Re: World Cup Predictions

1

I predict -- headbutts and kung fu kicks having been tried -- somebody will get a red card for launching a fireball.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 7:51 AM
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launching a fireball

This phrase must have at least one definition in urbandictionary.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 7:55 AM
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How about the odds of Sepp's fate? As President for Life he can die of old age in office, get eased out and sent into exile to the French Riviera, get Saddam treatment*, the Qaddafi one, or maybe go the Assad route and stay in power over a sea of ruins.

*Why isn't that ever considered in discussions of humane execution methods? Presumable getting your head literally ripped off in one quick yank is pretty quick, and it would make for great visuals.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 7:59 AM
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For those about to detract value
Ogged salutes preemptively refutes you.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:00 AM
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I can't wait to hear crowd noise at World Cup games. I was too busy to watch the 2006 one so it's been over a decade for me.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:01 AM
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Is that a joke, Ned? 2010 was South Africa and the vuvuzela, which is possibly the worst noise in the world, so a lot of people watched the games on mute.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:02 AM
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Presumable getting your head literally ripped off in one quick yank is pretty quick

Like this?


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:03 AM
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6: No, that's what I mean. At this one you'll be able to hear some dynamics in the crowd, happiness, disappointment, singing, etc. instead of a constant buzzing for the entire match.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:04 AM
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I had to look mine up. Spain over Brazil. Overall mine is pretty boring, but I have Portugal over Argentina (counting on the Hand of God to be involved in choking rather than directing balls this time around).

Brazil clearly has the most to lose on many fronts. Argentina winning being the worst scenario--decades of gloatage at stake if they win it inBrazil.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:05 AM
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Yeah but this isn't a prediction so it slides around the narkiness ban right?

http://www.reddit.com/r/britishproblems/comments/22osn0/as_the_fifa_world_cup_approaches_the_antifootball/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VF_uOgyBK1c

I usually don't mind the World Cup actually but having trouble mustering interest this year.


Posted by: conflated | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:10 AM
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I predict shitty conditions will be a factor somehow or other. Also that at least one game will become a Herzogian test of man against nature.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:10 AM
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11: Wait, they let a team of hungry grizzly bears play this year?


Posted by: conflated | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:11 AM
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Group of Death, B, D or G?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:11 AM
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Also, that both predictions in 11 will come to pass for England's game on Saturday.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:11 AM
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11, at least they managed to drag the stadium over that mountain to get it to Manaus on schedule.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:12 AM
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I predict that at least 12 of the teams in the round of 16 will not have to survive the group of death.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:12 AM
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I predict simmering workplace conflict between the Euro-weenies and the townie secretaries over the setting of the office television.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:13 AM
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I take no joy in having pwned ned in making my own joke explicit.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:13 AM
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15: ++


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:19 AM
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18:I see that I misplaced my accolades. You're just too subtle, Sifu. I'ms ure you get that a lot.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:21 AM
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But wait, are we adding or detracting value here?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:22 AM
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Croatia could beat Brazil tonight. I predict England - Italy will be a draw.

It does look like some of the stadiums are ... not good.

https://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/blogs/the-rio-report/images-abound-unfinished-world-cup-stadia-amid-safety-102455035.html


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:22 AM
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22: Yes, so much pressure on Brazil; it will be interesting to see how they react.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:26 AM
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So many teams are set up to press this world cup, but the heat will make that very hard.

I predict a bunch of European teams to underperform, and a Brazil-Argentina final.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:28 AM
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"In and around the changing rooms, naked power cables could be seen dangling from the walls. According to reports, outside the stadium workers were still applying a final coat of asphalt, while several security doors could be seen in their packaging, still waiting to be fitted."
There's going to be some horrific accident that either kills a member of one of the sides or results in them becoming a supervillain.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:32 AM
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[value detracted]


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:35 AM
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Apo never misuses a bracket.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:37 AM
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or results in them becoming a supervillain.

Who can shoot fireballs! My god, we've figured it out. And then obviously they have to set up a lair in Manaus because, hi, middle of the damned Amazon.

