May 10

Pop World Cup 2010: First Semi Final – Honduras 1 Germany 2

FT/14 comments • 792 views

Touching distance, now. It’s the semi-finals and, of all the matches in the Pop World Cup, the semi-finals are the most tense. The stakes feel high: win, and you’ll soon savour the feeling of running out in the biggest pop football game of all; lose and you’ll join the club – that stupid club – of teams who’ve experienced the anti-climax of the third place play-off. Strange things can happen under this kind of pressure…

This match closes at midnight on Sunday 6th June

HONDURAS Los Bohemios – “Romantico Suicida” The Manager Says: “Unbelievable scenes here Jeff, who’d have thought it, really this is beyond our wildest dreams. Now that we’ve calmed down a bit we thought we’d go for something a little more classy against such a strong team as the Germans, hence Los Bohemios, an eclectic side who like to mix up their influences and bring ska, reggae and, as you’ll hear, salsa to their reggaeton beats.  Might be a touch wobbly up front, but the midfield have plenty of silky skills and I think at this stage of the competition any team can beat any other, Brian.”

GERMANY: De-Phazz – “What’s the Use Of” The Manager Says: “I promised I’d have something different for the semis, and I have. Have some lounge jazz/drum and bass fusion. I know carsmilesteve has been boasting on Twitter about how Honduras are going to beat Germany but to me that kind of braggadoccio just shows insecurity. We’re confident enough at this stage that we don’t need to worry about beating the other side, just playing the best game we can…”

Semi Final 1: which track do you prefer?

  • GERMANY - De-Phazz 53%
  • HONDURAS - Los Bohemios 47%

Total Voters: 59

Poll closes: 6 Jun 2010 @ 23:59

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Commentary Box Analysis Both players have stylistically side-stepped again: Andrew H, while side-swiping at his opponent’s “talking, talking”,  fields a side who mix up the styles with some fizz, employing a Cuban pace and formation with an energetic, banjo-driven midfield. Have they enough upfront, though, in terms of hooks or vocal stylings? We’ll see. Carsmile Steve wrongfoots everybody by stepping away from his tried-and-tested seam of reggaeton, moving also into a loungey salsa – initially it seems that their passing formation may be so neat as to fall into syrupiness, but there seems to be a bit of grit in the spine of their team and there’s some great stuff being played in an assured back line.

So this is not the game we were expecting, and not a game we’re keen to call at this stage. The press box is buzzing with grumbly hacks who wish that either of these Cuban-flavoured numbers had come up against Castro the Destroyer – we love it when an analysis writes itself.

Coming up The second – and last – semi-final is an all-African affair, pitching Matt DC’s Nigerian steamroller against Weston Debevec’s Cameroonian rollercoaster.


  1. 1
    lonepilgrim on 31 May 2010 #

    Both sides make a tentative start, afraid of losing rather than expecting a win. The pace picks up for Germany with the introduction of Banjo but their front man appears a bit lost at times.
    Honduras are more positive but may be too relaxed. Fortunately their back line remains solid throughout.
    It’s a fascinating game and too early to call a winner just yet.

  2. 2
    thefatgit on 31 May 2010 #

    Just when we thought Honduras had a cast-iron formula for victory, they pull out a plan B, perhaps in anticipation of a ruthlessly efficient Germany side. Whaddaya know? The Germans have a plan B of their own. Both sides play cautious tippy-tappy stuff, but Honduras settle into their rhythm early. The midfield banjoes of ze Germans seem to wrest possesion from the Hondurans at will, but there’s a long way to go in this game. Who’s going to blink first? A few more listens of both tracks might help me decide.

  3. 3
    Birdseed on 31 May 2010 #

    Germany cost me a winning bet at Eurovision, I’m not voting for them here.

    Plus their track reminds me of Rednex and the Honduran track is actually good.

  4. 4
    shedders on 31 May 2010 #

    Not sure what the hell’s going on up front but the German backline has the merest hint of Krautrock so that just tips it for me.
    Honduras are taking a chance fielding this kind of track straight after Eurovision when cheese fatigue could come into play.

  5. 5
    Matt DC on 1 Jun 2010 #

    Strange and surprising that both teams have fallen back on loungey formations here. Could Honduras’s PWC fairytale REALLY take them all the way to the final? On this evidence, yes – both sides are pretty evenly matched but that means it only takes one brass section setpiece to put Honduras in dreamland.

  6. 6
    flahr on 1 Jun 2010 #

    Tough game, this. Every time I thought I didn’t like the German track, something happened to make me start liking it again. I think it comes down to the penalty shoot-out here, and in that case die Deutsche are just a tad too Pearl-and-Dean so I have to put the Hondurans through.

  7. 7
    Tom on 2 Jun 2010 #

    There’s been some criticism of the German front man but I think he’s doing a decent job here, holding up play and giving his side a bit of shape. Honduras definitely make a better first impression but I found myself checking the timing on their track well before the end – never a good sign. Germany keep it short and sweet and while I wouldn’t like to see this hoedown big-beat formation up against either of the other semi-finalists it’s good enough for a vote here.

  8. 8
    Tracer Hand on 5 Jun 2010 #

    Got to be Germany, that song is bonkers!!

    Who would have thought that country music would sound better cut up and with 20 percussionists added to it? Hang on, EVERYTHING sounds better cut up and with 20 percussionists added to it.

  9. 9
    jeff w registered on 5 Jun 2010 #

    It’s one match too far for Honduras. Whilst the Germans are getting stronger and stronger as the tournament nears its climax, having finally adapted to the hot conditions. No contest for me, this one.

  10. 10
    Tim on 6 Jun 2010 #

    This match ends at midnight – vote now (if you haven’t already)!

  11. 11
    lonepilgrim on 6 Jun 2010 #

    Having hung on to the last minutes of normal time in a close fought match it’s Germany who win this for me

  12. 12
    Jonathan Bogart (but as they say logged out innit) on 7 Jun 2010 #

    Honduras would probably have won in my affections no matter what Germany played, but a truly massive romantic rumba easily dominates over a sloppily cut-and-pasted piece of nonsense. I enjoyed Germany while I was listening to it; but I wanted to hear Honduras again and again.

  13. 13
    Tim on 7 Jun 2010 #

    Having squeaked through to the semi-finals by the narrowest of all possible margins, Germany progress again in a match almost – but not quite – as tight. The Germans were shocked by a goal from Honduras in the first few minutes, but many in the commentary box felt that Honduras were sitting back on their lead too much, and in the second half progressed the Germans began to pour forwards, driven by the relentless energy of their banjo-based midfield. A goal on the hour seemed to give them fresh legs, and another after 80 minutes broke Honduran hearts.

    Well done to both teams! We’ll be seeing them both again, although under rather different circumstances.

  14. 14
    CarsmileSteve on 7 Jun 2010 #

    oooooooooooooooh, so so so near…

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