Streaker + Mascot = Hilarity (NSFW)

Note this is NSWF as it shows ‘um…a man’s undercarriage’

This video was floating around my soccer team’s emails today.  What happens when a streaker is going about his business at a game, and comes in contact with the team’s mascot?

You’ll just have to watch to find out.

Apologies if you’ve seen this before, but I thought it was hilarious.

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African Cup of Nations: Second Round of Games done with Ghana and the Ivory Coast moving on

Today’s Matches (first batch of Round Three match-ups):

Ghana 2, Morocco 0

Starpower took over as both Michael Essien and Sulley Ali Muntari scored to dispatch of Morocco, who will be kicking themselves for the loss to Guinea. Both goals were scored in the first half and booked the host nation in the second round with a perfect 3-0-0 record. In no way was it dominant round-robin performance, but Ghana is certainly a heavy favorite.

Guinea 1, Namibia 1

After their showings against Morocco and Ghana, one would almost expect against Namibia but one point was enough to get the Guineans through. For those seeing Guinea as a complete dark horse, they have made the quarterfinals of the ANC for the third consecutive time. Souleymane Youla scored Guinea’s goal in the 61st minute, while Brian Brendell came back 20 minutes later to tie it up.

FULL STANDINGS

Quick Round Up of Game Twos

GROUP D 

Angola 3, Senegal 1

One word: Manucho. Angola’s striker has made it three in two games and really warranted a big European transfer. There is still a lot of tournament to go, however, and Angola is in no way safe. Their cause was helped by Manucho’s brace…

Tunisia 3, South Africa 1

Pretty embarassing defeat for the Bafana Bafana. Then again, they’re playing with a very young team…and playing against an established striker like Santos of Ligue 1’s Toulouse. The Tunisian scored two of his nation’s three goals and put the North African squad tied at the top with Angola.

GROUP C

Cameroon 5, Zambia 1

Samuel Eto’o equaled the record for most goals scored overall in the African Nation’s Cup, but the Barca striker was overshadowed by his teammates who put on a show for the crowd. Joseph Job scored a brace while Newcastle fullback Geremi found the net as well. Toulouse’s Achille Emana added one as well, putting Cameroon back in the mix for qualification.

Egypt 3, Sudan 0

Mohamed Zidan was dangerous yet again and with the attention he was getting, his teammates found the openings they needed to put one the Pharoahs’ feet into the next round. Mohamed Aboutraika struck for two and Hosni Abd Rabou converted the first of the night (his third of the tournament).

GROUP B

Ivory Coast 4, Benin 1

The only outright quarterfinal qualifier came on the backs of Didier Drogba, Yaya Toure, Kader Keita, and Aruna Dindane. All four scored to put the Ivory Coast through in authoritative fashion. The win puts them as my favorites to win.

Nigeria 0, Mali 0

In a hard-fought deadlock, Nigeria will be wondering why their star-studed strike force is sputtering at the moment. Obafemi Martins and John Utaka haven’t been able to find one goal as of yet and Nigeria sits in third with only 1 point out of two games. Mali sits in second with 4 and looks the favorite to go through as Benin is their last opponent.

GROUP A

See earlier post…

Player Movements, Some Obstructed, Some Rumored; Memo to Foreign Coaches re: Houston

Time to check around the league, to make sure the movement has generally been normal and regular.

– May as well start with the problem: the blockage keeping Taylor Twellman from leaving the New England Revolution for England’s Preston North End. And, here I was, all set to bang out a “Free Taylor” post, only to discover that someone else – namely, Longshoe over at Who Ate All the Cupcakes – beat me to it. To his further credit, he even laid out a more thorough argument than I would have. But, to add to the excellent point that the time to rebuild in New England is now, here’s something else: I’d argue that Major League Soccer (MLS) has maxed out Twellman’s marketing potential; worse, barring some changes to the Revs make up – and none seem upcoming – the odds for Twellman doing something eye-catching (e.g. win MLS Cup) any time soon don’t look so hot. Given that, all the Revs (and, to whatever extent, MLS) are doing now is pissing off Twellman and giving future talents reasons against signing a long-term contract with New England.

