July 08, 2006
Wanker of the Tournament
by Nicholas Beaudrot of Electoral Math
To my untrained eye, I think this award has to go to Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal/Manchester United). C Ronaldo's main contributions to his national side's fourth-place finish consist of frequent sprints from midfield towards the 18-yard box, ineffective stepovers and fake-stepovers that fool absolutely no one, and the Portuguese special, diving and WATB-esque carping towards the referees for not blowing the whistle. The harassment he's suffered since Wayne Rooney's groin stomp is inexcusable, but from an on-the-field standpoint, if he's leaving the Red Devils, I say good riddance. Manchester are a better side without him. Rumors have him headed to Real Madrid, a collection of famous but now-overrated footballers (see Zidane, Zinedine; Beckham, David; Ronaldo; Raul—exceptions: Robinho) where he'll fit in perfectly.
The top scorer gets the golden boot; the top player gets the golden ball; what's the award for the Wanker of the Tournament? The Golden Yellow Card?
Consider this a World Cup open thread.
I too hate him because he's pretty.
And maybe Zidane is past his prime, but that was a great performance against Brazil.
Posted by: pantomimeHorse | Jul 9, 2006 12:48:19 AM
Zidane is NOT overrated.
Posted by: brian | Jul 9, 2006 1:35:38 AM
I'm beginning to think World Cup futbol fandom will soon be joining, 'volvo-driving', 'latte-drinking', etc. as one of the signs the righties use to pillage liberals - given the prominent play progressive blogs have given to the 'anti-American' soccer playoffs (how dare the socialists call soccer by the name of football).
And those Refs are card-carrying members of the terrorist conspiracy against god-fearing Americans.
[I just watched "Good Night and Good Luck" on comcast pay per view and I'm caught up in the late 50's and early 60's now].
Where's our Edward R. Murrow and Fred Friendly for our current crisis in the media?
Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Jul 9, 2006 3:08:13 AM
I like soccer..the righties like paintball..seems appropriate.
Zidane has played well, his foot skills are exceptional, and he has been a team leader. A wonderful last act to his career. The players you mention are only overrated because they are compared to their reputations at their apex. They are the Barry Bonds of soccer. Most still have much better skills, if perhaps not the speed or endurance, than the great majority of other World Cup players.
As I watch the games, amidst the outrage over the alleged excessive number of yellow cards, I think far too few were thrown for dives.
My vote: Klinsmann to replace Arena.
Posted by: Mudge | Jul 9, 2006 9:10:54 AM
I still can't get over Brazil not starting Robinho for that last match. Ditto for Argentina and Messi. WTF?
Posted by: a-train | Jul 9, 2006 10:26:36 AM
Soccer is the most nationalistic sport in the World. I root for the Americans all the time. Plus they'll never really trash soccer because there are too many soccer moms.
Posted by: Nicholas Beaudrot | Jul 9, 2006 1:16:43 PM
Plus they'll never really trash soccer because there are too many soccer moms.
No, they know that soccer moms will ride where they're bidden.
Posted by: TJ | Jul 9, 2006 1:43:48 PM
"ineffective stepovers and fake-stepovers that fool absolutely no one"
The list of people that are fooled by his footwork and pace are many. This is what makes him fun to watch and what makes him a legitimate threat on the field.
A bit of maturity -- less tantrums, less acting, more teamwork -- would go along way to making him a more complete player.
I agree Zidane is not over rated, though it was sad to see him end the way he did.
Posted by: m | Jul 9, 2006 10:40:55 PM
Totally inexplicable. I just cant understand what Zidane was thinking, or IF he was thinking at all. Stupid Rookie mistake and France paid the price. Unbelievable, and what a stupid way to exit the world cup (and your career).
Posted by: xerixes | Jul 10, 2006 9:28:30 AM
Hey Nicholas....you don´t even need a trained eye, you got it right in one....Cristian Ronaldo was the wanker of the tournament.
I live in Rio and I gotta tell you that if the Brasilian media had their vote C Ronaldo would have a been a distant 13th behind Brasil´s coach and their national squad as THE absolute wankers of the World Cup.
Tagged "the team to forget" no one escaped the wrath for being a team of pretentious pricks who thought they could wave their magic wand or dance the samba to muster a win. Poor Roberto Carlos is really copping it in the arse...shame really, he was the one that at least had a true go during the tournament, prior to falling asleep and not tagging Henri in the game against France...the World Cup wash up has been brutal down in ol Brasil!
Posted by: Gary Ridge | Jul 11, 2006 8:58:16 AM
Posted by: paxman | Nov 11, 2006 10:50:03 PM
A great post! I will not give my opinion because I think that there are so many talanted footballers and so many who deserve a lot I just wonder how people select those kind of awards. It seems such a hard choice to me. Sports are different and the thing thta unites them is the satisfaction of playing.
Posted by: michael jones | Aug 18, 2007 7:57:55 AM
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