Shit, it'll be Rooney, won't it?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:37 AM
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I'm rooting for the striking airport workers, and delighted to not be saddled with an entire fucking year of cable just for the WC because luckily we'll be in the UK for half of it so the fam decided to skip a cable subscription.

Also, there is a not bad rendition of Ravel's Bolero on the vuvuzela (sp?) by brass section members of the Berlin Phil floating around youtube.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:40 AM
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"During warmups Oliver Zelenika acquired the ability to run at 200 miles an hour and jump 10 feet in the air, skills that could have helped Croatia get out of the group stage if he was registered as an outfield player instead of a keeper".


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:43 AM
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Also that at least one game will become a Herzogian test of man against nature.

And the crowds are dragging steamships on to the pitch! They think it's all over! [agonised scream] It is now!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:48 AM
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Wait, they let a team of hungry grizzly bears play this year?

It gives a new meaning to "group of death"

My upset is Italy beating Spain in the quarterfinals, then losing to Argentina in the semis. I hope Italy wins the thing, but I doubt that's going to happen. Realistically I see Argentina winning, since they have home continent advantage without home country pressure. I originally had the US out at the group stage, but I'm thinking that a time zone/hemisphere advantage might get them past Portugal. Now I've got them going out to Belgium in the final 16.


For man vs. nature, I predict an unprecedented level of whinging from the English team about having to play in the tropics. I recall the team blaming a previous flameout at an international tournament on "hot" (30 C) weather.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:59 AM
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My God, I am so excited about this World Cup, and yet I have to wait until this weekend to watch most of the matches. It is going to be impossible to avoid the results online.

Di Maria is one of my favorite players, too. (It is a rotating cast and features a lot of players whose faces appeal to me. So, unscientific, is what I'm saying.)


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 8:59 AM
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34

What's the over-under on number of reporters injured by riot police? If you took the under on "1", you've already lost.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:00 AM
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re: 32

30C _is_ hot. If you spend your entire sporting life playing in the northern hemisphere, in winter. That said, it's the job of the team to prepare for that, but there's no doubt it is an advantage for those teams used to it, and a disadvantage for those who aren't.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:01 AM
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36

it'll be Rooney, won't it?

At last, the supervillain with hairplugs we've all been waiting for!


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:03 AM
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37

Ah'm mad fer it! Mad fer it! Cahm down cahm down.

[ZAAAAPPPP]


Posted by: Opinionated Super Rooney | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:04 AM
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38

Yeah I don't know that "spending three hours running at top speed during the heat of the day in the middle of the Amazon is difficult for me, a person from England" counts as whiny, exactly, so much as self-evidently true.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:04 AM
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35: the thing that gets me about all the "oh the South American teams have an advantage because of the weather" preemptive whinging is, uh, where do most of the South American players play?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:05 AM
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40

I think England might do unexpectedly well. I might even hold out for the semi finals.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:05 AM
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41

I checked and 30C is only 86 regular. That's something even Canadians are able to adjust to.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:05 AM
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41: humid as fuck, though. Saturday looks to be sunny with a high of 91 and 52% humidity in Manaus. Plus, they'll all have malaria.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:07 AM
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43

Oh wait the game isn't until 6PM. I take it back. Total whiners.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:09 AM
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44

Going with the superhero team, the Brazilian squad already includes a guy called Hulk.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:09 AM
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My biggest issue with blaming your loss on the weather implies you're the only team experiencing those conditions. It's not like the one side gets 30 C and other gets 22 C. If the weather disproportionately affects one team's performance, then they didn't prepare properly. In which case, they should blame poor preparation. Manaus is going to be a shitty place to play, but it's going to be equally shitty for all teams.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:10 AM
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42.--And then there are the spiders.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:11 AM
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47

Don't forget decapitating the ref.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:12 AM
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30C _is_ hot. If you spend your entire sporting life playing in the northern hemisphere, in winter. That said, it's the job of the team to prepare for that, but there's no doubt it is an advantage for those teams used to it, and a disadvantage for those who aren't.

