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13 Nov 2011 11:26


World: Brazil raids notorious Rio de Janeiro slum ahead of World Cup, Olympics

  • An attempt to clean up a big problem: Tanks rolled through Rio’s Rocinha neighborhood early Sunday morning, in an effort to show some authority in the region, which is a hotbed for the country’s drug trade. “We’re taking back this territory for the 100,000 citizens of Rocinha, people who have needed peace,” said Sergio Cabral, the governor of the Rio de Janeiro state. But there’s also a bigger goal happening — officials want to clean up the region ahead of two major events heading to the city in the next few years — 2014’s World Cup and 2016’s Olympics. Roughly a third of the city’s six million residents live in slums — of which Rocinha is the largest one. (Photo by Silvia Izquierdo/AP) source

12 Jul 2010 10:17


World: Uganda’s World Cup excitement shattered by deadly blasts

  • If you want to fight, why don’t you attack soldiers or military installations instead of fighting innocent people watching football?
  • Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni • On the attacks that killed at least 74 people, including one American. One of the attacks – which had multiple blasts – occurred in the capitol, Kampala, while people were watching the World Cup final yesterday on a big-screen TV at a rugby center. The other took place 50 minutes earlier in a popular restaurant district. Another 71 were hospitalized in the attacks. source

27 Jun 2010 11:49


Culture: Yo, New York Post, tell us how you really feel about soccer

  • A couple of weeks ago, we debated on a message board with a couple of English soccer fans what the New York Post’s cover about its tie to England really meant. We thought it was brilliant commentary of the fair-weather nature of American soccer fans. This panel, which ran in today’s paper, basically confirms it. The New York Post is making fun of Americans’ anemic love of soccer.

13 Jun 2010 11:44


12 Jun 2010 16:46


World: World Cup game yet another bone for South Korea to pick

  • yes North Korea aired last night’s World Cup opening game on a local broadcaster … It wasn’t live.
  • no They legally did not have the right to air the game; a South Korean broadcaster had the rights. source

11 Jun 2010 10:05


World: No stranger to tragedy: Nelson Mandela’s family hardships

  • 1st His first child, Thembikele, died in a car crash in 1969.
  • 2nd His second child, Thembikele, lived only nine months.
  • 3rd His third child, Makgatho, died of an AIDS-related illness.
  • 4th His marriage to Winnie Mandela ended in 1996 after 38 years. source

11 Jun 2010 09:56


World: Nelson Mandela’s symbolic World Cup appearance cut short by tragedy

  • We are sure that South Africans and people all over the world will stand in solidarity with Mr. Mandela and his family in the aftermath of this tragedy.
  • A statement from Nelson Mandela’s people • Regarding the tragic, unexpected death of his great-granddaughter, Zenani, just before the opening ceremonies of the World Cup. Zenani, 13, died in a car crash – preventing Mandela from making the ceremony, a much-heralded appearance on the level of his heralding of the victorious South African rugby team in the 1995 Rugby World Cup. Why so symbolic? Well, rugby was traditionally associated with the Afrikaner elite, whereas soccer had ties with the black population. So it’s very unfortunate that he won’t be able to appear tonight. source

22 Feb 2010 09:13


World: Think racism in South Africa is gone? Check out the bus system

Despite major strides in the wake of the 2010 World Cup, a fairly extreme form of racial segregation forces some people to travel long distances just to get to work. source

07 Feb 2010 12:38


Culture: The Super Bowl’s big as a moneymaker; as a viewer draw, not so much

  • The Super Bowl is an American phenomenon. Despite its completely unavoidable presence in the U.S., Super Bowl Sunday is pretty much a nonentity outside of North America, where soccer is king. Even so, it’s still a much bigger moneymaker than any other single sporting event. Here’s a breakdown of how this works out.

Not-so-super viewership

  • 106
    people watched all of last year’s Super Bowl telecast, almost entirely in the U.S. and Canada
  • 109
    people watched all of last year’s UEFA Champions League final, a hugely popular soccer match

Super brand value

  • $420M the Super Bowl’s value as an brand, making it the largest brand of all
  • $230M the Olympics’ value, despite the fact it’s a much larger event
  • $120M the World Cup’s value; it routinely tops the Super Bowl in total viewers

Super ad rates

  • $312 million in Anheuser-Busch ads alone since 1990
  • $3
    the amount NBC charged for 69 ad spots last year
  • $2.8
    the amount CBS is able to charge per ad this year source
  • Big game, big profits. Despite the fact that it’s just a single game, it often can top the advertising value of both the the World Series and the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four, which each take place over multiple games.

So why isn’t it spreading?

  • complication American football is a much more complicated sport than soccer and basketball, which both have easily and quickly spread into China, for example. Blame the penalties.
  • mediocrity The NFL had been trying to tap the European market for years with a secondary league which folded in 2007. Now the NFL has real games in Europe, a better strategy. source

18 Nov 2009 21:48


World: Sudan doesn’t lighten up for anything – even a soccer match

A major soccer match between Egypt and Algeria took place in Sudan today, and the Sudanese brought their guns and military presence. Sounds fun. source