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Monday, July 18, 2011

How To Screw Up A Great Day of Soccer

This is just an aside - and not a real blog entry. I might take it down in a couple of days.

But yesterday, Sunday July 17, 2011, was the best day ever for Japan - It's A Wonderful Rife. Thanks to the Japan - USA showdown in women's World Cup soccer, we had 823 visitors yesterday! That was more in one day than the first three months of me starting to calculate visitors last June - August!

Of course, since March of 2011, this blog has been getting over 5,000 visits per month. Not numbers like some blogs, but respectable numbers considering the topic of Japan is quite the niche market.

I guess I need to do more blogs about soccer! Hah! I guess it's because everybody loves a winner - and Japan's Women's soccer squad did themselves and the nation of Japan proud.

My son (who is 5-1/2) was rooting for the USA. I have a lot of American friends and was cheering them - but, I have to admit that I was supremely happy and pumping my fist in celebration when Japan won. I mean... I write about Japan every day. How could I not support my adopted home country... in the sport I grew up playing... especially after I coached women's soccer here in Toronto for eight years with my friend Rob? Nope... sorry USA... while I think you actually played better than Japan and deserved a better outcome, I am glad that Japan won.

What I do hate, however, is winning and losing via penalty kicks. Nothing sucks more than standing on the sideline watching a ball being driven into the net from 10 yards out. Soccer is a team sport, and to watch a 1 on 1 event decide a game is just... anti-climatic.

Sorry Japan. I don't mean to take anything away from your well-deserved victory... but not only is it a lousy way to lose, it's a lousy way to win. Having played the game for 13 years and coached for an additional 8... I can honestly say I derived no pleasure in winning by penalty kicks. I was actually apologetic to the losing team. (I never lost on penalty kicks - ever). To me... there is no honour in deciding a game by penalty kicks.

Having ranted about that... I still say Japan was opportunistic and therefore, the best team won today. Fantastic goaltending by both teams. Fantastic defending - especially by Japan, and some hard-luck for the USA on offence. Japan's first goal was created by some good forechecking and some bad luck... but you know what? We can moan and groan about how the USA dominated Japan... but the fact is... Japan scored enough to take it to penalty kicks and were spot on to win on penalty kicks!

Congratulations Japan! Nippon Omedetō!

Here's a nice news story on the game: RECAP 

By the way... I wrote some brief stuff on the game while it was going on - I just wanted to give a short (crappy) blog showing how well or bad the game was for Japan.

After the USA scored in the extra period, I thought it was lights out for Japan, and wrote a headline stating that Japan had lost.

When they equalized and won on the penalty kicks, I quickly dashed off the data and posted the blog - forgetting to change my headline. It lasted two minutes up on the Internet before I realized my mistake. The data within my sparse blog was correct... the headline was not. Would you believe some 20 people hit that blog in 2 minutes?!

To them, I apologize. I almost had my own Dewey versus Truman moment. That's the photo down here. Truman of course won... making him President of the United States of America in 1948.

Somewhere proud of Japan and the USA,
Andrew Joseph

1 comment:

  1. Hey Joseph!
    Do you now why Japanese baseball sometimes has games that end in zero-zero ties?
    Well if the game ends in a zero-zero tie, even soccer fans can enjoy it!

    Hee Har!!!!