Sideshows spice up Brazil World Cup
Ultras Tonjol FC, as published in Mailsport today
ALLOW me to first congratulate Police for winning the Premier League title.
Their 4-0 win over Negri Sembilan on Friday night was enough to give them a five-point lead against second-placed Felda United en route to earning a promotion to the Super League next season.
I would like to wish Selangor and Johor Darul Takzim all the best as they play their final matches of the season tomorrow. JDT lead Selangor by one point and will have the advantage as they seek their first league crown.
And now the on-going World Cup.
It has been an exciting start to the 2014 edition as most teams now brace for their challenge in the knockout stage.
Iran, dubbed as ‘Bas Ekspress Iran’ by some, managed a solid performance before they were handed a cruel blow by Lionel Messi, who gave Argentina a 1-0 win and three valuable points.
Ghana gave three-time champions Germany a run for their money before Miroslav Klose scored the equaliser in a 2-2 draw.
Klose, appearing in his fourth Finals, has scored a total of 15 World Cup goals to equale former Brazilian star Ronaldo’s record.
Let’s leave the tactics to the very many “experts” and speak about the antics of the players and coaches, on and off the field, instead.
Hips don’t lie
You can always rely on the South American and African teams when it comes to executing sleek moves after scoring. During the match against Greece last week, the Colombian players (pic), led by leftback Pablo Armero, shook their hips real hard that some said it would put Shakira to shame. The Ghana players, not wanting to be outdone, also busted a move after Asamoah Gyan gave his side a 2-1 lead against Germany. Here’s hoping for more energetic dance moves in days to come.
Pretty boy pretty vain
If you think those who take selfies and post them on social media are vain, think again. Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo, who some claim is blessed with good looks, has an image of his face on his shin pads. As Daily Mail’s Andrew Magee wrote: “If anything, it might even have encouraged the Germans to kick him that little bit harder.”
Brazil star Neymar decided to go blond. With that hairstyle and colour, he’d go unnoticed if he sold pirate DVDs at pasar malam or visited a feng tau joint. As for Portugal’s Raul Meireles, the Mohawk, thick beard and beautiful ink on his body could land him a stint in a Roman empire-themed movie. Jeremy Clarkson, commented on England forward Wayne Rooney’s double hair transplant, tweeting: “Rooney’s hair transplant screwed us there.” Afro is still alive, according to Belgium’s Marouane Fellani while US footballer Kyle Beckerman, when armed with a guitar, could pass off as a reggae singer. Argentina’s Rodrigo Palacio’s pigtail? If he was a Hollywood star, he’d be roasted by Joan Rivers on Fashion Police.
Pictures of Japan supporters cleaning up the stands after their team’s goalless draw against Greece went viral on social media. This was the second time they were “caught” doing so after the team’s opening match against Ivory Coast. Then we have authorities investigating fans, who were believed to have bought concession tickets, for ticket fraud after they were caught on camera jumping out of their wheelchairs during a World Cup match. A dear friend, who watched Holland edge Australia 3-2 in Porto Alegre wrote, on Facebook: “A Dutch fan was so excited over the win that he started spraying a fire extinguisher in the stadium while dancing. The Brazilian security chased him and made him say: “I regret doing that and will never do it again. I will not celebrate Holland’s victory with a fire extinguisher.” Looks like the cops have a sense of humour.”
For some of us who cannot afford to watch matches in the wee hours of the morning, we have YouTube to thank. There are those who, behind their bosses backs, watch the highlights of
the matches only to later pretend to have watched the matches. At times we are forced to watch
matches with commentators speaking in foreign languages. As a colleague rightfully observed
recently, the English commentators would, right after a goal is scored say: “A beautiful execution. That shot would go into the history books for many reasons etc...”
As for the Middle East commentators, it’s just: “Gooooooooooooooaaaaaal, goal, goal, gooooooooooooooooooooaaaaaaaaa
HARESH is editor (investigations and special projects) of Malay Mail. Banter with him at
firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @HareshDeol