With the completion of the group stages, three quarters of the matches in the 2014 FIFA World Cup
have been played. Now, it's a straight round-by-round elimination
for the remaining 16 teams in their quest to reach the final. There's been biting
, alternative commentary
, mood swings
, (allegedly) sulky England players
, exciting matches
, the USA vs Ronaldo
, Europeans taking early return flights
, deep analysis
, a fantasy league
and many goals
- but who will finally lift the trophy
in Rio's Estádio do Maracanã
on Sunday 13th July? [more inside]
posted by Wordshore
on Jun 26, 2014 -
So earlier today Luis Suarez, striker for the Uruguay side, bit
Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder during their respective teams' final group play match for the World Cup. This is not the first time he's done this
--in fact, folks were taking bets
that Suarez would bite someone during World Cup play. Biting is a major taboo
in sports, and sure enough, Suarez is now facing a ban of up to 24 games
by FIFA. Indeed, Suarez has a history
of violent behavior and racist statements, even when you leave aside the biting incidents. And yet, despite all this, Suarez is generally regarded as one of the best soccer players in the world today. So it's fitting that, just before this year's World Cup began, ESPN published an essay by Wright Thompson (previously
) on the many myths and contradictions that surround Luis Suarez
posted by Cash4Lead
on Jun 24, 2014 -
sees the start of the final round of group games in the 2014 World Cup. Each day, there are 4 games, the final 2 games from each group. Both matches in each group will be played simultaneously, after a scheduling rule change by FIFA
after an infamous 1982 World Cup Finals match
. But last night, Algeria qualified for the knockout stages after beating South Korea 4-2
. This is the first time in history an African team has scored 4 goals at the World Cup Finals.
posted by marienbad
on Jun 23, 2014 -
BBC re-reports: Fifa is facing fresh allegations of corruption
over its controversial decision to award the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.
The Sunday Times has obtained millions of secret documents - emails, letters and bank transfers - which it alleges are proof that the disgraced Qatari football official Mohamed Bin Hammam made payments totalling US$5m (£3m) to football officials in return for their support for the Qatar bid.
posted by marienbad
on Jun 1, 2014 -
"The indispensable English footballer whose metatarsal will snap four weeks before the 2022 World Cup is currently 12 years old, but Fifa is already worrying stagily about the temperature in which he will perform disappointingly. As for the 12-year-old Nepalese boy whose family are unwittingly saving for the chance to send him off in a few years to die laying the foundations of a stadio-mall, or the 12-year-old Qatari boy wondering not when his people voted for this, but whether they'll ever vote for anything at all … well, it would be much easier if people did not concern themselves with them."
The Guardian summarizes the current issues over the staging of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
posted by salishsea
on Oct 4, 2013 -
"On Sunday, Joseph S Blatter
attended a ceremony on the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius to celebrate the renaming of the country's FA headquarters in his honour.
The Fifa president would perhaps say it was a fitting tribute, given his promotion of African football and the amount of "development" money poured into the continent over recent decades. His critics would say it was typical of his egomania and note the importance of African votes in keeping him atop world football for 15 years." [more inside]
posted by marienbad
on May 30, 2013 -
"Organized crime gangs have fixed or tried to fix hundreds of soccer matches around the world in recent years, including World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and two Champions League games, Europol announced
Monday. The European Union's police agency said an 18-month review
found 380 suspicious matches in Europe and another 300 questionable games outside the continent, mainly in Africa, Asia and South and Central America. It also found evidence that a Singapore-based crime syndicate was involved in some of the match-fixing."* [more inside]
posted by ericb
on Feb 4, 2013 -
"The World's most popular game is also its most corrupt, with investigations into match fixing ongoing in more than 25 countries. Here's a mere sampling of events since the beginning of last year: Operation Last Bet rocked the Italian Football Federation, with 22 clubs and 52 players awaiting trial for fixing matches; the Zimbabwe Football Association banned 80 players from its national-team selection due to similar accusations; Lu Jun, the first Chinese referee of a World Cup match, was sentenced to five and a half years in prison for taking more than $128,000 in bribes to fix outcomes in the Chinese Super League; prosecutors charged 57 people with match fixing in the South Korean K-League, four of whom later died in suspected suicides; the team director of second-division Hungarian club REAC Budapest jumped off a building after six of his players were arrested for fixing games; and in an under-21 friendly, Turkmenistan reportedly beat Maldives 3-2 in a "ghost match" -- neither country knew about the contest because it never actually happened, yet bookmakers still took action and fixers still profited." [All the world is staged: Bribed players, fake games. Criminal syndicates can fix any match, anywhere.
posted by vidur
on May 24, 2012 -
Pelé and Maradona:
the glorious, ludicrous feud between soccer's two biggest stars. In the summer of 2000, FIFA, which does not understand computers, decided to celebrate the arrival of the millennium by hosting an online poll. Its object: to determine the best soccer player of the past 100 years, with the victor to be fêted at a gaudy banquet in Rome. The organizers of the vote assumed it would be won by Pelé, soccer's silky ambassador, who'd been cheerfully ensconced in his Greatest of All Time sinecure for 40 years.
posted by Fizz
on Aug 10, 2010 -
The paradinha is a devastating penalty kick tactic popularized by Pelé in the 1970s, and increasingly adopted by Brazilian players. This week soccer's primary governing organization, FIFA, will discuss the maneuver as it prepares for the 2010 FIFA World Cup
As the Wall Street Journal
The paradinha (pronounced par-a-JEEN-ya) is performed on a penalty kick by the shooter, who pauses unexpectedly before striking the ball—or even swings his foot through the air several times—before making contact. It's designed to throw off the goalkeeper's timing. When executed properly, the move can have jaw-dropping results. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus
on Mar 4, 2010 -
Pickles - The dog who won the World Cup.
