November 11, 2005

First leg of World Cup playoffs begins tomorrow, second leg four days later: 27 countries have qualified for Germany '06 and 10 more will battle it out for the last 5 positions. Is it finally time for the Men from Oz to break their 32 year drought? Any predictions?

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY to soccer at 11:35 AM - 36 comments

Australia - Uruguay: I'm going with a slight nod to Australia...more hopeful than anything. Spain - Slovakia: Spain. Czech Republic - Norway: I think this one will be tight but...Czech Republic. Switzerland - Turkey: Tight again...Switzerland. Trinidad & Tobago - Bahrain: I've never seen Bahrain play but T&T are crap...Bahrain.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 11:41 AM on November 11, 2005

Uruguay Spain Czech Republic Turkey Trinidad & Tobago Will advance if recent history holds true.

posted by inmyopinion at 02:15 PM on November 11, 2005

Does anyone really care?

posted by volfire at 02:37 PM on November 11, 2005

Obviously the people posting in the thread care.

posted by acesrt132 at 02:49 PM on November 11, 2005

Does anyone really care? Probably only those who view the world beyond their own fence post.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 02:56 PM on November 11, 2005

That Czech Republic-Norway game should be a barnburner.

posted by chicobangs at 03:04 PM on November 11, 2005

I think Turkey will turn up the heat too high for the Swiss, and they'll melt like the cheese.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:06 PM on November 11, 2005

mmmmmm....Turkey melt. The Swiss have too many holes to be competitive.

posted by holden at 03:11 PM on November 11, 2005

Time for the Euro's to try to shove this sport down our throats again. Give up, no one in America cares about soccer. It is boring and there is no scoring. Plus all that kicking is effeminate, it is like watch a Chorus Line on grass.

posted by ArtVandalay420 at 03:39 PM on November 11, 2005

If you don't have anything constructive to say...

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:45 PM on November 11, 2005

Hey Art, are you calling everyone who's posted in this thread a nobody? That's really fucking rude of you. Sorry you feel threatened with talk about a sport that baffles you. It's not difficult, and you're obviously smarter than any of us. You could learn something today if you wanted to. Oh, and this isn't a US-only website. So go find a thread about something to which you can add something to the conversation.

posted by chicobangs at 03:49 PM on November 11, 2005

I'm not up on Int'l soccer but I'll give it a try... Uruguay Spain Czech Republic Suisse T & T

posted by willthrill72 at 04:09 PM on November 11, 2005

Where's DrJohnEvans with a cool scoring table when you need him? Uruguay Spain Czech Republic Turkey Bahrain

posted by The_Black_Hand at 06:48 PM on November 11, 2005

It would be nice to see the Aussies get there. Oh...about Americans and Soccer. I guess it would be meaningless of me to say that not only do we have the MLS but many of our players play in Europe. The US National Team is currently enjoying one of its highest rankings ever. Soccer is on the rise in America Like I said, It was useless of me to point that out. We already know these facts...well almost all of us. As for the other games. Spain, Norway, Switzerland and I agree with Texan...Bahrain

posted by bsheisty at 07:16 PM on November 11, 2005

Hey Art, Sitting on your lawn chair, in front of your trailer, sucking down some Miller apparently has not helped your intellect much. I would suggest you stick to redneck hick activities such as flicking boogers that suit your ignorant macho mentality.

posted by inmyopinion at 07:31 PM on November 11, 2005

I'm going for the underdogs. C'mon Ozzies, make history! Other personal preferences, not necessarily form favorites ... Norway Slovakia Swiss Bahrain We need more tiny countries to go in and win!

posted by worldcup2002 at 08:39 PM on November 11, 2005

Thanks for all your support for the green and gold, mates. But every four years I get my hopes up to see them quickly dashed. I'm going into this one with a modicum of sang-froid, as we are definitely underdogs. That's a good Uruguayan team, who beat Argentina quite convincingly, and haven't lost at home for over a year. We should hope for a draw or at least an away goal. And, worldcup2002, we actually did qualify 32 years ago, so it's not 'history' as such. But maybe the German host thing will work again this time. As for anything involving Norway being a 'barn-burner', chico, you are obviously a fan of the long ball game. Or maybe just rural arson.

posted by owlhouse at 11:08 PM on November 11, 2005

owlhouse, it's always nice to see fans who temper their love with knowledge and a taste of reality. As much as I'd love to see the Aussies do it up, I think you're right, Uruguay will prove too strong. Good luck, though. You are about the nicest people on earth, after all.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 12:01 AM on November 12, 2005

I hope Australia make it this time, though i don't dislike U-r-gay...

posted by StarFucker at 12:53 AM on November 12, 2005

And there was me thinking Tex was an American. Anyway, on to important matters.... Uruguay Spain Czech Republic Turkey T&T

posted by squealy at 06:34 AM on November 12, 2005

Oh, just as an aside: "Liverpool's John Arne Riise lost a Playstation bet he had with his international team-mates today and as the loser he had to parade semi-naked at Norway's pre-match press conference. Did he do it? You bet he did. This one's for the ladies" Can anyone read Norwegian?

