May 22, 2010 at 7:59 am #1259276
@davidpcvsamoaLocale: East Bay, CA
Anyone else excited about the World Cup? Here is an epic commercial with cameos from Federer, Kobe and Homer:
I may be spending those two weeks watching football (soccer) rather than hiking.May 22, 2010 at 2:40 pm #1612565
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
What's the cup made of? Plastic or titanium? What capacity?
CheersMay 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm #1612571
I think it is made of komershalism, and has an infinite capacity for money and time, although it is difficult to get anything out.May 22, 2010 at 7:18 pm #1612637
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Yeah, that's a pretty crappy alloy at the best of times, and usually needs a thick coating of High-P to work.
CheersMay 22, 2010 at 9:12 pm #1612666
@davidlutzLocale: Bay Area
for World Cup!May 23, 2010 at 2:07 am #1612705
@jephotoLocale: New Zealand
Can't wait. I know it has (like many sports) become over commercialised and awash with crazy money, but for those 90 minutes when the game is being played I can forget about all that and just enjoy the beauty and excitement of a great game.May 26, 2010 at 5:36 pm #1614200
Soccer is lame. Even Pele thinks they need to change the rules.
You blow past 4 dudes and then a guy slide tackles you and takes you out. Now those same guys get to stand in front of you (wall) while you attempt a kick on goal?
And whats with the off sides rule? I saw an interview with Pele where he was Ok with removing or changing that too.
Don't worry, I think American football isn't so great either.May 26, 2010 at 6:16 pm #1614214
Lame!? I think not, but to each his own! :) If we can love and adore baseball which is INCREDIBLY slow there is surely a place in the hearts of Americans for an intense paced sport filled with strategy, power and finesse, that requires players to run their guts out for 90 minutes! Depending on where and how a player is slide tackled on a field, it can result in a penalty kick which often results in a score. Most forwards are incredibly lethal at placing a ball in the goal even with defenders walled up. As far as the offside rule, I think some revision or modification of the rule could slightly benefit the viewership in the US; the offside rule doesn't seem to be a problem internationally as far as I know in terms of people following the sport.
If the offside rule mirrored the offside rule utilized in hockey then I think there would definitely be more chances at goal and less goals revoked. Remember, Pele was a forward, of course he'd be an advocate for removing the rule. The offside rule greatly benefits defenders and does nothing for a forward, it's a limiting factor for a brash and fleet footed forward itching to rip one off into the goal. It's been my experience that many people are deterred by soccer because they don't understand the game, not the offside rule. In terms of sheer athleticism and all around fitness, no other team sport requires the amount of strategy, endurance, power, speed, stamina and finesse all at once from each player as soccer does.May 26, 2010 at 6:26 pm #1614217
" the offside rule doesn't seem to be a problem internationally as far as I know in terms of people following the sport. "
Of course people follow the sport world wide. It is the sport of the poor. Anyone can play it, all you need is a ball (or a suitably round object).
Baseball is too slow. but at any given moment you know who is doing better.
walk in to a Soccer game and it is 0-0 or 1-1 and it is booooooring. especially when the game ends 0-0 or 1-1 etc and has to be decided on kicks.May 26, 2010 at 6:31 pm #1614223
yeah, baseball is so boring, its the only sport with a prescribed stretch to wake the fans up.
almost as boring as NASCAR- left turn, straight, left turn, straight, left turn, straight, left turn, straight…May 26, 2010 at 6:57 pm #1614232
I definitely disagree with the 'sport of the poor' comment. The accessibility of a sport and ones economic status shouldn't be associated. The game, apart from whether poor or rich people can play it, stands alone. Sure, by it's very design, soccer is inherently simple, requiring minimal amount of gear or investment, basically a ball is all you need to develop the necessary skills to take onto the field. I don't see this as a limiting or negative attribute, or even an answer to it's international fanfare, rather a testimony to the purity and accessibility of the sport for anyone… well anyone committed enough to the physical conditioning necessary to actually step foot onto the field of competitive play. Cliche as it may be, soccer is a true international sport that crosses cultural, political and economical bridges, people can relate to that. If anything, it's definitely not clouded by performance enhancing drugs, obnoxious commercialism and inflated egos like most traditional US team sports and that speaks volumes.May 26, 2010 at 7:47 pm #1614265
@dirk9827Locale: Pacific Northwest
But the idea international football (soccer) isn't "clouded by performance enhancing drugs, obnoxious commercialism and inflated egos" is a stretch, to say the least.
