South Africa 2010: Let the football craze begin!

Being too lazy and uninspired to write a decent World Cup post myself, I shall point our readers to a truly funny column by Dave Barry, in the Miami Herald, on football-related activities. One quote:

I truly believe that, even though many Americans say they hate soccer, if they gave it a fair chance — if they took the time to actually watch a World Cup match or two — they would still hate soccer. I don’t know why this is, but apparently it’s not going to change. I’ve given up arguing with guys who tell me how boring soccer is, but will happily spend four hours watching a baseball game in which 97 percent of the action consists of batters calling timeout.

Feel free to use this post as an excuse to share your own football-related witty comments, predictions, pet peeves, vuvuzela imitations, etcetera.

France!

Not a very good game, admittedly, but we’ve made it to Berlin nonetheless.

Considering the level of play displayed by the Italians last night, it will be a daunting task. But then again, so were the two previous games against Spain and Brazil. One can dream. The tens of thousands of people parading in the streets of Paris tonight certainly do.

Start in Cologne.

The New York Times’ Jeff Z. Klein decided to go to Germany early so he could tell his travelling countrymen how to best organize their trip to and through Germany during the football world cup next month. Now he’s all figured it out, and it’s easy: If You’re going to “The World Cup’s World Class Party“, start in Cologne, he says,

“… where the spirit is welcoming and properly fixated on fussball.

“The World Cup is not really for us here,” said Christian, a 40-ish punk musician who was watching the German Cup Final in a tiny bar on Weidengasse. “It’s for all the people coming from around the world.”

Raising his glass of whiskey and laughing he added, “And we’ll be right here ready to show everyone a good time.”

UEFA: Home of the cliche

Earlier today, the draw took place for next year’s European Football Championships (Euro 2004), placing the sixteen teams into four groups:

Group A: Portugal, Greece, Spain, Russia
Group B: France, England, Switzerland, Croatia
Group C: Sweden, Bulgaria, Denmark, Italy
Group D: Czech Republic, Latvia, Germany, Netherlands

The BBC Sport website has a good page detailing all the fixtures for the tournament.
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The dashing of surprise

Earlier in the week, I had planned to write a piece on the Euro 2004 playoffs, celebrating the surprise results in Saturday’s games and wondering if this marked a new equality in European international football.

Luckily for me and my predictive reputation, I didn’t get the time to write it, so I’m not left with egg on my face after 4 of tonight’s results.
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