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Posted by Susie Schaaf on 07/03/2010

I've been dying to do a little trash-talking lately, and this match seemed, to me, to be the perfect place to start. I've enlisted the help of a very excellent writer, and good friend: Gus Sanchez. He and I met over the interwebs several years back, mutually admiring each other's writing styles. And now we're friends, in real life, despite his being a Manchester United and Argentina supporter. Eh. We can't all be perfect...

The fur starts flying in 3, 2, 1....

So, Gus, I've got to tell you, I've been singing "Don't Cry For Me, Argentina" since we routed the Brits this past weekend--- even while I was praying for a sombrero to wear and a Corona to drink during your man-handling of Mexico. This match-up is more fitting for a semi-final, or even a final, huh?

I agree, this match would be even greater if it was a semi or a final. It's the match everyone's talking about, and it's a shame it's taking place so soon. Call me nuts, but I think the team that wins this one wins the my boys will be lifting the Cup on the 11th.

Not so fast, my friend! I mean, I'm all for positive thinking, but, we have a not-so-secret weapon: Paul, the Psychic Octopus. Any oracular animals in Argentina I'm not aware of?

No oracular animals that I'm aware of, but octopus is a tasty dish. Paul may want to rethink his prediction, lest he wants to end up on the wrong side of a skewer...

Hey, you mentioned on Monday that you weren't the least bit nervous about this match. It's less than 24 hours to go...surely you've got knots in your belly by now, thinking how on Earth will Messi be contained. If you don't, you're either crazy (which I know you are) or just plain deluded (which I know you're not).

Personally, I think Bastian will pick up Messi just fine. Besides, your boy has the sniffles... Also, I never sleep the night before important matches. And when I do sleep, I dream about football. I expect I'll be bleary-eyed, yet hopping around, which is really not any different from any other Saturday morning...

I know you're pissed about Bastian's statements, regarding the fans of Albiceleste and the national team itself. However, I think it's good that the Germans struck first (obviously), because after all, the actions by Maradona, after our "friendly" in March, predicated an attack by us.

Oh, yeah, Schweini. You know what? Whatever. Argentina invented smack talk. Schweini and Lahm need to do a better job of trying to play the dark arts with the Oakland Raiders of football.

You're referring to Diego pitching a hussy fit over having to sit next to Muller. Can you blame him? Diego thought he was the ball boy. Muller looks young enough to be one.

And no worries about Messi's sniffles. I hear gallons of Pepto Bismol have been sent to the German camp, because they'll be suffering heartburn and upset stomachs afterwards.

Hang on a sec. Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't that Muller's 1st appearance for Die Mannschaft? If so, how's that make Thomas "integral." All kidding aside, I love Diego, but he wouldn't recognize Oezil either, even if he's making those scary bug eyes he does when he scores. And what's up with that? Someone needs to check Oezil for an overactive thyroid...or amphetamines. (Wink back at ya.)

I was thinking Diego might toy with a 3-5-2, considering it's Carlos Bilardo (the DT behind Argentina's 1986 WC-winning squad) that's really orchestrating the formation, but he'll stick with the 3-4-3, or even a 4-3-3, on the notion that no team has yet fully challenged Argentina's defensive holes. Speaking of which, I really want to strangle DeMichelis. I know he's your boy at Bayern, but, yikes, I can't take his cavalier approach to clearing the ball from the box. With that being said, my XI, following the 4-3-3 formation, is as follows:

Romero-Heinze-DeMichelis (yikes!)-Burdisso-Otamendi-Mascherano-DiMaria-Rodriguez-Messi-Tevez-Higuain

So what's your side look like?

OK. So, perhaps "integral", in regards to Mueller, was a bit of a stretch... However, do you think the DFB would ever allow anyone else to face the press besides someone who matters? Even a drug-addled brain should understand that. Ha.

