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Forza Azzurri

My take on the World Cup

Few days after the World Cup is over, and I can finally breathe normally. L'azzurri finally held the Cup. Here is my take on the final match.

Fabio Cannavaro
Fabio Cannavaro
| Copy

Right from the beginning, it was obvious it was not going to be defensive on either side. The French really played hard, that I wished them to score first so that the Italians heat up and force forward. The French got a penalty kick, that was struck awesomely by Zidane. Soon after, the Azzurri struck back with a cute goal.

Tired Azzurri held firm against the old engines of the French. The French held possession of the ball, while the Italians lost almost every possession they gained, it was obvious that the Italians were worn out. Yet the French could not put the ball in the net, I think largely because of the tough Italian defense. Fabulous duo made up of Cannavaro and Buffon turned every strike into total failure. The French were losing hope faster than the Italians, who historically have always shown great patience, and unbeaten spirit (Did you witness the two goals in the 119 minute of the game against Germany?). It was a game of mental powers as well.

I was crying out loud: Zidane is taking a red card! Astonished! Truth is, I believe the matter is mere cultural difference. For Italians, provocation has always been part of the game, may be not personal insults, but frustrating the opponent is a skill they master. When Gattuso held Ballak tightly, smiling, Ballak seemed to be tipped off all of a sudden, pushing the Italian hands off of him, and giving him that look. Gattuso probably hugged him a bit too tight, he provoked him into acting aggressively. It did not work on Ballak. It worked on Zidane!

I always enjoyed Zinedine Zidane's football, and he received many red cards before, it's what makes him human. He deserves that red card as well, just as much as he deserves the Golden Ball award for best player. Zidane is Zidane.

As for those who say that the Italians did not deserve it, that is also one big piece of bullshit. Anyone who wins the game at the end does deserve it. It is enough that they had more goals, period. Although this match was not as good as the previous World Cup finals, but it had a different affair. The Italians were under legal pressures back home, they were being criticized, and they lost two players early (Nesta and De Rossi). But they also have been a hell of a team, they replaced all members, and almost all of the team scored goals (including defenders). They were really fast in going back and forth across the field. They had an unbeatable defensive line. And obviously they knew the right words to say to provoke opponents! They played the game, they mastered it really well, and above all that, they possessed nerves of steel.

What makes them my favorite team is not really a secret! They are more human than all of the other teams in World Cup (including Brazil). The vibe, the blood pressure, the hot temper, the chaos, the hand gestures, the accent! All makes them more human. When Tutti spat on that Danish player, I loved him more! When Zinedine Zidane played Brazil, I adored him, when he headbutted the Italian, I loved him. What can I say, I love attitude!

I am just happy my most favorite team since 1994 has finally won.