Tag Archives: Italy

Watch: Andrea Pirlo’s Beautiful Penalty Against England in Euro Semifinals

By Kevin Koczwara

England and Italy played to a dull 0-0 draw, the first scoreless game in this year’s European Championship. The game went to penalties and naturally the English lost. Italy prevailed. And Andrea Pirlo, the player of the game and maybe the tournament, continued his magnificent display with this penalty kick.

England goalkeeper Joe Hart tried to everything he could to put off Italy’s penalty takers during the shootout, but it didn’t work against Pirlo, the long-haired Jedi Master of the soccer ball. Watch as he scrumptiously chips in his kick. It’s just beautiful.

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Samuel Eto’o Scores in the Face of Racist Chants

Samuel Eto'o and Zlatan Ibrahimovic swapped teams in the summer of 2009. Eto'o moved to Inter Milan while Ibrahimovic headed to Barcelona, and their paths have been very different since the switch. Courtesy ruprtable flickr

By Kevin Koczwara

Samuel Eto’o scored his sixth goal in seven games for Internazionale on Sunday in the team’s, 1-0, win over Cagliari in front of a hostile crowd that partook in exposing the ugly side of Italian soccer: Racism.

The Italian national team called off a Euro 2012 qualifying match with Serbia after Serbian fans rioted in Genoa. The game had to be called after six minutes of play after Serbs threw flares onto the field and at rival Italian supporters. The riots filtered out into the streets, and the Italians were left wondering why the Serbs acted in the manner they did.

Then the fans in Cagliari showed the world that Italians still have a hard time with keeping up with FIFA’s “Say No to Racism” campaign and FARE (Football Against Racism in Euorpe). The referee of the match suspended play in the third minute because of the chants directed at Eto’o. Serie A officials gave referees the power to suspend play after Mario Balotelli was hounded and smeared by Juventus fans two years ago.

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What The Soccer Guys Are Reading

ESPN Soccernet – Serbia hits rock bottom

Serbian hooligans force Italy, Serbia Euro 2012 Qualifier to be cancelled. The disturbances and violence lasted throughout the day.

ESPN Soccernet Blogs Do Sparsely Supported Teams Deserve Their Place in the Premier League ?

Interesting question, but a really simple answer – yes.

The Guardian – Which clubs’ fans have unlikely friendships with their rivals?

A list you won’t find Celtic and Rangers on.

The Herald (Scotland) – The absence of Scott Brown raises some big questions for Celtic

With Celtic midfielder and captain, Scott Brown, out for around 10 weeks, questions are aroused about the club’s talent.

Zonal Marking – Ireland 2-3 Russia: Irish outpassed & outclassed

The Boys in Green dropped their Euro 2012 Qualifier to a Russia team that outplayed them for more than 90 minutes.

Zonal Marking – The tall tale of Peter Crouch’s aerial abilities

Pundits and coaches alike say that Crouch is a better player with his feet than his head, but the stats tell a different story.

Sky Sports – Henry – We’re here to win

New England Sports Venture and its chief owner, John Henry, finally completed the takeover of Liverpool, and he has already stated his intentions to win.

The Independent – Robinho: ‘I would never protest against being on the bench’

But do I believe the talented Brazilian forward? No. He knows he is too good of a player to be watching from the sidelines.

The Independent – Mourinho rules out January spending

This can’t be true. Mourinho will be looking to wheel and deal some underachieving players (Karim Benzema for sure) for players that fit his team’s style and mold.

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FIFA and English football still in the Dark Ages

By Mark Duckworth

Fabio Capello is one of the most successful managers of the past decade. He was successful in Italy and Spain, but now his CV is blotted by his time managing the England national side. And it’s not just an insignificant blot, it’s England’s heaviest defeat in a World Cup and a last 16 knock-out. Even Sven made the quarter-finals. So, is it all Capello’s fault or has he just become another victim of the English game and the false promise of talent and success?

Everyone seems to know the score, they’ve seen it all before, and in Bloemfontein Fabio Capello realised what it means to be the England team manager as Germany ran riot over his sorry side.

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Most and Least Impressive Teams of Round 2

Courtesy sam_herd Flickr

By Kevin Koczwara, Ryan Fleming, and Joe Meloni

We have already looked at the teams that performed the best and the teams that played the worst in the first round of play of the World Cup. Now it is time for us to pick the teams that overachieved and the underachieved in the second round of play.

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Who Won’t Win the World Cup Part 6: Group F

By Ryan Thies of the Long Beach Post

We’re now three-quarters of the way in, and despite talking about 20 different countries and why they won’t win, I think today’s might get me in the most trouble…

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World Cup Preview pt. 4: Group F

By Kevin Koczwara

I know I have been away for a long time and I am sorry for that. I was busy, very busy, with a job I had in the month of December. But, I am back and ready to go. So let’s start this column off with predictions for Group F.

Group F is a tough group with 2 defensive and strong-minded teams, one virtual unknown and a squad that won their group in European qualifying to many people’s surprise. Continue reading

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