For those that are new to the ‘Beautiful Game’, January is a special time. Not only does it bring about a highly congested fixture list (at least in England), but also a month-long period in which clubs across Europe may buy, sell and loan players. Potential purchases can save a club from relegation to the lower divisions, or bring a club glory for years to come. But by the next the next transfer window, supporters call for many of these same players to be shipped off to far-away lands, never to be heard of again. This should be a time of great excitement for football fans.
College basketball fans at Trinity have good reason to be excited. This season, students will be able to watch a young, exciting and potentially top-tier team up close and personal at their home away from home, the XL Center in downtown Hartford. And no, I am not talking about the Uconn women, although they too are well worth the price of admission.
Last night’s Champions League Group Game between Real Madrid and Ajax ended in farce, as two Madrid players were sent off in the game’s dying embers for time-wasting, despite leading 4-0. Xabi Alonso took seemingly forever to take a free kick, pointlessly stepping up and then back from the ball. Minutes later, the Ajax crowd found out that Sergio Ramos is apparently unable to play without his socks being very specifically adjusted. Both players received their marching orders and as a result, will miss Real Madrid’s next Group Game against French side Auxerre. However, this match is essentially meaningless, as Real Madrid have already qualified for the tournament’s Knockout Stages.
FIFA President Sepp Blatter has called for the creation of a task force charged with making the next World Cup “more attractive” than the last. FIFA’s primary concern is that of ‘quality’. When the most exciting moment of a tournament is when a particularly gifted octopus predicts the outcome of the final, you know it’s a pretty poor World Cup. And let there be no mistake about that.