17 March, 2012

CCL Final Four Set

The big news from CONCACAF this week: Toronto FC defeated the LA Galaxy to become the first Canadian club to make the semifinals of the CONCACAF Champions League. On March 7 in Toronto, the Canadian side looked like they were about to upset the Galaxy 2-1, until Landon Donovan scored in the 89th minute to give LA a road draw 2-2 in the first leg. On March 14, the clubs came to Carson, and were even 1-1 to make the aggregate score 3-3 and give LA the win on the away goals rule. But, in the 74th minute, 24 year old Dutch forward Nick Soolsma scored the game winner past Josh Saunders, and Toronto won the match 2-1 in Carson, and the aggregate score 4-3. Both Soolsma and Jamaican Ryan Johnson of Toronto had a goal and assist in Carson. Ryan Johnson also scored in the 2-2 draw in Toronto, making him Man of the Match.

14 March, 2012

No Beer For You

It sucks to be right sometimes. We mentioned this back in October that Qatar was going to try to wriggle out of FIFA's agreements with Budweiser and providing alcohol during the matches.

Obviously, there are religious issues to overcome, but it isn't unheard of as "premium" hotels in Qatar (not sure what a not premium one is) are allowed to sell alcohol, but the talk is now that Qatar will offer some sort of "place" for patrons to drink.

If by place, they mean you get 3 beer tokens and then not allowed to use more than 1 a day, then you are probably on the right track.

Qatar, for their part, state that they aren't the only ones who don't permit alcohol to be sold during games, citing the two preceding WC hosts, Brazil and Russia. Well, Brazil has since tentatively agreed to allow alcohol although the bill has to pass through Congress and be signed by the President, but I'm sure in that country, they are getting some kind of kickback. Russia and Putin have already stated they are going to think about making an exception with the WC and ESPN quotes Qatar as pointing out that England and Germany are the drinkers and many others don't.

Seriously? You pick two of the heaviest drinking countries in the world as an example, Qatar? I was at 2006 and there weren't many issues with drinkers at the games, inside or out. Why do I feel they are trying to now railroad FIFA now that their bid is in, and the palms are greased? Not like FIFA will pull a WC from a country, no matter how far behind in preparation they are *cough SA and Brazil cough*.

Now, I will mention that you can go to a college game (basketball and football for example) here in the States and you aren't allowed to drink, but I'd also like to point out that many drink while tailgating or just before, so there is no need to during the game.

Will people be willing to go to a "premium" hotel, pay a huge surcharge on alcohol, then attend a match? Probably not. And what happens to those that smuggle in alcohol to the country or event? Gonna tell me that they are just going to be kicked out of said event? Or will it more likely be that they are subsequently punished under Sharia and local laws?

If you do go (I'll keep my money and spend it buying kegs here and inviting friends over), don't drink and as Sepp tells ya, "don't be gay."


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