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World Cup 2014

Holy shit! Goal line technology! And it seemed to work! WTF is next?


  • Decent refereeing?
  • I'm not so much actually watching the game so much as it being on in the same room as I am.
  • Dat Germany. My ancestral lands may win it all this year!!
  • I'm also very much looking forward to Mexico/Brazil tomorrow. My workplace is full of Mexican supporters and they know I like Brazil so the shit will be talked all night long.
  • Dromaro said:

    Dat Germany. My ancestral lands may win it all this year!!

    Gaa... Portugal totally laid an egg during that game... And Pepe, WTF was up with headbutting that German player!?
  • Dirty play and still losing = ultimate fail.
  • Dromaro said:

    Dirty play and still losing = ultimate fail.

    To be fair, they were already down 2-0 when that play took place, if I recall correctly.
  • Holy shit that was a great, beautiful endin to the USA game.

    I've said it elsewhere but I'll say it here as well. I didn't think USA would make it outbid the group round but if they did, they'd break the top 4. Beating Ghana today was a huge step in making it out.

    With Pepe out, we have a good chance against Portugal, I think.
  • The World Cup doesn't fail to disappoint, I watched a bunch of matches while studying for exams.

    There is more diving than slide tackles.
    On average, diving starts from 90 seconds to 3 minutes to start.
    Referees make insanely bad calls and were laughably lenient to Brazil in their match versus Mexico.

    One thing that would be extreme yet funny would be if the person diving and asking for it to be counted would need to sit out for the rest of the game.
    There is potential abuse for this with one lesser player taking out another but then red cards plus fines might mean something. The potential to see great plays is there but the diving puts me off.

  • Fuck, that Netherlands Vs Australia game was good.
  • Diving is sadly a problem in just about every sport with contact fouls. Soccer, for whatever reason, seems to have some of the worst and most frequent examples of it, but it happens in basketball, hockey, and even football. Then again, FIFA is arguably the most corrupt sport regulation body on the planet, so that may play hand-in-hand with why the referees seem not to care about diving.
  • I find it funny that the US team is ranked 13th and no one in the US really cares. It's like they are the youngest sibling sporting real hard and no one cares because the rest of the family doesn't care about the sport.

    So, what are their odds on winning and does 13th ranking mean they are expected to come in 13th place?
  • Is being 13th a good thing?
  • edited June 2014
    HMTKSteve said:

    I find it funny that the US team is ranked 13th and no one in the US really cares.

    Dromaro said:

    I didn't think USA would make it out of the group round but if they did, they'd break the top 4.

    Odds on winning it all? Slim. Maybe 3%? To my mind, there are not 12 squads better than them but I'm just a Plebian when it comes to soccer so... *shrug*
    Post edited by Dromaro on
  • FiveThirtyEight had us at <1% last time I checked. Even after beating Ghana.
  • In countries where world cup is popular do they have local/national leagues or just the one country team?
  • edited June 2014
    HMTKSteve said:

    In countries where world cup is popular do they have local/national leagues or just the one country team?

    They most certainly do have local/national leagues. Generally, the national teams consist of all star players from the various local/national leagues, although this is somewhat complicated by the fact that many of the players on the various national teams don't play in their home countries. For example, Cristiano Ronaldo, current holder of the "Ballon d'Or" award (which goes to the person considered the best player in the world), is a Portuguese citizen by birth and plays for the Portuguese national team but makes his paycheck playing for Real Madrid in the Spanish league. Most league teams, especially in the wealthier soccer-mad nations, have a very international flavor to them as they'll pay top dollar for the best talent, no matter what their home countries may be. Before playing in Spain, he played for Manchester United in England while still being part of the Portuguese national team.

    The rule is that you have to play for the national team of the country you're a citizen of, either by birth or naturalization. People with multiple citizenship can choose which team they want to play for (or, more likely, try out for the team they have an easier chance of getting on). John Brooks, who scored the winning goal for the US against Ghana, could have theoretically played for either the US or Germany has he has dual citizenship (his father was a US soldier stationed in Berlin and his mother was a German native).

