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Thread: World Cup Discussion Thread

  1. #241
    Hisssssssss Yachtzee's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Nugget
    As for the MLS v European debate. The European leagues are still the best for day in and day out competition, both within the club and in the league. I think the issue MLS has is that rather than developing the home grown talent an then allowing them to go overseas, because of the transfer fees being paid its turned into more of a retirement league. You only need a few marquee players with the rest of the roster made up of young US talent. It gives them seasoning - The really good ones will progress on to Europe.
    Of course, it depends on the European league as well. Clearly the Serie A, Spanish Primera Division, EPL, Bundesliga, French and Dutch leagues are the class of Europe. However, I think that MLS teams would probably hold their own against teams of the second and third tier national leagues of Europe. But even with those leagues, I think a key difference is that their top teams are battle tested against the top clubs of Europe through the UEFA Cup and Champions League.

    Maybe another idea would be to organize UEFA Cup and Champions League-like competition for the Americas, where the top MLS teams would face of against the top Mexican, Brazilian and Argentinian clubs, among others.

    On the World Cup note, I wish I could have watched the Brazil-Croatia game today. I listened to some of it on XM. It sounded like a great match.

    By the way. As the parent of a 3 year old, I can't help but laugh that one of the world's top players is named Kaka.
    Burn down the disco. Hang the blessed DJ. Because the music that he constantly plays, it says nothing to me about my life.

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  3. #242
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Nugget
    A lot of the Australians have a Croatian heritage with their parents being postwar migrants or in the case of Jason Culina, his dad came out to play in Australia and ended up staying.

    The 3 guys who play for Croatia have dual citizenship. Whilst they were born and grew up in Australia they have Croatian parents. I understand that allows them to pursue Croatian nationalilty. Accordingly, having made that choice they can play for Croatia. Also I understand under FIFA rules that as long as you haven't played a senior match for another country you are free to play for the country of your choice (subject to nationality rules) without any waiting period.
    You've identified a significant subtext to this game. Simunic, a longtime starter in the Bundesliga and for the Croatian national team, was a shiing product of the Australian youth system, yet he never played for the national team. Viduka stayed loyal to the country, but forced the Melbourne Knights to let him go basically for free to one of croatia's top teams - Dinamo Zagreb, where he had a lot of success and was sold for a lot of money to Celtic, from which he went to Leeds, et al.
    Croatia played well. The thing that impressed me most was how they kept their defensive shape under all that Brazilian movement. Dario Simic did an unbelievable job of containing Ronaldinho on his side, while Emerson and Ze Roberto were awesome as defensive midfielders for Brazil. Kaka got the goal, which was well-taken, but those 2 were Brazil's best players today. Good thing for Lucio...If Croatia can play like that vrs. Australia and Japan they will advance.

  4. #243
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    The Spanish have spent the first 17 minutes swarming all over Ukraine. They've got three men forward, they've benched Raul, they've got what might be the loudest crowd I've heard in this tournament.

    They look better than any team I've seen so far.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  5. #244
    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Actually, Spain may now be my least favorite team in the world. Hard to root for a team with a fanbase so full of blatant racists. I'd love to see them get beat about 5-0 to one of the African teams.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David

  6. #245
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by MWM
    Actually, Spain may now be my least favorite team in the world. Hard to root for a team with a fanbase so full of blatant racists. I'd love to see them get beat about 5-0 to one of the African teams.
    Ghosts of the Moors haunt Iberia.

  7. #246
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by westofyou
    Ghosts of the Moors haunt Iberia.
    I spent three months in Spain once upon a time and the natives had a prejudice against South and Central Americans (called them Indios, mostly as an insistence of to who the "real" Spaniards are), but they were pretty tolerant of Africans. Mind you, this was 19 years ago and maybe the cultural zeitgeist has changed.

