I hope you've been enjoying the matches, for they've been super, super, super.
A few thoughts, from my parochial American perspective:
- Decisive play! The first 8 matches have all been decisive, not a draw in the bunch.
- And high scoring! It seems like we are seeing much more attacking, much higher level of scoring than I expected
- Good officiating. People will always complain, but all the games I've seen have flowed well, with referees present to keep the matches fair and honest, but not interfering to the point that the referees become a topic worth discussing. Since complaining about the ref is the top thing that soccer fans do, I don't expect this to continue, but it's been a great start in this respect.
- Good conditions. After all the stories about the weather, the state of the facilities, and so forth, the conditions of play have been superb. The fields are well-prepared and the conditions have allowed an extremely high level of play
- No weak teams. The only game that seemed like a blowout was Spain-Netherlands; every other game has been close, much closer than the scores might indicate.
If play continues at this level of quality and excitement, this will surely turn out to be one of the great cups of all time.