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Athena

International Soccer/Football & UEFA Champions League

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Hi, I'm from Chile and I have a question. Why do you call it "Soccer" and not "Football"? Thanks.

 

We already have a sport called football, even though very few of them actually touch the ball with their feet.

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No, that's not exactly true. "Soccer" is a legit name of the sport coined in England at the dawn of the modern game in the 1870s. It's an abbreviation of Association Football, used to distinguish from Rugby Football. So, if someone says, let's go watch the football, it is technically correct to ask which one. And this is the best kind of correct.

 

We didn't have Americal football before we had soccer iirc. 

 

As to why it's called different things in different places is because I assume the European language speakers find it easier to say 'futbol' than soccer. English is frankly a terrible language to learn because it's filled with made up words. Being that soccer is dominant pretty much everywhere except the USA, this evolved into the colloquial term. 

 

Pet peeve of mine. 

 

I'm fine with the away goal rule because I think it would be too easy to park the bus, so to speak, as the away team, and we'd have too many PKs. 

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Arsenal got themselves into that situation by bombing on the first leg. I don't feel bad for them in the slightest.

I don't either.  There's no reason they shouldn't have at least drawn the first leg match at the Emirates.  I do feel sorry for us fans who have to keep suffering through this crap; you'd think we'd have learned by now, but no, hope continues to spring eternal.

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I don't either.  There's no reason they shouldn't have at least drawn the first leg match at the Emirates.  I do feel sorry for us fans who have to keep suffering through this crap; you'd think we'd have learned by now, but no, hope continues to spring eternal.

 

A few months ago, I finally wrangled a copy of Fever Pitch the movie. I loved the book, but couldn't track down a copy of the movie for years. Now, whenever I see Arsenal lose badly now or just get hurt like this, I think about the ending. It's consoling to think about me with Colin Firth and Mark Strong celebrating an Arsenal win.

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It's consoling to think about me with Colin Firth and Mark Strong celebrating an Arsenal win.

 

And now I want Mark Strong to console me over Arsenal's CL washout.  That gives me something new to think about.  Thanks.  ;-)

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We have the match-ups for the CL quarter-finals:

Porto vs. Bayern Munich

Juventus vs. Monaco

PSG vs. Barcelona

Real Madrid vs. Atlético Madrid

What do you guys think?

As a Real Madrid fan, the last team I wanted them to play against is Atlético Madrid. However, I'm hopeful that Real Madrid will finally beat them this season.

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Ray Hudson had to be one of my least favorite things about El Clasico. He wasn't too bad yesterday, but I could have done without 99.9% of his analogies.

I wish Real had at least managed a draw, but I thought they played surprisingly well.

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Ray Hudson had to be one of my least favorite things about El Clasico. He wasn't too bad yesterday, but I could have done without 99.9% of his analogies.

I wish Real had at least managed a draw, but I thought they played surprisingly well.

I thought Real played really well yesterday too. I'm disappointed with the loss because I think they could've beaten Barcelona or at least drawn had it not been for those missed chances and if they hadn't gassed out towards the end.

Do you think they'll be able to overcome the 4 point lead Barcelona has over them in La Liga?

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I don't know. I don't see Barca dropping too many points in the remaining games. And we have to make sure we don't drop any points in our league games. Plus, we still have to deal with Atleti in the Champions League. Oy, I am getting stressed out again-lol.

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Barcelona does have difficult games left so anything can happen, but Real Madrid have to be absolutely perfect from now on and not drop anymore points like you said.

Atlético Madrid has definitely been a pain for Real this season. I'm hoping Real can finally beat them and knock them out of the Champions League.

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Not a fan of international breaks, but there have been some good games - mostly among the Euro qualifiers. The Netherlands-Turkey game was good, with a monster goal from Wesley Sneijder.

 

And Gareth Bale chased away his Real Madrid blues with a brace in Wales' 3-0 win against Israel.

 

I'm ready for club football to return now.

Edited by Gillian Rosh
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I'm rooting for Iceland in the Euros. 

I always root for Scotland.  You can see how that usually works out.  Although they are only one point back of Poland.

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Ray Hudson had to be one of my least favorite things about El Clasico. He wasn't too bad yesterday, but I could have done without 99.9% of his analogies.

 

Heh. I think I've just gotten used to him, and now find the non-Ray games to be a little dull. When I first started watching (~5 years ago, when a FC Barcelona obsessed human being came into my life) I was more like, WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING TO ME?!

 

¡Força Barça!

