Saturday, June 10, 2006

World Cup Day 1 Reflections...

For better or worse, this blog will deal almost exclusively with soccer of the next month. Can ya dig it? Fantastico.

First off, Radio Radio is gonna be a fantastic place to watch the games. They got some couches set up. The TV's are coming in fantastic in hi-def. Tufty and Roni are more than happy to be there, (at least on day 1 of 30 some)and the beer is great. Smaller crowds yesterday, but I can imagine as I am stuck at work today the crowds will be larger for England and Monday's US match will bring a great crowd.

I will be at the Monday match, I will be wearing my USA flag like a cape. I hope to see some people there.

Somehow I got interviewed by the Indianapolis Star. I really am interested to see what I had to say.

Germany looked much better than I anticipated. I have no idea how Klose continually scores goals in the World Cup. You don't exactly think of him as a top 10 striker in the world, yet every time that he puts on a Germany jersey he scores goals it seems.

Costa Rica is done. Finished. They looked awful really, they made it interesting for a few moments, I guess. But after seeing Ecuador beat Poland, it looks like my prediction of Ecuador being the second team through from that group will be correct.

Speaking of Poland, that is a team in shambles. When you really don't create a decent scoring opportunity till the 85th minute, in what is virtually a home game for you, against a very suspect Ecuador team, well you're done. They are worst than Costa Rica. They may be the worst team in the tournament.

That said, they beat Croatia last week, so that doesn't bode well for Croatia does it.

Soccer fans are an intersting lot aren't they? They almost seem to do misery better than joy. Take the love hate relationship with the star players on any team. Look at Michael Davies stuff on ESPN. He says about Costa Rica fans attitude before the game, "The Costa Ricans I met weren't much better. Very glum about their star player, Paolo Wanchope. Apparently, he's crap. Of course Wanchope scored two goals. Of course on one he was on the wrong side of the prime meridian and clearly offside, but it made the game interesting, so....

And let me say, I find this hilarious because I have done the same. I do it with Crew players all the time, and any Philadelphia sports icon. But here is the thing, I can say they are crap if I want, cause I support the team. But the minute some talking head or opposing fans says they are crap, I will defend them, cause they may be crap, but they are my crap. And frankly my crap is better than yours, so you have no right to judge.

Another moment of misery for fans...the commentators. Honestly, if you are so focused on Dave O'Brien, Marcello Balboa, or Julie Foudy, I think your focus may be in the wrong place. Get out, go to a bar, chat with friends suring the game, drown out the announcers. Whatever. There is no other sport that I think we complain so much about the announcers.

Personally I think O'Brien is doing a fine job. But I loved Jack Edwards too. And Foudy, I am discussing the game with friends during the half so I miss what she says. That said, it's gotta be better than Wynalda.

Last night on the way home from work, I decided that now that they have 2 albums under their belt Asobi Seksu are in the running for greatest active American band with Sleater-Kinney and a handful of others. And I thought it would be neat if they recorded a US World Cup anthem. Or even a Japanese one. I'd listen to that and love it. And then I realized that somehow that U2 song from all the ESPN commercials (City of Blinding Lights?) has been stuck in my head the whole damn day. And I realized for better or worse, that will always be linked in my head with this World Cup, and almost an unofficial anthem of it. I haven't liked much U2 at all since Pop. But it's hard not to get pumped up when that song comes on, mixed with highlights of the days action.

Is there a worse place to be today than at work, missing all the games?

Is it wring to already be losing sleep over the US game on Monday? I was tossing and turning past 3 am last night. Ridiculous.

Predictions for games I won't see today, until I get home and see 'em on tape. England draws Paraguay. Sweeden 75-Trindad nil, Tobago 1. And I am suddenly feeling more love for those cheating Argentine's. Argentina 3-2 over Ivory Coast.

William Hill betting srvice has 2-1 odds that I will fall apart and check the scores of the games I am taping within the first 25 minutes. Get while the getting is good.

And merry Christmas....