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Talk about conspiracies

Former Champ

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I have been chatting with a couple buddies from England about the recent tourney and the unusual final. Here are some highlights. What do you guys think?

There really has been a lot that smells, and I think that the whole

Scandinavian conspiracy was just a smoke screen. The Greece / Russian game

was oviously fixed, and I think that Greece got to the final because no Greeks

are buying any tickets to Olympics and some success at Euro will sell some

tickets. Portugal almost backed out of hosting Euro 2004 a couple years ago

also because of money.

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I dunno. But I am interested in what other people think about this.

I read the book 'Miracle of Castel diSangro' and there seemed to be credible accusation of match fixing in Italy Serie B. It actually made me a little sick.

Coach Sutter recently in Calgary and Wayne Gretzky at 2002 Olympics alledged an anti-Canadian cospiracy in hockey. Stuff like this isn't new to pro sports.

It's a facinating and controversial topic. I'm not saying 'It's all fixed!', but there seem to be people that do. I guess it's like UFO's.

The more I know how other people think about this, the better.[B)]

PS Joe Concacaf is the best name yet. Wish I thought of that.

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The bullet entered the president , took a sharp turn by 45 degrees bounced off .................

While watching the Holland game . I was yelling at the ref for the calls that went against Holland . After , well that's what makes soccer special the ref makes the call in an instant and live with it.

Some calls go your way some don't game on . No stopping the game to get the call perfect. North Americans have tended to make interpreting the rules perfectly more important than the game itself. Thus taking away from the game itself. Blaming the ref has always been a losers game.

Was this all part of a conspiracy so Portugal could win , I doubt it .

Just the way that ref saw the game that day . After all he is a human.

Game fixing if any will have more to do with betting than any grandious scheme FIFA ,UEFA or THE OLYMPICS could work out , then agree to, and then carry out.

After that rant . I'll hang out the "GONE FISHING SIGN " catch up with the views of y'all in a couple to three weeks.

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Guest Jeffery S.

I have been hearing from Serbia -Srdjan has mentioned this, also have read some things- that there are a lot of accusations of match fixing, or attempts at it. Even in the lower division. Perhaps the unstable political situation there (tutored rule, tough economy, the memory of former soccer strength in Europe) has made things worse.

Another question altogether is that of financial payoffs to win, like in late season promotion and relegation battles. This seems common in Spain, even accepted. You promise a famous "suitcase" to a team captain whose club has nothing to motivate them on the last day, when you need them to get a result against one of your direct rivals. Is this talked about in other leagues?

As for throwing a match: the only time I had real suspicions regarding a Barça match was when Kluivert put up that dumb hand in the UEFA semi-final vs. Liverpool to give them the late penalty and take them to the final. First thing I thought was that there was some major bets behind that. But I have no basis of proof, only that it was highly suspicious on his part. And I remain suspicious, not helped by the fact that very recently some of his family or close to it have been accused of physically attacking a young women who claims to have been his lover to shut her up; she has taken it to the press just this week (Kluivert has a typical blond Dutch cutie as wife and mom of his kids).

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One of the best things about tournaments like the Euro's and the World cup, unlike the qualifying stages, is that most of the games are on neutral grounds. Only the tournament hosts have the home adavantage. After following this game since the 1982 WC and especially closely in the last 10 years, I am convinced in the conspiracies from the officiating standpoint that favour the home sides. The likely benefit being that the organizers along with UEFA or FIFA maximize their revenues through prolonged interest amongst the locals.

In my opinion, the degree of favouritism from referees and especially side line refs (ie.: on Off-side calls) that home sides gets in international soccer is becoming dangerously appalling. I am prepared to go as far as to say that in any given game, the refs will deny the away team as many as one or two legitamate goals or high quality scoring chance per game. I have seen this in the last WC with Korea, the conferations cup involving Canada-Japan, Various UEFA WCQ matches ( eg.: Eng-Gre in WCQ 2002), the U19 womens in Edmonton, and in the current Euro 2004 with Portugal. If that Por-Hol semi final match is played in neutral situation, Holland wins. The goal by Nistelroy, would not have been called offside and those numerous mysterious fouls everytime the ball floated ( late in the second half) into the portugese goal area, would not have been called. The Dutch were getting to some of those balls often and its looks very well like they would have converted at least one of those chances. But, each time, the play would get whisttled down for a Dutch foul that no one (not even the TV annuncers)could explain and whereby there was no replay shown.

