Julio's Corner

The Euros and Copa America

June 24, 2024 Julio From New York Episode 4
The Euros and Copa America
Julio's Corner
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Julio's Corner
The Euros and Copa America
Jun 24, 2024 Episode 4
Julio From New York

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My thoughts on the Euros and Copa America. 

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My thoughts on the Euros and Copa America. 

Creative Commons License:

This show is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Support the Show.

This is Julio's Corner, my corner of the internet, where I talk about whatever is on my mind.

Usually, I'll talk about TV shows, movies, or whatever new content has taken my interest.

This episode is being recorded on Sunday, June 23rd, 2024.

Today's episode is going to be jam-packed with sports, specifically the most beautiful game or the beautiful game.

We are talking the Euros.

We are talking Copa America, which began this past Thursday for this opening weekend.

So yeah, there's been a lot to enjoy and absorb, and we're going to discuss.

And seeing as I like to keep these episodes within a 30-minute time frame, more or less, I am going to focus on mainly the teams that I am enjoying the most, the ones that I'm looking forward to to see how they'll progress.

So we're going to start with Germany.

In last week's episode, I did mention that they had already played the season, not the season, but the Euro opener, as they are the host country, and they completely crushed Scotland 5-1.

I believe was the score.

So Germany continued their dominance with their second game, in which they had a 2-1 win against Hungary.

So with those two wins, they automatically have six points, and they're the dominant one in their group, and they already qualify for the next round.

They can lose the next match and still get in.

But obviously Germany is not going to do that.

They're the host country.

They have some German pride, and they will probably win the next game.

I mean, at worst, they might tie.

I think that's the worst-case scenario they're looking at.

They don't want to lose any games, because they want to show that they are a tour de force, and as the host country, they are the ones to watch out for.

That's what I believe is their inclination.

Moving on, as I mentioned, Scotland had a horrible defeat by Germany, and so their next match was against Switzerland.

And sadly for Scotland, the best they could do was eke out a tie.

So Switzerland now is second in the group, because they won their first match, and they tied their second against Scotland.

So Germany is up at first place in the group with six.

Switzerland has four.

Scotland only has one point, because all they have is a tie.

They have a loss and a tie.

So they definitely need to win the next match in order to have a possibility of surviving.

Because in the Euros, you can get into the knockout rounds at third place.

So Scotland has quite a steep hill to climb.

So moving on, I think Germany plays Switzerland next.

Yeah, exactly.

They beat Scotland and they beat Hungary.

So their next match is going to be against Switzerland.

So Scotland has to hope that Germany beats Scotland so that Scotland can then win their next match.

I'm guessing it'll be Hungary because they already played Germany and Scotland.

So if they beat Hungary, they get four points.

They'll tie Switzerland with four points.

However, because of their 5-1 spanking, they have a much bigger goal differential than Switzerland.

So Switzerland will still eke out a second place scenario in that instance.

But because they'll have four points, that'll still make Scotland a much better third place contender than other people in their groups.

And that might give them a chance.

Unless, of course, Switzerland also has a 5-1 beat down by Germany, in which case now Scotland and Switzerland will be just neck to neck.

But anyway, moving on to the next group.

Portugal had a...

I mean, they won their first game against Chechia.

They managed 2-1 win, but it was a bit disappointing.

They looked out of sorts, and that was unfortunate.

They did win their second game, and I did not write it down, because it was today, or I should say it was Saturday, Saturday night, but I watched it at midnight, so Sunday.

So it was one of the more recent matches that I've watched.

So bear with me as I look it up.

So yes, Portugal won against Turkey.

They had a 3-1 or 3-0 win against Turkey.

So they definitely had a better second game than they did their first.

So Portugal is much, much happier, and they're the dominant team in their group.

They got their six points because of the disappointing win against Cecia, but a much better turnout against Turkey.

So good news for Portugal their second time around.

So France had a, for France standards, they had a substandard 0-1 win against Austria.

They just did not play as dominant as they were expected to play or with the same type of, well, yeah, because they were the finalists at the last World Cup.

So they're expected to be a much, one of the favorites to win the Euros.

So they just didn't really show up against Austria.

And also, sadly, Mbappe broke his nose in this match.

So that was unfortunate for the French team.

And so they had a much weaker roster in their second match against the Netherlands.

And that resulted in a 0-0 tie with Mbappe sitting out that game.