The teams used to it:
USA
Mexico
Honduras
Costa Rica
Colombia

Every other team supposedly from a hot country is mostly made up of players who spend their lives playing in Europe, I think. Except Ghana. That damn Asamoah Gyan's decision to leave Sunderland for somewhere in the Middle East means he'll be even better this time.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:12 AM
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re: 40

They are in quite a tricky group. They could easily go out at the group stage, or, as you say, make it to the semis. I quite like bits of the current team, though.

re: 41

It gets above 30 degrees, er, not much here. Temperate climate, and all that. We don't get the extreme cold that the US or Canada gets, but it also never gets that hot either. The average high temperature, for the hottest month of the year, is under 74F, in London, which is one of the warmest parts of the UK.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:13 AM
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50

And afterwards everyone will retire to the opera. (At this point I think we just have to carry on bludgeoning the joke into submission.)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:15 AM
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51

49

Right, but if you're going to be playing in South Africa or Brazil, or even on the continent, you should prepare beforehand to play in weather above 20 C degrees. It's not like there isn't advance warning. And plenty of other teams from cold places manage to do ok in warmer climate tournaments, or at least if they don't they don't blame it on the weather.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:16 AM
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At this point I think we just have to carry on bludgeoning the joke into submission.

I'm sure I have a rubber hose around here someplace.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:16 AM
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Hopefully this will be the year that Ogged's tactics guide allows me to view the sport as something more than dudes run around for 90 or more minutes and very occasionally score at random while Mini-driving yuppies/Mexicans/other legit and semi-legit foreigners yell. Value added.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:17 AM
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54

I might even hold out for the semi finals.

I thought it was a rule of the competition that England went out in the quarters.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:18 AM
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playing in South Africa
Even the English didn't whine about the weather in the South African Winter, right?


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:20 AM
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re: 51.last

Sure, and my understanding is that, given the limitations imposed by when the domestic season ended, that's more or less exactly what they* have been doing.

* who I don't support, just in case you think I'm being partial here.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:22 AM
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38: the game is 90 minutes long, barring the unfortunate overtime, which only lasts 30 more. So you're only off by 50-100%


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:22 AM
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53
You forgot to mention the short shorts. That's a huge part of why I enjoy watching soccer.

Interestingly, 538 has Uruguay and England making it out of group D. My guess is they didn't factor in that Italy tends to overperform at major tournaments while England tends to underperform. They have Uruguay winning the group. I predicted Italy and England to make it out, so we'll see.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:22 AM
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59

57: I was counting stoppage time.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:24 AM
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49.last: I understand that it doesn't get over 80F there very often. I just think that 30C is in the range of temperatures for which acclimatization ought to be relatively easy, especially for an athlete. I'm not sure where the upper bound of that range is, but certainly below 40C.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:25 AM
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59: hahaha, no. Not even for ManU. Maybe you've confused soccer with basketball?


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:25 AM
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62

You think it won't add up with the piranha attacks? You really aren't taking this seriously.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:27 AM
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63

It ends with Wayne Rooney alone on a raft with a bunch of monkeys.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:32 AM
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"Italy tends to overperform at major tournaments"
The more TV cameras there are, the more motivated they are to make the flops look extra-authentic.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:33 AM
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63: all shooting fireballs


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:34 AM
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63: more like a monkey alone on a raft with a bunch of Rooneys.


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:35 AM
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67

Fireballs?


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:48 AM
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68

Final match: Iran vs. Australia: 6-6. Australia wins on penalty kicks.


Posted by: Always Right | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:56 AM
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69

65: fireballs?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:59 AM
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70

Brazil have had more time to acclimatize than European teams, and they've all played in these conditions many times before. Chile and Argentina won't be helped by the climate I don't think.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:07 AM
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According to this, it takes about a week to acclimate, and you can do it more or less efficiently. Part of the advantage players from hot countries might have is probably psychological: they remember playing in these conditions and not dying. So, some advantage to hot-weather countries!

That said, if Bob Bowman or Bill Belichick were the coaches of any team, I'd bet on that team being unaffected by the heat. Surely other countries have sado-military coaches, but I don't know them, and mostly they seem to wear nice suits.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:20 AM
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72

Maybe Brazil should have to wear velour while playing. Just to keep things even.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:21 AM
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71: Klinsman seems to be rather unstinting when it comes to fitness. Apparently part of why he took the stance he did with Landon Donovan.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:25 AM
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Apparently part of why he took the stance he did with Landon Donovan.

