Wednesday, July 16, 2014

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For help in academics and specially for UPSC IAS preparation, the site www.iasupsc.in will be most useful to you. Quality answers on History, Geography, International Relations, Essays etc are available on the website.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The Salford City Story

Saturday night derby

Eighteen games into the season and Salford City is unstoppable. They trounced league winners Manchester United 4-3 last night in front of a packed home crowd. The small city wore a deserted look on saturday night as folks jostled into the 20,000 seater stadium in the north west corner of the city. The stadium, also called Uncle harry's meadow saw plenty of excitement as Salford equalized thrice and finally seized the game in the injury time.

Nani with two brilliant free kicks and Hernandez netted the third, but the home hero and this year's leading scorer Wayne Rooney banged in four goals, each of them a minute after every red score.

Unbeaten Run

This little "Cinderella" Manchester club has been riding solely on the success of 25 year old Wayne Rooney. Thanks to Wayne, the Club has climbed three divisions in the last three years and entered this season into the premier league and the city and the press just can't raving about Wayne.

The townsfolk just love this kid. "I know Wayne, he'll never leave this town", says the ageing caretaker of the club ground. "Wayne is our hero", says the Graffiti on this wall and the next we drive past and then we realize, all of them. The local Sir Francis catholic school even has a morning prayer called, "We'll be like Wayne."

So, how is Wayne dealing with all this adulation?

Wayne

Next we go to Wayne's house. A mile drive from the city outskirts into the woods and we reach a secluded lawn covered on all sides by dark forests and in the middle stood the two storey-ed building. All peace and quite. Transparent glass for a wall on the first floor, statues of unicorns in his lawn, a small freshly dug pond with mud still strewn around its edges. Lives alone. Grew up in this very house after his parents died or so he believed.

"There is something wrong", the first thing he says; looks blankly out the glass wall.

"What?", we ask, "things couldn't have been better."

"I've never told this to anyone before but I have to tell someone or I'll go crazy."

"Please go ahead! We'll understand", we lean forward, rapt attention. A dog barks in the distance breaking the afternoon stillness.

"I.....", he pauses, hesitating, "I never really touch the ball. I mean, like when I shoot, the ball moves before my boot hits it. It's like the ball isn't really there", he looks at us, "you understand what I am saying?"

We nod, trying out various possibilities in our minds. All that loneliness and the sudden adulation might have taken a toll on the kid's head.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Special One

It has been a love-hate affair of Chelsea fans with Mourinho ever since he took over Chelsea in 2004. 2004 to 06 was a good time to be a Chelsea fan. You didn’t have to go through the heartbreak of losing. It was a good time to support when all you wanted was emotional highs and skip the lows. And boy, did they win – back to back premiership titles after 1955. It didn’t matter that Mourinho turned Chelsea into a boring, defensive outfit. All was forgiven because he gave us wins.

But even the self-styled 'Special One' knew that this winning streak couldn’t go on forever. "Daddy always brings a trophy", said Jose's son and Jose says, "Daddy can't bring the trophy every year. Daddy got to lose someday". So, he did falter. A red resurgence in 2006/07 meant that Chelsea were second in England and there was that fallout with the Chelsea hierarchy.

Then Mourinho took Inter, an already boring team with quality not quite at the level of a Barca, Chelsea or a Man U. February came and Chelsea fans watched with horror as the man who had led their entry into the big league was taking apart their dreams. With Barcelona, it was vintage Mourinho as Inter suffocated Barcelona with their tight marking and umpteen flow-breaking fouls. The idea was to let them not play. The press conference smugness that Mourinho displays now seemed to be hubris and his tactics against the very idea of football. One anchor has put it this way, "If this world gets ten managers like Mourinho, there would be no spectators. The stadiums would be empty".

The most detestable part of it was that he was leading the second best or maybe the third best team to a trophy they didn’t deserve. Everyone, the neutrals would be happy if it was Messi's Barca who would lift the trophy and Jose Mourinho tried to upset that and therein lies a catch. Like, is it that bad? Leading an underdog, using their strengths whatever they had; as Eto'o accepted, 'We are not as skilled as Barcelona, but we have our strengths [sic]', does the most 'perfect', the highest quality team have to win? Why not the so called second best, those not quite at 'that level' but with their own strengths nonetheless? Why not those who rise to the occasion? It all seemed fair again.

So, what makes the special one, the special one? A glimpse of the answer came after Saturday's final match with a YouTube grab showing Jose getting down from his car and having an emotionally charged exchange with Marco Materazzi. "We did it. We knocked the bastards off". Jose was ours again.

