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View Full Version : U.S. advances to Semis of Confederations Cup


rfrobison
06-22-2009, 10:47 PM
In yet more heterodoxy (for a rightie), I tip my hand as a (casual) fan of U.S. soccer. For those who haven't heard, the U.S. advanced to the semifinals of the Confederations Cup. Grouped with defending cup champions Italy, Brazil, and African champions Egypt, the U.S. wasn't given much of a chance.

And after listless showings and consecutive losses of 3-1 to Italy and 3-0 to Brazil, those predictions looked spot on.

But with a gutsy 3-0 defeat of Egypt and much needed help from the Brazilians, who thrashed Italy 3-0, the U.S. managed to squeak through on goal difference.

It is better indeed, sometimes, to be lucky than good. They'll probably need more of that against their next opponent, Spain.

Starwatcher162536
06-22-2009, 11:55 PM
Is there some specific reason you believe Republicans as a whole like soccer less then Democrats or Independents?

I just don't see it.

claymisher
06-23-2009, 12:17 AM
I watched the first half of the Italy-Brazil match. Good lord, that awful South African horn! I guess it's called a "vuvuzela." I had to turn the sound off. They'd better ban those or I'll have to skip the 2010 World Cup completely.

rfrobison
06-23-2009, 01:02 AM
Is there some specific reason you believe Republicans as a whole like soccer less then Democrats or Independents?

I just don't see it.

Nah, not really. Just some vague stereotype about beefy guys sittin' around the tube with their equally beefy girlfriends, making jokes about that namby-pamby soccer stuff.

I like a lot of what James Taranto over at the WSJ writes on his pseudo-blog, "Best of the Web," but he's always dissing soccer--I guess just to try and get the goats of soccer fans. Or maybe he was always picked last for soccer in gym class when he was a kid and still hasn't gotten over it.

But note. I haven't given up all my pride. I still call soccer by its proper name, er, "soccer," and not that pretentious multicultural name, "football," which, as everyone knows, is played with helmets and pads and barely involves the feet at all.

rfrobison
06-23-2009, 01:06 AM
I wish I could see the Confederations cup games here in Japan. I'll have to take a closer look at the TV schedule. But I'm convinced I'm a jinx. Whenever I went to a baseball game as a kid, the only time my team (the then Triple-A Denver Bears) would score was when I got up to get a hot dog.

If I watch the U.S.-Spain match they'll be lucky to lose by less than three goals!

Lyle
06-23-2009, 07:47 AM
Totally undeserved. The U.S. was horrible against Brazil. Poor Egypt.

Lyle
06-23-2009, 07:51 AM
Anecdotal, but from what I read on American and International soccer forums there are plenty of conservative U.S. soccer fans. Maybe some of these people don't realize their views are conservative though and are in fact Democrats. Some are definitely Republicans though.

Lyle
06-23-2009, 07:51 AM
Respect different cultures, respect the vuvuzela.

Lyle
06-23-2009, 07:52 AM
Spain is the best team in the world at the moment, but I think the U.S. can hang with them. They'll be confident and they have nothing to lose.

rfrobison
06-23-2009, 08:08 AM
That's what's cool about sports (some more than others). It's like life. Luck plays a big role. How boring it would be if only the teams that "deserved to win," won.

For my money, John McCain deserved to beat GWB for the Republican nomination in 2000--ah, how different the world might be today! On the other hand, it could have turned out much worse...

Eventually, though, reality catches up. We'll see re: Spain.

Lyle
06-23-2009, 11:52 AM
Yeah, that is the truth, but the U.S. isn't that good a team. It's very rare that 3 points is enough to get out of a 4 team group in an international tournament.

rfrobison
06-24-2009, 01:58 AM
Yeah, that is the truth, but the U.S. isn't that good a team. It's very rare that 3 points is enough to get out of a 4 team group in an international tournament.

I suppose an objective observer would probably rate the U.S. national side as average, or maybe slightly better than average. They regularly qualify for the World Cup only because they are part of what is probably the weakest of all the regional conferences, CONCACAF.

I've often wondered what it would take to make the U.S. a serious challenger for the top ranks. Many have commented about American indifference to soccer--low scores (but there's baseball) and the fact that the format of the game doesn't lend itself well to commercial TV.

Maybe what U.S.soccer needs is a "public option." Imagine the following speech from President Obama:

My fellow Americans, as we seek to restore America's good name and rightful place of leadership in the community of nations, today my administration is announcing a package of measures that will change the course of the Beautiful Game, soccer, and perhaps that of history itself.

It is clear that soccer, through no fault of its own, is suffering from a market failure. How else to explain the fact that despite being far and away the world's most popular sport, soccer has failed to catch on here? The previous administration, with its blind devotion to a discredited version of sports laissez faire, neglected its role in fostering soccer, allowing it to languish and giving our adversaries one more excuse to hate us. One can almost hear the angry voices in the madrassas of [PAH KEE STAHN]: "Kill those infidel Americans! They don't even play football [soccer]!"

Ladies and gentlemen, we can no longer afford to hold ourselves apart. Unilateralism in sports will no longer serve our needs in the 21st century. That is why, under the Soccer for America Act, my administration is setting aside $10 billion annually to develop soccer at all levels, with the goal of bringing home a World Cup title within 10 years.

Now the opponents of this plan are going to attack it. They will tell you that we're out to destroy other great American sports like baseball and chug-a-lug contests. They will say we can't afford it. That's just plain dishonest. Americans will still be able to enjoy watching grown men spit on the ground and scratch their crotches on prime-time TV.

And the entire cost of our program is approximately equal to 3.2 nanoseconds of deployment time in [EE RAHK] and Afghanistan. Think about that.

What Soccer for America will do is level the playing field, if you will, building up this fine sport and allowing it to compete fairly with others. Once established, we will phase out public spending on soccer. Indeed, I believe as we transfer teams and players and stadiums to private owners, the government will actually earn a profit. In short, Soccer for America is a vital investment in America's international sporting future.

So tonight, I'm asking you to contact your representative and tell her or him that you support Soccer for America. God bless you, God bless the United States, and íViva futbol!...er, I mean, Long live soccer!

Good night.

Lyle
06-24-2009, 02:52 PM
Well it depends on who you compare them to. If you compare them to every single country that fields a national team, the U.S. isn't bad. If you compare them to Spain, Brazil, England, and Argentina... they're not too good.

My use of bad was really referencing their performance against Brazil, which was poor.

rfrobison
06-24-2009, 06:43 PM
Yes, yes, of course. But the speech's the thing (to badly paraphrase Shakespeare)!

bjkeefe
06-20-2010, 11:55 PM
I watched the first half of the Italy-Brazil match. Good lord, that awful South African horn! I guess it's called a "vuvuzela." I had to turn the sound off. They'd better ban those or I'll have to skip the 2010 World Cup completely.

You know WHO ELSE (http://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2010/06/hitlers-take-on-the-vuvuzela) didn't like the vuvuzela???1?

Starwatcher162536
06-21-2010, 12:36 AM
The vuvuzela is just a horn with no moving parts. I would imagine such an instrument would have a relative simple sound (?Timbre?) with few resonant frequencies which should make it easy to filter out. Admittedly, I have no idea if speech would still be intelligible afterwards. I do have a suspicion our brain might be able to compensate by filling in the gaps though.

TwinSwords
06-21-2010, 12:45 AM
The vuvuzela is just a horn with no moving parts. I would imagine such an instrument would have a relative simple sound (?Timbre?) with few resonant frequencies which should make it easy to filter out.

You're right (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gk5cnCGgq0I&feature=player_embedded).