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Heh. I think I've just gotten used to him, and now find the non-Ray games to be a little dull. When I first started watching (~5 years ago, when a FC Barcelona obsessed human being came into my life) I was more like, WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING TO ME?!

¡Força Barça!

 

That was about when I started following the sport. The only difference is my WTF reaction to Ray Hudson has never changed-lol

 

I've missed the Champions League, so it'll be nice to have it back in another week. Though I am already resigning myself to seeing Barcelona win the CL, I'm just grateful I don't have to watch Chelsea win it.

Edited by Gillian Rosh

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It looks like the pile of injuries have finally caught up to Bayern...there'd better be a thrashing at the Allianz next week (please PLEASE let Schweinsteiger be fine to play by then because Xabi needs a rest stat)

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I didn't expect Porto to beat Bayern. Give them a game, yes, but beat them 3-1? 

 

The second leg is gonna be mighty interesting.

 

As for Real Madrid, something tells me they're going to regret not finishing those chances vs. Atletico in the first leg.

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I guess I'm being very optimistic about Real Madrid, but I still think they'll finally be able to beat Atlético Madrid, at least I hope they'll be able to. I know that it looks grim with all the injuries, but I'll still be rooting for them.

Barcelona moving on to the semi-finals is pretty much a done deal unless PSG uses that away goal that Mathieu gifted to them to their advantage and scores some goals.

Bayern Munich vs. Porto will be interesting. I don't think a lot of people expected that 3-1 Porto win last week, but it's still open for Bayern Munich to come in and turn things around. It could really go either way.

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Well....a thrashing I asked for, a thrashing I got. 6-1? What a one-sided game this turned out to be. I knew they would get through but I didn't think it would be like this.

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Awwww, I was rooting for Porto and PSG.  Not so much because I care about them.  I just like underdogs when they aren't playing Arsenal.  Well, that, and I hate Barca.

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I'm glad Real went through, and due to the unlikeliest of heroes - Javier Hernandez.

 

That Bayern result had my jaw on the floor. It's like they got mad at everyone for doubting them.

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Both look to be fantastic games. I'm a big Buffon and Pirlo fan. They won't let Juve be intiminated by Real. 

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I'm hoping for a Juve-Bayern final. I don't think I can take a UCL final Clasico.

With Juve winning it all.  That's the only result that doesn't make me want to vomit.

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I would love to see Real Madrid in the final and win it all. I think that Juventus will be a tougher opponent than what some people think, but hopefully Madrid can do a great job on both legs and move on.

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I would love to see Real Madrid in the final and win it all. I think that Juventus will be a tougher opponent than what some people think, but hopefully Madrid can do a great job on both legs and move on.

 

Agreed. If Real struggled to unlock Atleti's defense, I shudder to think how they'll cope with Juve's.

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Bayern are my one team that I have absolute faith in (which is saying something considering I'm also an Arsenal fan...) but Robben, Ribery and possibly Lewa out? A broken nose is manageable, but broken upper jaw plus concussion is doubtful. My faith is starting to waver...but either way I do like Barca. I just like Bayern more

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Man, was yesterday's Bayern-Barca game phenomenal. We've already watched it twice in my house and I have a feeling it will stick around on the DVR for a looooong time. I expect/hope Tuesday's game won't disappoint either.

 

I heart Pep. 

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Messi's second goal was sick. You put an adult professional player literally on his ass and flicked the goal in like you were sneezing.

 

I know BM is ailing, but I don't see Barca losing if they play that well. 

Edited by ganesh

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So, bets on who the ultimate Champion will be? Already counting down the days to June 6 (and scheduling a weekend away around it, to ensure we'll be in a place with TV access where my husband can yell and scream without judgment). 

 

¡Força Barça!

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I hate it when Bayern and Barcelona play against each other. I love them both but when they go head and head I side with Bayern. Alas. 

 

But now that the semis are out of the way, I can focus all my rooting power for Barcelona. Go go go!

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I'm disappointed to see Real Madrid knocked out of the Champions League. Oh well, there's always next season...

In terms of the final, I hate to say it, but Barcelona is probably the favorite to win. The MSN are simply unstoppable at this point.

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I'm disappointed to see Real Madrid knocked out of the Champions League. Oh well, there's always next season...

 

I'm not even that upset about it. I was not looking forward to a Clasico final. Plus, I'd already resigned myself to Barca winning the CL.

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I'm dumbfounded how Real couldn't get a second goal. Everything seemed off to me. I know Gigi made some really great plays, but still. 

