World Cup Hurting Movie Biz?

This is an old article from Variety (plunked from an unfinished post by @huffcity) but kinda interesting, especially to see if it has played out to be true. Basically, it says that the World Cup — June 11-July 11 — has put a real crimp in Hollywood’s movie release schedule, particularly in Europe, where they’re presuming every debut would be a flop.

Personally, I think they should just re-run Victory non-stop:

Where to Watch Live Streaming 2010 World Cup Video Online for Free

A little more South Africa from Afar … here’s a list of places you’ll be able to watch matches over the internet via free streaming video:

South Africa from Afar

Just starting to set up my bookmarks and twitter follows for the World Cup. Already friggin’ excited … just filled out my bracket, and I gotta say, I’m such a homer — I’ve got USA losing to Brazil in the semis.

Anyhow, the Washington Post is set to give us one new site, and one old one — both of which seem worthy of checking out (for now):

Steven Goff’s Soccer Insider here.

And the new Wapocup here.

Not so sure about this posterous site … plan seems to be for a group fan-blog chock-full of user-submitted content. Have seen that fail many times in many different genres before — especially with hedlines such as “Here we go!” — but maybe the power of the Washington Post combined with the World FRIGGIN Cup will be enough to give it at least a month’s worth of legs?

More click-worthy links TK for sure, as well as probably a few that turn out to be better suited for unbookmarking eventually.

Soccerati/Wicked Chops World Cup Fantasy Bracket Contest

Check it out … Soccerati has partnered with the dudes at Wicked Chops for a joint World Cup fantasy bracket venture. Actual prizes will be in play. (What they are we don’t know yet, but @AlCantHang has offered to buy the winner a shot of SoCo … so we’ve got at least that much already to play for.)

Anyhow, here are the deets on getting in on the action. Sign up and forward to your friends — enourage them to play on ESPN in the Wicked Chops FC group:

First select which two teams will advance out of each the eight groups. The order you select them – 1st or 2nd – determines where they are placed in the 16-team bracket. Then predict the winner of the 15 bracket matches throughout the Finals. All picks lock with the first kickoff on Friday, June 11, 2010. Good luck!

Get in the action now:
http://games.espn.go.com/bpredictor/en-us/group?groupID=19078

Group: Wicked Chops FC
Password: wickedchops

Soccer Blogs from English Football People

I’m just starting to get my mind around this World Cup that’s ready to fall upon us. Perhaps shamefully, I missed the whole second half of this EPL season … playoffs included. (Do they call it “playoffs” in Europe?)

Big thanks to AlCantHang and Joe Speaker for sharing bits and pieces here so I could have at least a bit of a clue what’s been going on. (Go USA!)

Anyhow, I swear I’m not a soccer moron … I just happen to have been one recently. But thus, as I begin to figure out my World Cup Days, they will surely include regular visits to probably a half dozen or so soccer websites to see what’s up. Naturally, my first and last stops will be Soccerati … because, frankly, I trust you guys to keep me better informed and intelligently engaged than a website from some random hooligan.

But I will be seeking other perspectives, too, and one of them will come from a Brit pal of mine who happens to live in Germany. He’s @DaveAllan on twitter — Sang needn’t worry, he’s a Liverpool guy, not some douchethug Gooner — and he runs the Betfair Blog over on the poker side of the world.

He and his mate’s new soccer blog, er, sorry, an “England World Cup” blog is A2B World Cup. Check it out … as I will be because it should be particularly fun during the group stage.

BTW, since this is will be my first World Cup perusing the soccer blogosphere, let me know if there are any other sites — American or British — I should be sure not to miss … especially as it relates to Group C play.

ABC/ESPN 2010 World Cup Broadcast Schedule

2010 FIFA World CupThe ABC/ESPN broadcast schedule has been released and they will be showing over 40 matches from South Africa across their family of channels. A few of the Soccerati contributors will spend their time watching matches from the comfort of a random Vegas Sportsbook (thank you World Series of Poker) but the schedule is worth a look for those viewing from home. First big match will be USA/England at 2pm ET, June 12th on ABC.

You can view the complete schedule after the jump.

Continue reading “ABC/ESPN 2010 World Cup Broadcast Schedule”

The Weekly Dump – January 25th

Larne captain Liam Hogan meets Darren King

God bless the Irish – Once I read Unprofessional Foul there was no doubt what would lead the link dump. Irish sides Newry City and Larne met up in something called the Irish Cup which I assume is their version of the FA Cup. Here’s what I can tell from searching the news sites. Things were going along fine until the 80th minute when Larne captain Liam Hogan committed felonious assault on Darren King (pictured above). After that all damned hell broke loose. Punches, kicks and everyone sent home.  My favorite group of pictures were presented by the BBC, insanity.

Editorial comment: Soccer players fight like little school girls.

Should have paid the electric instead – Real Madrid were paid €2,000,000 for a trip to Albania (Elbonia?) to play a friendly against Gramozi, a newly promoted side who borrowed players from other teams for a little boost. Then the stadium lights went out. Things were thrown, curses cursed, and somebody got sacked. Eventually Real Madrid won the match and got the hell out of Dodge.

Captain Raul was the only Real player to stay for the presentation of a cup, before leaving in a hurry surrounded by bodyguards.

