Monday, July 10, 2006

World Class Boredom

The World Cup is finally over. Thank the Lord.

I actually watched the final game, or was "charmed" into it by the administrations of one of my daughters who, because she is half Italian and took Italian as a language, wanted to see the Italians play the French. Neither side could score more than one goal apiece in two hours of exertions.

Run, run, fall, run, run, kick, fall, trip, run, run, kick, kick, kick, run, slide, run, run, run.


An unholy head butt provides the only interesting moments of the entire 120 minute ordeal. It was spectacular! The French player nearly drove the Italian's sternum out between his shoulder blades. The replays showed the players jawing at each other shortly before the incident and now there is much speculation on what kind of provocation the frenchman suffered before responding as he did.

This is simply nonsense compounding the stupity of a basically criminal act.

We see this from time to time in every sport and we see it more often as time passes. The referees reacted as they should, ejecting the frenchman from the game and possibly sealing the fate of his entire team. As well it should.

From the London Times, the following is a list of Zidane's ejections during his career:

Sep 1993: Marcel Desailly, the Marseilles defender, punches him and the Bordeaux midfield player retaliates in kind.
Aug 1995: Slaps Thorsten Fink, a Karlsruhe player, in the face.
Oct 1995: Sees red for a tackle from behind on Frédéric Mendy, a Martigues player.
Sep 1996: At Juventus, sent off against Perugia after two bookings.
Jan 1997: Punches Enrico Chiesa, of Parma.
June 1998: Stamps on Fuad Amin, the Saudi Arabia captain, during World Cup finals.
Oct 1998: Commits a two-footed challenge on Paolo Sousa, the Inter Milan player.
Oct 1999: Receives a second yellow card for diving against AS Roma.
Sep 2000: Late challenge on Emerson, the Deportivo La Coruña midfield player, in Champions League.
Oct 2000: Butts Jochen Kientz, of SV Hamburg, and receives five-match ban.
Feb 2004: First sending-off at Real Madrid for thrusting hand into face of Pablo Alfaro, the Seville defender.
May 2004: Sent off for second booking after a rash challenge on Djalminha, the Deportivo midfield player.
April 2005: Tries to punch Quique Álvarez, the Villarreal defender.
July 2006: Butts Marco Materazzi in chest during World Cup final

And this was his final game, a game that ended his career on a very sour note. He should have spent more time perfecting his self control than the physical skills that ultimately failed him at the end.

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