Last time I checked, most of Europe didn't have the team name on their jerseys, but the name of a sponsor. Heck, it isn't the Premier League, it's the Barclays Premier League.
And in the top leagues, video boards along the sidelines remind you to "Fly Emirates" or pitch "Stanley Tools" for the length of the game. And other international teams like Real Madrid actually have the name a sports wagering website on their jerseys. So talk to me more about the purity of this sport.
Ok, moving on to drug testing. The Premiership tests for performance-enhancing drugs. None of the other divisions in England test. FIFA is testing approximately eight players per World Cup squad. Testing has already begun. That much said, there is good reason to believe that football (soccer) is very clean by international standards. One reason is that increased body muscle mass isn't necessarily the main goal, as it is in baseball and American football. So I will concede you on this point. And you are right, the fact it is played in many poorer nations does preclude many players from obtaining performance enhancing drugs at an early age.
As for a lack of egos, well, I would think anyone who saw Didier Drogba pout on the final day of the Premier League, might disagree. Drogba, an elite striker, was vying for the Golden Boot (top scorer award) and wanted to take a penalty shot When he was denied the opportunity, his childish behavior did suggest a rather healthy ego. And Diego Maradona, well, he has a rather healthy ego as both a player (where he could back it up) and as a coach (where he has been justly criticized and let's say he hasn't reacted well). Finally, there is Cristiano Ronaldo, who, because of his immense talent, is often called "high maintenance" when in fact, if he didn't regularly put it into the back of the net, would be the first guy out the door because he's a pain in the rear. But, again, most of the higher profile players tend to be strikers.May 26, 2010 at 8:43 pm #1614293
You make excellent points Dirk. I love sport as well, most sports, I see the merits and find enjoyment in many of them, I'm no soccer elitist for clarification.
When referring to commercialism I was more directing my comment at how the NFL and NBA in particular seem to revolve and dance around advertising whereas advertising hasn't affected how the game of soccer is played. other than how players look on the field. But I could care less. When I view NFL games I cannot help notice the bombardment of commercialism and adverts pre-game, during gameplay, intercession and post-game. In fact, NFL players have to literally stop and postpone game play for beer commercials to run their course on a regular basis. A 90 minute soccer match rarely extends those perimeters with the exception of injury time, however 60 minutes of regulation game play in the NFL regularly gets stretched out to more than 3 hours sometimes up to 4 hrs and players are usually only actively playing the game for around 5-10 minutes. Much of that time is commercial.
I watch soccer matches in the states, primarily Mexican broadcast matches, and I don't see as much commercial interruption as I do with many of the sports we enjoy in America. Just my experience.
As far as purity of a sport, yeah, players aren't out there for nothing and soccer players are nicely rewarded for their efforts on the field, particularly in the European leagues. Advertising in the stadium and on the players jerseys is pretty blatant and excessive on many of the international club soccer teams and leagues, which could definitely detract from the sport. America got it right keeping most sponsorship branding off of players jerseys, but gets it so wrong in others. I'd personally, much rather watch an abbreviated NFL match without having to sit through 5 beer commercials for every other possession. Yet I endure it anyways! Oh well. I enjoy football and futbol!
Viva la Copa de Mundial!May 26, 2010 at 11:16 pm #1614372
@dirk9827Locale: Pacific Northwest
I agree with your points about rampant commercialism in U.S. sports markets. You are absolutely correct, every game is punctuated by commercial interruption. Even when there isn't a need for an interruption, devices are invented such as the "media timeout" in basketball to allow advertisers to inundate the audience with commercials for the beer, cars and the latest razor.
It wasn't until very recently that most cable systems even began to show soccer. Sure, when I lived in California long ago we could watch the Latino stations which often would carry a game or two a week. Heck, back in the 1980s I watched the World Cup in Spanish because they didn't interrupt the games with commercial breaks unlike ABC sports, which thought nothing of leaving a match in progress for three minutes of commercials!
Now, of course, you watch a game and there are no interruptions. It's terrific. Sure there are boring matches, just like there are boring baseball games, boring American football games and boring NBA games (aka the regular season.)
