Today at 8 a.m., five-time World Cup champions and perennial favorite Brazil meets the Netherlands, who have neither drawn a game nor been defeated in this tournament, nor in their European qualifying matches that preceded it. This is a quarter-final match-up that is worthy of a final.
Also today, at 12:30 p.m., two-time World Cup champions Uruguay play Ghana, Africa's sole remaining representative in the continent's debut hosting of the tournament.
And tomorrow at 8 a.m., two-time World Cup champion Argentina, faces three-time World Cup champion Germany in another quarter-final match-up worthy of a final. Indeed, the two nations contested successive World Cup finals in 1986 and 1990, with Argentina prevailing in the former and the then-West Germany winning the latter. Argentina is led by mercurial manager Diego Maradona, considered by many the greatest soccer player of all-time, who is vying to become only the second person to win the tournament as both a player and coach. Franz Beckenbauer, a German, is the only one to have managed that feat to date.
Following a couple of rest days, the semi-finals take place at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 6, and 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 7. Tuesday will feature the winners of the Uruguay/Ghana and Brazil/Netherlands matches, while Wednesday showcases the victors of the Argentina/Germany and Spain/Paraguay games.
The third place match happens at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, July 10 and the grand final occurs at 12:30 p.m. Sunday, July 11.
U.S. Soccer-appointed official Soccer Bar Fado, which will be in it until the bitter end, is one of the best places to catch the matches; early arrival is recommended. Fado is at 1730 19th Street in LoDo; go to www.fadoirishpub.com/denver/soccer-cup or call 303-297-0066.
June 11-25; Fri., July 2; Sat., July 3; Tue., July 6; Wed., July 7; Sat., July 10; Sun., July 11, 2010