved in making South Africa 2010 a huge success.
“Appreciating the moment- congratulations to Spain and all the fans.”
Yeah, I am already starting to miss the afternoon rushing home and the staying up late to catch the games and its barely even 24 hours after the final. Well, i guess such is the emotion and joy that the World Cup Brings.
South Africa 2010 is now history and attention shifts to 2014 hosts Brazil. However, before we throw the covers on South Africa 2010 for good, lets recap on some of the tournament’s highlights and downfalls.
First and foremost, congratulations are in order to the 2010 winners Spain. Spain become the 8th nation to join the list of previous winners that include power houses Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Germany and France. Last night’s win over Holland was duly deserved and the Spaniards no doubt re-affirmed that they are the best team in the world.
Another major highlight for me was how the so called minnows proved to be more than what many had previously thought. Nations like South Africa, Switzerland and Chile added that unpredictable spark that made the tournament more exciting.
In that respect, nations from Asia and Oceania like South Korea, Japan and New Zealand sent out a strong message to the rest of the world that they can no longer be underestimated. Just look at South Korea’s second round match against Uruguay. The Uruguayans barely made it to the quarters after Suarez provided them with some brilliant individual piece of talent.
Japan on the other hand lost out to Paraguay after dominating the match since kick-off. These and of course and the emergence of young stars like Germany’s Thomas Muller, Ghana’s Andre Ayew etc are all worth mentioning. Again SA 2010 matched another very impressive record. This was the 3rd tournament after Germany 2006 and USA 1994 to have surpassed the 3 million mark in crowd attendance.
South Africa 2010 also had its ugly side with England’s 4-1 loss to Germany being the main talking point. Lampard’s outright goal was judged to have not crossed the line after replays showed otherwise and this re-opened the debate as to whether FIFA should use video technology to help match officials make their decisions.
Moreover, the disappointing performances of the favourites – Brazil, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Argentina, Portugal, Italy, Nigeria and England also added to fans displeasure.
I cannot forget to mention the poor officiating by some of the referees. In fact FIFA was so incensed with some of those decisions that refs like Mali’s Coulibaly and Roberto Rossetti of Italy were immediately sent home.
The positives however outweigh the negatives and these are what made my South Africa 2010. What made you South Africa 2010? Feel free to air your views and lets recap on what was truly an experience of a lifetime.
Photo credit: from realpictures