    I immersed pretty well over there and as far as anti-African racism goes, I never saw it.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  8. #247
    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by M2
    I immersed pretty well over there and as far as anti-African racism goes, I never saw it.
    I'm basing it on recent stories read and on a special done on ESPN about racism against Africans by Spanish soccer fans (actually it's not uncommon throughout much of Europe, but it's the most widspread in Spain). Players from Africa playing on Spanish club teams receive mass amounts of abuse even from fans of their own team. Black players are often subjected to chants of "Monkey" from the crowds. At one point, one of the better African players playing in Spain picked up the ball in the middle of the second half and walked off the field. I don't claim to be an expert and it's possible I'm jumping the gun here because there's been a lot of publicity on the topic lately.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David

  9. #248
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by MWM
    I'm basing it on recent stories read and on a special done on ESPN about racism against Africans by Spanish soccer fans (actually it's not uncommon throughout much of Europe, but it's the most widspread in Spain). Players from Africa playing on Spanish club teams receive mass amounts of abuse even from fans of their own team. Black players are often subjected to chants of "Monkey" from the crowds. At one point, one of the better African players playing in Spain picked up the ball in the middle of the second half and walked off the field. I don't claim to be an expert and it's possible I'm jumping the gun here because there's been a lot of publicity on the topic lately.
    That's inexcusable stuff and it should be a national embarrassment for Spain. Wonder what made that worm turn? Then again, I was there in the late '80s, which was like Spain's early 70s with no Vietnam getting in the way. Everybody loved everybody back then.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.

  10. #249
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by princeton
    Adu's no Li'l Lee Nguwen
    After seeing Ngyuyen(sp?) at IU for just a year, I absolutely can't wait to see Adu and Nguyen carving up people in the 2010 WC.
    When people say that I donít know what Iím talking about when it comes to sports or writing, I think: Man, you should see me in the rest of my life.
    ---Joe Posnanski

  11. #250
    Hisssssssss Yachtzee's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Did anyone see Tunisia - Saudi Arabia or Germany - Poland today? From what I heard on XM, they sounded like two great matches.
    Burn down the disco. Hang the blessed DJ. Because the music that he constantly plays, it says nothing to me about my life.

  12. #251
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Yachtzee
    Did anyone see Tunisia - Saudi Arabia or Germany - Poland today? From what I heard on XM, they sounded like two great matches.
    I saw the start of the Tunisia match and the 2nd half of the German match. Both SA and Tunisa are smaller teams, they matched well against each other, the Poles and Germany was a rough middle field match and the Ref had a quick yellow card. Onc ethe Poles went to ten on the RC, the Gremans were able to spread it out and work the space, they were lucky to get it after hitting the post twice in the 89th minute.. but if I was German fan I would be worried that the team is flat.

  13. #252
    Pre-tty, pre-tty good!! MWM's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Poland looked pretty good in the first half, but looked gassed about halfway through the second half. Poland's goal keeper had one hell of a game. Keepers in general are so good in this day and age you have to be almost perfect to score. I would have loved to see Poland beat Germany. It's about time Poland won SOMETHING over Germany. They deserve it.

    I was not that impressed with the German team. I thought they'd be stronger than they were. They were pretty good on defense, but their offense seemed lackluster and lacking any real gameplan. Klose was very underwhelming in today's game. But they're through to the next round.
    Grape works as a soda. Sort of as a gum. I wonder why it doesn't work as a pie. Grape pie? There's no grape pie. - Larry David

  14. #253
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    It seems to be the way with the German teams in the World Cup. They just seem to do enough to keep getting through to the next round. With all the teams having played once I think the WC is a bit more open than past years. Brazil always has the potential but the Spanish are coming through, the Germans are always hanging about and there are half a dozen other teams. Lets see how the next set of matches pan out.

  15. #254
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    The German team had a ton of scoring opportunities in the second half, but Poland's goalie was doing an incredible job of keeping it out of the net.

    Once Poland was down to 10 men, though, it was simply a matter of time.

  16. #255
    Posting in Dynarama M2's Avatar
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    Re: World Cup Discussion Thread

    Ecuador looks great and now only needs a tie against the Germans to win their group.

    On a separate note, the studio folks ESPN has had covering the World Cup have been excellent.
    Baseball isn't a magic trick ... it doesn't get spoiled if you figure out how it works. - gonelong

    I'm witchcrafting everybody.


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