Saturday, June 17, 2006

More World Cup

The US tied Italy today 1-1 in our second match of this World Cup.

It was an exciting but frustrating game--the referee threw out three players. One of the red cards (given to Italian player De Rossi) was deserved; the two given to American players were suspect.* I prefer games where the players are more important than the refs, but this was still a nail-biter.

The US played really well today, especially for being two men down for most of the match. Our players controlled much of the action until the card-fest started, and they played disciplined, tough soccer as the exhaustion crept in seventy, eighty minutes into the game. I suspect the team would have won if the ref had let it keep its players on the field.

Ghana beat the Czech Republic today, which makes the US's group really complicated. The Italians have 4 points, the Czechs and Ghaneans have 3, and we have 1. There's no guarantee that if we win our next (and final) group game we'll make it to the elimination round, but there's a real chance.

NEXT GAME: Thu., June 22, 10 a.m. EST (ESPN).

* My evaluation of the red cards isn't just me being jingoistic. The BBC said this: "De Rossi disgraced himself with a sickening, needless elbow on Brian McBride and was given his marching orders. It was the undoubted low point of a World Cup that has tried so hard to entertain."


At 5:10 PM , Blogger fifa2006 said...

Chinese World Cup blogger racks up 10 million hits
from Yahoo News 16 June,2006
BEIJING (Reuters) - Beijing blogger and podcaster Dong Lu registered his 10 millionth hit on Friday morning, racing to the landmark on the back of China's obsession with the World Cup.
The 36-year-old's irreverent take on soccer's showpiece, produced with the help of three friends in the living room of his apartment on the northeast outskirts of Beijing, has proved hugely popular with China's on-line audience.
Sporting a multi-coloured Afro wig and a fake moustache, Dong presents
a podcast every other day featuring caricatures of leading players, parodies of the many soccer-themed adverts on Chinese television and the occasional song.
"We do it for fun, out of passion for football," Dong, looking suitably bleary-eyed after another all-night session in front the TV watching the action from Germany, told Reuters.
"The World Cup is a great event for everybody whether from small countries or large ones, rich or poor."
Dong is no media outsider, however. He covered the 2002 World Cup as a journalist and still finds time for his day job as a columnist with a weekly sports paper.
Some have suggested the reason for the enormous popularity of sport and showbiz blogs in China is because they allow people to talk freely.
"In sports journalism there is relative freedom of expression and we can give our opinions about a match and other sporting issues," said Dong.
"In other fields such as the social and political arenas, there are regulations. I've spent 10 years working in the media and I understand the line that can never be crossed.
"There are many other interesting things in life for me to talk about. It's about fun, not trouble."
Dong started his blog last November to air his views on life, music and his love of soccer.
"At first I wasn't sure if anyone would be interested," he said. "But it took off after a month and the start of World Cup finals has brought an extra 100,000 hits a day."
Like many China, whose team failed to qualify for the finals, Dong is backing Brazil and his yellow number nine shirt signed by Ronaldo is never far from view.
"Someone offered to give me a car for it," he said. "But I turned them down."
Asked what his wife thought of him turning their apartment into a television studio, Dong laughed: "She's very supportive of what I do. I'm her superstar."
Dr Han (Super football fans)


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