LD's never not been up for the WCF, and was known as a physical freak for all the years he was involved in every other stage of the USMNT. Coach knows he's still got more craft than almost any of the other attacking players, and in particular is one of our best counterattackers.

So he takes a leap on Brad Davis and a player whose pro experience is mostly in the 4th division in Germany vice someone who's a) always shown up for US in WCF and b) has a history of doing things like crushing the beep test and c) actually can read the necessary counterattack pass?

Just doesn't make sense.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:29 AM
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74: I agree. At least as a mid-to-late game substitute.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:39 AM
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76

75: comity.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:42 AM
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77

We had fun with it last time around though I am obvs not a big sports fan. It was easy in NYC, though. You'd walk into any bar or restaurant in Brooklyn and they were showing it. Might take some looking here. Mostly for the better, there aren't thirty goddamn tv sets in every bar and restaurant.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:45 AM
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I read that NYT magazine profile of the German coach of the US team, who is I think the guy you're talking about, and I liked him. His attitude seemed to be fuck you UMC American high school soccer culture, play like you get murdered for losing like we do in real countries or go home.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:46 AM
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79

Might take some looking here.

I do not think it will take much looking at all there.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:46 AM
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80

Also I have no idea how to choose whose victory to be over-invested in. It seems like a homework assignment I would have needed to start months or years ago. I guess it'll just have to be whoever is, in aggregate, hottest.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:47 AM
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78: I'm not actually sure Germany ranks very high on the list of countries where you might get murdered for losing.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:48 AM
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82

Germany tends to rank very high on lists of countries with hot soccer players.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:49 AM
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83

78: "Play like you don't want me to send you to the showers."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:50 AM
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84

True, I guess the Germans are more into murdering other teams for beating them, like in that Ukranian death match that was the basis for Victory or whatever it was.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:50 AM
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85

Also that at least one game will become a Herzogian test of man against nature.

Maybe they will have to drag an entire stadium over a mountain.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:53 AM
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86

Getting 83 in before 84 gives me small pleasure. Not quite open bathroom stall fist pump, but a quiet, unvoiced "heh."


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:53 AM
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87

85: How many more variants are there on this one?
None. None more variants.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:55 AM
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88

85,15. 15, 85.


Posted by: Annelid Gustator | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:55 AM
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89

I read that NYT magazine profile of the German coach of the US team, who is I think the guy you're talking about, and I liked him. His attitude seemed to be fuck you UMC American high school soccer culture, play like you get murdered for losing like we do in real countries or go home.

Klinsmann's philosophy that American society is really overconfident and hard-charging, and this needs to be reflected in the national team, and the best way to do this is to replace wussy American players with people from Germany, Norway and Iceland, is not exactly the logic anyone expected.

As for the Julian Green issue, when Klinsmann was hired people interpreted it as a long-term project since most of the important US players from 2010 were expected to be well into decline by 2014, so better build for 2018 and beyond. Maybe they're actually going to intentionally lose all their games, like France did last year.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:55 AM
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90

Aw jeez, you act like nobody's ever been pwned 60 comments up before.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:56 AM
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91

Aw jeez, you act like nobody has ever subtracted 15 from 85 and gotten 60 before, he attempted to preemptively say.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:57 AM
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92

The Donovan thing is such bullshit. Fuck Klinsmann. Coaches shouldn't be so full of themselves. Somehow sports commentators are all about venerating asshole coaches while expecting players to grovel all the time.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in." (9) | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 10:58 AM
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93

Klinsmann's philosophy that American society is really overconfident and hard-charging, and this needs to be reflected in the national team has to be essentially hooey, right? "Your national character is reflected by a team that isn't super conservative and has good players who can freelance a little bit" is not so terribly specific.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:00 AM
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Klinsmann's philosophy that American society is really overconfident and hard-charging, and this needs to be reflected in the national team

Except that the most overconfident, hard-charging young people self-select into different sports, with soccer no higher than fourth, possibly fifth on the list.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:05 AM
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93: Yeah, it would be hooey even if word didn't contradict deed. As if the Italian team's "Everyone be as predictable and regimented as possible, except for one wacky goal-scoring guy" of the last 50 years reflected their national character.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:05 AM
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Some potentially interesting takeaways from this NYT Upshot survey of World Cup attitudes in different countries.