So now they're going to have a third match against whoever is going to be.

And of course, the question is, will Mbappe play with his protective mask on?

Or what's the situation?

But right now, France is not looking as promising as they should have.

So it's been very disappointing.

Speaking of disappointing, England had an OK match against Serbia.

They had a 1-0 win against them.

But it just looked like they were out of sorts.

And it just wasn't...

They were only...

I mean, because on paper, they have a pretty great squad.

You have Jude Bellingham.

You have Harry Kane.

You have Foden, who plays for Manchester City.

You have Walker, who plays defense in the back.

He's also from Manchester City.

You have a bunch of Manchester City players.

Stones, I think, is the other one.

And several well-known talents from the Premier League.

And these old guys happen to be British.

So perfect.

They play for England.

So everyone's expecting, because of the potential of these players, individually, hopefully, they can meld as a team and be dominant and have a promising chance of winning the whole thing.

But those expectations have not been met.

And a lot of critics are saying it's because the coach or manager or director, whatever you call them, in the beautiful game, he isn't playing his players to their strengths.

He has his own game plan, regardless of what the strengths or weaknesses of his players are, and they just have to match his program versus setting up, accommodating and making a game plan that works in favor of the talent that he has on his squad.

So we'll see.

Did I mention they only had a 1-1 tie against Denmark?

So if not, yeah, their second game ended in a 1-1 tie with Denmark.

So once again, in the first game, it was Jude Bellingham who scored, and within the first 15 minutes, so everything looked promising, but then they just fizzled out.

And the second match was the same thing.

They were doing well in the beginning.

Harry Kane scored, and then they fizzled out, and then Denmark was able to rally and tie the game.

Now, Italy.

Italy was fun to watch against Albania.

They came out with a 2-1 win.

They were dominant most of the game.

They had great control.

The way they played was fun to watch.

It kept me deeply invested and entertained.

And I was looking forward to their second match, which we will talk about in a moment.

So, yeah, they had a dominant 2-1 win against Albania.

And they could be...

I think they could be the dark horse for the Euros, because Italy hasn't really been all that dominant in recent years, but it looks like they're due for a comeback.

However, foreshadowing, we shall tell you...

I'll tell you what's going to come up.

So, the next game was Spain against Croatia.

Now, Croatia did really well in the World Cup, and I think they did great in the previous Euros.

I believe it was Argentina that eliminated Croatia in the semifinals.

So, they had the same World Cup squad from the last World Cup.

So, that's the good news.

The bad news is they're a much older team from two or three years ago.

They don't have any younger talent, and so consequently, they're weaker this year because other teams have gotten younger players and better players from the previous tourney.

And it shows because Spain came in with a nice young squad.

I don't think they were that good last Euros, and they definitely weren't that good in the World Cup.

But this time around, they destroyed Croatia 3-0, and it wasn't even close.

The whole game, they were just dominating the whole game, and Croatia just never really...

I mean, they had a few opportunities to score, but Spain just was relentless in their defense and their offense.

And yeah, it was a fun match.

So I was looking forward to their second game, which was against Italy.

And sadly for Italy, Spain was just too dominant.

And it ended in a 1-0 score.

However, Spain could have easily won 5-0.

That's how relentless and unwavering their attack was against Italy.

Italy had maybe a handful of opportunities where they were on the other side of the field with a chance to score.

But the Spanish defense was just too much for them and able to regain possession of the ball.

And they just had a lot of corners, they had a lot of strikes, and the ball was always on Italy's side.

And I give Italy all the credit to their defense in managing to pull out with just a 1-0 loss, because it easily could have been far worse than what it was.

So Spain won their first two games.

The first one was against Croatia and then Italy, so they have six points in their group, so they're ahead of every one.

Italy now only has three, because Italy won their first match, but they lost to Spain.

So now Italy's next match is against Croatia, which I think will be an easy win for Italy, because the way Spain destroyed them, I think Italy could come out with a 1-0 win against Croatia, just because Spain is just much more superior to Italy.

But that aside, the way Italy played against Albania, I think they have a good shot, because I believe Albania had a tie against Croatia.

So Albania and Croatia are relatively on par with each other in terms of skill level, and Albania got beat by Italy.

So if Italy had a relatively easy 2-1 win against Albania, they'll probably have about the same ease of...

It should be just as easy, I should say, against Croatia.

