Bielsa’s Chile the most tactically-exciting side

June 8, 2010

Marcelo Bielsa
“Judge Chile by looking at their squad list and you might be rather underwhelmed, but many of those who saw Marcelo Bielsa’s side in action throughout qualification see them as the most intriguing prospect on offer in South Africa.” (Zonal Marking)

Germany more aesthetically-pleasing than usual
“They haven’t got any great players, but you can never write them off” is the usual line about Germany. In 2010, that old cliche might not be appropriate.” (Zonal Marking)

Paraguay – functional rather than spectacular
“Paraguay coach Gerardo Martino has used his pre-tournament friendlies for experimentation, both in terms of formation and personnel, making his starting line-up for the opening game against Italy difficult to predict.” (Zonal Marking)

Nigeria may struggle for creativity in midfield
“Nigeria have traditionally been the strongest African nation, at least in terms of the quality of players they’ve produced. The likes of Ghana, South Africa, Senegal, Cameroon and Egypt have shown quality at points throughout the past two decades, but Nigeria has produced a stream of genuinely top-class players.” (Zonal Marking)


World Cup 2010 a feast of technology and tribalism

June 8, 2010

“Don’t be surprised if there are fewer meetings booked over the 31 days starting June 11. Chances are there will be fewer people at their desks, too, more people responding to e-mails on their BlackBerry and, oh yeah, the network might be a little sluggish as well. That’s because the FIFA World Cup 2010 finals kick off at 10 a.m. Friday, June 11 as Mexico takes on hosts South Africa.” (The Globe and Mail)

Thirty-One World Cup Shirts

June 8, 2010

“It’s that time again. Back by popular demand (to be precise, two people), it’s time for our quadrennial report of all the team shirts that will be on display at the upcoming World Cup. As ever, the menu is overwhelmed by items produced and designed by the twin behemoths of the sportswear universe, Adidas and Nike. Whether they have been using their market domination to the benefit of the sartorial elegance of international football, however, is something of an open question.” (twohundredpercent)

World Cup Predictions, Betting Tips, SEO SEO

June 8, 2010

Tiziano Vecellio, Venus and Adonis
“Just when you think that David Bowie has retired from the site, that the Goblin King will no longer grace our presence, that Jorge Luis Borges really is dead and not just waiting for a USMNT run to the finals, bam. It hits you. Despite the odd jokes, obscure historical references, and kinda weird pictures, we at Futfanatico give you the best betting tips for the World Cup while mocking the SEO keyterm Google carousel in an ironic act of betrayal, subversion, and delightful perversion. Thus, here are your WORLD CUP BETTING TIPS.” (futfanatico)

A Sport Blogger’s Reading Habits

June 8, 2010

“These are my answers to a fairly random and unserious set of questions, culled from Norm and Tiberius Gracchus. I can’t help thinking that they are most aimed at exactly the kind of reader that I hate most of all – you’ll see what I mean. Nevertheless I’d be very interested to hear your own answers, or answers to whichever of the questions you find interesting, in comments. Private habits can be revealing. I’m not sure that this particular private habit is. But I’ve done my best.” (More Than Mind Games)

“Soccer On Holiday”, Stephanie Lim

June 8, 2010

“When Norman Einstein’s own Stephanie Lim set off for South America some months back, I asked her to keep an eye out for the games people play and a camera handy to document them. Of course, on the world’s fourth largest continent, the game people play is by and large futbol. The importance of the beautiful game in South America, even for all the lofty words it inspires, is rarely overstated. In her travels through Argentina, Peru, and Uruguay, Stephanie unsurprisingly found even though the sport was at rest professionally, the game was always in motion, in streets, on beaches, in cafes… even in train stations. With the World Cup just around the corner, consider this concise photo essay a tribute to the sport’s enduring power and the fan’s creative impatience.” (Norman Einstein’s)

World Cup Group D Preview: World Cup Buzz Podcast

June 8, 2010

“The deepest group in the tournament was made all the more interesting when injuries to Michael Ballack and Michael Essien took the two biggest names out of Group D. On this episode of the World Cup Buzz podcast, myself, Laurence McKenna and Kartik Krishnaiyer consider what the absences of Ballack and Heiko Westermann do to Germany’s chances to get out of a group that also features Ghana, Serbia, and Australia. Along the way, we hear thoughts from Andy Brassell, Raphael Honigstein, Jonathan Wilson and Simon Hill.” (EPL Talk), (World Cup Group A Preview), (World Cup Group B Preview), (World Cup Group E), (World Cup Group H), (World Cup Group F)