To round off an almost-energetic night, this will be the final blog feed for tonight to mark an astounding day that blew us all out of the water. Today’s matches have been great, but let’s hope that tomorrow’s matches are much better than ever, and that the matches tomorrow are something for us to remember. As always, I will use BBC Sport to copy football commentator‘s quotes over, plus an inclusion of my own thoughts on the match as it unfolds.
Honduras 1-2 Ecuador
Jonathan Jurejko: “Lively start from the Ecuadorians with ex-Manchester City, ahem, hero Felipe Caicedo in the thick of the action. He lets rip with two shots in the opening seconds, one gulped up by the hands of Honduras keeper Alexander Dominguez and the other blocked by a white shirt. Oooh! Ecuador almost grab the opener, before Honduras hit back instantly with a chance of their own. Felipe Caicedo muscles clear to set up Frickson Erazo on the overlap and his teasing cross is cleared at the second attempt by the Honduras defence. Play quickly swings up to the other end as Carlo Costly goes close but is left short-changed by Ecuador keeper Alexander Dominguez. I’ll get my coat. Early booking for Honduras defender Victor Bernadez after he scythes down his Ecuadorian opponent. The 25-yard free-kick looks a tantalising prospect as the Ecuadorians discuss their options. But it goes to waste as Cristhian Noboa’s effort crashes back off the the wall of white shirts, with Walter Ayovi skewing the rebound woefully wide.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Never mind the goals and drama – one of my favourite things about this World Cup has been catching a glimpse of the retina-burning fancy dress outfits in the stands. My early favourite from this match is the Ecuador fan wearing ‘joke’ glasses and a yellow, red and blue Mohican wig. He looks like a colour-blind punk rocker.”
Former Wales Striker John Hartson: “Honduras need to get into the game, they play 4-4-2 and they rely on their strikers, but Ecuador play 4-1-4-1 and are in control. I’m expecting a lot more from Antonio Valencia of Manchester United, I felt he was a bit quiet the other day against Switzerland and I’m expecting more from him.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Honduras striker Carlo Costly looks like he is chomping down on a blue straw – what a cool dude. Surprised that isn’t breaking a Fifa safety regulation. Anyway, he lets fly from distance and Ecuador keeper Alexander Dominguez watches the ball go into the stand behind his goal. What a miss! Ecuador striker Enner Valencia – no relation to team-mate Antonio – is a man on fire in front of goal, having scored five in his last five internationals. But the 24-year-old blows a golden chance after some route one football. He latches on to a big lump forward from the back, but slashes his shot wide under pressure from Honduras defender Emilio Izaguirre.”
John Hartson: “That was a terrible miss, it was also terrible defending from Honduras but Enner Valencia really should have scored there.”
GOAL!!! HONDURAS HAVE SCORED (COSTLY – 31′)
GOAL!!! ECUADOR HAVE EQUALISED WITH A 1-1 SCORE AGAINST HONDURAS (VALENCIA – 34′)
Twitter Debate: #bbcworldcup
Some Body: How many immediate responses have there been in the World Cup so far?!
Plenty. Two immediately spring to mind in Group D…
Jonathan Jurejko: “This a thronker of a free-kick from Honduras defender Victor Bernardez! The San Jose Earthquakes man almost causes a huge ripple inside the Arena De Baixada as his thunderbolt of a free-kick arrows towards the corner. But he is denied by Alexander Dominguez’s flying save.”
2ND HALF KICK OFF!!! NOW THE FINAL FRONTIER PUMMELS DOWN ON BOTH TEAMS, MEANING THAT IT’LL BE INTERESTING TO SEE WHICH OF ONE OF THESE TWO TEAMS WILL GET THROUGH AFTER THIS MATCH COMES TO AN END.
Jonathan Jurejko: “Australian referee Benjamin Williams is putting in an impressive display with the vanishing spray. Bet he’d be handy with a can of spray paint on a rusty old car. Unfortunately Ecuador aren’t as impressive with the set piece from the left channel, the Honduran defence heading clear with ease. Ecuador threaten again as Cristhian Noboa slashes wide from distance, before the South Americans win a corner…Walter Ayovi’s delivery from the left side is headed clear by the Hondurans, who also deal with another set-piece moments later. Difficult one to call this. Both sides are holding their own, but each side look a little shaky at the back.”
John Hartson: “The way the second half has started is a little bit messy. I’d like to see more from Antonio Valencia, he should stand out, a player of his quality should be shining in games like this.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Now it is Antonio Valencia’s time to stand out. Er, for a crude challenge on Boniek Garcia which lands him a yellow card. Big let off for Honduras, and Maynor Figueroa in particular. The Hull City defender lunges in on Ecuador’s burly forward Felipe Caicedo, who steals march on his marker as he races into the box. Figueroa doesn’t appear to get a toe on the ball, but escapes with conceding a corner.”