Right. The rest of these are rumors and trades-in-progress to varying degrees. I’ll start with those filed under “outgoing” and conclude with “incoming”…which is where the real stretches lurk. Continue reading

Super-Krunk: CONCACAF Champions League Announced

Once again, the official site gets beat to the punch: Goal.com just posted the schedule for the brand-spankin’ CONCACAF Champions League. I have to say, it’s a bit burlier than I thought it’d be: the tourney kicks off August 2008, but the final doesn’t come until the end of April 2009. Fortunately, at least where the Major League Soccer (MLS) sides are concerned, there’s a several-month down-time that just happens to correspond with the MLS off-season. Rather unfortunately, however, MLS teams will hit “the shit” when the tourney resumes in February – e.g. that’s when the quarterfinals will be played, aka after the make-weights have been sifted out. So, show up frosty, boys, it’s gonna be real.

Speaking of those MLS teams, who should they be this year? Steve Goff provides:

“*CONCACAF will unveil details of the first Champions League today. From what I have been able to gather, Chivas USA (Western regular season winners) and New England (MLS Cup runner-up) will enter in the preliminary round in August while D.C. United (Supporters’ Shield) and Houston (MLS Cup champions) will start in the group stage in the fall. We’ll know for sure later.”

If you want to know how the rest of the field will fill in, check Goal.com’s report. Holy poop, is this going to be a hoot!

Everyone Please Read-We Are Bloggers, Not Journalists

(Please, I urge everyone to read to the end of this article, it might affect you some day)

I don’t speak for anyone that writes here on The Offside, for any other sports bloggers, or bloggers in general, but I do speak for myself.

I’m not a journalist. I’m a blogger. Those two things are completely different. I blog about football, but mostly, and like most of us here, we get out ‘information’ it is from reading articles, watching games, listening to the radio, and thinking critically about issues. Blogging is almost like writing a constant final paper for a class. You take in tons of information from various sources and put it together in a nice, neat compact article for the rest of the world to read.

I have no responsibility to be a journalist. None of us bloggers have that responsibility, for blogging is a completely different entity. I’m not getting paid, and frankly if you don’t want to read what I write, then don’t come back. I’m a Ph.D Linguistics student for God sakes, I don’t work for the New York Times.

Continue reading

Update on MLS Philly: “Harrah’s Is Down the Street”

The quote says everything. It’s “not a yes or not a no”, but there still is hope that the decision will be passed down by the original January 31st deadline.

Instead of provoking a bid for a bad day, instead of re-summarizing the article, read on for yourself.

FA Cup Round 5 Draw: ManYoo gets the Gunners; Round 4 Review

FA CUP FIFTH ROUND DRAW (to be played Feb 16/17)

Bristol Rovers vs. Southampton
Cardiff vs. Wolverhampton
Sheffield United vs. Middlesbrough
Liverpool vs. Barnsley
Manchester United vs. Arsenal
Preston North End vs. Portsmouth
Coventry vs. West Bromwich Albion
Chelsea vs. Huddersfield

Clearly the big match-up here is Manchester United drawing Arsenal in a battle that looks stacked in United’s favor. This is as long as Ronaldo is firing on all cylinders when Feb 16 and 17th rolls around. Regardless, if he underperforms – it isn’t bad to have Rooney and Tevez on the same squad.

ROUND 4 ROUND-UP

Saturday, January 26th

Arsenal 3, Newcastle 0

Kevin Keegan got an in-depth look at Newcastle’s play, only making his roster turnover increasingly imminent. Emmanuel Adebayor had his way with the piecemeal Newcastle defense, while his in-squad enemy Nicklas Bendtner sat on the bench waiting for his go. Adebayor’s 18th and 19th goals of the season didn’t come until late, speaking well for the umm…resilience? of a Newcastle squad that most likely will see a more youthful approach in the upcoming fixtures. Even Nicky Butt couldn’t get things right, putting one in his own net with time running out.

Liverpool 5, Havant and Waterlooville 2

Minnows Havant and W. fulfilled a dream by going twice up on sharks Liverpool. Not too bad. Liverpool eventually calmed down, however, as Yossi Benayoun made up for blowing a close range chance early to come back with a hat-trick (his second of the year). Slovakian signee Martin Skrtel got his second start and didn’t look up to Vidic-class, but he’s yet to settle. Young Brazilian Lucas Leiva got his first goal for the Reds, while Peter Crouch ended the madness scoring the fifth and final goal.

Chelsea 2, Wigan 1

Nicolas Anelka put a masterful finishing touch on his first Chelsea goal, pulling a ball out of the sky and volleying it past a sprawling Chris Kirkland. He then set-up Shaun Wright-Phillips for the second Chelsea goal that eventually proved to be the game-winner. It really is good to see this guy at a top club again as it has been one hell of rollercoaster career for him. Antoine Sibierski made it interesting with a swerving shot with about 5 minutes to go, but Chelski withstood the challenge.  