Who rooting against may be the most interesting:
Japan/S. Korea symmetric dislike.
Brazil/Argentina not-so-symmetric dislike. Many Brazilians clearly grasp downsides of my 9.last scenario.
USians not paying attention and/or confused.

France/England relatively low levels of interest in soccer somewhat of a surprise at first glance.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:16 AM
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79 gets it right. The bigger issue will be finding a place that's not horribly crowded.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:17 AM
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96: hah. The US sure is well-loved.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 11:18 AM
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99

Under the question "Who will win" the two top answers in the United States were: (1) USA and (2) Brazil.

I mean, when Argentinians and Spaniards think they'll win despite what everyone else thinks that's one thing. But seriously surveyed Americans? Aside from "America is the greatest nation ever and wins at everything" what reason could there be to think this?


Posted by: MHPH | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 12:19 PM
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99: It is really hard to imagine how they got that result, unless they limited the sample size to people who don't know what sport the phrase "World Cup" refers to.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 12:49 PM
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101

Having now seen the Brazilians sing their national anthem, I think they'll win the tournament and go on to conquer the world.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:00 PM
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102

They've got a player called Hulk. How could they not?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:01 PM
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103

99, 100: Only 14% of the respondents said that. That's about the same percent of people that say that Karl Marx wrote the Declaration of Independence.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:04 PM
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104

Oh, that was painful.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:14 PM
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105

I read that NYT magazine profile of the German coach of the US team, who is I think the guy you're talking about, and I liked him. His attitude seemed to be fuck you UMC American high school soccer culture, now haul that opera house over the mountain!


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:21 PM
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106

I can't believe nobody has made the Herzog joke yet.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:27 PM
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107

So that was a fun 20 minutes for Croatia, I guess.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:33 PM
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108

I'm waiting for the fat lady to sing.


Posted by: Nobody | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:40 PM
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109

What I don't understand is why they focus on goals instead of the Golden Snitch.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 1:59 PM
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"play like you get murdered for losing like we do in real countries "
Yeah, I'm a little concerned for the Brazil player who just scored an own goal for the first goal of the tournament.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:08 PM
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111

Didn't a guy from Columbia get murdered for that?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:09 PM
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Yes, against the US.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:10 PM
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That happened 20 years ago, let's move on. Also, u s/b o.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:15 PM
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That happened 20 years ago, let's move on.

True, but this happened just last year!


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:21 PM
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The OS?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:21 PM
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OSA! OSA! OSA!


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:28 PM
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And Brazil demonstrates the fine art of diving to draw the PK.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:31 PM
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Shame for the opening match to be decided on a clear dive. Black eye for FIFA as usual.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:32 PM
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Based on my general ignorance and stereotypes I assume the referee made the bad call out of fear of being attacked by a Brazilian mob.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:42 PM
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Man, first game, ref falls for a flop, and that's the ballgame. I'm starting to remember why I hated soccer.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:45 PM
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Please, withhold judgment until a penalty for an obvious dive is given to someone other than the home team.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:47 PM
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Is it that hard to have a TV monitor for the fourth ref to review PK dive calls? By the time they set up a kick he could have the review done. What else is there for the fourth ref to to besides setting numbers on a board and watching for tournament-deciding extra-time headbutts?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 2:51 PM
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47 -> 114


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 3:04 PM
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122:such a slippery slope. Can we please get goal line technology fully adopted first?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 3:07 PM
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According to the same survey, the Australians also had themselves down for winning. I'm pretty sure the US has a far likelier chance of winning the thing than Australia. Ditto with Japan, and you could argue we've about the same chances as Russia, if we make it out of the group stage. In fact, lots of countries with a very slight chance of winning pick themselves as the second choice. You could say it reflect arrogance to pick ourselves first, or it could just be kind of random. Interestingly, we've also picked ourselves as the top team to be rooting against ourselves, which might indicate that there was a lot of not quite taking this survey all that seriously.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 6:39 PM
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I guess it'll just have to be whoever is, in aggregate, hottest.

ahem


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 6:47 PM
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If the US wins, it will be documented in the new feature film: Birth of a Soccer Nation (alternate title: The Klinsmann


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:23 PM
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128

)


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:23 PM
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I'm starting to remember why I hated soccer.

