football thread No11

Grendeldef

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Takhisis

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Why did they let him out of jail again?
 

Grendeldef

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To make sure that Germany will not host any UEFA/FIFA tournaments near future? Or maybe the hope is that he'll get a PR job @FIFA and hence Bayern isn't always seen as a lunatic asylum when he opens his mouth. I think at this point his statements are clearly beyond "interesting".
 

Grendeldef

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NL group stage almost over and England goes down to B so Southgate sacked in the morning? I doubt it this close to WC but he'd better get some results in Qatar or have very good explanations for not doing so. Being on the same level as Finland is never a good sign in football. France barely avoided the embarrasment and they can still argue that nobody cares about NL which is partially true. The miserable state of Bulgaria & Romania is somewhat interesting, both in C next time around, after relative success 20 odd years ago.
 

Takhisis

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It turns out that the second-tier competition of the continent was played today, here in Argentina, between an Equatorian and a Brazilian team.

Why CONMEBOL still has such an inferiority complex that it continues to ape UEFA in spite of even local distances being greater here than international distances in Europe is beyond me, but it is geting ridiculous. A stadium not being even half full is a disgrace.
 

Grendeldef

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I sort of get the purpose of NL but it's still a stupid competition and even more so when one can qualify for Euros from pools C & D. But, also there're also metric f tons of other stuff in politics of football I don't get.

I only watched Pool-Brighton & West Ham-Wolves games yesterday and based on those those there's much in the game itself, too which I don't get. What has happened to TAA and why is Millie still getting so many minutes. Then comes why has Salah & Fabinho lost 30% of their former speed and is VvD still hangover from the summer's beach parties. After yesterday I'm also very anxious to see his recent performances in the orange jersey and last but not necessarily the least - has anyone told Lage that scoring goals in a football game is sort of the main purpose? It seems that since Jimenez' injury they have given up that trivial business. They somewhat remind me of early 90s Ajax when there purpose seemed to be holding the ball but occasionally someone lost his patience and they scored, often. This doesn't happen at all with Wolves so their self-control must be much better.
Yesterday The Walking Baby Oil Advertisement came in early due to injury and immediately created two chances even though playing on the left so the solution was not give him the ball anymore; at first glance their tactic seems rather odd and I'm not even trying to figure out why Coady was loaned off - as a scouser not Lusitanian enough I guess. Diego Costa on the other hand was a nice sight and if he can reach at least the effort level of current VvD he'll be a solid asset especially if Adama takes his place on the right wing or even left the only problem being that if Adama gets the ball on center line DG needs a 30m head start to be around penalty spot when Adama's cross from corner flag comes - not an unsolvable issue.
 

Grendeldef

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The Manchester derby isn't even over yet
Spoiler 75mins :
only 6-1
but I feel safe to say that EBH is superb in what he's supposed to do and unsurprisingly his father looks happier than Sir Alex in the stands. Yesterday Sir Kenny was inbetween but much closer to Håland Sr.
 
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Takhisis

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You didn't write Haaaaaaaland with enough a's, Grendeldef.
 

Grendeldef

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My spelling is always off. For reason or another, maybe even without one and yesterday I avoided spelling EB's Håland quite succesfully.
Back to the game slightly as ManU seems to have switched their target from success to having most expensive bench with Maguire, Ronaldo & Casemiro while Grealish is opening for Citizens.
 

Grendeldef

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So night of the CL again. Not expecting Bayern to play with its best if Nagelsmann could even decide such 11 but the early starting time makes it a must watch as I've sadly missed much of the BuLi season so far. I still wouldn't place my money on Plzen. For the later games my main hope atm is that TAA watches the game on telly at home or wherever. Pool's line in general will be interesting though as EPL & CL starting line-ups seem far from set in stone at this point. The 2nd, minor hope is that Phillips opens - get rid of VvD if that's what it takes. Otherwise I'll just expect a clear dominance with large amount of amateurish errors everywhere on the pitch. I'm willing to be surprised.

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Pathetic performance by Norway. I know this script too well :(

Yeah it's the same old song. They always choke up at the finish line.

I could've said this earlier but I didn't want to add anything to the wound at the time as I've said multiple times earlier - I like Norway & Norwegians..

You lucky b'stards complaining about not quite making it on the line :p We have a habit of being flagged off before the last lap even begins. I admit that's prolly for the best of football but also mildly annoying to say the least.
 
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thetrooper

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Somehow I think it’s better to be in your position than endlessly failing while being so close every time.
 

Grendeldef

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Yes, I can see the point in that, too. 257th kick in the nuts is probably not as bad as 3rd since it's part of a routine by then and only a fool would not prepare. Still, some change would be nice. There're same elements than with athletes who claim that 4th is the worst possible position to end up. Matti Pitkänen being the local expert in this - 4th in all three individual CC events in the Lahti WC '78. I bet the relay silver felt good even if beaten by fresh-from-father's-funeral Magnusson in the end.

