1. James Rodriguez Has Scored The Goal Of The Tournament
Remember Maxi Rodriguez’s goal for Argentina against Mexico in Leipzig in 2006? Well namesake James produced something just as good here.
The initial chest control was terrific, but then to unleash such a stunning, crashing volley was truly the work of a genius, and established new Golden Boot leader Rodriguez as easily one of the standout names of this World Cup, in fact…
2. James Rodriguez Could Be The Player Of The Tournament
Never mind Neymar and leave it out Lionel, Rodriguez has been simply sensational throughout his tournament in Brazil, inspiring his teammates and providing the cutting edge to their frequently excellent football, scoring both goals here.
The 22-year-old is a special player, and one that Monaco are likely to have to use all of their financial muscle to keep in the Principality beyond this summer.
3. Diego Forlan Has Played His Last Game On The Global Stage
Thrust back into the team in the much-storied absence of Luis Suarez, Diego Forlan lumbered around the Maracana pitch to little or no effect.
Four years on from his superb tournament in South Africa in 2010 the 35-year-old now looks every inch his age, a shame but an inevitability. He’ll return to Japanese club Cerezo Osaka to live out his days as a professional footballer, away from this Uruguayan side he had such a large impact on.
4. Colombia Will Be Incredibly Tough Opposition For Brazil
After surviving in their own tournament by the pores on the skin of their teeth, Brazil will now face Colombia in the quarter-final in Fortaleza on Friday. It will comfortably be their toughest challenge to date.
With Rodriguez in this kind of form and the excellent Juan Cuadrado pulling the strings behind him, the Colombians can expose the defensive weakness that is so prevalent in the Brazilian team (his name’s David and he’s got big hair) in a clash which promises to be a compelling watch.
5. Not Even Luis Suarez Would Have Saved Uruguay
As he remains on FIFA’s naughty step, the temptation is to believe that Suarez would have turned this game in Uruguay’s favour had he been available to play and not just been the comedy sideshow present only in ‘hilarious’ bite puns and masks on the faces of Uruguayan supporters.
As good as he is, not even he would have been able to help out a side who were distinctly second-best, and now they’re out it would be nice to think that they can focus their efforts on ensuring that the bizarre circumstances their star man put them in in Brazil become a thing of the past.