Thursday, 2 June 2016

Penalty Shot In The Foot

I didn’t realised at the time, but the Champions League Final penalty shoot-out was rather unusual in that the side winning the toss, Atletico, chose to kick second, seemingly handing the advantage to Real as teams kicking second have just a 40% probability of winning a shoot-out. A case of shooting themselves in the foot perhaps?

The referee chooses the end at which the penalties are to be taken, and typically “choose the less partisan goal for the shootout”. In this case, Mr. Manu Clattenburg chose the Real end – as I touched upon in my Cup Final review, going for your eleventh title isn’t quite as exciting as going for your first.

Had the FA Cup Final gone to penalties, there’s no doubt about the end at which they would have been taken!

It was also interesting to see the large number of empty seats at the Hull City end during the play-off game earlier that Saturday. Hull City have had a couple of recent visits to Wembley, Sheffield Wednesday haven't, and this was evident from the level of support (numbers and passion) seen. The fact that table topping Hull FC were hosting St Helens the same day in front of 11,247 supporters didn't help! 

Baz commented on the FA Cup Final:
Living about two miles from Old Trafford and a season ticket holder I was obviously pleased when we won the FA Cup but your post has almost got me wishing we hadn't and winning almost seemed a hollow victory it having been a disappointing season in which I attended every game and but enjoyed just a few, the cup win seemed to happen on Saturday and be forgotten on Sunday. It must be hard for fans who start the season knowing their team will probably win nothing, something United fans may have to get used to. I have followed Man Utd since the fifties and I am really pleased that the premier league is becoming more open.
I'm not sure I share the opinion that Manchester United supporters may have to get used to not winning anything, but it does emphasise my point that winning the FA Cup (or League Cup for that matter) means far more to supporters of the non-elites. Leicester City's freak Premier League win was most refreshing, and while we may not have to wait another 5,000 years for a similar shock, I'm not expecting another one any time soon, so any major trophy wins will be in the form of a Cup or possibly the Europa 'League'.

Finally, and admittedly off topic, but I found this saved on my computer while going through a spring clean. Unfortunately I can't remember the source, but it amused me:
If you want to be fit you have to keep doing exercise forever, it has emerged.
Healthy eating and sport have been condemned as a scam after it was revealed that they only lead to more healthy eating and more sport.
Carolyn Ryan of Cardiff said: “After two months of going to the gym I asked my personal trainer when I’d be fit enough to stop all this and eat the fuck out of some pies.
“The look on her face. She said that if I relaxed my diet regime even for a week then the fat would pile on again even faster than before, and if anything I should be stepping it up.
“I thought it’d be like A-levels where once you’ve passed you never think about history ever again, but it’s more like revising history five nights a week for the rest of your life.
“She says after a while I won’t even want a Toblerone any more. That made me cry.”
Personal trainer Donna Sheridan said: “Getting healthy isn’t a sprint, it’s an endless marathon through featureless terrain pretending that chips and sitting around watching telly don’t exist.
“However I do have the warm glow of knowing that I’m better than everyone else.
“Unless they’re right and I’m the moron. Which I occasionally think, but I get that out of my system with a nice eight-mile run.”

1 comment:

James said...

I'm not a fan of the game so I suppose I have no right to talk about it. However, I find it odd that a team that comes third in a division gets promotion and a slap on the back whereas the team coming 7th gets a trip to Wembley and a trophy. Of course, it's all about money and the FA must have an awfully large debt to pay after building their new stadium.

As Leicester is the nearest EPL team to where I live I did pay some attention to them this season. I don't think their winning the EPL was a "freak". Personally, I think it will be more common with all the TV money flowing in. Regardless of what the "hardcore fan" thinks it is what the owners think that matters and for them coming fourth in the EPL is more important than winning a Victorian throwback FA Cup or even coming first in the EPL. Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester City and Leicester will be entering revised incomes streams into their data models.

Also, Leicester put paid to the nonsense about "soulless bowls". I've never heard such noise from an EPL team. More than in your trad four sheds. Mind you on the day Leicester received its EPL trophy the crowd was not as raucous as the rest of the season. I suppose it was the English reserve kicking in again.

The Emirates Stadium is referred to as a library but you could quite happily read a book in peace at just about any EPL stadium this season. Talking of being otherwise engaged I found it rather amusing when, at the beginning of the Champion's League final, the cameras were trained on the assembled UEFA and FIFA élite in their corporate box. To a man their heads were bowed as they examined the screens of their mobile phones and not paying the slightest attention to a game they supposedly govern. Still, I was glad that Blatter and Platini were not there. Public executions for halftime entertainment? It would make up for a bore-draw.