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World Cup, Brazil 2014: Day 17 Open Thread. Brazil vs Chile, Colombia vs Uruguay

Shit gets real. It's Knockout round time, penalties loom. Fun.

Party poopers!
Party poopers!
Quinn Rooney

Alright, a day to breathe and recuperate, and hey TFC and New York did an admirable job of filling in didn't they? Quality play, attacking intent, 4 goals that were all different but all very well worked in their own way. Much better than expected.

Anyway, back to the World Cup, and it's win or go home time (or win and stay home I guess if you're Brazil, but whatever). The group stages were great, can the knockout round possibly live up to it? Yes and no, there's a different dynamic at play now. More importance, more tension, everything on the line might well mean more caution and less skill out there, but whatever happens from here on in, every match will have drama, the potential for extra time and maybe penalties, and a team being knocked out at the end of it. Win or lose, no ties, no good effort, no lose but hey we're still in good shape in the group all together, just straight up survival of the fittest, the sort of thing Ann Coulter and co can surely get behind.

First up at 12 eastern, it's Brazil vs Chile, which theoretically should be a cracking match, and a step up from any challenge the Brazilians have faced so far. They weren't all that impressive, Neymar aside, during the group stage, whereas Chile did well to get out of a tough group, before a curiously weak performance against the Netherlands forced them to settle for 2nd place. I could seriously see this going both ways, but at the same time I can't quote see Brazil going out this early, I just hope there's no refereeing controversy in their favour to stoke disillusion with the whole process.

After that at 4 Eastern, it's Colombia vs Uruguay. Colombia should be favourites here, especially with Luis Suarez now unable to bring his own unique brand of mayhem into play. Without him, Uruguay looked toothless (hey-oooooooooooh!) against Costa Rica whereas Colombia have looked very very good against everyone so far. I'd be stunned if Colombia don't go on to set up a very mouth watering quarter final clash against Brazil.

So far the South American teams have seriously impressed. Now they get a whole day entirely to themselves. This should be fun.