Daily Archives: December 5, 2022

England 3-0 Senegal: Emboldened Generation Head For Historic French Showdown

Jude Bellingham
“England came into this game nursing an unbeaten seven-game record against African sides in their World Cup history, although the only time they’d experienced one in the knockout stages was against Cameroon in the 1990 quarter-final, a game in which the Three Lions were largely outclassed, progressing thanks to a late pair of penalties from Gary Lineker. Senegal began 2022 by winning the African Cup of Nations and ending the same year as the first African nation to reach a World Cup semi-final would be a fair reflection of Aliou Cissé’s squad, even shorn of the injured Sadio Mane. England were favourites, but this is knockout football and the margins are tiny. …”
The Analyst
The Athletic – England 3-0 Senegal: Bellingham sparkles, eight World Cup scorers, Henderson sets the tone (Video)
Guardian: Jude Bellingham’s moment of cinema makes us wonder where this might go


The inside story of how Belgium’s World Cup turned toxic

“In the blissful early stages of his tenure with Belgium, Roberto Martinez came up with an idea. People had kept telling him the language barrier was a persistent problem in Belgian football, creating a natural divide between those from the Flemish-speaking north of the country, such as Toby Alderweireld, Jan Vertonghen and Kevin De Bruyne, and those whose first language is French, such as Axel Witsel and Eden Hazard. …”
The Athletic (Video)

France 3-1 Poland: Giroud’s new record, fine margins and how do you stop Mbappe?

France are through to the World Cup quarter-finals after comfortably beating Poland 3-1. Olivier Giroud opened the scoring on the 44th minute — a goal that also made him France’s all-time top goal scorer. And then Kylian Mbappe happened. The mercurial Frenchman scored two stunning goals to give France a 3-0 lead. …”
The Athletic
The Athletic: Breaking down the brilliance of Kylian Mbappe, the man who can score any type of goal
NY Times: Mbappé and France make a statement in extending their title defense.

At Qatar’s Church City, Sunday Comes on Friday

“Behind closed doors on Friday, in small rooms usually used for teaching catechism, the children celebrated Christmas. There was food, drink and songs. Wreaths and stockings decorated the walls. A few adults wore red Santa hats. Nearby, across the complex of mostly unmarked sand-colored buildings, a Mass was being celebrated in a 2,700-seat sanctuary, its altar backed by painted angels and Jesus on a cross. There would be another mass every hour, 15 of them on Friday, said in 10 different languages: English, Tagalog, Indonesian, Korean, Urdu, Malayalam, Tamil, Konkani, Sinhala, Arabic. …”
NY Times

The cult of Lionel Messi: From the pitch, to Buenos Aires, to the pilgrims of Doha

“… Lionel Messi could have been in the stands. He rhythmically threw his hands up in the air and sang with the fans behind the goal, as if he were one of them at the Ahmad bin Ali stadium, a smile breaking through his red beard.  After a fortnight of carrying the cross on his shoulders, Argentina’s messiah appeared ecstatic and unburdened. He spent a long time after the final whistle communing with his team-mates and his people. The players doused each other in water, bouncing arm-in-arm, joining the fans in concert. …”
The Athletic (Video)
The Athletic: This is how you can stop Lionel Messi

How Jared Kushner Lost at the World Cup in Qatar

“It is not clear from Ivanka Trump’s Instagram record of her family’s three-day visit to the World Cup in Qatar if she or her husband, Jared Kushner, heard any of the chants and songs in support of the Palestinians voiced by Arab fans at multiple venues during the first round of matches. But the outpouring of support — which was also expressed on huge ‘Free Palestine’ banners displayed in the stands, and by fans who intruded on Israeli television interviews to wave Palestinian flags and berate Israeli reporters — made it clear how badly Kushner had miscalculated, as his father-in-law Donald Trump’s Middle East peace envoy, when he convinced a handful of Arab autocrats to sign economic cooperation deals with Israel that did not respect the rights of Palestinians. …”
The Intercept_ (Video)