Tuesday, November 15, 2005

WCQ - The Final Five - Part 2

We are in the final 24 hours of World Cup Qualifying. By this time tomorrow night, we will know the full 32 teams making up the German roster. But before we get there, we’ve got 5 more matches to watch.

The Australians host Uruguay down a goal. If they are going to change their fortunes and make their first finals appearance since the 70’s, they will need to get past Uruguayan defense star Diego Lugano. The Socceroos can pull this off, but Guus Hiddink will need to get his side clicking. They have an advantage of having returned home a few hours ahead of Uruguay, which might just give them the advantage they need.
Australia 2-0 Uruguay (Australia wins series)

Bahrain - Trinidad and Tobago
The Soca Warriors almost lost at home on Saturday, but unlike their hosts, they will almost be at full strength for the second leg. Bahrain will be without their captain Mohamed Salmeen and defender Abdulla Marzooq due to suspension. Still T&T must be a little scared about the way their defense played the other night. This situation is very familiar for Bahrain as they also tied in their first leg during their Asian playoff. They ended up tying 0-0 with Uzbekistan to advance to this playoff. However, I think T&T might just have it in them.
Bahrain 0-1 Trinidad and Tobago (T&T wins series)

Turkey – Switzerland
Poor Turkey, they have fallen so far from their 2002 success. They have a big challenge ahead of them tomorrow night as they are down by two to Switzerland without an away goal. Emre Belozoglu will need to make things happen for Turkey. If he cannot, the Swiss will win. As much as I wish Turkey would win this one, I think this is just too much of a challenge for them.
Turkey 2-1 Switzerland (Switzerland wins series)

Czech Republic – Norway
The Czech’s are happy walking into this match after winning 1-0 on the road. However, Norway can do it if Kristofer Hæstad, Christian Grindheim and Jan Gunnar Solli step up and challenge the occasional mistakes made by the Czech’s mid and back line. However, the Czech’s are the better team and should be happy with the way this ends.
Czech Republic 2 – 0 Norway (Czech R win series)

Slovakia - Spain
Spain’s bus showed up in Italy today, allowing Slovakia to take the win on an open pitch. Unless that is the headline tomorrow, Spain will be going to the World Cup without much of a challenge.
Slovakia 1-1 Spain (Spain wins series)


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