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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

OT: Soccer Thread (World Cup)

We’ve gotten through Champions League and most of the relegation/promotion stuff so we may as well focus on the World Cup. And what a World Cup, Buffon playing his sixth, Pulisic making his WC debut, quality on-site reporting from Fox and two time Copa America champs Chile just part of what should make for an amazing tournament!  Plus of course the the family-friendly, inclusive atmosphere sure to be fostered by the Russians.

Group A - Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay
Group B - Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran
Group C - France, Australia, Peru, Denmark
Group D - Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, Nigeria
Group E - Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia
Group F - Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea
Group G - Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England
Group H - Poland, Senegal, Colombia, Japan

Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: May 29, 2018 at 09:57 AM | 3354 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: off topic, soccer

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   401. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: June 17, 2018 at 03:55 PM (#5693912)
favorites flop
   402. Palm Beach Pollworker Posted: June 17, 2018 at 03:57 PM (#5693913)
The Brazilians better come with a better attitude for future games or they are going to go home with a well-deserved empty spot in their trophy case.
   403. tshipman Posted: June 17, 2018 at 03:59 PM (#5693914)
Switzerland is my absolute least favorite kind of team. Just cynically fouling all game, daring a new ref to card them. They don't even play on the attack at all, just set up a set piece, foul on the set piece, get a goal.

Congrats, guys.
   404. strong silence Posted: June 17, 2018 at 04:03 PM (#5693915)
yes. Foul accumulation was forgotten by those officials. Is the fourth official resonponsible for keeping track?
   405. PASTE, Now with Extra Pitch and Extra Stamina Posted: June 17, 2018 at 04:12 PM (#5693917)
If you’re not as good as your opponents then continually fouling and daring the refs to blow the whistle every single time is a smart strategy, in any contact sport. Hideous to watch, but good strategy. Every foul you get away with is a small victory.
   406. J. Sosa Posted: June 17, 2018 at 04:18 PM (#5693919)
Re: Germany

If it were me I would drop Draxler and Khedira in favor of Rudy and Goretzka. Brandt should probably play too. Muller and Ozil are redundant.

Re: Swiss

Eh, that’s been the way since time began for less talented teams to play. It is incumbent on the more talented team to break them down. Discipline and effort still count for a lot especially in international play. The less talented team is under no obligation to show the belly. If the ref is reluctant to give cards it is irresponsible not to adjust accordingly.
   407. J. Sosa Posted: June 17, 2018 at 04:19 PM (#5693920)
Coke to paste
   408. zack Posted: June 17, 2018 at 04:51 PM (#5693934)
2/3 of the way through matchday 1 without a 0-0 draw is a positive sign. Pun unintended.
   409. tshipman Posted: June 17, 2018 at 05:07 PM (#5693942)
Re: Swiss

Eh, that’s been the way since time began for less talented teams to play. It is incumbent on the more talented team to break them down. Discipline and effort still count for a lot especially in international play. The less talented team is under no obligation to show the belly. If the ref is reluctant to give cards it is irresponsible not to adjust accordingly.


Brazil did break them down, though. They just weren't given one penalty that they should have been and missed several other good chances.

I hate teams like Switzerland because they're not trying to play soccer. No, they don't have to do that, but I also don't have to like them.
   410. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 17, 2018 at 05:32 PM (#5693956)
I came into the tournament thinking Germany were heavy favorites. I don’t know who talked about their lack of midfield athleticism on the last page and I’m not going to look (Sosa maybe?) but he was 100% right. It was shocking how unimpressive they were. It’s not that they lost it’s that they were so clearly second best out there.

3 of the last 4 WC winners have gone out in the group stage. None of them were expected to and I’d be shocked if Germany joined them but from what I saw I woudln’t say it’s impossible. Sweden can be pesky and organized enough to steal a draw and if that happens anything goes.
   411. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: June 17, 2018 at 07:35 PM (#5694024)
I don't think it was a foul on the Switzerland goal. If you want to call that a foul, you might as well not bother with corner kicks, because that constantly happens both ways.

I do think Brazil should have had a penalty.
   412. J. Sosa Posted: June 17, 2018 at 08:46 PM (#5694069)
Brazil didn’t generate much in the way of genuine chances though, possession and working the ball around isn’t necessarily productive if you are working primarily in conceded space. xG was about equal. On the whole, a draw was “fair”.