There were two amazing events that happened in London in 1966 that focused on the Jules Rimet Trophy (aka The World Cup): 1: England won
; 2. the 15 inch, solid gold trophy tall was stolen, held to ransom
, and then discovered in a bush by a dog called Pickles
The English FA had commisioned a base metal replica
, which - after the Queen awarded the trophy to Bobby Moore
- was substituted for the priceless trophy in the England dressing room, when a copper swapped it
with legendary Manchester United & England fullback Nobby Stiles
. That was the one which toured the country over the next few years - not the the real one.
The replica was sold £254,000 by Sothebys in 1997... to FIFA
, whereas the original was stolen again in Brazil
, and has never been seen since. The replica is on long term loan to the National Football Museum
in Preston, Lancashire - though they don't always tell you
: it's a fake
posted by dash_slot-
on Jun 5, 2006 -
Old Firm dialectics
It's going down the thinnest wire tomorrow in the Scottish Premier League (football/soccer/fitba that is) as Celtic and Rangers, with one game left to play in perhaps the most absurd league in Europe, stand equal on points and goal difference after 37 games thus far.
posted by skellum
on May 24, 2003 -
A few rather mundane numbers have turned into international chart toppers by being blessed as the 'official song' of the FIFA World CupTM
or being on the 'official album
' and getting airplay as the theme songs for local TV broadcasts. I think this trend started during Italia '90
. Neither I, nor FIFA can remember any official songs from Mexico '86 or Spain '82. While Anastacia's Boom
is this year's FIFA designated 'official song;' I like Tejano singer Jennifer Peña's
upbeat Vamos al Mundial
, the theme song for Univision's World Cup broadcast
. What's the theme song of your local World Cup broadcast? Is it any good?
posted by tamim
on Jun 25, 2002 -
"Soccer scolds" attack!
The Weekly Standard's Jonathan Last has had it with gushing soccer writers like Slate's David Thomson ("[Soccer is] something made out of muscle, speed, grace and the soul") who see American lack of enthusiasm for the sport as a deep-seated national character flaw worthy of dire-sounding pronouncements. Is he right, or, as The San Francisco Chronicle would have it, can soccer really bring world peace?
posted by transona5
on Jun 20, 2002 -
Korea 2-1 Italy. A classic World Cup in the making?
First it was Senegal dumping out the French, and then the Argies and the Portuguese were left biting the dust. Spain and Ireland fought out a nail-biting penalty shoot-out, Saudi Arabia got hit for eight, and now South Korea
continue their miraculous journey by sending Italy home. Next on the cards: let's hope for another classic when England take on Brazil!
posted by arrowhead
on Jun 18, 2002 -
so which site has the best soccer live coverage? is it yahoo!'s fifaworldcup.com
? is it the bbc
? is it someone else? right now from here (germany) it looks like none of the big sites is holding up to the traffic. is any site as well prepared as msnbc
was for the olympics? oh, and it looks like senegal is winning the opening match.
posted by HeikoH
on May 31, 2002 -
I have a bad feeling about this.
The UK government has urged employers to be leniant to staff who want to watch the World Cup when they should be working. Isn't this instantly discriminating against people who happen to like football (Soccer) all that much? For example, I'm sure I know what would happen if I broached the idea of turning up for work late on May 16th after I've been to the first showing of this thing
posted by feelinglistless
on Apr 29, 2002 -
It's the Shperiks!
Those wacky mascots for the upcoming FIFA World Cup Korea-Japan!
I can't tell what the heck is going on here, and if it weren't for the upbeat BGM, I'd probably be scared to visit this site again. But it was an interesting little adventure...
posted by Bixby23
on Mar 26, 2002 -
Welcome to the 2002 FIFA Worldcup, er, make that WorldCup, um... "The efforts being made by organizations of all kinds to ensure that a positive image of [Korea] is projected this summer deserve the highest praise. It is a crying shame, however, that so many of these efforts will be undermined by the comedic quality of much of the English being used."
Not intended as a poke at Korea, but an interesting example of how hard it is for people (or a people) to change their mindset (more inside).
posted by Bixby23
on Feb 24, 2002 -
As Seoul Prepares for Soccer World Cup, a Debate Is Unleashed Over Dog Meat
. Cultures collide as FIFA warns and Brigitte Bardot threatens to organize boycotts of Korea over their Canine Cuisine
. Koreans are offended. (more)...
posted by Mack Twain
on Dec 11, 2001 -
World Cup Fever!
The draw for the group stages of the FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan was made on 1st December. England got an awful draw: Argentina, Sweden and Nigeria. The USA look like they did much better: Portugal, Poland and one of the hosts, South Korea. As an Englishman, I'm pretty down about it at the moment.
posted by salmacis
on Dec 3, 2001 -