Argentina outlasts Colombia in PKs in heart-stopping Copa quarterfinal

June 27, 2015

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“The bare facts are that Argentina reached the semifinals of the Copa America, defeating Colombia in penalty kicks (5–4) after a goalless draw, but that hardly tells the full story of the match. It had been an astonishing game, which Argentina had dominated almost from start to finish without being able to score. David Ospina, the Colombia goalkeeper, made a number of fine saves, chances were missed, the woodwork was struck twice and, even when Carlos Tevez got by all those obstacles with two minutes to go, Jeison Murillo was on hand to hook the ball clear.” SI – Jonathan Wilson


James Rodríguez irked at Copa América, a year on from World Cup wonder goal

June 27, 2015

“On Sunday, it will be a year since James Rodríguez scored the goal against Uruguay that, emblematically at least, confirmed his talent. His performances for Porto and Monaco had marked him out as a player of great potential and the rumours linking him with a move to Real Madrid were well-established, but it was his sumptuous chest and volley against Uruguay in the last 16 of the World Cup that provided the image of his brilliance, a shorthand for what he is capable of.” Guardian


On professional football – or: in praise of illusionary love

June 27, 2015

“Summer has arrived. And in the absence of the usual pulsating weekly encounters punctuated with thrilling goals and flooded with indomitable passion, we have to settle for the next best thing – transfer speculation – the time of the year when almost anybody and everybody is linked with, well, almost anybody and everybody. This is when, for a few moments, one is allowed to imagine, hope, as to what might be – even if it never materialises – everyday brings with it a new story, a new exclusive, a new quote, closely analysed, to decode a player’s possible intentions.” backpagefootball


Chile end Copa America quarterfinal curse by defeating feisty Uruguay

June 27, 2015

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“And so Chile did not fall foul of the Copa America curse of the quarterfinals. In four of the past five tournaments the hosts have been eliminated at this stage — three times by Uruguay. This time, though, there were no slip ups, and Uruguay were beaten 1-0. Ninety-nine years ago they kicked off the first Copa America — against Uruguay — and they are still looking for their first tournament win. Their golden generation is at its peak. They are at home, with all of their games taking place in Santiago’s National Stadium. But for a long time on Wednesday night, it was looking like a case of ‘if not now, when?’ for the Chilean team.” ESPN – Tim Vickery


How Football Shaped The Clash’s Greatest Album

June 27, 2015

“In 1979 the Clash wrote and recorded London Calling, the double album that was their finest artistic statement. Not released in the U.S. until January 1980, it would be hailed 10 years later by Rolling Stone as ‘the album of the decade.’ When they started work on their masterpiece, the Clash were at a low point. Having dismissed their original manager, Bernie Rhodes, and his temporary successor, the group had no one to fall back on but themselves. And it was football, as much as their supremely able songwriting abilities, that pulled them into the mental form necessary for writing and recording the album.” 8 By 8


Russian wrap – Zenit claim top honours for the fifth time

June 27, 2015

“With the vital Russia v Austria Euro 2016 qualifier lost in disappointing circumstances, the Russian season eased to a finish with pretty much everyone and everything where we expected them. The Russian Football Union (RFS) hasn’t the money to pay off their expensive Italian (a crowdfunding gimmick was launched to do just that) and President of the RFS Nikolai Tolstykh was slaughtered by the Sports Minister’s allies.” backpagefootball


Sounds silly but Qatar keeping the 2022 World Cup might be the least fucked solution

June 27, 2015

“The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), the largest inter-governmental organization in the world after the United Nations, describes itself as the ‘collective voice of the Muslim world.’ With 57 member states on four continents, the OIC seeks to ‘safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world in the spirit of promoting international peace and harmony among various people of the world.’ It’s a noble-sounding endeavor, tone-wise, and in line with the mission statements of almost every other notable inter-governmental organization designed, in theory, to foster global harmony, understanding, and puppy GIF feelings.” Fusion