posted by squealy at 09:56 AM on November 12, 2005

Great link, squealy. And there was me thinking Tex was an American. What was your first clue? Yes, the referring comment was so absurd I couldn't even respond. Now off to watch the Scotland - US Match on tivo. I've waited just long enough to fast-forward through the donkey-talk half-time coverage, aka Alan Hopkins and Max Bretos speaking. This game is actually one that worries me a bit. I'm sensing a not-so-great performance against Scotland.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 10:26 AM on November 12, 2005

The Uruguay - Oz game is on GolTV live at 3:00 today followed by an SDD of Spain - Slovakia. I'm not sure about other systems but GolTV is on directv.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 10:29 AM on November 12, 2005

Strange isn't it, this urge some Americans seem to have to tell us how much they dislike football? I'm not a big fan of NFL but I don't feel the need to state that on SpoFi NFL threads. Time for the Euro's to try to shove this sport down our throats again. Give up, no one in America cares about soccer. I got a tip for you Art. Us "Euro's" don't give a shit whether America takes to football or not.

posted by squealy at 10:45 AM on November 12, 2005

GolTV is on most Comcast systems but extra cost. For more on the increasing success of soccer in America, I'll point to two articles: Soccer Reaches the Tipping Point from the Soccer Silicon Valley blog discussing this article from Football Stadium Digest about the terrific soccer-specific stadiums being built by MLS teams. SSV is a fan group, spun out from the Earthquakes supporters club, working with investors and local politicians to find a new owner for the Quakes and end the two years of AEG-driven misery. Which leads to.... Sharks, cities talking to keep Quakes in area from the front page of today's Mercury News surfaces the news that the ownership group of the (NHL) Sharks is possibly going to be our saviors and buy the franchise.

posted by billsaysthis at 12:41 PM on November 12, 2005

bill, as much as Houston comes into the picture everytime relocation and San Jose are mentioned, I hope you keep your team. OK, so I wish the field the Quakes played on was about 20 yards wider...I'm sure the talks for a soccer-specific stadium will address this...but the fan base in San Jose has to be among the best in MLS, if not the best. The fans there seem to be very soccer-wise and you can hear that through television. Good fans deserve a team to support. Houston can just wait for another option to get their team, assuming it happens at all. And this from the Football Stadium digest story: "Those kids [from the 1970s] are now forty years old or even slightly older, and they are beginning to take positions of influence throughout American society." I resemble that remark, and look forward to moving back to Texas next year to open a soccer camp for underprivileged kids. It is my dream. Great post, bill...great links. Will it shut up the morons who feel the need to defecate on our soccer threads? Probably not. But we never needed the approval of those whose eyes can't see anyway.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 02:08 PM on November 12, 2005

Don't worry, guys. Every four years the Australian press is also full of advice from football xenophobes telling soccer fans about how to improve the most popular game on the planet. Just enjoy the ride. And we didn't score in Montevideo, but it was only 1-0 so the dream stays alive.

posted by owlhouse at 06:43 PM on November 12, 2005

1-0 with the goal being controversial from what I read. Linesman calls the foul against Uruguay and ref thinks it was the other way. Boom, goal.

posted by billsaysthis at 10:39 PM on November 12, 2005

Yea bill, it looked like the foul was going the other way to me, but Australia should have done a better job defending the back post. The free kick was perfectly placed for the falling header, but someone should have been there. Here's more on the foul. Australia had their chances and did well throughout the game; I thought Viduka's snap-shot about 2 minutes into the second half was going in. Uruguay may have just deserved the win, but only just. I still the think the Aussies will come back Wednesday...kick-off at 4:00 a.m. ET. Gotta set the tivo! Other results: Spain 5 - Slovakia 1 Norway 0 - Czech Republic 1 Switzerland 2 - Turkey 0...should be a madhouse in Istanbul Wednesday. Trinidad & Tobago 1 - Bahrain 1...about as crap a game as you'll ever see in WC qualifying. Obviously, with the away goal, Bahrain have to be the favorite now.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 10:57 AM on November 13, 2005

And possibly the shortest story ever posted in SportsFilter, there's this.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 11:34 AM on November 13, 2005

I'm finding all kinds of little nuggets today, eh? Free subscription may be required and they don't spam.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 11:48 AM on November 13, 2005

Four of Spain's five goals came from Liverpool players and Cisse had one of the best chances for France. When, oh when, will they start producing like that for us?!?!?

posted by billsaysthis at 06:24 PM on November 13, 2005

Barcelona in MLS?! Unbelievable...

posted by StarFucker at 08:34 AM on November 14, 2005

Did anyone watch the MLS Championship? What a fucking eyesore that was.

posted by Texan_lost_in_NY at 08:53 AM on November 14, 2005

I watched it... It wasn't too bad.

posted by StarFucker at 10:46 AM on November 14, 2005

I couldn't watch because if LA ended up winning--which they did--I would be screaming at Landon for betraying us.

posted by billsaysthis at 03:20 PM on November 14, 2005

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