Sentinel-Echo.com

Opinion

July 3, 2013

Direct Kick: The new Brazil finally looking like the Brazil of old

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — As Mark Twain once said, “the report of my death was an exaggeration.”

Brazil knows exactly how he felt.

Coming into Sunday’s Confederation Cup final against the No. 1 team and defending European and World Champion Spain, Brazil had slipped all the way down to No. 22 in FIFA’s current rankings (the lowest it had ever been), between those two football powers Ghana and Mali. Many so-called experts had already written Brazil off as a threat to win next year’s World Cup, which they will be hosting. Some even said that if Brazil wasn’t automatically qualified for the tournament (since they are the host) they probably wouldn’t even qualify. But Brazil triumphed, easily dispatching Spain, 3-0, behind two goals from Fred and another by Neymar. Not good enough to qualify? Come on, this is Selecao we are talking about, the country that had been ranked No. 1 151 times on seven occasions. The team that has never missed a World Cup since the tournament started in 1930, the only country to be able to say that. The country with the soccer lineage of Pele, Cafu, Jairzinho, Tostao, Zico, Ronaldo and Ronaldinho. Did anyone really believe they wouldn’t get it all together for the upcoming World Cup?

Mighty Spain had 1, 614 points, well ahead of No. 2 Germany’s 1,416. Meanwhile, the Brazilians had 872 points and had dropped three spots from the May poll. When the new poll is release Thursday, there’s a good chance that Brazil will have vaulted into the Top 10 thanks to the win over Spain.

For the past couple of years all the talk has been about Neymar, but until this tournament, he hadn’t really showed what he could do on the international level. That all changed with the ConFed Cup, as he put on quite the show with his fantastic goals and great passes. Fans of Barcelona had to be pleased to witness this display, as Neymar has signed with the Spanish giant for this upcoming season.

So does this mean Brazil will win next year’s World Cup? Of course not. But it does serve notice to the rest of the world that the country that put the “beauty” in the beautiful game still has a lot left in their tank.

sports@sentinel-echo.com

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • mitch.jpg On The Rebound: All Star Game less important than Wiffle Ball

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • denis.jpg Direct Kick: A very eventful week in sports

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • The shining kingdom

    The drop in gas prices locally is a welcome sight for most residents in the area with gas falling under $3.60 per gallon.

    July 16, 2014

  • Letter to the editor: Thanks, Sentinel-Echo

    In the July 4 edition of the Sentinel-Echo, (last page, section 1), the entire page was given to quotes of references to God, the Declaration of Independence, and our constitution by our founding fathers, former presidents, Supreme Court judges, etc. 

    July 14, 2014

  • Zamperini's story was inspiring

    I had never heard the names of Louis Zamperini and Russel Allen Phillips until my pastor gave me a book, “Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption,” by author Laura Hillenbrand, who wrote, “Seabiscuit: An American Legend” a few years ago.

    July 11, 2014

  • The tales of Dr. Robert E. Pennington

    When Dr. H. V. Pennington began to practice medicine in Laurel County times were hard and medical methods were primitive, compared to today. 

    July 11, 2014

  • Where did that red truck go?

     We were sitting out on the front porch last Saturday afternoon when a  big, red, late- model pick up whizzed by on Charlie Brown.  It looked like there was a man driving and a woman riding shotgun  

    July 7, 2014

  • A change for Pace

    Let me tell you a little about my friend Candice Pace. We were sitting in the fountain square the other day and she was telling me about how she had driven to Pikeville, where she’s from, to visit with her mom. Along the way, deep in McCreary County, she passed three turtles that were crossing the road.Let me tell you a little about my friend Candice Pace. We were sitting in the fountain square the other day and she was telling me about how she had driven to Pikeville, where she’s from, to visit with her mom. Along the way, deep in McCreary County, she passed three turtles that were crossing the road.

    July 7, 2014

  • mitch.jpg On The Rebound: A little effort can make a big difference

    July 5, 2014 1 Photo

  • Gordon Wayne Weston

    Gordon Wayne Weston, 61, of London, Ky., passed away Friday, June 27, 2014, at his home surrounded by his loving family. 

     

    July 3, 2014

Facebook
AP Video
Judge Ponders Overturning Colo. Gay Marriage Ban Airlines Halt Travel to Israel Amid Violence NYPD Chief Calls for 'use of Force' Retraining VA Nominee McDonald Goes Before Congress Bush: Don't Worry, Sugarland Isn't Breaking Up US Official: Most Migrant Children to Be Removed Police Probing Brooklyn Bridge Flag Switch CDC Head Concerned About a Post-antibiotic Era Raw: First Lady Says `Drink Up' More Water Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law Holder Urges Bipartisanship on Immigration Raw: Truck, Train Crash Leads to Fireball US Airlines Cancel Israel Flights Obama Signs Workforce Training Law Crash Victims' Remains Reach Ukraine-held City Diplomatic Push Intensifies to End War in Gaza Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival Michigan Plant's Goal: Flower and Die Veteran Creates Job During High Unemployment
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Now that school is out, what are your family’s summer vacation plans?

A. No major plans. We will probably hang out around Laurel County.
B. Going to the beach!
C. Kentucky has a lot of wonderful state parks, and we plan to visit a few and enjoy quality family time.
     View Results