Posts Tagged ‘Soccer’

Zinedine Zidane is one of the sport’s greatest ever players. Let’s watch as he destroys the spirit of a youth academy player…

It’s times like these when you want to delve into the archives and celebrate great moments in the sport. Here’s Elizabeth Lambert playing a match against Brigham Young University…


This weekend Wayne Rooney scored the goal of the year, maybe the decade, to help Manchester United beat their bitter rivals Manchester City. To quote the singing fans at Old Trafford, “I saw my mate, the other day he said to me he’d seen a white Pele. So I asked who is he? He goes by the name of Wayne Rooney.

Most Americans were overheard saying, “I really don’t like soccer, and even I’m impressed.”

Something tells me the game did not go according to plan for Milicic Darko. You could say his honesty is refreshing, or you could say this is the greatest example of being a sore loser ever! Serbia have qualified for the World Cup, which is only a week away now, and let’s hope there are no refereeing mistakes in their games. The press conferences could be interesting to say the least. Also, check out the tongue-in-cheek Xenophobe Guide to hating all 31 US opponents at the World Cup below. It’s safe to say it is written by an American Fan.

LINK: Check out a Xenophobe’s Guide to Hating All 31 USA Opponents at the 2010 World Cup

Spooky, what’s wrong with you?!
You’ve been watching football for three weeks and forgot to feed me…what’s wrong with you, man?

I guarantee that amongst all the slick big budget SA 2010 ads you are likely to see in the build up over the next 2 weeks, MTV have produced the strangest.

Check out Nike’s ‘Write The Future’ World Cup Ad. If this doesn’t get you in the mood for the FIFA World Cup nothing will. Bring it on South Africa. We are ready.

“Fifa has admitted that South Africa is not yet ready to host the 2010 World Cup, with just over three months to go before kick off. In a fractious news conference Fifa secretary general Jérôme Valcke said the main venue in Johannesburg, Soccer City, was yet to be completed, and 700,000 tickets for the tournament were still unsold. Out of a total of 3 million tickets, 2.3 million have been sold, raising fears of half empty stadiums at some of the lower profile games. He also expressed frustration at media speculation over the state of England’s proposed training camp which is also incomplete. “If the question is ‘Could we host the World Cup tomorrow morning?’ the answer is no,” Valcke said on Tuesday after a team workshop meeting in Sun City. “We have 108 days – it seems short, it is short, but even if we have to stay awake all night, every day we will be ready by the time of the World Cup.”

It must be kept in mind that Jérôme Valcke is French and a secretary. This is a bad combination. The key point in these comments is that according to Valcke SA is not ready but will be. His comments came after a feisty exchange with reporters about the state of several training camps. Valcke, who joined the England coach on his tour of the complex, said: “The rooms are there – there is a welcome desk where you can pay, a breakfast area where you can eat.” He said an Irish company who are “experts in grass” are working on two of the training pitches. Irish people and weed. Another bad combination. I was under the impression that areas where you could play soccer were more important than breakfast requirements and welcome desks for training facilities but maybe I am misreading these quotes. Don’t worry because Fifa has been assured that the medical facilities will be built on time. Otherwise throw them some energy drinks and tell the overpayed stars to brush themselves off and get on with it.

South Africa has had to fight sceptism directed towards its ability hold a successful and safe tournament since it won the right to host the event. Questions have continually been raised on crime levels (high), corruption (high), transport (poor), stadia (incomplete), Eskom’s reliability (power failures) and those noisy and pointless vuvuzelas which many international viewers have asked to be banned. They won’t be and that’s fine. South Africa is a noisy place and it adds local flavour to the games even if players can’t hear calls on the field or their coaches. Didn’t you know colourful plastic trumpets are an important part of African tradition stretching back thousands of years before plastic or trumpets were even invented? The atmosphere will be buzzing with excitement, irritation and confused players. A great recipe for exciting television. What would be the point of taking the World Cup to Africa, and then trying to give it a European feel? Then again, they are not musical instruments and noise is noise no matter the location or culture.

The bottomline is that, ultimately, it is FIFA’s responsibilty to make sure the tournament is successful. The host nation has busted its ass to build beautiful stadiums in trying circumstances and should be commended for being ‘almost there’ in terms of readiness.
In my opinion, Fifa’s biggest concern should be referee errors and controversial calls during the tournament. Too many matches in recent years have been ruined by mistakes. Not to mention Thierry Henry’s blatant handball to cheat Ireland out of a World Cup place. Did I mention the Fifa secretary general is French?
Fifa remain adamant that technology will not be brought in to assist the referees and so all football fans can expect another tournament influenced by incorrect calls. I hope I am wrong in this regard but most fans know it is part and parcel of the game these days. The modern game has changed, sped up and players dive and cheat. Referees clearly need assistance in such high profile games to make the correct call or at least be afford a quick chance to review a major decision. The question is, has Fifa changed with the game?