Meanwhile in Munich Bayern is taking back what they have been lacking in BuLi. Not the most exciting spectacle I've ever watched.

And Sporling is making a showcase for "how to royalle mess up a dream start". Probably best that Marseille due to recent incident have to play without spectators. Reminds us all from the Good ol' Corona Times.

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Not exactly or even close to what I wanted but apparently Jürgen has accepted that they can't defend at all so let's go for offense as we need at least 4 to win a game. Sort of exciting 3-2-4. I'll leave it to the viewer to fill in TAA's position.
 
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Grendeldef

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6 mins in and TAA gives a middle finger to me & I assume, to quite a few others as well. Excellent. The Hug Monster on the sidelines looks happier than ever on this season.
 

Takhisis

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Grendeldef

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Sir Alex the Spectator looks much happier today than he did on Sunday. I assume he's not leaving early for the busses either.
 

Takhisis

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In Argentina we always do things properly.

Shortages, fury and the hunt for Messi: Argentina’s Panini sticker mania forces government to step in

With the football World Cup in Qatar just weeks away, parents are threatening to sue because of the anguish caused by the cards’ scarcity

Uki Goñi in Buenos Aires

Spoiler :
The Via Manzanares shopping centre in the northern suburb of Pilar outside Buenos Aires is an old-style ring of stores around a modest parking lot that usually services a countryside area dotted with gated communities and polo clubs, in a country that boasts the best polo players in the world.

There’s a small supermarket, a bicycle shop, a sushi delivery store, a coffee shop and not much more, except for a sleepy mutt named Canela who’ll amble up for a pat on the head from the shoppers stopping by for a pack of beer, a quick espresso or to order a tray of nigiri.

But in recent days its peace has been disturbed by fans not of polo, but of football. A large quantity of kids and adults stood patiently waiting in line outside its sweet shop, desperate to buy “figuritas”, football player stickers similar to US baseball cards.

The object is to fill the traditional Panini World Cup album that is a ritual of almost religious significance that repeats itself every four years in Argentina when the World Cup tournament rolls around. The stickers come in sealed packs and there is no assurance collectors will find the players they need to complete the album. Sold in countries around the world, an English-language version in the UK will cost fans an average of about £870 to fill.

With the Qatar games fast approaching, Argentina has gone into a dizzy whirl that is outdoing by a wide stride any previous sticker furore in a country that breathes, dreams and lives football.

“I can’t handle the amount of people wanting stickers,” said the attendant at the Via Manzanares sweet shop early in the week, before having to inform her distraught customers that she had run out of packs on Thursday.

Sticker mania has swept over Argentina like a tsunami this year, creating a scarcity on the sticker market that has quite literally become an affair of state.

Sweet shops, known here as “quioscos”, have been the traditional outlet for sticker packs, but this year Panini began supplying the stickers to other outlets such as supermarkets and gas stations, provoking howls of protest from sweet shop owners.

Trade secretary Matías Tombolini was forced to call a meeting with Panini executives and sweet shop representatives to try to solve a scarcity that has led to media-reported threats from some parents to sue Panini because of the anguish the scarcity has been causing their children.

“The meeting has begun to assess the situation of the World Cup figuritas market,” the trade secretary tweeted, offering to “make our legal and technical teams available to collaborate in the search for possible solutions.”

But with inflation out of control and poverty snapping at the heels of an ever-widening segment of society, the government’s intervention backfired badly. There was a social media uproar against the authorities distracting state resources to solve the stickers problem and the government abruptly suspended its intervention.

The hardest sticker to find is that of Argentina’s ace player Lionel Messi, who will reportedly be playing his last World Cup at the Qatar games.

Marc R Stanley, the US ambassador to Argentina, posted an ecstatic Twitter video of himself opening up his sticker packages. “Oh holy crap, I got Messi, I can’t believe it. That’s unbelievable. I got Messi! All right, Messi, you’re mine!”

Apart from Italian-owned Panini allowing the stickers to be sold at other venues than just sweet shops, the scarcity is being blamed on distributors who are reportedly bypassing traditional outlets to sell directly in wholesale amounts to individual buyers, sometimes online.

This seems to have led to hoarding by mass buyers who then hawk the stickers on the online shopping site Mercado Libre for up to 10 times their suggested retail price of slightly under one dollar a pack.

With inflation heading for 100% this year and the recent assassination attempt on vice-president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, which failed when the assailant’s gun failed to fire, perhaps Argentina was in need of some light distraction, and the sticker scarcity seems to fit the bill.

All this while, of course, people keep getting killed in stadia as happened only last Thursday, in which the much-feared Buenos Aires police locked people inside an overcrowded stadium (the club oversold tickets by a few thousand, i.e. at least a sixth of maximum capacity) and started throwing pepper spray and tear gas grenades at people, as well as shooting even at paramedics who were trying to assist the injured and straight at cameramen who were recording everything.

FFS.
 
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