And Albania is pretty much going to be eliminated, because their next opponent is going to be Spain.

So Spain will probably rest most of their players, because again, like Germany and Portugal, they have their six points, so they can take it easy.

But I'm sure they're still going to want to do more than just tie.

So Scotland, Albania, and Croatia all have one point, and they're all trying to fight for third place contention, for four points to try to get in.

So out of those three, Scotland has the best chance, because who do they play again?

Let me go over my show notes here.

All right, Scotland plays Hungary.

So Hungary, I mean, they're no slouch, but I think Scotland can best Hungary, whereas Albania is going to play Spain, and Croatia is going to play Italy.

So Italy doesn't want to get eliminated in the first round of the tournament, so they're going to play all out.

So that's going to crush Croatia.

Sadly, Croatia is going to have an early exit, unless they pull up an upset, but I don't see that happening.

And Albania, Spain is not going to go easy on them.

They have something to prove, and so Spain is going to win that match.

So Scotland really better play all out against Hungary if they want to advance to the round of 16 teams, I believe it is called, that's what they call it.

So those are all the teams that I care about in the Euros.

Turkey, you know, I didn't really follow them.

I think one of their games was in Fubu, but the other game was against Portugal.

So that's the only reason why I saw that game.

And yeah, it was a 3-1 win by Portugal.

Sadly, there was an own goal in that match that was kind of sad for Turkey.

And also, that same player got like a yellow card, which I think it was his second yellow card.

So he's not going to even be able to play the third game in the next match that they're going to have.

He's not going to even play.

But on top of that, he got an injury that might have taken him out of the third game anyway.

So that guy had a pretty bad day.

But anyway, let's move on to...

I went a lot faster on this than I thought I would.

But anyways, on to Copa America.

So as I mentioned, Copa America began Thursday.

So it's 8, 12 a.m.

Sunday right now as I'm recording this.

So there's only been three matches.

There's been a match on Thursday, there was a match on Friday, and there was a match on Saturday.

Actually, I think Saturday had two matches.

So yes, Saturday was two matches, and I think there's two matches today.

I only really pay attention to the first match.

Actually, I did see...

I skimmed through the other ones.

So the first match, the opener of the Copa América was Argentina against Canada.

And Argentina had a 2-0 win.

It wasn't their best performance, but they were clearly dominant against Canada.

Canada, despite the fact that it was 2-0, they did their best.

They weren't slouches.

And they had...

They put up a fight.

I mean, the score doesn't represent it, but they did put up a fight.

It took a lot of attacks for Argentina to get those two goals.

It could have been a lot worse had the goalie not been as dominant as he was, had the defense not been as good as they were to constantly take the ball away from Messi.

But definitely the goalie.

The goalie stopped at least, I want to say, three.

I think it was either two or three possible goals that Messi could have scored himself, that the goalie stopped.

So that alone could have made it five-nothing.

There were maybe two others.

But that aside, even though Messi didn't score, he got two passes that made for those two goals.

The first one, he threw it to...

He passed it to...

I forget the guy's name.

And that guy was blocked.

But then the rebound went to Julian Alvarez, who plays for Manchester City, and he got the score.

And then the second was to...

The second was an assist to Messi.

So the second goal, Messi definitely contributed to on paper.

The first one, he didn't get the assist, but he definitely put the ball in the right direction that resulted in the goal.

So yeah, it's definitely apparent.

It's definitely apparent that Argentina is the team to watch out for in the Copa America for now.

Among who the other ones are, we don't know.

Now, Mexico played against Jamaica, and I didn't watch the game in its entirety.

I just watched the highlights because I saw the first...

Well, as I was recording it, I accidentally opened it up while it was still live, and it was at the half, and it was a 0-0 tie.

So I'm like, okay, I'm not going to watch the whole thing because I know Mexico is not that good.

And the fact that 45 minutes have gone by and it's a 0-0 score, it's not going to be a pretty match to watch.

And I don't want to...

My time is limited, especially on Saturdays because I have laundry to do and all this stuff, so I'm not going to waste too much time on it.

And so yeah, so I saw the highlights, and Mexico did score a goal in the second half.

So they squeaked out a 1-0 win against Jamaica, but it wasn't pretty.

And it just further cements that Mexico is going to have a long road ahead of them.

And the chances of them doing relatively well are not promising.

