Arsenal World Cup Match Day 10: Eboue’s Elephants Downed By Samba Boys

Three live matches a day.  Plus at least one match a day on DVR for your player reviews.  It’s enough to start dreaming football, and not in a good way.  Sure enough I had a rather strange one the other night involving Joe Strummer, Smithy from “Gavin and Stacey”, the away stands at Wigan and a girl on her daily run who delivered a handwritten message to me from Arsene Wenger while I was waiting for the bus.  I might need therapy after that dream.  In any event, yesterday was Father’s Day, and while I’m not a dad myself, I do have a dad and decided to spend a football-free day with him.  OK – maybe it was the dream that scared me away from footie, but Happy Father’s Day anyway.

Match Day 10 had Emmanuel Eboue’s Cote d’Ivoire facing the tall task of Brazil.  Despite starting the injured Didier Drogba, it was always going to be a test to show against the Samba Boys.  The match opened with some decent probing by each side, but nothing too threatening.  A free kick from Drogba on 12 minutes was boomed into the stands, taking out a beer vendor in the 20th row.  Brazil seemed content to absorb on defense and work the counter for much of the early going.  Louis Fabiano opened the Brazilian account on 25 minutes with a quality strike into the top of the net from a tight angle.  Nice ball work by Brazil preceding the goal.  Neither attack was able to gain extended traction as the first half ended with Eboue’s men a goal down.  Fabiano doubled Brazil’s lead on 50 minutes by creating his own opportunity in the box.  Fabiano controlled possession, worked through a couple defenders and finished expertly.  There could have been two hand balls called on Fabiano on the play, but neither was whistled.  The Cote d’Ivoire defense completely fell asleep on Brazil’s final goal.  Kaka led play down the left side, then sublimely slotted a pass into the box to be finished off by a near unmarked Elano on 62 minutes.  Drogba put in a consolation header on 79 minutes for the first ever African goal against Brazil in World Cup play.  Two late, controversial yellows on Kaka saw the Samba Boy sent off and Cote d’Ivoire tested, but the match was well in hand as 10 man Brazil moved into the Knockout Stage with the 3-1 win.

Cote d’Ivoire

Eboue Quiet As Elephants Fall To Brazil

Arsenal man Emmanuel Eboue took his second start for the Elephants of Cote d’Ivoire yesterday against mighty Brazil.  Early doors saw Eboue with some standard right midfield work, cleaning up wayward passes and the like.  He did manage to make a nice run on 12 minutes, bobbing and weaving his way through the Brazilian defense to draw the foul and free kick after being hauled down.  A promising free kick from the left side by Eboue on 16 minutes was met by a coterie of bodies around the keeper, who punched away safely.  Emmanuel made an enterprising run and took a long range effort on goal just shy of the half, but it was wide of the mark.   Eboue again fired wide of the net, garnering little more than a wave of the hand by the Brazilian keeper as it went by on 57 minutes.  Nearing 70 minutes, former Arsenal man Kolo Toure played in a nice through ball for Eboue in the box, but it was collected well by the net minder before a final touch was made.  A relatively quiet evening came to an end on 72 minutes as Eboue was subbed for Romaric.  Not great yesterday, but not poor, either.  Just not a lot of involvement for Arsenal’s #27.

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Football Nomad is South Africa bound!  Andy makes the flight to SA today, so be sure to check out his exclusive coverage as the World Cup continues.  Germany V Ghana, Portugal V Brazil and a knockout stage match will feature in upcoming coverage.  Get yourselves over to Football Nomad sharpish for all the latest videos, commentary and craziness.

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Have your say on Arsenal’s participation in the World Cup by leaving a comment.



  1. Admittedly I didnt watch the second half, but I thought eboue was great in the 1st! He was playing a bit further forward than perhaps he’s suited to, but he kept attacking their defence, won a few freekicks and put in a lot of challenges. Definitely IC’s best player in the 1st half. Shame about everybody else imo 🙂

  2. It would have paid a good dividend if erricson played him in wide wing possition rather than at the middle.ebue has pace to pernetrate at the brasilian defence and create opporturnities.

  3. @ Larryking –

    I agree. Eboue is most effective when played out wide. He’s been sat in left central midfield most of the time, splitting between laying a bit deep in support of the defense and having possession near the top of the box centrally. He’s had few opportunities to drive directly at the defense, which is what he does for Arsenal, and that creates opportunities for lay-off passing and chances in the box. I don’t want my write ups to sound overly negative of Eboue because he hasn’t played poorly at all. But he’s not been involved a whole lot and he hasn’t been a featured player in the attack, really. Believe me, I’d LOVE to have enough highlights from one of these matches to really give him props…but… 😉

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