    This is kind of like what happens with hockey in the Olympics. Most of the top players for each of the national teams play in the US and Canada in the NHL, some of the other players tend to play in their home countries' national leagues, but they all end up on their home countries' national teams come Olympics time.
    Post edited by Dragonmaster Lou on
  • image

    This guy is going to be soooo famous for the next few days.
  • Salty Cameroon is salty.

  • edited June 2014

    Meanwhile in the NFL, NHL, and AFL, players are getting completely smashed on every play, and they get right back up immediately unless they are actually injured. And sometimes when they're legitimately injured they get right back up anyway.
    Post edited by Apreche on
  • Not sure if comparing the NFL, NHL, etc., to the World Cup is a 100% fair comparison. Those are full contact sports where players wear significant amounts of protective gear. Between the gear and the fact that players are used to and trained to deal with the contact, it's inherent to think they'd be better equipped to handle getting hit. Also, even in the NFL, it sometimes takes 10-15 seconds or so for everyone to get up and huddle after a play concludes. I do give you that the NHL doesn't have the same sort of stoppage rules as the NFL, so players do need to get back up right away, (even if it's just to skate over to the bench to get replaced). Unlimited substitutions in both those sports also may play a part -- a player may tweak something, but he can still just get off the field and to the bench to get checked out and then later come back into the game. Soccer only has limited substitutions and once a player leaves the game, he/she cannot return.

    The NBA is a better comparison, which also is interesting as diving is a problem there too, albeit not to quite the same extent. Again, maybe unlimited substitutions plays into this difference to an extent.

    If you do the math for those stats, players are only going down for "injuries" for under 30 seconds per "injury" on average.

    The problem isn't so much the amount of time spent writhing per incident (or even the fact that players are writhing if they legitimately got something tweaked), it's the overall number of incidents, the frequency with which they occur, and the timing of the incidents (i.e. diving in order to give your team some sort of advantage).
  • How about AFL, which I mentioned, and Rugby?

    Compared to other world class athletes, soccer and basketball (now that you mention it) players are pansies, actors, or both. Whatever they are, it isn't deserving of respect.
  • AFL, is that Arena Football? Or do you mean Australian Rules Football? Both would count, I admit.

    You also got a point on Rugby, although Rugby isn't quite as rough as American Football (at least when it comes to high speed impacts between heavily armored players), it's still very close at the very least.

    For Aussie Rules and Rugby, though, I don't know what the substitution rules are (Arena Football is like any other form of American football). If they also have limited substitution rules, then they arguably are among the toughest athletes out there -- even tougher than NFL and NHL. At least in the NFL and NHL, if you get a minor injury you can leave the game and come back after walking it off and/or getting it checked out by a doctor. Soccer gets a small pass due to limited substitution rules, but basketball gets no pass as they wimp out and can leave the game and come back pretty much at will.

    I'll also say that full-contact vs. non-contact sports (even ignoring the protective gear aspect) get a bit of leeway as presumably part of the training for a full-contact sport involves how to protect yourself if/when you get hit and there are only a finite number of legal ways you can be hit (and the training probably also covers protecting yourself from borderline, though still illegal, hits). Heck, pro wrestling, which I'd consider at the very least a sports exhibition instead of a full blown sport (due to the fact that it is scripted), involves significant amounts of training as to how to take a hit without getting hurt (as well as ways to fake hits that still look realistic).

    Also, you have to give credit to American soccer player Clint Dempsey for playing with a broken nose.
  • AFL is Aussie Rules.

    It doesn't matter what the substitution rules are, or whether the sport is full contact or not. It's very simple.

    Compare incidents one to one. Go find a video of a standard hit in AFL. Watch the player get back up immediately. Now watch an average incident in a soccer game. The player will writhe on the ground. You can easily find hundreds of examples of both. The soccer players are either acting, are weak little babies, or both.

