Soccer legend who supports all African teams – and Brazil

May 3, 2010

Luis Fabiano
“The African footballer of the century clutches an icepack against his cheek. He is hurting. ‘I like to chew bones, turkey bones,’ mumbles George Weah, in a Liberian accent that further complicates comprehension. Watching television one day he got distracted and bit too hard. Visiting the Netherlands last weekend, Weah spent a lot of time with Dutch dentists. In between he talked about Africa and the coming World Cup in South Africa – and about whether it will be an ‘African’ World Cup.” (FI – Simon Kuper)

Unlike Europe, Brazilian league preserves its competitive balance

May 3, 2010

“In England, Chelsea and Manchester United are fighting for the domestic title. In Spain, it’s Real Madrid and Barcelona. Inter Milan is out front in Italy, as are Bayern Munich in Germany. It’s the same old same old.” (SI – Tim Vickery)

A Mental Game: On Happiness, or Does it Matter Who Wins?

May 3, 2010

“Why do we care? Why will hundreds of millions of fans watch the World Cup this summer and hinge their lives around game results? Why does it matter whether the millionaire players, coaches, and owners of Inter Milan beat the millionaire players, coaches, and owners of Bayern Munich in the Champions League final? Why does anybody, no matter how few, bother going to watch FC Dallas play?” (Pitch Invasion)

Good Soccer Writing is Fueled by Love (Duh)

May 3, 2010

“Sorry for the long pause (I think longest in AMSL’s history if I’m not mistaken). I was working. Like last Saturday, when I performed at one of those concerts professional musicians are forced to attend once or twice a year. Far removed from the regular stuff—baroque, period performance in a familiar venue with familiar faces who know when to clap and when to sit silent—I ended up in some Coptic church in Richmond Hill performing Coptic music with a mix of Coptic and classical musicians. It was one of those gigs you walk into initially and think, ‘here we go, the things I do for money etc.’ Hip, professional cynicism.” (A More Splendid Life)

Gilberto Silva has become a symbol of Dunga’s regime

May 3, 2010

“Nearing 34 and surely on the downward slope, Gilberto Silva prepares for his third World Cup – but the first in which he is guaranteed a place in the starting line-up. In 2002 he was a squad player with a handful of caps, only recently converted from centre-back to defensive midfielder, when on the eve of the tournament Emerson injured himself in a training-ground kickabout and Gilberto had to step in.” (World Soccer – Tim Vickery)

Joan Laporta’s homage to Catalonia

May 3, 2010

“Outgoing Barcelona president Joan Laporta looks set to run as a candidate for Catalan regional president in elections this November. Although he has yet to announce his candidacy formally, a campaign website is already up and running. “I will continue to dedicate the best years of my life to the country I love,” says a beaming Laporta. “The moment has come for us all to serve Catalonia.” With Catalan voters apparently fed up with their current Socialist-led coalition government, a recent poll already has a nominal Laporta-led party getting 17 per cent of votes. This would give Laporta control of a decisive block of seats in the Catalan parliament and plenty of Nick Clegg style bargaining power.” (WSC)

A Liverpool supporter’s dilemma

May 3, 2010

“Liverpool find themselves in the awkward position of potentially crowning bitter rivals Manchester United as Premier League champions today. If Liverpool defeat Chelsea, United could set up their 19th League title by beating Sunderland today and Stoke next week, while also going above Liverpool as the most successful club in the history of English football.” (WSC)


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