Don’t get me wrong shipman, I am a Liverpool fan, which means my hopes and dreams have often foundered on parked buses over the years, but I can appreciate the tactic in terms of effort and positional discipline. It requires total concentration and coordination.
   413. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 17, 2018 at 08:52 PM (#5694077)
I hate teams like Switzerland because they're not trying to play soccer. No, they don't have to do that, but I also don't have to like them
This is very harsh on Switzerland. xG has them at almost a draw (1.2 to 1.0). They had more expected goals than half the teams in the tournament so far. Sure, they're not the most exciting team in the tournament but I wouldn't even put them in the top third of teams that are most going to sit back and defend/foul and play "negative" soccer.
   414. McCoy Posted: June 17, 2018 at 08:57 PM (#5694080)
I am by no means a soccer expert but I was impressed with Germany's "full court pressure" as I would call it but like others they did a horrible job defending the midfield which allowed Mexico to get off their counters. Mexico seemed incredibly sloppy with their decision making and execution once pulling off their counters and they seemed like they were gassed well before the first half ended. Somehow Germany couldn't do anything with the ball despite Mexico giving up any real attempt at trying to score or take it to the Germans from about the 40 minute mark and on.
   415. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 17, 2018 at 09:01 PM (#5694082)
100% agree with Biff, if refs want to start giving PKs when the defender does what the Swiss attacker did fine, but if they won’t then let it go for both teams. The Brazilian defender needs to be stronger there.
   416. Howie Menckel Posted: June 17, 2018 at 09:15 PM (#5694097)
I hate teams like Switzerland because they're not trying to play soccer. No, they don't have to do that, but I also don't have to like them.

As a 100 pct Irish-American, I get the strategy and I can't argue with it. Culturally, Spain and the South American countries play a style that is more "Irish" in terms of taking chances and being passionate. I'd love to see it with Ireland (when they qualify), but the nation is just too small.

officiating influences World Cup results more than any other sport, and I think it's a shame when that is marginalized by those who believe it is just a U.S. ignorant statement. it's true, it's a shame, and it can be reduced. and yes, US replays are plodding and not always accurate. but soccer/futbol needs replay more than any other sport.
   417. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 17, 2018 at 09:19 PM (#5694099)
I don't think the Jesus play was a penalty, but as noted earlier, my threshold for penalty is higher than most others'. I didn't like the Ronaldo or Griezmann penalties either.

The bigger issue though is that some plays are going to VAR and some not, so the discretion is still being used at the VAR review level. It's not clear what criteria is being used. Someone pointed out that the only contentious foul that has gone for a VAR review was the Griezmann one--the others (Pavon, Jesus, maybe others) have been passed over by the VAR referees.
   418. McCoy Posted: June 17, 2018 at 09:37 PM (#5694109)
As a 100 pct Irish-American,

This always strike me as "70% of the time it works all of the time". Plus spit in a DNA cup I'm betting you'll be surprised.
   419. tshipman Posted: June 17, 2018 at 10:02 PM (#5694125)
This is very harsh on Switzerland. xG has them at almost a draw (1.2 to 1.0). They had more expected goals than half the teams in the tournament so far. Sure, they're not the most exciting team in the tournament but I wouldn't even put them in the top third of teams that are most going to sit back and defend/foul and play "negative" soccer.


This is a classic example of misleading stats.

Switzerland had one chance all game, on the corner set piece. Set pieces aren't really a good example of positive football.

It also ignores the persistent fouling, the potential penalty, and the fact that there was contact that created the header in the first place. So yeah, if you ignore everything that happened in the game, it looks pretty even.
   420. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 17, 2018 at 10:43 PM (#5694140)
Switzerland had one chance all game, on the corner set piece. Set pieces aren't really a good example of positive football.
That's not what the xG map says. It says they had two excellent chances, and converted one of them. Brazil also only had two excellent chances, and converted neither of them. Brazil had a lot of other chances, none of which were excellent, and converted one of them.
It also ignores the persistent fouling, the potential penalty, and the fact that there was contact that created the header in the first place. So yeah, if you ignore everything that happened in the game, it looks pretty even
Switzerland did not have an unusual amount of fouls called on them. Their total (18) was fully consistent with other teams were not favored, which generally had between 15 and 20 fouls called on them. And, even if you think there should have been a penalty, it was no more obviously a penalty than the Pavon foul, and much less obvious than the uncalled one in the Peru game.

