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Stay tuned for updates......Football has had to take a back seat and that is tragic

Monday, July 26, 2010

Chatham Cup Update

It was a full blooded Cup Derby at Farrington Park on Sunday with three red cards and plenty of handbags drawn at five paces- My favourite piece of childish churlishness was when a Miramar Striker stomped the United Keeper's hat into the mud after a penalty box entanglement. Not the best advert for Fair play for my Two year old's first game, but great entertainment for the adults. Miro didn't seem to care though. Although the actual score was 3-1 to the home side, eliminating Wellington United from a great 2010 cup run, as far as Miro was concerned the real score was:
Packet of Chippies 2-Lemonade 1

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Chatham Cup Fever

The best way to describe the come down after a four week orgy of back to back televised sport is an enveloping ennui. World Cup fever, for what it was worth in the end after the shock elimination of dark horse New Zealand, has dissipated. The heroes' parade has come and gone and the ticker tape is wrapped in the gills of a harbour floor Gurnard. The Boca Juinors too came and went, playing like, well, Juniors, whereas the Phoenix put on a competent display in the wind tunnel atmosphere of the Wellington Stadium. It is quite interesting to see visiting teams struggle to come to terms with the intense wind effects of the Stadium.

Preseason friendly or not the Blue and Gold scalp of Boca Juniors is an impressive one for the Wellington Phoenix, and must be a boost for their confidence ahead of the A-League season.

But it is with the greatest expectation since the World Cup final's hooplah died down that I am heading along to a local park today to catch my club side Wellington United take on local rivals Miramar Rangers in a Chatham Cup Quarter Final derby. A call was put out to our club members to paint the Miramar ground Orange, and thats what we'll be doing, wearing our own Salmon football tops along to support our First team in a rare Quarter final appearance.

It will be my son's first time at a football match as an occasion, he has been to plenty of games at our local Newtown Park, but this is his first destination game- complete with Orange jumper, face paint and sausage sizzle. Result to follow.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Breaking News!

New Zealand are the only undefeated team at South Africa 2010!

Oh, and in other news Spain win World Cup. Meh.

More cockeyed blather to follow later...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The Tragics' Final

Germany won the Third Place Play off, beating Uruguay 3-2. Although people say that it is the game that nonone wants to play, there seemed to be no shortage of motivation from both teams. The last three installments of this so called meaningless game have produced highly entertaining matches.

It was end to end stuff, and if this had been the actual World Cup Final then it would be remembered as a classic; a lead which see-sawed back and forth, Forlan's awesome downward volley and his free kick which was the last act of the game, hitting the post to deny Uruguay extra time.

It was shame in some ways that Miroslav Klose was injured and couldn't add to his talley, although not many people wanted him to surpass Ronaldo as all time leading World Cup goal scorer. It was also fitting that Suarez, who was booed by the African fans everyime he touched the ball, failed to score- his World Cup will be shoruded in infamy. His role as provider summed up by the dive at the death which set Forlan up for his last gasp free kick. (OK, to be fair it did look like a foul, but Suarez milked it for all it was worth.)

Well done Germany, with such a young squad surely the future looks bright for Deutschland, and a begrudging respect to Uruguay who were the best of the South Amercians by a long shot, resilient and tenacious until the end.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Raging Bulls & Octopuses

The 2010 World Cup Final will be competed by Spain and Netherlands; two countries which have never lofted that glittering prize, so a new name will be added to the illustrious list of World Champions.

For all their calm and patient build up against Germany in the semi-final, it was the raging bull Carlos Puyol, with a route one Iberian Express header into the back of the net from a corner which finally sealed it.

It's a shame that Germany won't be contending the final against the Netherlands, given the history those two countries have both on the field and off. But Spain vs. Netherlands is in many ways a neutral's dream. Two exciting, attacking, teams who like to push the ball around.

There is an adage, much used in Rugby League, that you must lose a final to win a final. Meaning that you must go to the pinnacle and experience the pain of defeat to understand what it takes to win it. The phrase does not hold much water for the Football World Cup; England, France and Argentina all won it at the first time of asking. But I still think does hold some truth and that the languid Spanish will be beaten by the Dutch, who can draw on the collective memory of the lost opportunities in 1974 and 1978 to spur them on.

The Spanish game may be technically adept but how often do the intricate movements come to naught? How hard do they work for such little reward in front of goal? Think of their young striker Pedro, through one on one against Germany in the semi-final, with Torres unmarked to his left. Poor Pedro could not even fashion a shot on goal- compare this to the free scoring and more direct Dutch who have managed to score all manner of fluky, freaky goals. Quite frankly, it doesn't matter how many passes you string together if you cannot bulge the old onion bag.

So yes, I think the Dutch will take the Cup. Although picking this one is a fool's game really. But since my own club, Wellington United, is allied to the Dutch settlers of Wellington I'll be an Orange man for the day. I am going against the Oracle however, since the famous Cephalod commentator Paul the Octopus fancies salsa over mayonnaise with his French Fries. At least a parakeet called Mani agrees with me. This truly has been a bizarre World Cup.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Uruguay 2- Netherlands 3

Netherlands edged out Uruguay 3-2 although the score does not reflect the Dutch dominance. Arjen Robben could have had a hat trick and put the game to bed long before Maximiliano Pereira almost broke Dutch hearts with a late, late goal. The referee didn't seem to want the game to end, blowing up some late fouls for both teams which allowed Uruguay to pump some long balls into the box and almost steal it. They showed tremendous fight, like a shark on the line they twisted and turned as the dreaeded daylight loomed. Still I am well pleased that Suarez will now miss out on a World Cup Final appearance, just deserts for his cheating ways.

Netherlands are playing fantastically well and deserve to be in their first final since 1978. Whoever they play, Spain or Germany, it will be a cracker.

Uruguay vs Netherlands -take one

6.30am with my 2 year old son, trying to tell him that we will not be watching Playhouse Disney cos daddy has a very important Soccer game to watch.

As Diego Forlan lines up in the tunnel Miro says: "That's Captain Feathersword"

Whatever it takes to get you through this Miro, whatever it takes.

At half time its 1-1 after two of the best long range goals of the tournament so far.

More to follow. C'mon Oranje!