Good. Use your aggressive feelings, boy. Let the hate flow through you.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 06-12-14 9:59 PM
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I'm dubious about that opinion poll thing - why would English people be particularly rooting against Russia? (We're upset about the Crimea I guess.) Surely our #1 football enemy still has to be Argentina?


Posted by: asilon | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 12:39 AM
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If you mouse over the country names, you see the percentages. Apparently, only 5% of the English picked Russia, and that put Russia on top. Seems strange that way, too.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:13 AM
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Benoît Assou-Ekotto is my hero.

But Cameroon look... not good.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 9:27 AM
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I'm watching with Spanish commentary so I have no idea why the second goal was waved off (the first should have been the not-offsides one that was waved off.) They said something about el agua, is there a rule about rain and corner kicks or something?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 9:45 AM
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It was called offsides again. World Cup refereeing really is the worst.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 9:57 AM
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How can you be offsides on a corner kick? Was he standing inside the goal?


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:01 AM
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The ball was touched after the corner kick and before the shot.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:04 AM
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Wow, that's either a BS call or some serious back line discipline by the defense. Everyone take two steps forward.... now!


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:05 AM
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All the commentary says the call was wrong.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:08 AM
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What percentage of World Cup games are decided by bad calls? 1/4? 1/3?


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:09 AM
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Generally less than 100% but this year might be otherwise. Yet another tipping point reached!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:10 AM
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Well you can't forget about the games that are decided by purposeful handballs on the goal line.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:12 AM
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Wow, that's either a BS call or some serious back line discipline by the defense.

Barcelona used to do this all the time. They wouldn't put players on the posts because they wanted to step up right away and catch the other team offside.

... and Mexico just scored. That'd been coming for some time.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:23 AM
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So then the game wasn't decided by the blown calls if Mexico wins anyway- that probably accounts for the 66-75%.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:24 AM
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Of course goal differential is important, so it still matters.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:44 AM
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Spain scores on a penalty that probably wasn't a penalty. This would be more fair if it were call-your-own. Cripes.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 12:30 PM
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Maybe the way FIFA is doing seeding this year is you get a free PK if you're ranked in the top 8.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 12:33 PM
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That goal was kind of astounding, and as far as I could tell pretty much clean. I should probably stop watching now.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:12 PM
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I went back to work at halftime. Holy Crap! Or, rather Hup, Hup!!


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:23 PM
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147 is correct, I'm disgusted that there's been a clean goal in this tournament.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:26 PM
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Whoa, they got a call right!


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:26 PM
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It's hardly fair that the Netherlands has so much more experience playing in the heat.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:27 PM
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This is thrilling! Actual goals!


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:28 PM
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Looking pretty good for anyone who bet that Spain won't get out of group play.


Posted by: Unfoggetarian: "Pause endlessly, then go in" (9) | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:34 PM
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It's hardly fair that the Netherlands has so much more experience playing in the heat.

It's all that mandatory military service they have to do, keeping down the natives in Sumatra and Borneo.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:36 PM
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Holy crap.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:37 PM
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Cogent analysis from Mr. Tweety.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:42 PM
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(Not sarcastic. That's all I've been able to come
up with.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:43 PM
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Orange! I've only seen last 10 minutes, but wow Spain is deflated.


Posted by: Simulated annealing | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:46 PM
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Spain is killing me here. This should be 7-1.


Posted by: mike d | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:46 PM
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Or what 158 said.


Posted by: mike d | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 1:47 PM
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Poor Iker. (And poor, poor Fernando.)


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 2:18 PM
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Iker just looked broken by the end.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 2:36 PM
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EEK! ER, CASILLAS?


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 2:40 PM
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Hah hah! Tika taka my arse.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 2:54 PM
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9 -> 153


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 3:03 PM
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What a game. Robben's goals were so great.

I certainly didn't see that coming, but I did think Spain was weaker than people thought. I think Germany too will underperform.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 3:20 PM
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There's no reason for anyone to look at dodgy streams, by the way. Just use Hola Unblocker.