John Hartson: “That’s a penalty for me, he gets nothing of the ball. Figueroa did well to get back, but he brought him and down and that should have been a penalty. He did not get anything of the ball, if Figueroa is going to ground he has to get something of the ball. To his credit, Caicedo was trying to stay on his feet.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Now it is Honduras’ chance to go close. Forward Jerry Bengtson, who was their goalscoring hero at the London 2012 Olympic Games with three strikes, has a go with an angled drive that flicks off the boot of an Ecuadorian defender. Alexander Dominguez is equal to it though. Jerry Bengtson sticks the ball into the onion bag again – and again he is denied. But there is certainly no doubt about this one because the Honduras striker is yards offside.”
GOAL!!! ECUADOR JUST SCORED WITH A 1-2 GOAL STRIKE AGAINST HONDURAS (ENNER VALENCIA – 65′)
Jonathan Jurejko: “End-to-end stuff as Ecuador press forward – and they get their reward! Enner Valencia shrugs off his marker to find space and meet Walter Ayovi’s pinpoint free-kick with a thumping header. That’s the Ecuador forward’s third goal of the tournament. If he fancies a summer move from Mexican side Pachuca then he’s going the right way about it. Shop window time.”
John Hartson: “Honduras defensively clearly have not done their homework, it was a cardboard cut out of Ayovi’s goal in the first game, it was exactly the same kind of goal. We’ve spoken about Ayovi’s poor delivery tonight, but that was a pinpoint cross. And Antonio Valencia has woken up, he’s getting angry, winning corners and is getting involved more.”
Twitter Debate: #bbcworldcup
Pat O’Hara: Decent game this. These games sometimes are. No rules apply, though, judging by the tackles. We all love a good 80/20.
Tony Munky: That was such an England goal – why didn’t we score any of those?
Jonathan Jurejko: “Curitiba is rocking to the sound of Ecuadorian ecstasy. And there is not a Sash record in sight. Thousands of supporters have made the journey across South America to Brazil and they are getting their money’s worth in the Arena Da Baixada tonight.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Slight blemish on Enner Valencia’s evening as the two-goal Ecuadorian hero picks up a yellow card for needlessly kicking the ball away. Bit of trivial gold for you here. As a child, 24-year-old Valencia milked cows and then sold the milk in his rural village in order to pay for his first pair of football boots. Money very well spent. There are some glum Honduran faces in the Curitiba crowd as they watch Maynor Figueroa thump a long-range free-kick high over the Ecuador crossbar. But then they raise a smile when they spot themselves on the stadium’s big screen. Ecuador defender Frickson Erazo virtually manhandles Carlo Costly in the penalty area, but plastering both hands over the Honduras striker does not prove, er, costly.”
John Hartson: “Erazo is all over Costly there. If that is not a penalty, I don’t know what is. That was a bear-hug, Erazo made no attempt to get the ball. The referee has to be braver to give it.”
Jonathan Jurejko: “Get it in the mixer! Honduras defender Victor Bernandez lumps a deep free-kick into the Ecuador box which is headed clear to the feet of Roger Espinoza. The Wigan midfielder, with the hammer of a left foot, lurks menacingly on the edge of the box, but sees his drive bravely blocked. Ten minutes to go for Honduras to save their World Cup dream.”
Twitter Debate: #bbcworldcup
Daniel Woodley: Quite often tonight this game has resembled a rugby match. Feisty, physical and two very aggressive teams.
Jonathan Jurejko: “Enner Valencia is clearly a man thriving on confidence, sizing up a long-range free-kick. It must be 35 yards out! He hits the target but it is an easy save for Honduras keeper Noel Valladares. Honduras defender Maynor Figueroa is known for pulling a ‘worldie’ out of the bag now and again – and he almost obliges on the biggest global stage. The Hull man smashes one goalwards which dips and swerves towards the top corner, before nestling on top of the Ecuador net to the relief of keeper Alexander Dominguez.”
John Hartson: “The Ecuador manager must be turning even greyer, because the number of times they could have slid the ball down the side to the centre forward and instead they are trying to play it out from midfield and defence. They are 2-1 up with three minutes to go!”
Jonathan Jurejko: “The Ecuador fans rediscover their vocal chords to cheer their side over the finish line. Four minutes of added time to go. Classic time-wasting tactics from Ecuador boss Reinaldo Rueda. Gabriel Achilier trots on for Jefferson Montero. Ecuador striker Enner Valencia wheels away in delight after bagging his hat-trick – but his smile is wiped off by the referee’s whistle. Not sure why that is disallowed, perhaps the official gave handball against Antonio Valencia in the build-up. Puzzled expressions all round. But it matters little – Enner Valencia’s brace is enough to give Ecuador a vital three points!”
FULL TIME!!! THANK YOU FOR VIEWING THIS BLOG FEED AS THE MATCH UNFOLDED. TODAY HAS TRULY BLOWN US ALL OUT OF THE WATER, AND WAS ALSO ANOTHER ENERGETIC NIGHT. I WILL CONTINUE TO PUBLISH MORE BLOG FEEDS LATER TODAY.
THANK YOU FOR VIEWING THIS BLOG FEED :-).
More to follow…