Posted: 6/25/2006


  NURNBERG Hbf Internet cafe-quite exotic. Upholstered like a Turkish cafe- people are smoking hookahs in one corner and weird Middle Eastern music at Midnight as fans pore off the trains from the Franken Stadion in one of the wildest World Cup matches I have ever witnessed.
Referee Valentin Ivanov sent off 4 players and gave out 16 yellow cards and completely lost it.
There are far too many yellows in this World Cup. From the next game I think that every time a yellow is shown a FIFA official has to leave the VIP box and go stand in the mens urinals until the end of the match.
When will they realise that though its called the FIFA World Cup it's  THE PEOPLE'S GAME, and we were robbed of a decent match.
  Before hand there were lots of tickets being sold outside the stadium with people running out of cash so it was a buyers market, and will be even more so as the Dutch go home-second only to the English in number of fans over here.
Riding the train from Munchen I was sitting across from a lady working for one of the sponsors. She was taking rubbish on her cell phone to another rep and when she stopped I told her she was an SMT. That's a Superflous Marketing Type . You see them at every MLS match, at NCAA Soccer Finals and at US Soccer international matches. ERMOS are all over the place here. Easily Replacable Minor Officials. DB train officials, security people etc. Most are very pleasant but just get in the way.
Aldstat -the old and very pleasant downtown of old Nurnburg was 'taken over' by the Dutch earlier in the day. the Old MARKT Place was  ull of singing Dutch and a stage and entertainment provided by a Dutch radio station. Must have been 50,000 there , far outnumbering the Portuguese, but a superb goal by Manich won the day and set up a match Portugal vs England in the next round.
I was at the WC Semi Final in London in 1966 when England beat Portugal, and went on to win the World Cup for the only time.
  If they play like they did earlier in the day against Ecuador the Portuguese, Britain's oldest ally, will win, if they have any players left after all the cards. England again showed lack of resource and only a typically brilliant strike from a free kick from captain David Beckham saved their blushes.
Well, got to get a night train to Dresden , in former East Germany for some sightseeing, and then to Prague for a quick break.
We have tickets for the next round in Hamburg and as yet don't know who will be playing that day until tomorrows matches.
Later Dudes.