I've got to admit, I'm a bit torn on the Demichelis thing. As the Bayern writer for this site, I heaped a ton of crap on him until, strangely, after the not-so-friendly match with you boys. His sustaining 3 facial fractures via Michael Ballack during that encounter seemed to have lit a fire under him that continued through the rest of the season. The majority of the Bayern contingent was happy to see "Zorro"--- masked or not.

Starting line-up for us? 4-5-1, of course; unchanged from the England showdown. Neuer - Lahm, Mertesacker, Friedrich, Boateng - Khedira, Schweinsteiger - Mueller, Oezil, Podolski - Klose.

But, you see, the only one who matters is Diego. Even Pele knows that! And, besides, to know Diego is to tolerate his diva antics. Personally, I never wanted the AFA to name him as the DT, and I wanted him gone after he made those crass comments to the media. But he's been a massive dose of fresh air, because he's so not a coach, and doesn't bother acting like one. Between his counting the rosary and chest bumping all the players, it's hard not to like what he's doing so far, even if it flies in the face of every coach that's ever lived.

Haha. I'll never be one to jump on the Maradona bandwagon, but I can see where he's got his charm. Nah. That's a lie. I don't, really. That being said...

...Both squads are playing markedly better than our meeting in March. I think the deciding factor will be which back line holds up better. Goals will be scored, for sure. And, I've got to say that I wouldn't mind Neuer pulling a sweaty piece of paper out of his sock, a la Lehmann. We Krauts are quite fond of the shootouts.

You've got to be an Argie to understand Diego's charm. But that's an explanation for another day.

I've always said qualifiers and friendlies mean nothing. Yes, both teams are playing outstanding, considering the "experts" didn't fancy either side to go far.

Yeah, that Lehmann thing. Probably the one thing that most ticked us off; he had us pegged to the T. I don't think we'll end up in a shootout. Honestly, I think both teams want to settle this within 90+minutes. I know I do.

Final thought: the match will be won and lost in the midfield, not the back line. The team that neutralizes their opponent's midfield wins. Here's where I see Mascherano being the most important player for Argentina.

No fistfights this time, yeah? I have to agree with your choice of Mascherano for the AFA. And while the attacking mids for die Mannschaft have gotten all the glamor press, I've got to say Bastian's got to put his money where his mouth is. I'm expecting big things from him.

One more final thought: Jogi's, for sure, the more stylish manager. (Why Diego bothers to wear suits is beyond me.). But, who is the more disgusting of the two? "Pick 'n' Eat" Loew or "Hands in the Pants" Maradona?

Please, dear football gods, no post-match brawl!

Oh, Jogi's a stylin' cat. I'd say him and Bert van Marwhatever have cut stylish looks. I think it's hilarious that Diego looks as if he found his suit at the Salvation Army. Still, getting caught picking and eating snot is pretty gross, and he's got Diego beat in the "inappropriate moment caught on TV moment" corner. But, if Diego sniffed his hands...

That would be... awesome. And disgusting.

Thanks for your time, wisdom and humor, Gus. Best of luck to you, and here's to hoping you need it!


Posted by UDAY KATHAYAT on 07/03/2010


Posted by leslie on 07/03/2010

Die Mannschaft to win 3-0? What say you all

Posted by Mike on 07/03/2010

Still trying to decide which is better, the 4-0 scoreline or the sulking expressions on the faces of Maradona and Tevez? Seems like the Argentines were too busy making fun of Brazil for their exit. At least the Brazilians gave the fans a game yesterday. For all the hype about Maradona being better than we thought he was, he is now back to what he was before the World Cup: one of the most overrated, selfish, and arrogant players to ever set foot on the pitch. Germany always gives the fans an entertaining spectacle. Today, the gave the best World Cup performance of the new millenium.

Posted by Jeff on 07/04/2010

FIFA may just hand the trophy over...

Posted by Andre on 07/05/2010

No overtime, no penalties, no post-match brawl. Just the symphony of a 4-0 destruction. :) Go Germany

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