June 17, 2010 Leave a comment
The opening round of matches in the group phase was completed yesterday afternoon, so we are now exactly one-quarter of the way through the 2010 World Cup in terms of games played (16 out of 64). Here are some random statistics relating to each of the 16 games so far.
20 – South Africa‘s 1-1 draw with Mexico means that the record for host nations in their opening game is now as follows: played 20, won 14, drawn 6. (2002, of course, had two host nations: Japan and South Korea.)
5 – It is the first time since 1986 (Italy 1 Bulgaria 1) that the opening game of the tournament has been drawn, ending a run of five openers without a draw.
3 – The last three games between France and Uruguay have each finished 0-0.
3 – South Korea‘s Park Ji Sung has now scored at three consecutive World Cups.
24 – Argentina had 24 shots in their 1-0 win over Nigeria. Wasteful.
8/10 – England have now failed to score more than one goal in eight of their last ten opening matches at the World Cup.
7 – Slovenia‘s 1-0 win over Algeria was their first win in seven attempts at a major international finals (two World Cups, one European Championships).
4-3-3 – Serbia have now lost all four of their World Cup games, conceding three penalties and accumulating three red cards in the process.
11 – Miroslav Klose scored his eleventh World Cup goal in Germany‘s 4-0 demolition ofAustralia, moving him up to joint-fifth in the all-time list of individual goalscorers.
3 – Last Sunday was the first time in the tournament’s history there have been red cards in three different games on the same day – Algeria‘s Abdelkader Ghezzal, Serbia‘s Aleksandar Lukovic and Australia‘s Tim Cahill.
20 - Holland‘s 2-0 win over Denmark was their 20th consecutive game without a defeat, a sequence dating back to September 2008.
1938 – The last time Holland lost their opening World Cup game (Czechoslovakia beat them 3-0 after extra time).
0 - Japan did not force a single corner in their 1-0 win over Cameroon. In addition, they only had three shots on target in the entire game.
20 - Italy haven’t scored from a direct free kick at the World Cup for 20 years.
12 – Their 1-1 draw with Slovakia was the first time ever New Zealand had avoided defeated in any competition outside Oceania, at the 12th time of asking.
1 - Portugal‘s 0-0 draw with the Ivory Coast – a game which featured just three total shots on target – was the first time they have ever drawn a game in the group phase.
15 – After defeating North Korea 2-1, Brazil have now played 15 World Cup matches against nations from outside Europe and South America and won all 15.
91.8% – Midfielder Felipe Melo completed 90 of his 98 passes in the win over North Korea, an impressive 91.8% success rate.
48 – Chile’s 1-0 victory over Honduras came on the 48th anniversary of their previous World Cup win (16 June 1962 versus Yugoslavia).
5 – Switzerland have kept clean sheets in their last five World Cup games (tying Italy’s all-time World Cup record), dating back to their opening game of the 2006 tournament (0-0 versus France). It is 484 minutes since they last conceded a World Cup goal. Stingy.
2 – Spain have lost just two of their last 49 games – both losses happened in South Africa (2-0 versus USA in the 2009 Confederations Cup semi-final, and 1-0 against Switzerland yesterday).
0 – Total number of goals and assists by Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo, Samuel Eto’o, Wayne Rooney, Didier Drogba, Robin van Persie, Kaka, David Villa and Fernando Torres in the opening round of group games.