Brazil 2014 has been my favorite World Cup since the 1982 finals held in Spain.
- The good spirit that most of the games were played in both on the field and in the stands.
- The cliff hanging matches such as Holland vs Mexico, Ghana vs Germany/USA, Chile vs Brazil.
- The superb performances by Costa Rica, Columbia and Chile
- James Rodriquez – fearless, dynamic and at just 21 proved a leader of the entertaining Columbian football
- Germany 7 Brazil 1 – clinical goal finishing at its deadliest encouraged by a defensive meltdown.
- Goalkeeping. The standard has been first class. Ochoa (Mexico), Neuer (Germany), Nevas (Costa Rica) and Howard (USA) leading the way.
- Tim Vickery – for the past 2 decades the passionate English voice on South American football. His enthusiastic analysis of the games and Brazilian culture was priceless. Was probably the busiest media man in Brazil.
- England’s manager Roy Hodgson managed to brainwash a nation (plus his players) to expect and accept mediocrity and failure without falling on his sword.
- Poor officiating that proved costly to the likes of Croatia, Colombia, Bosnia Herzegovina and Nigeria
- Iran vs Nigeria
- Luis Suarez banned for 4 months but much the richer for his 75 million transfer to Barcelona
- Ghana just losing it in every way conceivable
- Ivory Coast throwing away their 2nd round spot in the dying minutes against Greece
Watching the World Cup matches in Jamaica you realise many here are Brazilian fans. Whenever Brazil played there was a silence across my home town. It became ghost town when the host lost in the semi finals.
Germany were the best team and seasoned players like Bastian Schweinsteiger and Phillip Lahm deserved their moment in Rio’s night lights. Special mention to Sami Khedira who added the World Cup to his Champion League win with Real Madrid in May.
The next major senior football championship will be COPA America in June/July 2015 in Chile for South American teams with Mexico and Jamaica added as invitees. Can’t wait!