European Curse?


A dejected German fan ponders his team’s fate

Call it Vuvuzela’s Revenge: Europe’s traditional soccer powers have certainly been stinking up the pitch.  After they ran roughshod over the Aussies, Germany missed a penalty and lost to Serbia (although some would say there is no shame in that). European champions Spain threw the kitchen sink at Switzerland but couldn’t break them down, losing 1-0. Yesterday, it was the Italians’ turn.

Italy? Defending World Cup champions. New Zealand? Ranked 78th. But on a free kick in the seventh minute, the ball went off Che Capitano Cannavaro and into the path of Shane Smeltz; 1-0 to New Zealand on their only shot on net.  The Italians would eventually tie the game on a penalty.  But the Azzurri have yet to win a match, and now need at least a draw against Slovakia to go through.

Which leads us to The Three Lions. After Saturday’s lacklustre display, Captain Schtupping — who really isn’t captain — decided to hold a captain’s conference, saying the players shouldn’t be afraid to challenge the manager. Fortunately, the players wanted no part of it.  They reminded John Terry that: a) he is no longer their leader, and b) they aren’t going to speak out against Capello. I think they were afraid Don Fabio would have them all whacked…

Of course, the British press are spewing theories on why England have been terrible. Some say fatigue after a long Premier League season, others say a lack of preparation,  yet others say the players are afraid of making a Robert Green-esque error.  Meanwhile, England fans just want them to get on with it.

BTW, best cheeky bit we’ve read so far:

The England football team visited an orphanage in Soweto today. “It was great to be able to put a smile on the faces of people without hope,” said Mbutto, aged six.


Mais oh la la la la la. England and Italy don’t have it as bad as La France.  Nicolas “The Incredible Sulk” Anelka was sent home after directing some swears at French coach Raymond Domenech.  Then the French players showed up for practice but wouldn’t get off the bus.  Then they did.  Then captain Patrice Evra had a bust-up with the team’s fitness coach.  Then Domenech had to read a statement saying the players wouldn’t practice because Anelka was sent home… because Domenech had told the FFF about the swears.  The French are kings of irony but this is a bit much.  If you listen carefully, you can hear Irish laughter…

So what’s their problem? According to one journalist, it’s the economy, stupid. But it’s looking more and more likely that once again, a European team will not win on a foreign continent.

Oh yeah, Brazil qualified yeseterday, with Luis Fabiano scoring two lovely goals against the Ivory Coast. Too bad the game was overshadowed by Kaka being sent off because of Kader Keita’s Rivaldo-like performance.

Brent Lanthier

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24 Comments

Filed under World Cup

24 responses to “European Curse?

  1. Raul

    Kader Keita’s acting performance was…well…ridiculously good! I put extra emphasis on the ridiculously part…What happend to his face…did the air hit it?

    http://www.wutevs.wordpress.com

  2. Mahfooz Hasan

    Great article, loved it. I think a lot the teams are too scared of losing so they play a defensive game, which is why the World Cup has been a rather boring spectacle, until Brazil’s match yesterday and Portugal’s match today.

  3. Wen

    Love the post. Lots of upsets this year. Game officials aren’t being fair at all. USA-Slovenia, Brazil-Ivory Coast. Being a fan is not easy these days….

  4. True, Germany missed a penalty – but what’s with the referee(s) these days? I mean, come on. If I were spiteful, I’d say that referees who give a thousand yellow and red cards per match don’t have a clue what the heck they’re doing. OR they’re being paid good money to influence the results.
    But luckily, I’m not spiteful at all…

  5. Lulu

    I am always for Germany, no matter what! but this year’s world cup seems to have been bringing a lot of surprises since the beginning.

  6. Couldn’t agree more. It’s all going wrong and South America is reaping the benefits.

    http://gregtheoharis.wordpress.com/2010/06/20/south-america/

  7. True…

    The most disappointing of all was France.. Rubbish game this time…

  8. Il y eu plusieurs surprises sur cette coupe du monde, mais quoi qui arrive l’équipe allemande reste une très grande équipe.

  9. poor kaka. he didn’t do NUTHIN to get that red card! Brasil is my team and i’m glad they actually stepped up after the PRK game and went balls-out. THey play it so beautifully. glad they made it!

  10. Songbird

    At least Spain rallied and rose to the occasion against Honduras… Capello is so going to be out of a job after this World Cup…

  11. teax2

    I’m loving it. I have yet to actually pick a team to root for, really–I was going to go for Italy, but honestly they already got it, what’s the point? So now it’s Suisse, Mexico, and Japan. Yeah, I’m rooting for three teams at once. I also want some of the African teams to beat, like, France just to see the look on their faces afterward. Seriously though, I love it that this is an unorthodox Cup. I always say that soccer is like kicking big inflated dice across a huge field of grass!

  12. England,France and Itaty are play disappointing.

  13. @ ClairelaPoor Kaka indeed! Brazil notches an extra goal to its tally through a blatant foul and the ref., like everyone else it appears, laughs it off. Ref. falls for another unsporting behaviour and all one hears is poor Kaka. The ref. was applying a little rough justice, surely?
    Good write-up, Brent. Really enjoyed it.

  14. Nice blog, I’m also surprised about the results so far – the African countries performing poorly and Spain losing against Switzerland. As for Germany, I think it’s better to start off bad and then grow during the championship, then to peak in the beginning and get worse throughout the championship.

  15. I’ve read that the French team didn’t practice due to a snitch who told the press about Anelka’s “sulk” tirade against the trainer…it’s their way of smoking the snitch out.
    A la France! Drama! Love it!

  16. Okay, another red card (South Africa:France) today… that stinks. Someone’s getting paid to f**k things up, I’m sure.

  17. @ ClairelaPoor Kaka indeed! Brazil notches an extra goal to its tally through a blatant foul and the ref., like everyone else it appears, laughs it off. Ref. falls for another unsporting behaviour and all one hears is poor Kaka. The ref. was applying a little rough justice, surely?
    Good write-up, Brent. Really enjoyed it.

  18. The most disappointing of all was France.. Rubbish game this time

  19. http://www.barstoolcam.com is a place to talk about the days worldcup action

  20. elmer

    It’s the French Curse:

    *The controversial 1998 WP victory

    *The 2002 WP early exit

    *The 2006 Zinedine Zidane head-butt

    *The 2010 Dishonor

  21. Mr.Saeed

    England,France and Itaty are play disappointing.

  22. It’s really up to Argentina or Spain… Spain could bring it home for Europe or Argentina could add to the curse.

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