France Surrenders, or the question of European Football hegemony

France is pretty much toast. England, we’ll find out tomorrow. Spain and Germany have been inconsistent. Portugal may be great, but it’s hard to tell. Meanwhile, Latin America looks fantastic, with Uruguay, Mexico, Argentina, and probably Paraguay, Brazil, and Chile moving on. Poor Honduras was unfortunately stuck playing Chile and Spain.

I bring this up because I heard the argument 4 years ago, when Europe looked fairly dominant in the knockout stage, that the situation would only get worse since the best players in Asia, Africa, and the Americas were going to be playing in the more lucrative confines of Europe, far away from the practice fields of their homelands. They would be unable to foster cohesion and chemistry with their national teams while fulfilling their duties on their European clubs, while the best German players would be merely a train ride from Berlin and the best English players would be a short drive to London, etc. But that doesn’t seem to be playing out very well. The consistent teams are the ones from South America and Mexico while the European teams are either beating up on softies like North Korea and Australia while having difficulty with teams like Serbia, Ivory Coast, Switzerland, and Algeria. I don’t know what this means, other than the pundits in sports are just as shortsighted as those in politics.

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