Posted by: Hjalmar Branting | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 3:58 PM
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Didn't Spain lose their first match last World Cup, to a worse team?


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 4:05 PM
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I knew this was going to happen, but I'm dead, so I couldn't tell you.


Posted by: Opinionated Dead Octopus | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 4:12 PM
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Climb aboard.


Posted by: Opinionated Rice Shaped into a Pleasing Mound | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 4:15 PM
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168: Good memory, I had forgotten that. Switzerland beat them 1-0 but did not make it out of the group stage.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 4:19 PM
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168, 171: still...


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 5:07 PM
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Australia were better than they were supposed to. Chile's pressing game maybe not suited to the climate.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 6:11 PM
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Prediction: the thin man will kick the ball.

My canvas of sportsbars ( and bars with a few big TVs but not usually sport themed) showed big viewership for the yellow team today. As northeastern Queens goes, so goes the nation.


Posted by: Econolicious | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 6:31 PM
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173: I think oz just lucked out that it wasn't much worse


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 6:42 PM
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We have mixed feelings about the Spain-Netherlands result.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 6:51 PM
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176 is fantastic!


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 7:02 PM
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172: Yes. And as my son reminded me Spain pretty much dominated that game (shots, corners and possession), but Switzerland just managed to squeeze out a goal and play their brand of packed in defense plus some poor Spanish shooting and post action. A very different kind of showing today, even if against a somewhat better team than Switzerland.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 7:30 PM
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176: Where's the after shot?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 7:32 PM
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It's all that mandatory military service they have to do, keeping down the natives in Sumatra and Borneo.

I thought it was all that partying in Ibiza and Mallorca.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 8:15 PM
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The hockey game is way better than any of the soccer games so far.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 8:30 PM
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Wait, I would have cared about Spain losing more if I had seen photographs of their team earlier in the day.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 06-13-14 10:26 PM
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Is Univisión the only network showing all the games on cable in the US?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 9:20 AM
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The games should all be on some Disney station according to this link: http://waitbutwhy.com/2014/06/actually-useful-world-cup-schedule.html


Posted by: md 20/400 | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 9:43 AM
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man greece is playing dirty


Posted by: turgid jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 10:14 AM
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182: Dude! Always evaluate team hotness before picking a team to root for. (Spain is my fav at the moment, though I am behind in catching up with all the rosters this time around.)


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 10:53 AM
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185: But I did think the American ref did pretty well in that match. Certainly by the standards of the competition so far. First US ref since 2002 I believe.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 12:53 PM
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187: he did but greece is always so filthy


Posted by: turgid jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:18 PM
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Re: 182

Fwiw, my wife is a big follower of Xabi Alonso, for reasons unconnected to his playing.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:25 PM
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189: We call him the Stealth Ginger.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:43 PM
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What is happening to Uruguay tonight?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:44 PM
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CRC!

190: carpet/drapes?


Posted by: turgid jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:48 PM
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Is drapes the new slang for beard? I am unversed in this lingo.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 1:51 PM
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"Does the carpet match the drapes" = is their pubic hair ginger too?


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 2:22 PM
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193, 94: I remember watching MASH as a little kid and being entirely baffled by Hawkeye and Trapper's method for determining whether Hot Lips was a "real blonde." (The pull the stall walls down around her when she is taking a shower so everyone can see her naked.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 2:28 PM
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The=They


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 2:29 PM
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194: I used to know that, really. Goodness.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 2:33 PM
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195:

Not from Mash--one of those supposed generational identifiers I just never got the appeal of--but that notion of how to demonstrate blondness never made much sense to me.

I come from a family of blondes, although my brother and I are/were redheads. My dad's hair was almost white in summer, but not where the sun didn't shine. I presume the same would be true of my sister, whose hair would always be "blonde" but a rather different shade summer and winter.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 3:19 PM
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192: CONCACAF!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 3:30 PM
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The English sure are going down with a lot of cramps. Maybe they aren't ready for the heat.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 4:43 PM
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200 Ve francais vill 'ave no problem


Posted by: Opinonated French Pilot | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 4:55 PM
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English pulled up lame.

