Every Sunday morning, I gather my socks and shorts and yellow shirt and prepare for that day's Sunday league match. I've been playing for Team 'Looking to Score' for almost a decade now, wearing my #6 shirt in defense and defensive midfield like my idol Marcel Desailly. And sometimes striker, because I also like David Luiz.
A few years back, we had a very good player on our team, someone who belonged in a much higher level competition than Rec League B. We would give him the ball, he would make something happen, and we'd just stand around looking homeless. There was hardly any need for organization or tactics or even basic teamwork for that matter. Our guy was great, were crap, and because it was just Sunday league, we won almost every time. Our guy's name wasn't Oscar, but the man who played that role for Brazil tonight, his name was.
Unfortunately for Brazil, they were playing in the FIFA World Cup, and even though it was just the third place match, the Netherlands did care just enough to punish Brazil for their amateurish qualities yet again. Just like in the semifinal, they were a disjointed mess. Too much individualism in attack, no organization or tracking back in defense, individual errors galore. Thiago Silva should've been sent off in the second minute, but he got away with just a conceded penalty kick. David Luiz gifted another goal, though when Daley Blind has time for three touches and an uncontested shot from the top of the box, fingers need to be pointed not just at Sideshow. Even Luiz Gustavo stopped caring and he was actually still trying against Germany.
On a brighter note for the Chelsea boys, all three of our Brazilians started the match in the attacking band behind yet another useless striker. I think it was Jo, not that it really matters. Willian was useful at times, Ramires less so. But Oscar was full of running and shooting and invention and beautiful free kicks and crosses. He was fouled several times, though only awarded a free kick twice and was very harshly booked for a "dive" in the penalty box. In fact, it was such an egregious dive that it even injured the Dutch defender, the force of the air generated by the fall clearly inflicting pain onto Daley Blind's leg. Or something. Magic dive, that.
Fortunately for the referee, his incompetence was matched by the hosts and the boos at half time and full time were reserved purely for Luiz Felipe Scolari and his disgraced charges.
Meanwhile, at the other end, Louis Van Gaal ends his tenure as Dutch national team coach with a third place finish; not something that many predicted for a weak-looking Netherlands selection beforehand, that's for sure. His replacement will be one of our favorites Guus Hiddink, so good luck to him. (And less good luck to Van Gaal as he starts his Manchester United coaching career.)