Brazil vs. Netherlands 2010: Dunga's Firing Appears Imminent after Upset
Brazil, an international soccer superpower, fell to the Netherlands 2-1 in the Canarinho's quarterfinal match today.
Brazil initially took a 1-0 lead with Robinho's 10th minute strike off of a brilliant pass from Felipe Melo that split the Dutch defense.
Then, Melo suddenly turned from a hero to a goat. His own goal in the 53rd minute off a Wesley Sneijder long ball gave the Dutch the equalizer along with all the momentum.
Brazil was stunned, and the Canarinho failed to create many scoring chances in the second half.
Soon, the Dutch took control, and took the lead off of an improbable header.
Sneijder, standing all of 5'7" headed a corner kick from Dirk Kuyt into the top left corner of Brazil's net.
Brazil ended up scrambling for the equalizer, but, unfortunately for the Green and Yellow, it never came.
Instead, the Dutch pulled off an improbable upset, and will play the winner of the Uruguay-Ghana match today.
Brazil, who was favored by many to go deep into the World Cup, if not win it, had a relatively easy path to the finals if they bested the Netherlands today.
Uruguay or Ghana come nowhere near the talent level that Brazil has, and it seemed likely that Brazil would have a good chance to try for their sixth World Cup title.
For most Brazilians, the tournament won't be considered "good" by any means. Brazil had emerged from the Group of Death without a loss, and was expected to go to the final match.
Brazil didn't get past the quarterfinals.
The Brazilian manager, Dunga, who had already been criticized in his homeland for failing to teach his team how to play "Joga Bonito" or "the beautiful game," is now likely to be fired after his team's disappointing quarterfinals loss.
Dunga, however, is not the one to blame.
Brazil is a team loaded with club superstars in Europe. Kaka, Luis Fabiano, Robinho, the list goes on and on.
Kaka made some killer passes in the tournament, but he failed to find any real rhythm, and he did not lead his team to the expected final match.
Luis Fabiano and Robinho were the leading scorers for Brazil in the tournament, taking some of Kaka's defense-splitting passes and turning them into goals.
Melo, a center back for Brazil, failed to keep his composure in the match against the Netherlands. Although he made a wonderful pass to set up Robinho's goal, he failed to have a level head after his own goal. In the 73rd minute, he stomped on Dutch midfielder Arjen Robben to earn himself a red card.
It truly was a disastrous match for Melo.
But Dunga appears to be the odd man out. He applied a more European style of soccer to Brazil's beautifully creative system. That led to criticism from his home country, and with a heartbreaking quarterfinal exit, it is extremely likely that Dunga will be fired.
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