Maybe you hate the Swiss for some reason unrelated to soccer?
   421. J. Sosa Posted: June 17, 2018 at 10:44 PM (#5694141)
Yes, Switzerland had a point blank header from a yard in front of the goal when Brazil shutoff and Alisson didn’t come for the corner. And? That is reflected in the stats. Set pieces are part of the game. Brazil had a break in concentration. It hurt them. Set pieces are absolutely a sign of positive football. They are often the result of penetration. Portugal and Spain was an open game. But that came down to Ronaldo on a dead ball. The Argentina match came down to a Messi dead ball.

Brazil only managed to generate 55 percent possession if I remember correctly. That is pretty astounding and damning. xG isn’t perfect, context does matter. But if you want a match where xG doesn’t tell the story Mexico vs Germany is your huckleberry.
   422. J. Sosa Posted: June 17, 2018 at 10:45 PM (#5694143)
Coke to Bea. I’m going to go broke...
   423. frannyzoo Posted: June 17, 2018 at 10:51 PM (#5694148)
Looking back at the comments above, I'm not shocked, just pleasantly reassured that being an Atletico fan isn't for everyone. What the Swiss did was exciting to me, and their ability to ground down a faster (remember, faster isn't always "better") team was damn close to exhilarating. And yes, I think Neymar is pretty much the embodiment of all I detest about futbol, but I'm a big Coutinho fan, and that's the way the game is played, both by those capable of "Brasil" and those capable, at least today, in neutralizing them.

   424. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 17, 2018 at 11:12 PM (#5694157)
Well I for one feel vindicated, for my earlier statement, that this is a 'meh' Brazil team by Brazil standards.
   425. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 17, 2018 at 11:21 PM (#5694160)
There's now about a 50/50 shot that the only UEFA team to lose in the first set of games will be... Germany. The odds of that pre-tournament must have been ridiculously low.
   426. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 17, 2018 at 11:26 PM (#5694161)
The bigger issue though is that some plays are going to VAR and some not, so the discretion is still being used at the VAR review level.


Is that true? My impression is that VAR is being used on an ongoing basis and only being referred to the ref onsite when the VAR judges feel it’s appropriate. Am I wrong?

You are right that there is a human element there still and I don’t know how you eliminate that in a flowing game like soccer. I for one feel like it has been pretty good so far. I haven’t felt that it’s been overly intrusive* and I haven’t seen any obvious errors because of it or unreasonable delays.

* the one caveat is the same problem I have with replay in general. Something happens and you don’t react emotionally right away because of VAR. The Swiss goal is a good example. I waited until kickoff to say “yes!” That’s harmful to my fan experience but that’s unavoidable if you are going to use replay of any sort.
   427. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 17, 2018 at 11:32 PM (#5694163)
Never mind I’m being dense.
   428. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 17, 2018 at 11:33 PM (#5694164)
Is that true? My impression is that VAR is being used on an ongoing basis and only being referred to the ref onsite when the VAR judges feel it’s appropriate. Am I wrong?
This is what I meant by discretion. The VAR refs are effectively deciding what is penalty-worthy (or at least potentially penalty-worthy), and don;t seem to be especially consistent.
   429. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: June 18, 2018 at 09:23 AM (#5694216)
That PK stunk.
   430. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 18, 2018 at 09:23 AM (#5694217)
VAR penalty given for Sweden and again it seems to work well. It was pretty quick and got the call right.

AuntBea is of course 100% right, there is always going to be a human element to these calls. It's not black and white the way a tag play or fair foul call is. But I think this is a good example of VAR really working well. That was a stone penalty and the onfield ref missed it.
   431. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 09:47 AM (#5694232)
Agree on the VAR review in this game. It was well used. If they had just not reviewed the Griezmann play (or not overturned it), overall I wouldn't be unhappy with VAR as used in this tournament.

If this result holds, Germany will probably have to beat Sweden, so they better get their tactics in order fast. A Germany draw against Sweden would very likely mean that Mexico would be happy with a draw against Sweden, in which case both Mexico and Sweden would advance.

edit: I'm assuming above that Mexico at least draws against Korea, which seems very likely.
   432. Eddo Posted: June 18, 2018 at 10:39 AM (#5694262)
This is very harsh on Switzerland. xG has them at almost a draw (1.2 to 1.0). They had more expected goals than half the teams in the tournament so far. Sure, they're not the most exciting team in the tournament but I wouldn't even put them in the top third of teams that are most going to sit back and defend/foul and play "negative" soccer.