I am aware of how officiating decisions can be influenced by the the home team's fans in any sport. But what I have noticed in the past years in soccer goes way beyond that and, to me, makes the game look bad. If the issue is not adressed IMO it could end up making a mockry of the sport in the long term. This is where the conspiracy lies in my opinion.

In any kind semblance of fair and just officating these events mights have occured differently:

1) A 2002 WC semi final involving Spain versus Germany and possibly Spain versus Brazil in the final.

2) a much closer game than the 3-0 loss we suffered to Jpn at the conferderations cup.

3)Canada gets eliminated by Brazil at the semi final round of the U19 Womens WC and goes on to the final. Check that dublious penalty award to Christine Sinclair and compare it an earlier foul (in the box)in that game that was so much more clear cut but whereby no spot kick was awarded to Brazil.

4) Holland would be playing Greece today.

5)England would have lost to Greece in their last WCQ match for 2002. The refs did everything in there power to give england all kinds of chincy fouls until Becks could finally convert on one. Otherwise the group winner would have been Germany and the English would have been playing in the playoff versus Ukraine. However, the way Ukraine played against Germany, England would have still advanced to the WCQ.

The good news here is that if canada, is awarded the U20 WC in 2007, I don't think that it would be unrealistic for us to expect a semi-final berth for that event. Or at the very least making it to the quarter finals. The refs will help us. If we have any kind of decent team, we could go far in that tournament.

Regarding upcomming WCQ this is why I believe it is so critical for canadians to show that they are behind their MNT. Both in their emotions and wallet( ie.: being in attandance in large numbers). Or more specifically, that our presence on the WC stage contributes to the coffers of FIFA or Concacaf. Without that, many well timed runs from Radzinski, will be called off side. A missed tackle by one of our defenders may result in caution whereas in an hostile environment, it wouldn't have. Those fifty-fifty challenges in midfield will result is change of possession going to the opposition as a result of fouls.

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Warning! Rant in defence of referees


To be honest with you, I'm surprised the ref'ing is as good as it is. I'll admit crowd favoratism can play on the ref and linesmen, which is normal enough, but the game played at field level is an entirely different creature than the one you see at broadcast angle.

Was showing the #1 nephew a little tugging trick last week. Had been complaining about the physical way in which another player had shielded the ball from him (they're getting to that age). No sweat. Just get a handful of shirt in the small of his back. Make sure you keep your elbow at your side and grab as close to the waiste line as possible so his shirt dosen't stretch as much when he tries to roll around you. Don't want to be advertising what you're up to. One steam-boat, two steam-boats max., and let go or you'll get nailed for sure. Course, sometimes it's better to give the foul than let the play carry on, but that'll come with experience.

Now before anyone yells about me corrupting the young, even at 11 you can see the better players are already learning how to back in, obstruct, and crash to ground. At eleven! Playing club footie! I think there's a lot of fatherly coaching going on away from the practice pitch.

So adult, professionals, playing the ref's for asses and getting away with it shouldn't be so stunnning. They do it with dramatics, they do it by poisoning the ref's ear, and they do it by playing the crowd into the chorus. It all adds up.

I mean realy. I'm sure at field level 75% of the ref's calls for fouls are based on the ref's ability to read the body language of the players involved and reconginse the pattern of the play. The actual foul isn't clearly seen. Just guessing. Never ref'd at any level.

Anyway. I just think the ref'ing is way better than it used to be. Still gets you shaking your head sometimes but I have doughts about it being anything more than the way those officials saw the match on that particular day.

As for the English conspiracy theroys. Hard to take seriously from the side which should have finished France off in the 1st half of one match and then had this same poster boy's ho-hum tourny end on a moon-ball spot kick. Which of course, as we all know, was the turf's fault.

Were realy hard done by on Campbell's goal getting called back. Will admit that. Will admit Eufa defending the call afterwards with the enthusiasm that they did had me going, hmmmmmm.

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I saw nothing in your post to disagree with. But in neutral games the grey area calls don't seem to always tilt to the same side. Another thing thatI have noticed regarding the home side tilt of officiating always ends a certain point. Just For Korea it was against Germany in the semis. Probably to avoid any appearance of scandal once the world spotlight is more and more on them as the tourament reaches the semis or the finals. The soccer world knew that Korea was not WC finals side.

And I am seeing it today also. The officiating right now in the Por-Gre is totally different than what Portugal saw against Hol and Eng. With a huge world wide audience watching, you are see a impartial and well ref'ed game

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