In boxing, there is an old saw that contends that styles make fights. To anyone who suggests football (soccer) is boring, you just need to watch a game between teams comprised of elite athletes. In the United States, Major League Soccer has improved exponentially since the its infancy, yet, watch a Chelsea-Manchester United play in the English Premier League, and you suddenly understand the difference between good football and GREAT football. In the EPL, strikers can finish, they have flair, they have speed and they are in their prime. In MLS, strikers often don't have the flair, nor breakaway speed, and often are older than their counterparts in Europe.
I am really looking forward to the World Cup. I am uncertain what to make of Mexico in Group A. At times, they looked electric. Other times, they were terrible. France wasn't all that during qualifications. Uruguay kind of got its act together late. South Africa? I think it might be too much for the host country to ask to get to the knockout stage.
Your prediction for the Cup?
DirkMay 27, 2010 at 6:36 am #1614429
Well, if I was a betting man I'd have to go with Capello's talented England team, they're probably highly favored to make it to the final. I'm hoping Mexico will at least be victorious in Group A. As far as the US doing well, it's not looking too good, playing England in the 1st round, yikes.May 27, 2010 at 3:50 pm #1614605
@jephotoLocale: New Zealand
Predictions? Well tournament football is a unique environment. A few key injuries can make a massive difference, as there is little time to recover. You need your key players to hit form over a few short weeks and sometimes a unexpected player plays the best four weeks of football of his entire life.
I would make Brazil my favourites with Italy, Spain or France to make the final, but of course in sport anything can happen. As for England – well nothing would make me happier, but I am used to being disappointed. The English season is very long and physically demanding.Jun 7, 2010 at 10:55 pm #1617785
just saw that vid, was gonna post it, saw this…
Im psyched! lets see how we fair this outing.Jun 12, 2010 at 10:56 am #1619319
@davidpcvsamoaLocale: East Bay, CA
Here we go USA! I think they are going to have bring their best to have a chance.Jun 12, 2010 at 2:02 pm #1619374
RUSTENBURG, South Africa — Clint Dempsey scored on a blunder by goalkeeper Robert Green in the 40th minute, and the United States came from behind to tie England 1-1 in the Americans' World Cup opener Saturday.
Steven Gerrard put England ahead in the fourth minute, blowing past Ricardo Clark to beat goalkeeper Tim Howard from short range.
But Dempsey tied the score when his 25-yard shot skipped off the grass twice and bounced in off Green's hand, yet another in a long line of shocking gaffes by England goalkeepers. It made Dempsey only the second American to score in two World Cups, joining Brian McBride.
The result was a thrill for the U.S. and a disappointment for England, which is looking for its first World Cup title since 1966.Jun 12, 2010 at 3:18 pm #1619397
@obxcolaLocale: Outer Banks of North Carolina
Thanks George! That's good news. Sounds like team USA had a lucky break! Out all day on patrol on day 12 of the 2010 edition of the 100 day war here on the OBX……. only 80 days to September!
BPL your top source for current headline news!Jun 12, 2010 at 4:48 pm #1619424
"The result was a thrill for the U.S. and a disappointment for England, which is looking for its first World Cup title since 1966."
At least we have won the world cup. The disappointment is in Green. He made a mistake and that is how the USA scored. Your goal keeper was beaten by skill not a mistake. Give the USA its credit in you that you played ok and are getting better.Jun 12, 2010 at 5:21 pm #1619436
Well, Howard shined and Greene blew it, nothing much else to say. With as inconsistent as the USA defense was playing for the duration of the game it's very surprising England didn't score more. Why? This draw wasn't a "gift" for the USA, they scored and maintained what was established…barely. If anything England should be disappointed with themselves for not capitalizing on the US team, with USA having everything to gain and England having everything to lose I wouldn't want to be in Englands shoes right now. We're favored over Algeria and Slovenia, we'll see what happens.Jun 12, 2010 at 5:31 pm #1619438
@kennyhel77Locale: Scotts Valley CA via San Jose, CA
Baseball is not boringJun 12, 2010 at 11:04 pm #1619497
Ben 2 WorldParticipant
@ben2worldLocale: So Cal
Honestly, I get the same excitement watching baseball, basketball, football and monochrome carpet weaving.
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