I don't have a full understanding of how xG works, but is it really a defense of the style of play of Switzerland. Isn't tshipman's argument that this style is ugly, even though it does level the field against a team like Brazil? And if it levels the field, wouldn't we expect to see xG be close?

EDIT: I'm honestly curious, as a relative novice on anything advanced with soccer.
   433. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 10:55 AM (#5694277)
Some debate about whether the refs are allowed to stop the run of play when calling for a VAR review, or if they have to wait until there is a natural stoppage. So maybe it wasn't applied correctly in the game today, though presumably the result would have been the same.
   434. J. Sosa Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:02 PM (#5694343)
Re: 432

Shipman was saying the stats didn’t tell the story and that the match wasn’t even as xG implies? But the match was even. Fans tend to grossly overate how likely a given shot is to go in. Switzerland didn’t have the volume of chances that Brazil did, but they did have a guilded edge virtually unmarked point blank header from the six yard box.

Those tend to go in more often. Brazil missed both big chances but got a wonder goal from Coutinho. Parking the bus is often more about shot mitigation rather than shot prevention. They mostly mitigated Brazil’s chances.

Edit to add: In other words, no the match was close. To put it in another context, if a basketball team runs the shot clock down every possession in an attempt to reduce possessions against a more talented team, a lower score might imply to casual observation that it was “closer” than expected.

But a deeper analysis might show that the less talented team got destroyed on a per possession basis. That is why xG tends to be useful. The 1-0 was a “low” score but the underlying data also suggests it was close. Soccer, as Klopp has said, is all about chances. Chances created, supressed, and mitigated.
   435. J. Sosa Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:22 PM (#5694359)
Nice goal by Mertens.
   436. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:27 PM (#5694367)
Idle thought watching Belgium-Panama. What language are the players using when they yap at each other after fouls? The Ugly American assumes English, but is that actually true? I would rate the likelihood of a Belgian speaking Spanish higher than that of a Panamanian speaking either Belgian or Dutch, but often I discover I don't really know shit.

I thought about this during Iran-Morocco, too; I doubt many Iranians speak Arabic, but I could be wrong. Is soccer like being a pilot, where English has become the default (at least at the international level), or are, say, Koreans and Swedes just jabbering after fouls in whatever language comes to mind, and don't really expect to be understood?
   437. J. Sosa Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5694369)
Belgium is loaded. If Martinez doesn’t screw it up they could be in business.
   438. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:33 PM (#5694372)
In other news, how is Mertens not offside on the Lukaku goal? He obviously wasn't involved in the play physically; I would have thought his presence in an offside position would have been a distraction.
   439. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:43 PM (#5694385)
Shipman was saying the stats didn’t tell the story and that the match wasn’t even as xG implies? But the match was even. Fans tend to grossly overate how likely a given shot is to go in. Switzerland didn’t have the volume of chances that Brazil did, but they did have a guilded edge virtually unmarked point blank header from the six yard box.

I think this shows the limits of usefulness of reducing the entire match down to shot location. For example, Mexico had a ton of quality breaks, where they never ended up getting off a shot. That doesn't mean that those chances had a 0% chance to score. That is only true if you only focus on the shot and nothing but the shot.

It's a bit like DIPS theory in baseball. It works great for a lot of cases, but it does break down at extremes. There are pitchers who are better at not allowing BIP hits than others. And if you only focus on non-BIP you miss that. And if you only focus on shot locations, you will miss things too. (I realize that that is what we have the data for, and likely the best we can do. But that doesn't make it perfect or foolproof.)

Similarly, once the Swiss got the header off, it was a very high percentage chance. But the odds of getting a header like that, even off a well executed corner, are not all that great. If he had been marked properly, if the keeper had read the corner better and come out for it, if the cross had been a little lower and intercepted, or a bit higher over his head, he never gets a head on it, and it counts as 0%. It seems incredulous to me, that the difference between "completely outclassed" and "played about even" boils down to a fluke like that.