Middlesbrough 2, Mansfield 0

Dong-Gook Lee kept Mansfield at bay with an early 17th-minute goal. The underdogs really looked poised to be the under-performing squad who was without their playmaker Sanli Tuncay.

Wolves 4, Watford 1

Jay DeMerit’s Watford couldn’t get back on track as they were picked apart by a merciless Wolves squad led by the two goals of young Irish striker Andy Keogh. DeMerit went the full 90 as the Hornets bowed out of FA Cup competition.

Portsmouth 2, Plymouth 1

New signing Lassana Diarra showed his worth right away, putting Pompey up in the 34th minute and equalizing after an early 5th minute Chris Clark goal for Plymouth. Niko Kranjcar provided the gamewinner. Pompey was missing the work ethic of Diop and Muntari badly as Plymouth looked the fitter squad at times.

Preston North End 4, Derby 1

Talk about beating someone while they’re down. Preston did just that, regardless of the announcement that Derby has been taken over by American investors. Maybe these investors will demand Benny Feilhaber plays. Karl Hawley led the charge for PNE, while Robert Earnshaw grabbed the consolation goal for the Rams (his first in a billion years). It’s early but the new signings aren’t helping…

Coventry 2, Millwall 1

Millwall missed Zak Whitbread and Maltese ManYoo killer Michael Mifsud (say that five times fast) worked his magic again. This time at Millwall’s expense. Mifsud provided the winner early in the second half. It was his 16th of the season.

West Bromwich Albion 3, Peterborough 0

Goals from Roman Bednar, Robert Koren, and Kevin Phillips secured an easy win over P-boro.  The Eastern Europeans are working out well for W.B.A. as Bednar is Czech and Koren is Slovenian.

Southampton 2, Bury 0

So’ton destroyed Bury. No real contest and many didn’t expect otherwise. Goals from rising star Andrew Surman and Grzegorz Rasiak did Bury in and ensured Southampton’s faithful that they could survive without coach George Burley, who just took over the Scotland position.

Huddersfield 1, Oldham 0

Luke Beckett secured a 5th round tie for Huddersfield, despite getting beat around by a rather efficient Oldham set-up. But it was Beckett’s finishing that provided the win.

Bristol Rovers 1, Barnet 0

Bristol took their seat as lowest seed to advance despite beating Fulham in the third round. The Rovers are in the fifth round for the first time in 9 years thanks to Richard Lambert’s goal in the 49th minute. The real help came from Barnet’s Jason Puncheon who missed a penalty kick just 5 minutes before.  

Sunday, January 27th 

Sheffield United 2, Manchester City 1

Young Jamaican Luton Shelton took advantage of Michael Ball’s mishap (in his defense, those blue and white balloons really get in the way) to fire United in front of City. Neither Elano nor Petrov could  jumpstart City’s offense against the Blades. They had to wait until prospect Daniel Sturridge came on in the 46th for an equalizer to be scored. Yet another defensive mishap, however, and a favorable deflection, led to Jon Stead’s finish and the 2-1 win for the Blades. Sucky day for City as many believed they had a shot at it all…Sheffield United will take on yet another EPL squad in the next round – Middlesbrough – but there’s a good chance Boro could be without their rock in the back, Jonathan Woodgate.

Manchester United 3, Tottenham 1

ManYoo didn’t disappoint in setting their fifth round tie with the Gunners. In fact, they showed they were clear favorites dispatching a ‘hot’ Spur club. It wasn’t all glitz and glamour for the Red Devils, especially when Robbie Keane is on the pitch. Keane fired the first goal home in the 24th minute and Carlos Tevez’s equalizer was more luck than craftsmanship. The real turning point wasn’t until the 69th minute when Michael Dawson was sent off for a blatant hand ball in the box, setting up Cristiano Ronaldo for his 24th goal of the year. His 25th came with time running out after an individual effort from 20 yards out trickled through Radek Cerny’s wickets.

Cardiff 2, Hereford 1

No surprises here, although Cardiff were obliged to make things tougher for themselves letting Hereford dictate the course of play. City’s finishing was with them, however, as Hereford couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn until it was too late. Cardiff had already tucked away two before Theo Robinson’s consolation goal in the 77th minute.