Inside Insight: That NSA Thing

The world has gone totally mad, hasn’t it? Ever since the “US citizen-without-a-passport”, Edward Snowden, went public and gradually released his material about global spying, institutionalized by US and UK spooks at the NSA and GCHQ, a storm of aggression has hit him and the US alike.

Meanwhile, in a parallel universe (and somewhat ridiculous to compare with issues of real concern), a handful of people continue digging and investigating for a very handsome fee –

Read more …

Inside Insight: Just another day at the Confederations Cup of contrasts

Spain’s Confederations Cup semi-final win on penalties over Italy in Fortaleza was marred by more protests as 5,000 protestors clashed with police who responded with tear gas prior to the game.

Inside the stadium a 58,000 capacity crowd watched Spain break the world record by marching to 29 consecutive competitive matches unbeaten. A match that to the world’s TV audience had drama and celebration of the positive football kind – in abundance.

The vast majority of colour in the stadium was the yellow of Brazil and TV pictures couldn’t resist the image of the parents feeding their baby at half time.

Read more …

Inside Insight: Brazil unplugged

Brazil is rocked by (justified) demonstrations. While numbers vary, it is safe to assume that hundreds of thousands have and are taking to the streets to voice anger, frustration and dissatisfaction. With what, exactly, that remains a question to some. But it is a question that seems to get a wide spectrum of answers, depending on where the writer stands and from where the “independent” observer hails.

It is clear that Brazil’s economy,

Read more …

‘Ideological wars’ are ‘the new bitterness’

So, FIFA have had their congress which by some – mainly FIFA – was called “historic”, and by others a “whitewash”, “irrelevant” or worse.

Under the rainy skies of the African island nation of Mauritius, 209 FIFA Members met and the individual delegates cast their electronic vote. Actually, they also cast their more traditional manual vote in a secret ballot that determined which one of three women candidates would be FIFA’s first elected Executive Committee (Board) member.

Read more …

Inside Insight: Über Abschreiberlinge und andere Erstaunlichkeiten

Es schallt und raucht. Die Bildschirme biegen sich allenthalben unter dem Gewicht des Wortschwalls, der da laut und unmissverständlich aus angelsächsichen Laptops in den Cyberäther drängelt, dicht gefolgt von plagiarisierenden Deppen teutscher Sprache, die anstelle des Selbstgegorenen (weil eben schwieriger, eine eigene Meinung zu haben, als eine andere kopiert zu wiederkäuen), lieber den Schwachsinn aus englischen Landen, als die scheinbar abscheuliche Manna der “real existierende Rechstprechung” herumreichen.

Die Rede ist vom Abschreiberling, der – selber eher unzureichend mit Intellekt ausgestattet – die Kunst der Boulevaldisierung von allem und jedem bis hin zum Gehtnichtmehr beherrscht.

Read more …

Money rules The Game (what else is new)

Questions arise, and only the un-inducted don’t have answers. Why does football play such a central role in the world today? What is it that makes the wealthiest people in the world and the poorest sods alike flock to The Game religiously and cherish it beyond comprehension? What is it that makes football different, to the extent that pundits, writers and idiots alike make a living commenting about The Game, about those who own it,

Read more …

Inside Insight: No Irish, no blacks, no dogs.

no irish no blacks no dogs

The most recent spell of hooliganism in England (Millwall-Wigan and Newcastle-Sunderland matches) appears to have rung in a renewed era of primitive and vulgar fan behavior that had led to the ban of English clubs and the England team from international football in the 80s. Hooliganism defaced the English game throughout the 1970s and 1980s: in 1974, a Blackpool fan was stabbed to death at Blackpool’s home match with Bolton Wanderers. In 1985, after vile hooliganism of Liverpool fans led to the deaths of 39 Juventus supporters before the European Cup final at the Heysel Stadium,

Read more …

Caribbean mayhem or post-colonial arrogance?


CONCACAF is voting again. Chuck Blazer, a US citizen, is stepping down to be succeeded by Sunil Gulati, a US citizen, who will be promoted to FIFA’s Executive Committee. Meanwhile, the tiniest of Caribbean islands that make up the majority of the CFU, are following orders as usual.  This time, not those of the much maligned Jack Warner, but those of a dubious and FIFA-reprimanded figure, Gordon Derrick, victorious in a somewhat weird election to the helm of the CFU in Budapest last year (held in parallel to the FIFA Congress),

Read more …

The AFC minefield turns toxic

Sadly, the AFC presidential and FIFA Executive Committee elections in Asia promise to deliver another battle-field of smear and grime. Some of the protagonists are set to disappear into their self-made trenches of libel and slander, while one (or two) others are quietly watching from the side-lines at present, but ready to hit the unsuspecting contenders at the opportune moment.

Sri Lankan Vernon Manilal Fernando has been eliminated from proceedings. Temporarily, they say.

Read more …

Inside Insight: As straight as an Arabian dagger…the race for the AFC presidency

Deutsche Fassung  

The Asian Football Confederation, AFC, is trying one more time to get its house in order. After a dismal era under an omni(im)potent Peter Velappan (a GenSec who played president for far too long), a man with an often particular management style took over the helm: Mohamed bin Hammam was in charge, and in ways that widened many a nostril. What he created, at times against crude opposition, is a more functioning and more modern organisation in terms of competitions,

Read more …

[b]Inside Insight:[/b] Everybody talks about racism but no-one really cares

Let us assume that all those do-gooders who are so very concerned about mankind (while only paying lip-service to a ‘trend’ that seems worth exploiting for their own advancement) have a tiny remnant of human decency left and, for once, actually mean what they say and not only say what others want to hear.

Let us further assume that the large group of those who are mentally differently abled (i.e. either don’t have a clue or don’t give a hoot),

Read more …