For me, Switzerland were outplayed, but lucked into one great chance and capitalized. Doesn't mean they weren't outplayed.
   440. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:47 PM (#5694389)
I don't think that was offside. Not that it matters. But would have been nice to see Panama get one.
   441. Scott Lange Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:49 PM (#5694393)
I think this shows the limits of usefulness of reducing the entire match down to shot location. For example, Mexico had a ton of quality breaks, where they never ended up getting off a shot. That doesn't mean that those chances had a 0% chance to score. That is only true if you only focus on the shot and nothing but the shot.


Right - it accounts for "shot luck" but not "last pass" luck. So it's useful as long as you understand what it's saying.

Anyway, I understood shipman's original comments to be about the negative style Switzerland played. He wasn't saying it was ineffective, just that Brazil played more creative, more positive soccer, so it seems like this while XG argument is kind of a diversion.
   442. J. Sosa Posted: June 18, 2018 at 12:57 PM (#5694404)
Re: 439

As I said explicitly, if you want a match to show the limits of xG Mexico vs Germany is the one. Switzerland vs Brazil was more static. Even if you take the header out of it Brazil didn’t set the world on fire. 55 percent possession against a bus parking team with the talent disparity is terrible. Brazil played badly. This idea that they dominated the match is really odd to me. They played badly, made a critical collective error, and drew. Justly.

The notion that Brazil should somehow get credit for a total defensive breakdown by multiple players is baffling. It is the nature of the beast. Some mistakes matter more.
   443. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 01:05 PM (#5694411)
Similarly, once the Swiss got the header off, it was a very high percentage chance. But the odds of getting a header like that, even off a well executed corner, are not all that great. If he had been marked properly, if the keeper had read the corner better and come out for it, if the cross had been a little lower and intercepted, or a bit higher over his head, he never gets a head on it, and it counts as 0%. It seems incredulous to me, that the difference between "completely outclassed" and "played about even" boils down to a fluke like that.
I generally agree with the criticism of xG, but not exactly with the description of this game. Switzerland actually had 2 excellent chances, not just one. Brazil was also clearly superior in talent, but over the last 60 minutes were arguably not the better team, and at worst it was close. Brazil really didn't play well after their fast start.

I think xG marked the game as closer than it was, but not by nearly as much as a full goal.

edit: coke to Sosa this time.

   444. spivey Posted: June 18, 2018 at 01:20 PM (#5694423)
Although it seems like the conversation has gotten into the minutiae of xG and Switzerland's specific performance, I think it can be important to not draw too much out of one game. Didn't they beat the Spain team in 2010 in their opening match, the same Spain team that went on to not allow another goal the rest of the tournament?

And as good as Brazil and Germany are - the two favorites - they both seem to have some weaker links than you'd expect.

They happen so infrequently it's easy for me to forget how cagey and often boring World Cup soccer is compared to high level club soccer. It's rare you see two teams really try to go at each other, especially in the group stages.
   445. Eddo Posted: June 18, 2018 at 01:38 PM (#5694441)
Thanks for the answers, everyone. This from Scott Lange in 441 is what I was basically asking about:
Anyway, I understood shipman's original comments to be about the negative style Switzerland played. He wasn't saying it was ineffective, just that Brazil played more creative, more positive soccer, so it seems like this while XG argument is kind of a diversion.
   446. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 01:52 PM (#5694457)
So coming out of a whole promo featuring Alli, the Fox cameras focus on... Jesse Lingard, and the announcer starts off calling him Alli... until he realizes it's not, and then covers by saying something like "doesn't matter..."

See, stuff like that doesn't happen on NBC (or most networks that give a ####).

   447. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 01:54 PM (#5694460)
I have a feeling there's a Stones OG somewhere in these first 3 games, at which point we'll have side by side comparisons of "Stones face" to "Phil Jones face" on Twitter.
   448. Howie Menckel Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:04 PM (#5694466)
As a 100 pct Irish-American,

This always strike me as "70% of the time it works all of the time". Plus spit in a DNA cup I'm betting you'll be surprised.

my parents were born 100 years ago. as my brother noted, our paternal grandparents grew only 15 miles apart in Ireland, but met in Brooklyn. the odds of them ever meeting someone from 15 miles away in poor, rural 1800s Ireland was slim to none. who would venture so far?
there also were no traveling salesmen from France or Egypt or something to woo the local ladies.

two of my closest relatives had their DNA done. there were no surprises.
   449. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:05 PM (#5694468)
Ah, Sterling, you're not going to put the haters to bed with a miss like that.
   450. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:08 PM (#5694471)
Volgograd fever, catch it!

