2006

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A Few Final Thoughts

Okay. It’s… ooh… five past four in the morning, and time for some final thoughts in the World Club Cup. Did the best team win? Well, the layout of it the competition didn’t really allow us to find out. Do Europe’s top sides simply not take it seriously? Are the Brazilian club sides really that…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

Inside The Mixed Zone

Of course, there was no real need for me to be in the “Mixed Zone”, the area where the players meet the press after the match. I speak no Portuguese at all beyond “obrigado”, and my Spanish probably prevents me from doing a great deal more than asking Victor Valdes for a two beers and…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

FC Barcelona vs SC Internacional

Right ho, then. Another truncated version of the “FIFA Anthem”, and we’re ready to go (and might I briefly register my surprise at the number of hacks that actually stood for it – it represents “all 207 member nations of the FIFA family”, apparently). 7.20: And we’re off. Barca must have the toss, because they’re…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

The Final Countdown

Just a quickie, before we get onto the serious business of the match ahead. First of all, the team news. Barca are unchanged from the team that demolished Club America on Thursday evenings, so: Valdes, Motta, Marquez, Puyol, Gudjohnsen, Giuly, Ronaldinho, Zambrotta, Van Bronckhorst, Deco, Iniesta. For Inter, Pato, The Duck, plays. Quacking news. He…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

Ahly SC vs Club America

Well. WELL. It’s 4.15, and time for the first match of the afternoon. Ahly SC vs Club America. Sepp Blatter’s out there, wearing what looks like a VERY expensive cashmere coat, and I think he’s about to give a speech. It’s okay, though, because I’ve got my headphones on, and I’m going to drown him…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

Well, We Got Here

In spite of a moment of minor panic on the train out of Tokyo, we made it to Yokohama in one piece. It’s finals day, no less, so there are two matches being played on this final day of the World Club Cup, with Ahly SC taking on Club America for third place before the…

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December 17, 2006
Ian

Over & Out

Well, we weren’t the only people here tonight. In fact, there were 23,000 other hardy souls here, that had braved the cold Tokyo night and we were rewarded with… not a bad game, actually, and a 3-0 win for Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors that confirms them as the fifth best team in the world. If you…

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December 15, 2006
Ian
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