What's a sporting event without snide quips from commentators and
peanut-gallery fans? If you aren't enough of a soccer nut to know where to find
the goods for World Cup coverage, never fear: the Wire has you covered. Herewith, our roundup of
the most entertaining and bizarre soccer-related comments of the past
- The Guardian Hates the Japanese National Anthem "Japan's is bloody miserable, to tell the truth," writes Scott Murray on the liveblog for the Japan-Cameroon match. Their anthem is "the sort of dirge you'd expect to hear pinging off the walls of a church in the Outer Hebridies." Later, he gets some support on this topic:
"Having listened to the Japanese national anthem I had an enormous urge to commit suicide," writes Tim Love, who is still with us, we hope. "I checked out a translation and the guys were singing about moss growing on rocks. At least now we know how kamikaze pilots managed to motivate themselves. Is that the most depressing sounding national anthem in the world!?"
- But It's the BBC That's Really Eurocentric Murray's issues with Japan notwithstanding, The Guardian's Barry Glendenning
holds that the real condescension towards non-European countries is to
be found at the BBC. During the Uruguay-France game, he mocked BBC commentators for their condescending notes of approval
every time slightly less-experienced referees so much as blew a whistle
19 min: Franck Ribery gets booked for hanging out of the shirt of ... somebody. Despite being from Japan, the referee manages to do everything in the right order, blowing his whistle, removing the card from his pocket, writing the correct player's number on the back of it and then holding it up in the air. Well done, Yuichi Nishimura! Well done, you. Mark Lawrenson, Steve Wilson and the rest of the BBC team will be very impressed, what this being such a big game and the referee being a funny foreigner.
- More Questionable Geopolitical Humor Jillian York at Global Voices Online rounds up some colorful tweets from the England-U.S. game, among them one from tweeter Elsalameen: "Where is the US offense ? A guy next to me yelled 'In Iraq?'"
- 'Professional Sport Has Become the Sow That Eats Its Own Farrow' That's the conclusion at the end of a concise little outburst by one Malachy of The Willesden Herald blog. He hates, among other "travesties," that the balls the World Cup is using don't have the traditional "hexagonal panels."
- The World Cup Is Spoiling My Taste for Boring Things and My TV Clashes with My Brocaded Armchair The Financial Times's Gideon Rachman finds himself in dire straits:
With the World Cup underway, I'm finding it hard to concentrate on my usual diet of failed states, UN resolutions and brave struggles for democracy. The 42-inch-plasma TV is now installed and looking vulgar and out of place in my otherwise tasteful, sitting room.
- And Of Course, Vuvuzuelas "Is it just me," asks John Mille of the National Review in a remark representative of thousands more like it, "or does it sound like these games are played in beehives?