Possibly literally:


Swarms of mosquitoes and midges bothered England players in the warm-up for their World Cup tie in Volgograd on Monday evening.

The players were instructed by the FA to apply high strength insect repellent liberally before the game but during the warm up Raheem Sterling could be seen swatting them away from his face.
Praise for organisers and friendly Russians in Volgograd
Read more

Fans, however, were not allowed to bring insect repellent into the Volgograd Arena because all liquids were confiscated at the gate as part of thorough security checks.

It is understood the city of Volgograd, which is in the south east of the country, knew that the bugs – a mixture of mosquitoes and midges - would be a nuisance. Two days ago they deployed helicopters to spray the nearby marshland with pesticides.

City of Volgograd officials asked the Visit Russia tourism board to include in their guide to the city the fact they had “deployed chemical weapons” to target the insects. But it was pointed out to them, in light of the Sergei Skripal poisoning in Sailsbury, that this might not be the best choice of words.

It is thought that the pesticide did reduce the number of mosquitoes in the area over the weekend but they have returned with a vengeance and are wreaking havoc. Sky Sports News had to abandon a series of live interviews they had planned at the England team hotel on Sunday evening when their presenter Kaveh Solhekol was attacked by a swarm of bugs.

It is thought the position of the stadium, which is directly by the river Volga around which this city is built, might mean the number of bugs is even higher during the game on Monday evening.
   451. PreservedFish Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:20 PM (#5694478)
Granted, I haven't paid attention to soccer for 4 years, or arguably 8 years, but I'm amazed at how unfamiliar I am with the English team.
   452. vortex of dissipation Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:26 PM (#5694489)
It's supposed to be 88 degrees here today, but yes, I feel I have to wear my England scarf.
   453. jmurph Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:26 PM (#5694490)
Granted, I haven't paid attention to soccer for 4 years, or arguably 8 years, but I'm amazed at how unfamiliar I am with the English team.

In fairness to you, they haven't selected a team based on merit (like they did this year) in a very, very long time.
   454. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:28 PM (#5694493)
England doesn't have really have any players that are known as true international stars, and all their players play in the EPL. If you don't watch the EPL you might not know most of them.
   455. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:33 PM (#5694500)
What is Walker doing there?
   456. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:34 PM (#5694501)
That's a stupid move by Walker but it was a clear, obvious dive. What's VAR for if not to figure out that was a dive after the fact.
   457. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:35 PM (#5694503)
Like VAR is a joke if that's not ruled a dive.
   458. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:37 PM (#5694504)
That's a stupid move by Walker but it was a clear, obvious dive. What's VAR for if not to figure out that was a dive after the fact.
I don't like the call either (And don't think it should have been called), but to me this call was fully consistent with those people that are calling for all fouls in the box to be penalties. This may be the new reality. I hope not.
   459. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5694508)
So England's back 3 is going to get torched by Belgium, so they better get all 6 points otherwise or they won't make it out of the group.
   460. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:39 PM (#5694513)
AB--but he clearly just ran into Walker's and fell over. That's not called a penalty in U13...

And Stones flubs one too. Brilliant.

This game has a red card in it, I think.
   461. McCoy Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5694514)
How is this game tied?
   462. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5694515)
That's not an own goal for Stones but it's a tremendous miss.
   463. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5694516)
Now Alli is coming off.

Just great.

[edit] Oops, I'm behind and he hasn't, at least yet.
   464. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:41 PM (#5694517)
And Kane completely tackled in the box on last free kick. Nothing. Oh well.
   465. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:41 PM (#5694518)
AB--but he clearly just ran into Walker's and fell over. That's not called a penalty in U13...
This is highly inaccurate. Walker swinging his arm intentionally back towards the offensive player and made contact with his face. That's usually going to be afoul outside the box. The fact that the player embellished after contact is supposed to be irrelevant.
   466. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:46 PM (#5694522)
Also, you can see on replay the offensive player wasn't expecting to be hit in the face... he was looking in the other direction. He did go down like he was shot though.
   467. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:48 PM (#5694525)
IMHO, Walker wasn't swinging his arm; it barely looked raised from his side. The guy ran into it and dropped like he was shot--he knew precisely what he was doing by the way he celebrated after he saw the penalty was given. A guy on my U13 team would have gotten a stern talking to had he pulled the same gambit. But hey, it's the WC so by hook or by crook.