Personalized stab-proof vests in time for the World Cup – This summer’s World Cup will see ~500,000 fans heads to South Africa where they are averaging 50 murders per day and more than 50% of them via knife/shank/sharpened nail clipper (reference TSA procedures). Now local crime lords promise to boost up the mayhem quotient. It makes perfect sense a company would now offer stab-proof vests for those making the trip and kind enough to give supporters the chance to order a vest with their national flag.  World Cup officials are pissed at everyone.  Customized personal protection equipment will be all the rage. (h/t Wicked Chops Poker)

Nine men, No problem – The top fixture in Serie A was the derby between AC Milan and Inter who were 7 points clear before the match. Inter scored their first goal early and then played much of the match with 10 men when Wesley Sneijder was sent off in the 27th minute. An injury time dismissal was enough to grab the 9-man headline then Secreteriat-like Ronaldinho has a penalty attempt rejected. I do think the reporter by have blown the size of this match out of proportion.

During a build-up which had involved more tactics than any game of football, Sneijder and Alessandro Nesta were both set to miss an eagerly-anticipated Milan derby.

Stoke City gun down the Gooners – Winner for worst EPL headline. Stoke City took points from Liverpool last week and this time around they knock Arsenal from the FA Cup. Wenger fielded a fairly weak side after the mid-week clash with Bolton but he’ll have some questions to answer. Who’s left in the FA Cup besides Chelsea and Coca Cola pretenders? Manchester United and Arsenal are now tied atop the leaderboard with the mighty Chelsea (KTBFFH) but they have two games in hand on ManU and one on the Arse.

Becks gets groped – I have no idea how to explain the video below. I cannot speak a lick of Italian but I believe the lass spends a few minutes talking about David Beckham’s junk and then goes on a sneak attack. You have to struggle through the first few minutes of yapping and close ups on his manhood but the two minute mark gets entertaining.

The Weekly Dump – January 18th

Kop in bloom

The Kop during happier times (Andy Teebay/Propaganda)

“Blow me f*** face” says Liverpool to a supporter – It may seem I like to bag on those lovable Scousers because it’s true. I had a rough time picking a lead story for the link dump but I think this short yet descriptive email from Tom Hicks Jr to a Liverpool supporter is a fine start. The next obvious step was Hicks resigning from the Liverpool Board of Directors.

How did the rest of the week go for Liverpool?

Crashed out of the FA Cup to powerhouse Reading.
– While losing to Reading, Torres and Gerrard go down with severe injuries.
Give up a last minute goal to draw with Stoke City.
Ryan Babel twitters his unhappiness with Rafael Benitez.
Benitez then apologies for the team being crap.
– And the final nut kick, stories of Steven Gerrard ready to leave Anfield.

Glazers take £20m out of Manchester United – Continuing the EPL trend of Liverpool and Portsmouth, reports are now coming out about just how deep the historic club is buried in debt. It is so bad they might consider selling Old Trafford (and leasing it back). At least they have their FA Cup money to help out. Nevermind. The Daily Mail has a good rundown of the situation.

Meanwhile ManU supporters think Sir Alex should quit – They mean it as a way of protest. It seems a perfectly reasonable, non-knee jerk response and certainly much better than the standard French response of “Go on strike. Again.”

Chelsea score a touchdown – The American Football version, hanging 7 goals on hapless Sunderland despite missing Didier Drogba, John Obi Mikel, Michael Essien and Salomon Kalou to the Africa Cup of Nations. Not all is happy at Stamford Bridge though as Michael Essien has a knee injury forcing him from African and club competitions.

Shorthanded Arsenal can catch Chelsea – The Gooners have a chance to tie Chelsea atop the leaderboard with a midweek match against Bolton but will be making their second half run without 9 first team players including Robin van Persie and Johan Djourou who are lost for the year.

Thierry Henry to meet with FIFA – Noted French cheat (not mutually exclusive) Thierry Henry will finally meet with the FIFA disciplinary committee concerning his handball in World Cup qualifying. I’m not sure what they can actually do other than a typical sternly worded slap on the wrist at which point the French national will surely lay down his weapons and form an underground. None of this makes a difference to the Irish side which was cheated out of a spot in the 2010 World Cup.

Bono on the World Cup

Bono has a semi-interesting Top 10 type of list in the New York Times — looking at 10 things that will shape the next decade — and one of them (I can’t tell if it’s #1 or #10) is soccer. Specifically the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

He says:

africa-world-cup-ball

Peter Arkle

The World Cup Kicks Off the African Decade

It’s getting easier to describe to Americans the impact of the World Cup — especially the impact it will have in Africa, where the tournament is to be held this summer. A few years ago, Ivory Coast was splitting apart and in the midst of civil war when its national team qualified for the 2006 jamboree. The response was so ecstatic that the war was largely put on hold as something more important than deathly combat took place, i.e. a soccer match. The team became a symbol of how the different tribes could — and did — get on after the tournament was over.

This time round, for the 2010 World Cup, naysayers thought South Africa could not build the stadiums in time. Those critics should be red-faced now. South Africa’s impressive preparations underline the changes on the continent, where over the last few years, 5 percent economic growth was the average. Signs point to a further decade of growth to come. Canny investors will put more capital there. This in turn has the potential to shore up fragile young democracies across the continent.

Sony to Show World Cup Games in 3-D

Not even sure what that means and whether or not you’ll have to wear funny glasses … but the techsters at Sony are using South Africa 2010 as the stage to show off their latest technology.

From the looks of things, however, we will not be able to view the special stuff in the USA.

http://www.brandrepublic.com/Global/News/971846/Sony-show-World-Cup-matches-3D/

We’ll Be Fighting in the Streets with our Children at our feet…

Notice the Green

In a game Iran needed to win in order to qualify for the 2010 World Cup, five members of the Iranian national team wore green armbands. Team captain Ali Karimi and four other teammates wore the armbands as a show of support for Iranian political opposition leader Hossein Mousavi. They wore the armbands for all of the first half, only for the armbands to disappear for the second. Kudos to the Iranians for showing football can have an impact beyond the game itself. Here are the match highlights. I’m rooting for the Iranians to make it to South Africa.