Thoughts on Guillermo Ochoa and more World Cup stuff
The games in the World Cup are picking up some pace and the first round of fixtures have already been completed. Yesterday saw the Golden Belgian team take to the pitch against an Algeria side that was clearly weaker than the Europeans on paper.
Belgium seemed to be in bullish mode against their Northern African opposition but Jan Vertonghen foolishly impeded Sofiane Feghouli in the box. The Valencia attacker picked himself up and dispatched the penalty past Thibaut Courtois. The Algerians tried to apply some information they’d studied from the Jose Mourinho best seller, “Parking the Bus for Dummies” but their efforts were undone when Kevin de Bruyne’s inch-perfect cross was headed home by Maroaune Fellaini. With 10 minutes to go, Belgium instigated a swift counter attack from Eden Hazard and the winger threaded a neat defense – splitting pass to Dries Martens. The rest they say was history.
Fabio Capello and his Russian side took on South Korea in the late fixture and it was somehow awkward seeing a Russian team in an international competition without Andrei Arshavin in the team but it just goes to show that the only constant thing in life is change. Both sides shared the spoils of battle giving the group an interesting outlook.
The game of the night was the clash between the hosts, Brazil, and the thorn in their flesh, Mexico. As recently as August 2012, both nations played in the London Olympics final, albeit at Under-23 level, but the central Americans got the gold thereby extending Brazil’s wait for a gold medal in the football competition.
As expected, the expectations were high for the host nation and they actually turned up but their attacking efforts were quelled by some outstanding goalkeeping from Guillermo Ochoa. The shot stopper was relatively untested in the win over Cameroon but he knew that he had to have a stormer to keep Brazil at bay and boy, did he put up a magnificent performance.
He made some terrific saves from headers from Neymar and Thiago Silva. He also had to make himself big to stop Paulinho and David Luiz.
Which brings me to the bone of contention. Guillermo Ochoa is currently a free agent after a three year spell with Ajaccio in the French Ligue 1. He began his career in América in 2004 and was their custodian between the sticks for so many years before taking a punt to Europe in 2011.
While at Ajaccio, Ochoa featured consistently for the French outfit making 112 appearances and he had his fair share of outstanding performances in the course of his career with the club. After three seasons, Ochoa’s time with the club was up and he has been a free agent this summer.
He probably set a target of getting a new club for himself with some good performances in the World Cup and in the games he has featured he has been a valuable asset to Mexico.
With Ochoa available on a free transfer this summer and Lukasz Fabianski already on his way to Swansea, would Arsenal swoop for the Mexican for him to serve as Wojciech Szczesny’s back up goalie?
He’s 28, agile and he has the reflexes of a cat. And most importantly, he’d be cheap since he’s gonna cost nothing.
Well, it’s just a random thought tho.