Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
This comment is in response to all you've said here over and over.

You don't seem to understand this tournament, perhaps this sport, at all. This is a month long tournament, for one thing, with all that entails for both big and small national clubs.

It's the game itself which takes the spotlight. I just watched a very entertaining, hard-fought 0-0 between Cote d'Ivoire and Portugal. There was precision missing in both teams, and neither could finish... but there was always something just waiting to happen which captured football fans.

One thing amurkans forget is this game brings the pleasure of two halves of 45 continuous minutes (plus) without commercials.  it also means the athletes are truly that. One sees strategies develop, one analyzes the individual strengths and failures, the brilliant and the missed passes, the explosions of breakaway running. it doesn't always need to be capped by a Goal Orgasm.

Plus, if you watch on TV, you don't realize what an incredible, though beautiful game it is.  You stand 5 meters from a Bundesliga 3 match, or a top amateur match, and you feel the constant danger and explosive physical contact.  When you've got that in your blood, then you can judge what's up from TV. (It's amazing to me that anyone survives a real match, and i've done hundreds of hard slides into the 2nd baseman or shortstop.)

More goals? You've already got your hockey, which is a mix of sport and World Wrestling Federation entertainment. It's one thing for a wide receiver to juke a US football cornerback for 0.8 seconds, it's another to do it controlling a ball with your feet.  some of us get pleasure in watching that as well.

You've made your point, it sits well with some, but you really shouldn't criticize football until you've a real understanding of the sport.

There's far more to criticize about the effect of predatory capitalism on sports, than whether there's not enough scoring in the World Cup.

(PS.  This is the World Cup, which is different than the various national leagues, where the football is also different.  Remember, these guys may be tops, but they don't play together very often.
PPS.  This is the World Cup, not the world series, which includes one club from Canada among the amurkan ones. We even saw New Zealand stay alive by getting a tie point against Slovakia, where both scored their first World Cup goals ever. And if you don't believe the early morning streets in New Zealand aren't alive with revelry right now, you should go back to watching grown men fight with padding.)

(nothing personal, just discussing sports brings out a bit of testosterone.)

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Tue Jun 15th, 2010 at 12:53:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Maybe it's an affliction of sports-related diaries -- of which this might be my first one -- that super fans interpret a request by a casual fan to change one aspect of a game as an attack on the game itself.

There's no evidence at all here for me being anti-soccer or whatever you're directing your feelings toward, but I do admit being a casual rather than super fan. The diary "is actually just anti-extremely-low-scores . . ." But there's plenty of evidence here of the extreme conservatism of die-hard super soccer fans.

Which is unfortunate, because with a few tweaks the game would be much more entertaining for most people. And I bet "super fans of soccer just the way it is" would continue to enjoy the game much more than casual fans even if the average score were 3-2 instead of 1-.67. Everyone happier, good. And, actually, I have a feeling FIFA will eventually figure the preceding out, so I will 'win' this debate eventually in the 'real world'. The low scoring has gotten too ridiculous to ignore.

About the Ivory Coast Portugal match, I love watching precision passing, precision scheming, and so on, and I get frustrated by crappy finishing, so I'm not sure how much I would have enjoyed the match. As you say, but I think many many agree with me, the big national leagues in Europe provide the precision and teamwork that the World Cup is missing, and I enjoy that football more than the World Cup variety. And, after watching World Cup after World Cup since, I don't know, '92, I've finally decided the great joy when your team wins has to be dimmed very significantly by the certainty that -- in these low-scoring matches -- doing well in the World Cup depends very much on getting the best of bad ref calls.

And testosterone away, it's all in good fun really.


by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Tue Jun 15th, 2010 at 02:35:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Never thought you were "anti-soccer."  Just that your wish for more goals shows you don't understand the game.

"extreme conservatism of die-hard soccer fans." ???
be careful there. you wouldn't want to seem blind. equating protection of a game you don't quite understand might not be conservative, especially around here.

at least here some might believe the game was not designed, nor did it evolve, to please amurkan tv audiences. unlike amurkan football, where athletes of superior ability are now weaponized.

the game isn't designed to be "entertaining for most people." it's simply evolved the way it has.  it's changed over the decades, not least that all the athletes are far better trained. sometimes we enjoy watching them kick the ball under speed and pressure from other great athletes.

for some of us conservatives, we'd rather watch trained athletes kick the cheney-bush caball around for a coupla decades, or perhaps a bit of high hard chin music to some masters of the universe... but that's not as possible as a few hours non-commercial break at watching what the human body is capable of doing.

A bad ref call can change a soccer game, but so can a very bad call change a perfect baseball game, which would have been the 21st time in a whole century (and the second time in a week)... and that only happened last week.

So i say, first learn the game really well, only then do you have a chance to figure out how it can evolve to your taste.

PS. high hard chin music is baseball talk for a fastball (hard leather, 158 km/h, 2-seam or 4-seam, right at the batter's chin.) i'd give anything to throw one at Lloyd Blankfein.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Ana´s Nin

by Crazy Horse on Tue Jun 15th, 2010 at 05:07:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You've written a very conservative response, in the sense that you don't assign any role to popular control over the game. 'It just changes, and we watch and enjoy as best we can'.

I think suggestions are a good thing.

And the game is for casual fans as well as religious ones. I feel like I entirely 'get' love of low-scoring games (usually dominated at the WC by bad ref calls) and certainly have watched a helluva lot of them and I enjoy them. Just not as much as ones with a little or a lot more scoring. I bet my feelings are about average for a soccer fan, in his and her secret heart of hearts.


by fairleft (fairleftatyahoodotcom) on Tue Jun 15th, 2010 at 05:40:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]


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