2010 World Cup Recap

2010 World Cup Recap

The 2010 World Cup was held in Johannesburg South Africa, the first time the tournament was held in an African nation. Just like in Brazil, the tournament was criticized for it’s treatment of workers and the large amount of money which was spent in preparation.

The host cities of the tournament were;  Bloemfontein, Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg (two venues),  Kimberley,  Klerksdorp,  Nelspruit,  Orkney,  Polokwane, Port Elizabeth, Pretoria, and Rustenburg.

Some of the stars from the top teams were;

  • Spain- Casillas, Iniesta, Xavi, Villa, Puyol
  • Holland- Robben, Dirk Kuyt, Wesley Sneijder
  • Brazil- Kaka, Julio Cesar
  • Argentina- Leo Messi, Carlos Tevez, Juan Verón
  • Italy- Gigi Buffon, Andrea Pirlo, Fabio Cannavaro
  • Ivory Coast- Gervinho, Yaya Toure, Didier Drogba
  • France- Franck Ribéry, Thierry Henry, Patrice Evra
  • England- John Terry, Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney
  • USA- Landon Donovan, Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard


This World Cup seems to have created as much controversy as any and that stands out when looking back at the standout moments of the tournament.


One of the most controversial moments of the tournament came in the quarter-final between Uruguay and Ghana with the score tied and the whistle about to be blown at any moment. In Ghana’s final attack they were bombarding the Uruguay goal when it looked as if they were finally going to break through before Luis Suarez blocked the ball with his hand before it could cross the goal line. He was sent of and Ghana were given a penalty which could win them the match. Asamoah Gyan missed the penalty though and Uruguay went on to win the match in PK’s after overtime. Suarez made himself the villain in almost everyone’s eyes not for his gamesmanship and the handball, but for how he celebrated like a hero both after the missed penalty and the Uruguayan victory.


The Final between Spain and Holland was not one of the matches of beautiful football of the tournament. Holland seem to have gone into the match with the game plan to kick anything that moves and to not let the Spanish dominate with their passing that they love. It worked well but they should feel very lucky nobody was sent off. The climax of the horrid tacking and fouling came when Nigel De Jong kung fu kicked Xabi Alonso in the chest. The fact that he was not sent of is absurd but that didn’t both the Spanish who went on to win in extra time, despite having the life kicked out of them all game.


The most controversial moment of the whole tournament depending on who you ask came in the England vs. Germany game when Frank Lampard’s shot from long distance hit off the bar and shot down into the goal. The problem was the goal was not awarded and the referees claimed that it didn’t cross the line. This was also a huge deal because FIFA had chosen not to implement goal line technology for the tournament. England fans were and still are raging about it, but maybe it was just revenge for 1966.


A personal one here for me is the last-minute goal Landon Donavon scored against Algeria to send the U.S. into the round of 16. With time running out the U.S. mounted a counter attack which culminated in the ball falling to Donavon yards from the goal mouth. What happened next sent every U.S. soccer fan into pandemonium and is a memory which live forever live in my heart.


The implosion of the French national team during the tournament was a huge storyline throughout. It all started when Nicolas Anelka called the manager a ‘son of a whore’, after their defeat to Mexico. Anelka was subsequently sent home by the manager. However, the team did not agree with that decision and then refused to train and essential went to war with the coaching staff. It was all a huge mess and ended in complete disgrace for the French as they totally ruined their World Cup.


A huge piece of controversy in this World Cup was over the ball which was being used, the Jabulani. Many players and coaches complained that it had somethings wrong with it which caused it to swerve and curve in unusual ways. In many cases this left us with a large number of shots flying wildly astray. However, it also gave us a few wonder goals which have become legends of the World Cup.


Possibly the most defining feature of the 2010 World Cup was the vuvuzelas which rang throughout the stadiums. These sounded like a low buzzing noise when heard on tv. As if the stadium was engulfed by a huge swarm of bees. It makes any game from this tournament instantly recognizable.

The Final


Soccer City Stadium,

July 11th, 2010

Spain vs. Holland

Final Score: 1-0 (Andres Iniesta 116’)

Spain Manager: Vicente Del Bosque

Holland Manager: Bert Van Marwijk

MOTM: Iniesta


3rd Place: Germany

Top Scorer: Thomas Muller (5 Goals)

Best Player: Diego Forlan

Top Assister: Thomas Muller (3 Assists)

Best Keeper: Iker Casillas

Best Young Player: Thomas Muller

Goals per game: 2.3

Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed. Any feedback would be hugely appreciated!

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