Sunday, June 29, 2008

Congratulations to the Spanish national football team. They finally won one. I didn't think they could. I didn't think they'd get past Italy. But they won fair and square, and they played better than the Germans. Everyone played well; probably Xavi and Torres were the best. Senna has had a great Eurocup, and his value has probably doubled. Possibly the main advantage Spain had: the average age of the players is the youngest of all the Eurocup squads, something like 26.8 years. Stats show baseball players peak at age 27; if that translates to soccer, and I bet it does, Spain's guys are, on the average, just hitting the best years of their careers.

Puyol had a good Eurocup, which surprised me, because he was all beat up physically during the late unlamented Barça season. Iniesta was OK. Xavi was excellent. Fabregas was very good, and he'll be playing here again within a couple of years.

Barcelona needs a forward. I wonder if they make a big offer for Torres with the, say, €50 million they're going to get for the three big stars who will be leaving soon.

The celebration isn't too wild around here; there are a few firecrackers going off, but it's not as if the Barça had won something. Toni Soler had a piece today in La Vangua about the people like him who "don't care" if the Spanish team wins; of course, what they want is for Spain to lose, but saying so would seem unsporting.

It is true that the announcers have been obnoxiously nationalistic through this whole thing; there have been a good few pieces in the Catalan papers about this, and they're right. Rather than, say, reporting on the game, they've been leading cheers.

Anyway, congratulations to the players, and we hope the fans are happy. I bet a lot of people show up for work hung over tomorrow.


Anthony said...

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Dave Barnes said...


No one cares about futbol.
How about some of your excellent writing about economics, culture, politics?


Dave Barnes said...


I hope you are OK.
We miss you and your wonderful, insightful writing.


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