Funnily enough, my analysis of these games was pretty much dead-on, and yet my predictions were off. Dammit!
Ecuador 0, England 1. Once again, England doesn't impress, but does just barely enough to get the win. They did look like the heat affected them (Beckham puking all over the place was just the most graphic depiction), but a well struck free kick from Posh Spice's husband was enough to get a score and a win. I think I've said this after every single England game, but I'm going to say again--they need to play better if they want to get any further. Sooner or later, that's going to be true, so I'll keep saying it. Stopped clocks are right twice a day, and all that.
Portugal 1, The Netherlands 0. This game lived up to the advance billing. The Netherlands came up with a great strategy to contain Christiano Ronaldo--spike him in the thighs. Ronaldo left the game in the first half, limping pretty badly. The game was chock full of fouls and cards of all sorts of hues. It ended up finishing as a 9 on 9 affair. Portugal scored in the first half, with a great strike from Maniche. Van der Saar played out of his head to keep it at just one score. As guys were getting kicked off right and left, the field opened up dramatically, and the second half was just a ton of up and down play, stopped for the occasional card. Their were a couple of near full out fights on the pitch, and even Figo head-butted some dude. No Van Nistelroy in this game at all, something Van Basten is going to have to answer for to the Dutch press. And the Portugese are going to have to play England without Deco or Constinha and possibly Ronaldo.