The group matches are basically a chance for the good teams to build up into form and also to provide an opportunity for the lesser known ones (read qualifiers) to perform at the big stage. Well, as of now - the fun part of World cup 2006 is over.
From today, every match will push one team out of the race and that will change a lot of stuff in the approach of the teams. They will be more desperate, they will take more chances, they will want to win and they will know that if they don't, they don't have another chance.
Well folks - the Round of 16 begins today evening (IST i mean) and i cannot hide my excitement. As a big big Football fan, it cannot get bigger than this for me and I'm already licking my lips. Just take a look at the teams lined up in the stage and you'll know why i get s excited.
Come what may - I'm backing Brazil again. For all that i see, Spain and Argentina seem to be the only 2 teams which match Brazil in skills and people power, in all departments - Defense, Attack and Play making. England could do well as well (provided their defense loses all that stupidity it displayed in the last game) and is kind of on par with Germany. The good thing is that these teams are well placed in the various groups which means that they have a realistic chance of moving up all the way upto the Semi Finals. I'd place my money on 4 of these 5 teams featuring in the Semi finals.
Till then, I'm glued to the TV set :)