    I remember seeing a video of a high school track meet where some girl takes a huge fall. I think her face smashed right into the ground. Oh, she gets up and wins the race. That's toughness right there. Almost every pro soccer player is less tough than that.

    Soccer players categorically lack toughness relatively to other pro athletes, and deserve disrespect because of that fact.
  • Definitely acting... the weak little baby thing is probably less about how much pain they're in and more about the fact that they will play to the ref in order to get an advantage. The fact that the players often get right back up afterwards without showing any ill effects, without even walking off their tweaked ankle of whatever (which we do see players in other sports to) shows that it's less about really being hurt and more about trying to work the refs. We're talking total gamesmanship here. Heck, diving and acting and yelling at the ref to call penalties takes place in the NFL and NHL too, albeit not as much as there aren't as many advantages to doing so for various reasons.

    I heard someone suggest that as a way to stop diving in soccer is to require every player who writhes on the ground for more than a couple of seconds (because, hey, even in the toughest of sports players sometimes need a couple of seconds when they tweak an ankle or something just to shake it out) to leave the game to be examined by a doctor and for the team to play short handed for a minute or two until the player is cleared by said doctor. That would at the very least mean that players would have to actually be really hurt before they dive.
  • If that's true, then how come the refs keep falling for it? If I was a soccer ref I would just say things like "get up and play you pansy" and if they did it again "You laying on the ground reminds me of the last time I saw your mom."
  • I would pay upwards of five dollars to watch Scott ref a game of his choice.
  • Apreche said:

    If that's true, then how come the refs keep falling for it? If I was a soccer ref I would just say things like "get up and play you pansy" and if they did it again "You laying on the ground reminds me of the last time I saw your mom."

    Don't get me started on the cluelessness of soccer refs. Plus, I think a foul in soccer is kind of like a foul in basketball -- there doesn't seem to be any precise rules on what constitutes a foul, it's almost a "I know one when I see one" sort of thing. Even in rougher sports like the NFL and NHL, fouls/penalties/etc. are called even when no one gets hurt. Illegal block to the back? 15 yards, even if the victim gets right up afterwards. Cross-check? Two minutes, again, even if the victim pops right back on his skates. However, in both cases, there are clearly defined rules as to what constitutes illegal contact vs. not. In soccer (and basketball), it seems like while mild incidental contact is okay, contact that causes a player to fall down usually results in a foul of some sort, but not always -- it's up to the ref's discretion. Hence, diving is rewarded because it's to the player's advantage to deceive the ref into thinking that a minor bump actually resulted in you falling down to the ground. Acting like you just had your leg cut off adds to the effect to play to the ref.

    Another possible issue is that soccer just doesn't have enough refs to really see what's going on with a field that size (larger than an NFL football field). The NFL has something like a half dozen refs, all strategically positioned on the field to get good views of all the play and all with equal authority to call penalties. Soccer only has three officials, two of which apparently only have the job of determining if players are offsides or a ball goes out of bounds. Only the main referee has the authority to call fouls and he's running up and down the field like crazy and may often be nowhere near the site of a foul when it's called. I've lost count how many times I've seen a soccer ref sprint from half way across the field to hold up a yellow or red card for a play there was no possible way to have gotten a good clear view of from that distance.

    Finally, it's also well known that FIFA is corrupt beyond all belief. I wouldn't be surprised if there is some money changing hands with the refs to get them to call crappy games for one reason or another.

    A lot of these issues can be fixed with simple rules patches, but again, FIFA in all its corrupt stupidity doesn't want to fix them. It took them until now to even allow for goal detection technology in their balls and goals. One can only imagine how long it'll take, if ever, for them to add additional refs to the field and to institute anti-diving rules like the mandatory "must leave the field and have your team play shorthanded if you act injured."
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