 

Not for nothing though, the clearance by Casillas on the Juve goal was terrible. Goalkeeping 101 tells you not to punch it directly out in front. He might have been better off trying to catch it and get fouled. Not that getting knocked out lies on him, but it speaks to the general offness of the team. 

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I hate it when Bayern and Barcelona play against each other. I love them both but when they go head and head I side with Bayern. Alas.

That's exactly how I felt. But I still feel some residual disappointment; it's good thing the final's not till june, I need time to forgive barca lol 

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Ten FIFA officials have been arrested in Switzerland for extradition to the US to face corruption charges in the awarding of the World Cups to Qatar and Russia.

 

http://screamer.deadspin.com/reports-justice-department-brings-the-goddamn-hammer-d-1707109298

FIFA is corrupt?  I can't believe it!  Says no football/soccer fan anywhere.  The surprise is someone finally doing something about it.  Unfortunately FIFA is so corrupt that the cynic in me wonders if the timing of this isn't designed to handicap Sepp's election opposition.

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See what happens when you decide you really really want the USA to start paying attention to world soccer, FIFA?

 

I'm kidding. A little bit.

 

I mean, we all know that FIFA is corrupt and we basically accept that it's corrupt in order to get the games but... this is very very interesting. Even more so that Switzerland is cooperating and extraditing... That's kind of astounding.

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Very interesting.

 

Qatar being, apparently, the straw the broke the camel's back... yeah... because I still don't know how that's even going to work. Russia is a bit problematic, too. Garcia's investigation was hindered by FIFA from jump but, you know, Russia destroying all of their computers before he could get to them... that's not remotely suspicious, is it? And Garcia has experience dealing with Russian corruption. Still... Qatar.

 

You can only use the 'we want to bring football to all corners of the globe' for so long when you look at conditions there, what is required to host one of the world's largest sporting events (you can certainly make an argument for the Olympics but those are held in one city as opposed to the World Cup which stretches across the entire country.) There were things in Brazil that made no sense to me. Manaus being at the top of that list... a "city" that didn't have a team for the stadium build there to use after the tournament, a place so remote they couldn't get building supplies there by road. What are they even going to use that stadium for?

 

Qatar's even worse... people dying, a slave state where they aren't even getting paid for their work, building 14 stadiums to house more people than they even have in their borders... and then there's the whole weather thing. Talking about moving the World Cup to a different season when it conflicts with the national leagues all across the world?

 

It's a mess. It's a big fat mess and, yes, Qatar getting the World Cup was MYSTIFYING... which is why the initial investigation happened in the first place.

 

Michael Garcia must be delighted with this turn of events. 

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Considering the connections between Michael Garcia and the FBI Director and the current Attorney General, I wonder if they got together and said, "This needs to be resolved."

 

I read this morning that Switzerland is running its own investigation.

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I mean, we all know that FIFA is corrupt and we basically accept that it's corrupt in order to get the games but... this is very very interesting. Even more so that Switzerland is cooperating and extraditing... That's kind of astounding.

 

Well, FIFA was using non-Swiss banks to launder their bribe money, so . . .

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I get that FIFA being corrupt is no shock.

 

What's mind boggling to me is how they awarded the World Cup to Qatar and didn't think that would raise an eyebrow or arouse suspicion.  

 

WTF?

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I think it was one of those situations where Blatter and Co honestly believed they were completely untouchable. It didn't matter what decision they made, no one would question it and if they did, they wouldn't be able to do anything about it.

 

John Oliver's rant against FIFA last year before the World Cup was absolutely delightful but it was also laced with a very firm truth: FIFA is awful but what they sell is delightful.

 

There always seems to be a line... a line that is crossed that those who think they never have to answer for anything ultimately cross due to hubris and Qatar seems to be it. But there was so much involved, like selecting 2018/22 at the same time which is not generally done. Like that wouldn't raise up any flags? A 350 page report being cut to 42 saying 'Yeah, there was some misconduct but it didn't really affect the voting. So there.'

 

And FIFA is big game, you know? This is a great big shiny feather in a cap and I can only hope that other federations take this ball and run with it (to use an American football analogy which seems like I'm rubbing salt into a wound... but it's FIFA so they can suck it.)

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Seriously. Qatar. One can at least deal with Russia as a host since there's an infrastructure in place. But come on. No one in that room said, "uh, guys? This might be a smidge much."

 

I'm also wondering if USA thought they were going to get 2022, since the rotation would have been back to this hemisphere by then, so were like, "No, I don't think so."

 

I don't get why USA hasn't gotten another one yet. It's still been the most successful one to date.

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