Tunisia's plan appears to be WWF'ing the remainder of the game. England will have to adjust. Part of that adjustment will no doubt be a kick-out stupid red. I'm guessing Alli gets the red.
   468. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:53 PM (#5694533)
Hmm. I thought there was an arm swing, and the guy took an elbow to the temple. I got no problem with that being a foul, which means, in that situation, a PK.

He did go from flat on the ground to gleeful pretty fast, though.
   469. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:54 PM (#5694534)
Let me just say that I respectfully disagree. Of course it's unfair that a penalty is awarded for this kind of play, but this situation to me is no different than most of the others. Walker felt the offensive player coming up on him, and swung his arm back to create space and not let the player get past him (why else would he do it?) The intent was to legally impede the offensive player via contact. The problem is that his arm was too high and the movement was too violent, and he happened to catch the offensive player on the face.

People here (and elsewhere) keep saying things like "don't foul, don't dive", etc. The same applies here. Don't swing your arms high when you know there is a player right behind you.

Personally I don't agree with any of it, but it is consistent.
   470. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 18, 2018 at 02:58 PM (#5694537)
The problem is that his arm was too high and the movement was too violent, and he happened to catch the offensive player on the face.

Disrespectfully disagree. That swing of the arm was about as slow as humanly possible. To call that violent is an abuse of the English language. If that is considered violent, then anything short of standing like a complete statue is. If that was a penalty, England should have gotten 4 on the other end.
   471. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:00 PM (#5694540)
No need for disrespect (sounds like your fandom is getting the best of you?) Even the English pundits at halftime agree with me.
   472. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:00 PM (#5694541)
If that was a penalty, England should have gotten 4 on the other end.


England should have gotten a penalty at the other end even if the Walker one wasn't called.

Defender basically drove Kane to the ground.
   473. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:03 PM (#5694542)
No need for disrespect (sounds like your fandom is getting the best of you?) Even the English pundits at halftime agree with me.

I am Scottish. I want England to lose. But bullshit is bullshit.
   474. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:06 PM (#5694545)

I am Scottish. I want England to lose. But bullshit is bullshit.
To me it's no worse than the Ronaldo play. You do realize it;s not legal to swing your arm back to impede a defender in the first place, right? If you hit him in the face, it's normally a foul.

Anyway, I keep saying I wouldn't have called it. It's just not inconsistent with some of the others.
   475. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:07 PM (#5694546)
How's that challenge from behind, studs up, not at least a yellow?

Alli'll get a red before this one is through. It's Tunisia's whole plan now--wind them up by fouling all over the pitch.
   476. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:09 PM (#5694548)
In my opinion what Walker did was the equivalent of taking a pitch an inch off the plate on an 0-2 count. Yeah you're right but it's going to go against you as often as not and you put yourself in a position to get screwed. Real speed I thought "no foul" and on replay I thought "ok, I see what they saw." I have no problem with that penalty but wouldn't have been particularly bothered if they hadn't given it either. But Walker has to know that Tunisia is looking for that kind of thing. There was no play to be made, keep your arms down at your side.
   477. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:11 PM (#5694551)
Sterling is one of those guys who SHOULD be a great player, and yet somehow never is.

And Kane is ####### tackled every MF, GD corner kick and free kick. It's a ####### joke at this point. A. #######. Joke.
   478. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:13 PM (#5694554)
They seriously tackle Kane every set piece. At some point someone will kick out and get a red.
   479. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:17 PM (#5694557)
Vardy for Lingard? Struggling to think of how England can really shake things up here.
   480. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:18 PM (#5694558)
+1 that three or four PKs could/should have been awarded to England by this point. In a vacuum, though, I don't have a problem with the Walker call.

I wonder how much of it is that Walker was right in front of the ref, surrounded by green grass, and the bulk of the Tunisian mugging has taken place in scrums that have fourteen or fifteen people in the box. A lot of crap that would be a penalty in the run of play gets overlooked in the positioning battles on set pieces. Even three or four refs can only see so much, and a lot of the worst stuff is done by players who are intentionally shielding their deeds from where they know a ref probably is. The Walker arm had no cover.

