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Archive for the ‘Soccer’ Category

Diego Maradona Head is Awesomely Frightening

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Maradona Head

Would calling the above guy’s haberdashery choice the “Head of God” be too disrespectful? If so, I don’t want to be right. Oh, and for those of you who aren’t convinced Diego Maradona is bigger than life, he has soccer fans wearing facsimiles of his head equaling the size of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade floats, therefore, your argument is invalid.

Maradona Head

That should be plenty of nightmare fuel for you, dear reader; especially if you are rooting against Argentina.

Carlos Tevez’ Amazingly-Brilliant Goal

Tevez Goal

While his first goal remains mired in controversy, there’s no denying the second goal scored by Carlos Tevez was an absolutely amazing goal. In fact, it might just be the goal of the World Cup, with no offense to folks like Siphiwe Tshabalala or Lukas Poldolski.

Now that, friends, was an absolute blast. For as controversial as his first goal was, Tevez’ second goal was just as brilliant.

In other news, Argentina/Germany looks like must-see TV. While that side of the World Cup bracket has teams like Spain and Portugal remaining, it’s hard not to see the winner of Germany/Argentina making it to the World Cup final.

FIFA Laughs In The Face of Replay Requests

No Goal

It was another piss-poor weekend for FIFA referees. From allowing goals from players who were clearly offsides to disallowing legitimate goals, it wasn’t the best performance from the group of officials tasked with overseeing what’s was supposed to be fair and just contests. In light of these disappointing calls, FIFA is again under fire for their unwillingness to implement some kind of replay initiative which would double-check questionable on-field calls, especially goals.

While there seems to be hope for future World Cups — “(There were) some decisions that were not good. (But) we have no time to implement changes immediately. That can occur for the World 2014.” – FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke — the 2010 version is going to continue as is: with no replay.

In fact, FIFA isn’t stopping there. Instead of implementing some kind of double-check system, FIFA is nixing the idea of replay completely, all the way down to the in-stadium video replays that show the fans whether the correct call was made on the field. The Worldwide Leader has more:

FIFA will censor World Cup match action being shown on giant screens inside the stadium after replays of Argentina’s disputed first goal against Mexico fueled arguments on the pitch… FIFA spokesman Nicolas Maingot said Monday that replaying the incident was “a clear mistake.”

Not only will they not review any questionable plays, FIFA is going to hide whatever on-field mistakes were made by officials from the fans by controlling the in-stadium playback. Granted, this won’t have much impact on fans watching at home, but the fact remains, at least in 2010: FIFA would rather enjoy the controversy instead of getting it right on the field.

Meanwhile, teams like Mexico and England are left wondering what if. What if the correct call is made on Carlos Tevez’ first goal? What if Frank Lampard’s goal was correctly allowed? Would either of those results be the same?

Don’t Try To Save Darth Vader Penalties

The Dark Lord of Sith as been something of a fixture during the 2010 World Cup; well, at least his franchise has. First, there’s the Adidas Originals/Star Wars commercial mash-up that makes liberal use of George Lucas’ golden child. Now, we have a what appears to be a Mexican telecom offering their various digital services, while capitalizing on the popularity of the World Cup and the never-ending recognition the Star Wars franchise carries. All things being equal, if I had a master of the force in my lineup, it would never come to penalties. I’d simply camp him out in the midfield, launching those force-controlled blasts that would render the goalie useless.

If that fails, there’s always lightsaber-powered destruction as an ace-in-the-hole.

H/t to Guyism for the find.

Oh, and here’s Part 1, in case you are Star Wars completist.

Simply put, I fully support the addition of Darth Vader to any team I root for.

Invisible Wayne Rooney?

Invisible Wayne Rooney

I’m sorry for doing this, but after the Sarah Palin/3 Invisible… meme, I just couldn’t resist. Oh, and if anyone actually knows the fan I’m making fun of, please tell it’s nothing personal. Wrong place/wrong time, and all that.

Algeria Has Some Sore Losers


After today’s late-game loss, some Algerian players weren’t feeling too friendly with the press, and so one player, Rafik Saifi, decided he’d slap Asma Halimi in the face. For Saifi’s troubles and piss-poor attitude, he got slapped back by Halimi, who also caught his lip with her fingernail. You know, good measure and all. According to Yahoo Sports, the two have a history dating back to an article she wrote before the World Cup.

“She was standing there and the guy came here and he hit her,” said Francisco Aguilar Chang, a reporter from Guatemala who witnessed the incident. “Then she hit him back and her nail caught his lip.”

Saifi and Algerian football association officials refused to comment when quizzed by Yahoo! Sports.

After watching ESPN’s gut-wrenching expose about the treatment of lesbian soccer players in Africa, I can’t say I’m incredibly surprised by Saifi’s actions. Is that short-sighted of me? Perhaps, but that doesn’t mean all African men view women with a degrading viewpoint. If, however, you are from an area known to subjugate women, one can see how negative attitudes could easily permeate to the point where slapping a female journalist seems like a good, acceptable idea.

Thankfully, Saifi’s disrespect didn’t go unnoticed or unanswered.

H/t to Mike Hayes and Steady Burn for the find.

Landon Donovan Broke The Internet

Landon Donovan

Not only did Landon Donovan put himself in a position to be the leader of the free world, his extra-time World Cup-saving goal also caused such Internet traffic spikes, he single-handedly knocked Yahoo Sports off the air, Internet-wise, anyway.

Reaction to his goal also “fail-whale’d” Twitter, but that’s par for the course with that thing. The reason for these malfunctions? Traffic.

Lots and lots of traffic.

In the minutes following Landon Donovan’s game winning goal in the 91st minute of action (which sent the US to the round of 16), traffic spiked to 11.2 million visitors per minute, which moves the event past the 2008 presidential election as the 2nd highest traffic spike of all-time… The plethora of World Cup breaking news briefly knocked Yahoo Sports offline…

Who says Americans don’t like soccer/football/futbol? Just ask Jack, Evan and Biz about how Twitter handled all the excitement.

Landon Donovan For President!

Landon Donovan

By scoring perhaps the most dramatic goal in the history of US Soccer, Landon Donovan, with one touch of his right foot’s instep, secured the US’ World Cup advancement to the knock-out round of 16, vaulted his team to the top of Group C, all while preventing the setback of the US soccer movement by years, if not generations. Yes, Donovan’s game-winner was just that big. After 90-plus minutes of a nerve-racking 0-0 tie, the United States finally broke the seal. Once the goal was confirmed by the referee — not a sure thing by any means for the US so far — you could feel a sense of relief, mixed with exaltation.

Again, Donovan’s game-winner was just that big.

To quote the superior English soccer announcers, “brilliant.”

If the Presidential election was held today, Donovan would be a considerable opponent for any nominee, regardless of the political party they represented.