The story so far…

How are you enjoying the 2010 World Cup from South Africa? Has it lived up to your expectations? Is your country performing as you believed it would? What is the biggest story for you so far? How do you feel about the vuvuzela?

I can personally remember far more exciting group stages at the World Cup. There were definitely some thrilling finishes towards the end, but overall, that edge-of-your-seat type action was lacking tremendously for me. And I also have a problem with the weather and how cold it always looks. Seeing Casillas wearing a scarf during the World Cup is just wrong. I can respect the tournament being held in South Africa, but ultimately, the World Cup always smacks of summer and unfortunately, I’m not feeling the sizzle at all this time around.

The other problem with the tournament is the lack of attendance in the group stages. Most of the stadiums were not full and if it wasn’t for the vuvuzela, would there have been an atmosphere in some of the early games at all? Sure everyone has complained about the vuvuzela, but if you ask me, I think it saved the blushes of FIFA by filling the seats with sound as opposed to their ability to sell the tickets and fill the seats with warm bodies.

I’m also a little bored with Brazil and Argentina being so dominant again. Sure they are playing beautiful football and I would prefer to see Argentina win it all over Brazil. I know that is probably weird coming from a Brit and deep down I’m still hoping this is the year someone unpredictable wins the whole enchilada. But if we’re running with a favourite, I hope it’s Argentina who makes it to the final and I have this silly optimism they will meet England and we will payback Maradona for the Hand of God once and for all!

The truth is anything can happen. Who would have predicted France’s public implosion? And what about Italy’s collapse? It was a total embarrassment as they tried to defend their title. I feel bad for their supporters. We feel your pain. And speaking of pain, some of the refereeing has been hellacious. Some refs have made terrible decisions that would inspire any government in any country across our universe! Fans get ripped enough at it is in life and they certainly don’t want some amateur ref from Mali screwing them over at the World Cup! Come on referees! Sort it out FIFA.

There have been some good goals and perhaps a couple of great goals. We’ve seen very few sexy free-kicks converted and I’m not sure if there is a new star that has emerged just yet for us all to be salivating over. And the already established stars like Ronaldo, Rooney and Messi haven’t really lit it up yet have they? Messi’s had some pretty play overall, but we’ve seen no individual magic just yet and I think that’s what this World Cup is lacking.

Hopefully the last 16 will make me eat all of my above mentioned words. Hopefully the stars will come out and shine bright because the story so far is…Slovakia and Uruguay?