World cup 2014
World Cup Diary

World Cup diary: Brazil weeps for Neymar, but team reaped what they sowed

After kicking James Rodriguez off the pitch, selecao have a cheek to castigate Juan Zuniga for rough stuff - maybe they should look at the ref

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 06 July, 2014, 12:44am
UPDATED : Sunday, 06 July, 2014, 4:03am

The fallout from Brazil-Colombia looks set to continue for a while, with Fifa considering taking retrospective action on Juan Zuniga for the knee in the back that ended Neymar's World Cup and sent a nation into shock.

Zuniga's foul wasn't much worse than anything else in the game - Brazil clearly set out with the tactic of kicking James Rodriguez off the park, so can hardly complain - and it's a slippery slope if every foul is going to be punished after the event.

But then again, it's Neymar, in Brazil, so all bets are off.

Zuniga was immediately trending on social media, AFP reports having dipped a toe into the cesspool - and mainly because of death threats and foul-mouthed, even racist, abuse:

'Among the less offensive posts, contributors [sic] called the 28-year-old a ”monster” and the “biggest villain in the history of football”.' 

But surely most of the blame should be laid firmly at Carlos Velasco Carballo's feet, the Spanish referee who seemingly had forgotten his cards, especially where Brazil were concerned.

There were 54 fouls in the game, the most of any game and nearly double the average at this tournament, and for long periods it seemed Brazil could just do whatever they wanted short of actually murdering Rodriguez.

Carballo let 41 fouls go before booking anyone; he lost control of the game by not clamping down on Brazil's rough stuff early on. 

That leniency directly led to players figuring 'anything goes', and thus to Neymar's injury at the end of the game, and the reaction seen in this slideshow of Brazilian front pages:

As the papers (collected by reddit user tellman152 from show, the injury to Neymar has more than dampened the mood in Brazil.

Colombia's papers, some seen here, mainly thank their players for their performance.

But there's no doubt about the best front page of the day - this one from Colombia's Hoy, who go with the bold splash headline, SPANISH REFEREE: SON OF THE MASSIVE WHORE MOTHER WHO BORE YOU!

Inside, the paper rants at considerable length about "Fifa mafia" and basically calls Carballo a criminal. 

Given that Colombians once murdered one of their own players for scoring an own goal in the World Cup, Carballo might want to steer clear of the country for a while. 


Vine of the day

Argentina coach Alejandro Sabella leans back a bit too far after Gonzalo Higuain hits the bar against Belgium

Optimist of the day

Reuters reports on comments from William Ojeda, a Venezuelan politician, who reckons Fifa should give 10 per cent of the profits from the World Cup to the poor.

"It would be stupendous news for the whole planet, which is in such need of good news," he said. "Fifa, which earns so much money from the organisation of the world event, should demonstrate with actions that its vision is not only monetary, and should channel at least 10 percent of its profits from the World Cup to help poor countries."

Yeaaaahhhh ... let us know how you get on with that, Bill.

Welcome (back) to the jungle

Colombia's exit might also be a blow for the government's hopes of luring Marxist rebels out of the jungle.

According to Bloomberg, the country's Defence Ministry has been airing adverts on television enticing the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc) and National Liberation Army (ELN) out of hiding to join in the team's success.

“Guerrilla fighter, how can you miss the world’s biggest spectacle?” the ads ask. “Colombia is saving a seat for you so you can enjoy the world’s biggest football party in freedom.”

Farc and ELN have been fighting the goverment since the sixties. As well as the adverts, the Defence Ministry has been encouraging twitter users to promote desertions using the hashtag 'I'll save a seat for you'.

Hmm ... nah, you can keep that seat, we're heading back to the jungle now.