So, we're on to the final phase of the WorldCup and Ireland isn't. Sorry about that, and thank you for keeping Switzerland at bay. Maybe someday we'll repay the favour (I wouldn't hold much hope, though).
Yes, soccer - the Americans among you can now run away screaming -, or football, as it's known around our part of the world, and really there was no reason to change the name. Now, I don't know shit about football, and I'm about to show it rather gloriously. But nature abhors a vacuum, and I have bugger all else to talk about, plus I have two football-related pet peeves.
First. I like Domenech, I really do. Everybody in France has been slagging him off, but I stick by my opinion: I like the guy, and I certainly hope that he'll show all the nay-sayers wrong. The whole thing reminds me of 1998, in fact, when the whole country (except me, of course) had united against Aimé Jacquet. Then we won and all was forgiven/forgotten. I'm wondering if the journos and football fans aren't doing it to Domenech for good luck now, after the 2002 fiasco.
Second. Zidane. He's a brilliant player, of course he is, but come on. Nobody seems to see just how blatantly wrong it is that he's become so indispensable. You can't depend on just the one player, people, it's a team sport! Granted, he's the team leader, but he's 33! If you made me run on a field for 90 minutes, I'd die wheezing after 90 seconds tops. And I'm only 32!
OK, so maybe that isn't a show of good faith, and yes, he scored first today, but he wasn't particularly convincing against Switzerland, and he's not in great shape these days, and he'll be a year older next year, what do you think he'll be doing? Cheerleading from the sidelines, I bet. And I'll be expecting nasty laughs in my face in June-July if it turns out I was wrong.
Ooh I'm glad I got that off my chest. I'll go back to talking rags and lipsticks now.