At the moment of contact Walker's arm was pretty much horizontal. I probably would have called it. As noted above, dumb, since there was no play on the ball, but I don't see how that could *not* be a foul.
   481. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:20 PM (#5694561)
Penalty called on Walker for a light arm brush but Tunisia can (American) football tackle Kane every set piece and they're not penalties.
   482. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:20 PM (#5694562)
To me it's no worse than the Ronaldo play. You do realize it;s not legal to swing your arm back to impede a defender in the first place, right? If you hit him in the face, it's normally a foul.

You might be surprised to learn that "swing your arm back" is not mentioned anywhere in the rules. Whereas "tripping" (what happened to Ronaldo) is.

Not every contact is a foul. This is self evident, as otherwise, there would never be more than 3 seconds of play without one. The standard on contact like that is "reckless" or using "excessive force." Calling what Walker did either of those is torture of the English language.
   483. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:21 PM (#5694567)
Actually Rose for Young would be a good sub I'd make.
   484. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:23 PM (#5694572)
Southgate is dithering here and needs to make some moves.
   485. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:28 PM (#5694576)
Striking an opponent (if careless) is a direct kick foul. Impeding the progress of an opponent is an indirect kick foul.
   486. AuntBea calls himself Sky Panther Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:31 PM (#5694580)
+1 that three or four PKs could/should have been awarded to England by this point. In a vacuum, though, I don't have a problem with the Walker call.
Though I didn't see most of those plays, this is my problem with calling soft penalties. We are likely to end up in a place where either it's pretty much impossible to defend in the box, or games will be decided on a parade of penalties. The only thing preventing that right now is that penalties are not called with consistency.
   487. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:31 PM (#5694581)
They have to get Rose in there for Young.
   488. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:32 PM (#5694585)
Southgate is running out of time here. This result as it stands is a complete disaster, does he not get the urgency here?
   489. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:35 PM (#5694588)
The commentator pronouncing Alli's name like the boxer Ali is... not a great look, BTW.
   490. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:35 PM (#5694589)
Like, how do you #### that up? He's a pretty damn famous player and it's not a hard name.
   491. zack Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:36 PM (#5694592)

You might be surprised to learn that "swing your arm back" is not mentioned anywhere in the rules. Whereas "tripping" (what happened to Ronaldo) is.

By that standard power headbutting someone in the chest isn't a foul...
Striking an opponent (if careless) is a direct kick foul. Impeding the progress of an opponent is an indirect kick foul.

The biggest problem is that the FIFA rules are, by the standards of a top-level sporting competition, impossibly vague. There are more words spent on the technicalities of a goalie handling the ball then on all the rules for outfielders combined.
I actually think the obstruction on the play is worse than the violence of it, but is that impeding or holding or neither? Who knows. And how could you ever make a video review out of those rules.
   492. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:38 PM (#5694595)
HOW THE HELL DO YOU LET ASHLEY YOUNG TAKE THAT FREE KICK????
   493. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:39 PM (#5694599)
WTF with this sub?
   494. Count Vorror Rairol Mencoon (CoB) Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:39 PM (#5694601)
Like, how do you #### that up? He's a pretty damn famous player and it's not a hard name.


And it's being pronounced correctly right in front of you, over and over.

Wait, I think she got it right for once, just before he was subbed ...

Did you know that Dele Ali plays for The Spurs?
   495. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:40 PM (#5694603)
England's set pieces are a GD train wreck.
   496. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:41 PM (#5694604)
England starting to lose their minds a bit. The red card for a kick out is coming.
   497. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:41 PM (#5694606)
It got mentioned somewhere that England's lack of a quality free kick taker is a somewhat under the radar story. They don't really have that guy that you want to see standing over the ball in such situations.
   498. zack Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:42 PM (#5694607)
This result as it stands is a complete disaster, does he not get the urgency here?

Is it? It means they at worst need to beat Panama better than Tunisia does.
   499. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:43 PM (#5694609)
Here comes the 5 minute injury delay that'll only count for 2 added minutes...
   500. Textbook Editor Posted: June 18, 2018 at 03:45 PM (#5694613)
When Tunisia tries the "KICK THE #### OUT OF THE OPPOSITION" tactic with a real referee on the pitch, they'll be down to 10 and lose 4-0.
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