Check out the vid: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUD4IxLIPuo

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Champions league up for sale: 14 man Inter beat Barca

'It's a fucking disgrace', as Didier Drogba would have put it. Never has a referee been so moronic, the decisions so glaringly wrong as has been in the Inter-Barca first leg match last night at San Siro. Dani Alves' hearty laugh said it all when he was fouled by Sneijder inside the Inter penalty box, and what does the referee do? Instead of a penalty to Barca, he throws down a yellow to the fallen Alves. The refs mistakes had reached such comic proportions that one wonders how fatter his wallet got after Tuesday's match.

No doubt Inter played well; attacked on the break and defended well, but the scoreline should have been 2-2 rather than 3-1.

To add to the circus, look at how the commentator describes Milito's goal - "Well Deserved". Now sir, before using any other adjective, a remotely sensible person would say, "that was clearly an offside". Well deserved? You must be joking, right? Or did the Mafia manage to scare the commentators too?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Let the bodies hit the floor

Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor

Beaten, why for (why for)
Can't take much more
Here we go here we go here we go, now

One, nothing wrong with me
Two, nothing wrong with me
Three, nothing wrong with me
Four, nothing wrong with me

One ,something's got to give
Two, something's got to give
Three, something's got to give

Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor
Now!

Push me again (again)
This is the end
Here we go here we go here we go, now

One, nothing wrong with me
Two, nothing wrong with me
Three, nothing wrong with me
Four, nothing wrong with me

One ,something's got to give
Two, something's got to give
Three, something's got to give

Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor
Now!

Skin to skin, blood and bone
You're all by yourself but you're not alone
You wanted in and now you're here
Driven by hate, consumed by fear

Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor

One, nothing wrong with me
Two, nothing wrong with me
Three, nothing wrong with me
Four, nothing wrong with me

One ,something's got to give
Two, something's got to give
Three, something's got to give

Let the bodies hit the floor
Let the bodies hit the floor

Hey...Go!
Hey...Go!
Hey...Go!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Champions league final preplay

If you are curious about what’s going to happen on the 27th of May at Rome, here is an indicator. We as summer interns dedicated to contributing to humanity’s powers of prediction decided to check out what fortune and the game engine of FIFA 09 had to say about the match. So it was, with difficulty level set to world class and half length at 6 minutes did the kickoff start.

Lest the validity of the game should be questioned, it was played in front of two witnesses who alternated between watching out for the big boss Tanya and taking a peek at the interesting happenings on the screen.

Astonished we were at the accuracy of FIFA makers at modeling reality as Messi dominated pretty much of the whole game. Ronaldo with all his spread legged free kicks was at best a shadow of the swerving and shimmying Messi. Wayne F. Rooney burst into an occasional run and a shot which often went wide off the post. All in all the attacking trio of Etoo–Messi–Henry proved to be too good for Man F. United as Barcelona trounced them 4-2 in 90 minutes.

Barcelona took the lead in the 26th minute as Etoo slipped the ball inside from five yards with a grounded pass from Henry. Man U equalized in the 44th minute with a low shot by Berbatov from just outside the box. The game went into the break with 1-1.



Messi exults after scoring in injury time

And then second half saw the real genius that is Messi. The heat was on Man U from the word go as Messi took the ball from midfield, burned down the right wing and unleashed a fierce shot from an acute angle. Van der Sar parried the ball off just to see it being tapped in coolly by the well positioned Henry. The third goal followed soon enough as Xavi and Iniesta combined to set up Etoo who slot it home. Michael Carrick gave Man U some hope with his spectacular goal from about 20 yards, but by then the damage was already done. Messi sealed the deal for Barcelona in injury time with a straight left footer after another solo run down the right wing.

P.S. Down with Man F. United. This is what is going to happen.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Oh no! Not again

Maybe some things aren’t just meant to be. Last year it was the rain and this time it’s the referee. Feel really sorry for Lampard and Terry, so much belonging, so much commitment but all that love always goes unrequited. Maybe that’s the way it will be written in history books, the best players to not have won the champions league. The Stamford Bridge heroes who never got to lay their hands on the silverware.

It’s getting tiring, year after year. The same story keeps repeating itself. First comes Mourinho, then comes Scolari and then Hiddink, everyone is so cursed. After a while you got to start asking `is it really worth the effort?’, because fuck history, history or glory fifty years on doesn’t really matter – what does though are those few minutes of relief and pure joy that they so rightfully deserve and that they have been denied again and again. It’s a cruel and unfair system, yeah and in the end, maybe the cup doesn’t really deserve Chelsea. I say, just f*ck off.

 

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