England Loses 4-1 to Germany As Controversy Looms

One of the favorites to win the 2010 FIFA World Cup was sent home on Sunday when England was bested by Germany, losing 4-1. In soccer terms that’s what’s called a blowout. The game’s first goal was scored by Germany’s Miroslav Klose 20 minuets into the game. Germany went on to score again in the 32nd minute with a goal by Lukas Podolski. With England being down two they would go to cut that deficit in half when England’s Matthew Upson scored a goal in the 37th minute of action.

Controversy would soon come into the game when England thought they had scored the tying goal that would then be overturned. It began when England’s Frank Lampard scored what seemed to be the goal that tied the game 2-2 in the 38th minute. However, referee Jorge Larrionda called it a non goal because he either felt or had not seen that the ball had broken the plane. During the second half Germany would all but seal England’s fate when Thomas Mueller went on to score two goals within 3 minuets of each other, one in the 67′ and the other in the 70′ and close the win for Germany.

The talk centers around allowing replays for goals, which in my opinion is a good idea. It’s not like there is going to be ten goals in a game and you would have to review all of them. Ten goals in a game would be an anomaly. Lets be honest at the most there would only be two goals to review and in this new sports age where mistakes that can make the difference between winning and losing can be fixed why not. The NBA, NHL, NFL, Tennis and even MLB all have replay in various degrees. This will be something that FIFA has to look at if it wants to save any credibility to its sport to its fans as well as newcomers to the sport.

On the issue of using replay FIFA spokesman Nicolas Maingot said that FIFA would begin censoring replays in the stadium after in the game between Mexico and Argentina the Mexican players began to argue after seeing on the screen that Argentina’s Carlos Tevez was offside when he scored a goal in the 26′, which therefore meant that the goal should have been disallowed. Nicolas Maingot went on to say that replaying that was ” a clear mistake” and that “[t]his will be corrected and we will have a closer look into that”,…”[w]e will work on this and be a bit more, I would say, tight on this for the games to be played.” In my opinion that sounds like ten steps back.

Donovan’s Penalty Kick in 62′ Not Enough For A Victory As Gyan Scores Second Goal in Overtime

On Saturday June 26th the magic of Team U.S.A. ran out. Team Ghana helped extinguish the U.S.A.’s hopes of being the 2010 FIFA World Cup Champions with a 2-1 win. The United States fell behind early, which they had done in their previous games. Kevin Prince Boateng from Ghana put the team ahead when he scored a goal just five minuets into the game. Hoping karma would repeat itself I was nervously waiting for Landon Donovan to hit the game tying goal like he had done in the previous game. I felt that they still had some magic when he did just that. In the 62nd minute Donovan scored the tying goal off a penalty kick given when Ghana’s Jonathan Mensah pulled down U.S.A.’s Clint Dempsey. But as fate would have it this time there was no final minute miracle. Just three minuets into the overtime Ghana’s Asamoah Gyan scored the team’s second goal; the goal the U.S.A. could not come back from. Ghana did the exact thing they did the last time they met the U.S.A. in the World Cup, eliminated them. In my opinion the biggest factor that caused the U.S.A.’s loss was their own sloppy play at the beginning of the game. It set the tone of having the pressure for a comeback. Although the magic was still around then, it eventually evaporated and Team U.S.A. was not able to pull out another victory.

Landon Donovan’s Kick Helps Power Team U.S.A. to Next Round

Let me start off in full disclosure by saying that I am in no way a fanatic about the sport of soccer or Football as they call it other parts of the world. In my opinion as an I feel that we have been programed to admire scoring; whether it be Baseball, American Football, or the NBA. I am aware that in baseball you can have a 1-0 game and that in American football you can win by a field goal.  The thing is that in those games there is most of the time many opportunities to score. Even in tennis there is anticipation of seeing who is going to win the match point. For me watching a group of 10 or 11 men running up and down the field for 90+ minuets and not scoring is not for me. How does it make any sense that a game can end in a 0-0 tie??? What?! or that the time still ticks off as a player gets injured or the team is celebrating. I have tried to embrace soccer, I truly have, but for me as well as many other Americans it just isn’t happening. Years ago when Pele came to the U.S. the sports world said that this country would embrace soccer… didn’t happen, then the same with Beckham… Still didn’t happen.

All that being said I find myself sucked in watching the U.S. soccer team play in the World Cup. I find myself, especally at the end of the game, at the end of my seat wondering if they are going to score the winning goal. Many Americans are on the same boat as me. I guess it has to do with the playing field on which this is happening, the 2010 World Cup. It is not about one soccer team from one state going against another team in another state. This is US V. THEM; country versus country. When it comes to most Americans nothing unites them more than cheering for their country. I do feel a sense of pride when it comes to watching the U.S. win and I probably would watch much less if they weren’t in it. But it is also because  they (we) are seen as underdogs and according to many in the sports nation they would not even get out of the first round. That is why during the game versus Algeria I was so nervous, and at the edge of my seat. All we needed was to score one goal . Every time it appeared that Algeria would score a goal my teeth would cringe. As time began to expire I was beginning to feel panic. I knew the ramifications if the U.S. didn’t get that goal and beat  Algeria . England and Slovenia would advance and the U.S. would be eliminated. When 4 minutes of stoppage time was added I knew that this was their last opportunity to score, but felt that it was all for not and that it was time for them to go home. They had been having bad luck the entire tournament up to that point having had two previous goals disallowed, one in this game as well as one in the previous game. However in the 91 minute I felt jubilation when Landon Donovan, the U.S. team’s most well known and accomplished player in the team’s history, kicked in the game winning goal off a rebound with 3 minuets left in the game. That goal not only guaranteed that the U.S. would move on to the next round with England and that Slovenia had been eliminated it also meant that the U.S. team would finish at the top of their group. The U.S. team proved the doubters in the sports nation incorrect and made millions of Americans happy and proud. I am not sure and highly doubtful that I will watch much of soccer after the 2010 World Cup, but for now I am enjoying the ride.

