Final verdict - War-Torn Berlin
OK, so all my bets were wrong, Argentina failed, Lionel Messi hardly got a look-in, England turned out to be predictably poor and midfield maestro Zinedine Zidane did the unthinkable, showing that a Frenchman really can defend themselves if called upon. But what a tragic way to finish such an illustrious footballing career. A tragic end for arguably the greatest player of his generation.
Italy has won the World Cup, emphasising the nice guys finish last scenario, what with the spectre of match'fixing haunting the Azzurri men, with the result of their domestic strife set to come to a swift conclusion in the coming days.
In truth, the final was a pretty big anti-climax, OK there were two goals but neither side, predictably had that killer instinct in front of goal. There were lots of half chances, missed placed passes and flying footballers to call it a truly great final. Afterall, it finished nin the jmost cruel of ways, by dreaded penalties. In fairness, the French probably did enough throughout the game to deserve to win it but they couldn't find that final ball all the extra couple of yards needed to get in front of the last defender. When ZZ got sent off it just brought French frustrations to a head, no pun intended.
From an English point of view. It really will be interesting to see how the national side will be shaping up over the next couple of years. What with the like´s of David Beckham, Sol Campbell and Gary Neville sure to retire from International football before the next World Cup to be held in South Africa and the resurgence of Aarron lennon, Stewart Dowining and Owen Hargreaves - the Euro Championships in two year´s is sure to matk an interesting transition period for the three lions with Steve McClaren at the helm.