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The Cup Running Over


July 3, 2010 11:46 AM

Instant Quarterfinal Review: Germany in a Rout

SCORE:  Germany 4, Argentina 0. Not the expected classic but instead, another German rout. Maybe the English aren't that bad after all.

THE STORY LINE:  We said going in that the game would hinge on which German team showed up. The good one did. Right now, this team is playing the best soccer in the tournament and is an offensive powerhouse.

TURNING POINT: Three minutes in and Thomas Muller scores again. Argentina was never really in the game.

PLAYER OF THE GAME: The offense got the headlines but Germany's back line did an outstanding job on Lionel Messi, who not only didn't score, but didn't set up anyone really either.

BIGGEST SURPRISE: How slow Argentina started. It not only gave up a goal in the first five minutes (shades of the US!) but didn't get a shot off for the first 28.

BIGGEST NO-SHOW: Diego Maradona. His team needed to make a number of tactical adjustments at halftime to get back in the game. It didn't -- though to be fair, it didn't have the goods. Old conventional wisdom: The Argentinians are back! New conventional wisdom: Whom did they play in the first four games that was any good anyway?

KEY STAT: Germany has now made the semis three tournaments in a row.

WHAT IT MEANS:
We may well be looking at yet another all-European final, which would make it the first time a team from Europe has won the tournament when it isn't held in Europe.

IF THE GAME WERE A ROLLING STONES SONG IT WOULD BE: You Can't Catch Me

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