The U.S. Team’s next game: Saturday June 26, 2010 at 2:30 PM on ABC

My Take on the NBA Draft

There are many things I am not a fan of in sports: steroids, golf, curling, the NFL draft. One of the other things I’m not a fan of happened yesterday June 24, 2010… the NBA draft. Sitting there for hours hearing names read off is not exactly how I picture spending my day. Just so you know, point guard John Wall from Kentucky was picked first over all by the Washington Wizards. Five years from now most of the players in this draft will be described as “busts” by NBA analysts. Some of the former “busts” include Kwame Brown (drafted in 2001 in the first round first overall by the Washington Wizards), and Nikoloz Tskitishvili (drafted in 2002 in the first round fifth by the Denver Nuggets). I don’t think I need to say anymore. The truth is it is not about who is drafted or where; true talent is explained on a court. The draft is similar to playing the lottery.  You might hit it big in the first round or the first time you play the lottery, but most of the time you won’t. The NBA draft, like the lottery, is a crap shoot. In my opinion whoever watched the draft, unless it was you’re job, wasted valuable hours in your life that you can never get back.

Isner Outlasts Mahut in Record Breaking Match

On June 22, 2010 began a tennis match at Wimbledon that would turn into one of the most incredible, memorable, and record breaking matches in not only Wimbledon history; but tennis history. The match was between American John Isner, ranked 19th in the world, and Frenchmen Nicolas Mahut, currently unranked. The match began as any other tennis match with the first four sets going 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (3). The first four sets lasted about 3 hours. The magic and record breaking occurred in the fifth set, which took approximately 8 hours and 11 minuets to complete. The fifth set lasted longer than the previous longest match in tennis history; the 2004 French Open which lasted 6 hours and 33 minutes. This match was so historic it needs a record book all its own. It broke the records for: most games in a match (163), Total aces in a match (193), most games in a single set (118), most aces by a single player (98; John Isner), and most points in a match (190). The match was so long that at one point while in the fifth set the scoreboard malfunctioned and stopped working. This epic match had to be suspended twice, due to darkness. Word quicly spread around as the historic match was being played that player Rodger Federer became aware of it during his own match. You normally don’t expect court 18 to be the highlight of a Wimbledon match, but this was no normal match. During the third day of play the court was so full of spectators that people could not find sets, not even the press corps. People close enough to the building began watching the match through their windows. The match was so huge that even Queen Elizabeth’s visit to Wimbledon was a blip on the radar. Whenever there is a match where both players give their all there should be a rule that they both win. Isner finally won the match on the third day which took 1 hour and 5 minuets to complete, beating Mahut in the fifth set 70-68. They say that records are made to be broken, but I have a feeling that this one will hold for a very, very long time.

Final Score: 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (3), 70-68 (first round match)

Statistics provided by: ESPN.com and Tennis.com

Winning At a Losing Game

Winning at a losing game isn’t bad.

When a cup of gin turns into ginger ale,

Trying to cover up that you were sad.

Those days and nights you cried. That drove you mad,

Powerless. A boat on an endless sail.

Winning at a losing game isn’t bad.

In and out of bars was the life you had,

Unable to get sleep. Always looked pale

Trying to cover up that you were sad.

 

You told yourself that drinking made you glad,

Those words rang hollow. They told a false tale.

Winning at a losing game isn’t bad.

 

Sixteen years. The long journey you had,

The false medicine that once was your veil,

Trying to cover up that you were sad,

 

Eighteen years. A new journey. That’s not bad.

There are some games in life you want to fail.

You won by losing and you don’t feel bad.

No need for cover. No need to be sad.

 

Weeping Willow

The weeping willow

A tree with evergreen leaves

That droop as if they are tears

Suspended in midair

Never able to touch ground

A brown bark so strong

That it holds their weight

Yet inside it is soft and filed

With water

The tears that have succumbed

To gravity

Have created the lake

That now surrounds it

 

The girl that cries

For the guy

With the evergreen eyes

Her face frowns

With sadness

Her tears trace

The outline

Of her face

While never touching

The ground

The sadness she does not show

Lives inside her

Her soul is Atlantis

Becoming submerged

In ocean water

That girl has become

The weeping willow

Visible outside

Her window

 

My Definition of “Sonnet”: To Struggle

Writing a sonnet is so hard to do

Shakespeare I’m not. What do you expect?

I know that others are struggling too

Doing this makes me feel like a reject

As I write this sonnet my brain is strained

I want to sleep and get lost in my dreams

I am drawing a blank going insane

In my head I can hear my helpless screams

Others with this struggle can empathize

I have no luck and words are hard to find

I wish I could lie down and close my eyes

If the sandman came by I would not mind

This sonnet is probably not my best

But it is time to close my eyes and rest.

My View of New York

Rainbow of colors,

coming up ahead of me.

It was the stop lights

 

Large concrete brown square,

on the sidewalks of New York

Building I call home.

 

Walls tattooed with ink.

Figures of all shapes, sizes.

Expressions for the artist.

 

Many large puddles,

on the concrete New York streets.

The view when it rains

 

No stars to be seen,

in the darkness if the sky.

Too many lights on.