Also am I alone in thinking wilshire is massively overrated?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:08 PM
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Early signs is this world cup will be pretty great.


Posted by: David the Unfogged Commenter | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:11 PM
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202.last: He hasn't quite lived up to expectations (set when he was 18 or 19), but then again he's been injured a *lot* the past few years. He was excellent for Arsenal last season.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:11 PM
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Looks like my England predictions are playing out nicely. Of course the Costa Rica-Uruguay match put a spanner in the things. In any case, Uruguay-England match will be a lot of fun to watch.*

*I wonder if anyone bet on Italy and Costa Rica making it out of Group D? If so, they may make a killing.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:13 PM
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That's fair; I was impressed when he debuted back in the day. I confess not seeing much EPL last year.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:32 PM
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I'm always curious to see which country's players actually sing their national anthem. Looks like both teams for this match.


Posted by: J, Robot | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 5:58 PM
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The Ivory Coast guys mysteriously all falling down with cramps in extra time with a one goal lead is pretty embarrassing.


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 7:54 PM
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The Univision commentators were mocking them. "Ay, no puede, no puede!"


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 7:59 PM
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They're probably just not used to the heat.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 8:00 PM
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Most of the crampers were midfield and forwards... Most of whom play in Europe. Also one cramper was a mid second half sub. Fuck those guys.


Posted by: Turgid jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-14-14 8:07 PM
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Though realistically, England's chances depend more on whether Costa Rica is much better than anyone thought or Uruguay much worse (probably some combo of the two). If Uruguay is actually crap, then England should fairly easily (at least on paper) beat them and CR, especially if Suarez is still injured or not playing his best, giving them a pretty decent chance of getting out of the group in second place. If CR is way better than expected, England might end up with a draw or upset against them, which would tank their chances. I suppose Uruguay losing to CR is actually the best thing to happen given England's loss to Italy, because now the two favorite teams are both down and Uruguay lost with a higher goal differential. (Obviously it also depends on Italy, who I am presuming will win or draw the remaining matches, as they appear competent enough that it's a reasonable expectation.)


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 2:43 AM
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211.1: well not most.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 6:26 AM
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Go-ahead Swiss (by which I mean Albanian) goal disallowed on a mistaken offsides call.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 10:32 AM
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I saw Swiss cheeseheads in the crowd. I really didn't anticipate that.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 10:48 AM
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214: if you're going to get bent out of shape about mistaken offsides calls, your flirtation with soccer is going to be shortlived. Besides, they got the winner in extra time anyway.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 11:42 AM
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215: Wisconsin is a world leader in headgear.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 12:08 PM
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Ref barely keeping a lid on France v Honduras.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 12:37 PM
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Well that was dumb by Palacios.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 12:48 PM
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219: sure was. He forgot he wasn't being officiated in central America.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:01 PM
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Goal-line technology!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:08 PM
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Goalline technology!


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:08 PM
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223

Shit


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:08 PM
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224

Hooray, instant replay!


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:09 PM
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Hmm.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:10 PM
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224 -> 222


Posted by: SP | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:10 PM
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216: And that was an excellent allowance of advantage by. the ref on the break that led to the goal.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 1:11 PM
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Argentina v BiH should be fun.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 2:56 PM
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I get a kick out of the foibles from the little kids that escort the players out.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 2:57 PM
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"Follies," I guess, and not "foibles."


Posted by: TJ | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 3:05 PM
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Oops.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 3:06 PM
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It seems like a much larger fraction of points scored in soccer come from total accidents than in other sports.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 3:07 PM
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I have thought the same, but it seems that the better teams do win most of the time.


Posted by: Kreskin | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 3:21 PM
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Many of the "accidents" come when the defending team is under pressure. Not entirely random.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 3:40 PM
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MESSI!


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 4:28 PM
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And I've seen more rabonas in this game than in all the others I've watched put together.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 4:31 PM
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236: MATCH FIXING


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 4:35 PM
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now I wantto know what ogged almost shared


Posted by: turgid jacobian | Link to this comment | 06-15-14 6:06 PM
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A new WC thread might be warranted.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 06-16-14 4:26 AM
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