And Now—Sport

Swifty

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This is going to be a harder sell than a 'Mrs Brown's Boys' omnibus ... but here we go anyway. England will either qualify for a bronze of they won't against Belgium at 3pm today .. so we've still lost the World Cup either way. This has to be the least looked forward to match since, well, ever. I'm not predicting massive viewing figures.
 

cycleboy2

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This is going to be a harder sell than a 'Mrs Brown's Boys' omnibus ... but here we go anyway. England will either qualify for a bronze of they won't against Belgium at 3pm today .. so we've still lost the World Cup either way. This has to be the least looked forward to match since, well, ever. I'm not predicting massive viewing figures.
The least looked forward match to the third-place play-off in 1990, I guess. We lost then, and I can't even be bothered to look up who beat us (was it Italy?). The factor that may make it worth watching is that for England, it would represent our second best finish if we were to win, and I'm guessing Belgium's best (or equal best, I can't be bothered to look that up). And if the players can rouse themselves from the anguish of losing in the week, it's possible it may be worth watching. I'll be watching it, albeit it with low expectations...
 

Peripart

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You're both right - someone on the radio was trying to justify it, by comparing the situation with that in, say, athletics or motor racing. In those sports, of course, the 3rd place is a valued one, with a place on the podium on offer.

The big difference, though, is that those events are races with many competitors at the same time, whereas the latter part of the World Cup is a knockout competition - the clue being in the words "knock out". As I write this, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal are into the fifth set of their Wimbledon semi-final, and the winner will have the chance to play for the big prize tomorrow, against Kevin Anderson (never mind, for now, that they'll both be knackered, and this will probably be one of the least exciting men's finals for some time!).

If you were to tell the loser of today's delayed match that they could play against John Isner later for the honour of seeing which one was a slightly better semi-final loser than the other, I doubt whether the response would be broadcastable.

So no, we don't need the 3rd/4th place playoff, although the BBC are having a good go at persuading us that it's not a huge waste of time:
It wasn't meant to end this way.

England's World Cup journey was supposed to come to a glorious conclusion in Moscow on Sunday, with Harry Kane lifting the trophy to delirium in fan parks, pubs and living rooms across the country.

Wednesday's semi-final defeat by Croatia leaves fans with the comparatively unappealing prospect of a third/fourth-place play-off with Belgium in Saint Petersburg on Saturday.

The temptation is to ignore the game, forget about it, begin your World Cup detox by going out into the sunshine and finding something better to do.

Allow us, then, to try and change your mind with five reasons to watch England's final game at Russia 2018...

etc...
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/44804907
 
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Peripart

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That match was amazing last night! One of the greatest the tournament has ever seen! Nadal vs Del Potro, both absolutely brilliant, it's a cliché to say but what a shame one of them had to lose. Makes up for Federer going out and Djokovic still being in.
I don't mind him too much myself (though the tedious ball-bouncing needs to be clamped down upon), but I sort of see why you dislike Djokovic. However, he's surely not the most hated man in tennis while Andrew Castle is employed as a commentator. What a smarmy, self-satisfied tosser that man is.
 
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GNC

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I don't him him too much myself (though the tedious ball-bouncing needs to be clamped down upon), but I sort of see why you dislike Djokovic. However, he's surely not the most hated man in tennis while Andrew Castle is employed as a commentator. What a smarmy, self-satisfied tosser that man is.
I thought you were going to say Nick Kyrgios! Don't mind Andrew Castle, but then, I never watch breakfast TV.

Anyway, Novak went through today (bah), though not for want of Rafa's trying. Cue the most exhausted gentlemen's singles final in living memory. Maybe they should have let the butterflies win.

Congratulations to Angelique Kerber, she was terrific today, really upset the Serena comeback applecart. Hope she can enjoy the success this time.
 

Schrodinger's Zebra

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I didn't mind too much losing to a team that played better than us on the night .. and we don't have to listen to 'Three Lions' for another 4 years hopefully unless the fair weather fans carry it over for the Euros ..

THIS was this year's official terrace fans song and I hope this continues to be so:


Mr Zebra and I stopped our DIY and got snack food in and everything, to watch the semi final. Shame England didn't win but I agree the Croatians played better than us so they deserved to win it.

I kinda like the Three Lions song :sorry:
 

Nemo

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I hope that Croatia win, just to rub it in the big boys' (& fifa's) faces that a small country can kick their arses.
 
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Swifty

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I hope that Croatia win, just to rub it in the big boys' (& fifa's) faces that a small country can kick their arses.
Me too .. and Croatia have never won before so it would be brilliant for them. I've got nothing against France but fingers crossed for Croatia everyone ..
 

cycleboy2

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2-1 to France at the moment .. FFS stop throwing yourselves on the ground France ! .. even the ref has stopped the game for VAR, first time ever in a world cup final.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Olympic_divers_of_France
And, along with the BBC commentators and the Guardian, I think the ref got the penalty wrong. It was never a clear and obvious error (or whatever the terminology is), as evidenced by the fact that the ref had to watch it dozens of times. And as I'm typing this, France have just scored a third. I suspect that'll be it, and Croatia will feel justly peeved should that be the case. There was a major element of luck about the first goal, which I wasn't convinced was a foul at the time and repeated viewings haven't made me change my mind.
 

GNC

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Oh well, congratulations Novak, I can't deny you're a great player, but you had help in that Anderson was so worn out. I thought we were finally getting a match in the third set, but it was not to be. Still don't get the eating grass business, but whatever makes you happy.

What am I going to do now?!
 

GNC

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Who doesn't want to put an arm around Naomi Osaka's shoulders today, or at least give her a hearty handclasp?

Serena Williams is saying she was standing up for women's rights, no Serena, you were caught cheating and had a massive tantrum:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/tennis/45463018

Naomi nearly dropped the trophy, she was so traumatised!
 
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But did Bruce get to keep the cabbage?

Police are working with Aston Villa to find a fan who threw a cabbage at the Championship club's boss Steve Bruce.

The vegetable did not hit Bruce, but he was angered by the incident before Tuesday's 3-3 home draw with Preston.

A West Midlands police spokesperson said: "A cabbage was thrown at the dugout from the stand. We are working with the club to identify the person."

Villa are 12th in the league table and have won one of their past 10 games in all competitions.

Bruce, who has been in charge for two years, said the spectator had shown a lack of respect.

https://www.bbc.com/sport/football/45730381
 

Swifty

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The Connor McGregor V Khabib Nurmagomedov fight's taking place on the 7th, 3am UK time ..

We all know fighters try to psych each other out at pre fight press conferences, this one's a bit crazy even for McGregor as he turns up with a bottle of his own brand whisky and .. well .. so NSFW AND LOTS OF EXTREMELY BAD LANGUAGE WARNING I'll understand and respect if the mods want to remove this post .. if that's real whiskey he's drinking so close to the fight then I don't fancy McGregor's chances very much on Saturday ..

 
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