Now the other team that I really want to watch is Colombia, but they don't play till Monday, so I got to wait out on that.

The US does play against Bolivia tonight, so that game will happen sometime later today.

And Brazil, which is the other team that I'm going to pay attention to, is also playing on Monday against Costa Rica.

That should be an easy win for Brazil, but based on what Ronaldinho is saying and other critics, that this is not a strong Brazilian team, who knows?

But it's Costa Rica.

Costa Rica is always the best team in Central America for the most part.

They're the ones that usually make the World Cup, or in this case, the Copa América, but they don't really amount to much, other than the fact that they're the only ones in their region that make it to the tournament, only to get eliminated very early on.

So Brazil should not have a challenge with this game, any more than the US should have a challenge against Bolivia.

Those are two relatively weak teams, but we shall see.

Colombia, on the other hand, they're playing against Paraguay.

And Paraguay is going to have an old Luis Suarez, who plays for Inter Miami, along with Messi.

But he still knows how to score, even though he's up there in age.

He still can get the ball in the net.

And in general, Paraguay is a relatively good team, them along with Uruguay.

But Uruguay doesn't, I don't think...

No, Uruguay is actually in it, but they're in a different group.

But anyway, regardless of Uruguay, Paraguay is going to play Columbia Monday.

That's the game I'm really going to look at with bated breath because I'm nervous, because Columbia is the team I go for.

For those of you who don't realize, if you look at the cover art of my podcast, it's the colors of the Colombian flag with an old New York City subway token that doesn't exist anymore.

Back in the day, in order to use mass transit, the subway or the buses, you would use that New York City subway token, which is no longer in circulation.

So that is the cover art of my podcast.

It's the Colombian flag with the New York City subway token in the middle, because those are the two representations of me, my being.

I am Colombian-American, and I'm also a Native New Yorker.

So those are the two things that make up my persona, and that's my cover art.

So anyway, Colombia is the team I root for, even though they never win it in the end.

I'm hoping they have a good chance this time around.

I'm hearing good things about Colombia.

This game will definitely be a good indicator of where they will go in this tournament.

I mean, the favorites are Argentina and Brazil, but they're saying Brazil isn't great this year, and they are in the same group as Colombia, unfortunately, for Colombia.

So I'm really hoping that Brazil isn't strong this time around.

So Colombia has a good chance, and hopefully if they do well and they end up facing Argentina in the end, I hope Colombia shows up and shows out and doesn't let the prestige that follows Argentina get to them.

Because they generally, when they play against Brazil or Argentina, they buckle under their aura or pressure or whatever because of what they represent.

Argentina is generally one of the stronger teams from South America, as is Brazil with the most World Cup wins of the World Cup, I should say.

They have more World Cup trophies than any country in the world.

So, yeah, so those that...

And Argentina has the second most.

I think they're tied with Germany.

And of course, they won the last one.

So, actually, by winning the last one, are they tied with Brazil?

Let me see it because I haven't kept count.

How many World Cup...

Oops, typo.

OK, so Argentina only has three.

And Brazil, of course, has five.

So, yeah, so this is the rankings.

Brazil number one with five.

They won in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, and 2002.

And those first three was with Pelé, who I think is the greatest player of all time.

Though people seem to have forgotten about him, and they're saying Messi, because even though Messi only has one World Cup, which he got in 2002, 2022, I should say, he has all the accolades of winning all the Ballon d'Ors, playing in the Liga in Spain, probably in Champions League and all those things, which, if you look at history, and sadly, Pelé did not have that opportunity, because in his time, you played in the leagues of your country.

So Pelé stayed in Brazil for the majority of his career up until he was close to retirement, and then he came over to the US and played for the New York Cosmos, because he was past his prime, and it was time to cash in on his name.

So anyway, Brazil has five, Germany is in second place with four, Italy also has four, and Argentina has three now.

So they won in 78, 86.

86 was with Maradona, and 2022 with Messi.

Italy won 1934, 1938, 1982, and 2006.

And Germany was 54, 74, 90, and 2014.

I remember that game, 2014.

That was...

I think that was against Brazil, actually.

But anyways, I digress.

We are going past...

We're getting to the 30-minute thing.

So yeah, I'm rooting for Colombia against Paraguay.

Brazil should win against Costa Rica.

And that's pretty much it for the Euros and Copa América.

And that wraps the show.

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Copa America