Thursday, December 02, 2010

World Cup 2018/2022 The Winners Revealed: A Live Blog!

11:30 ET--And with that our conversations have devolved into MacKenzie family hijinx. Including the invention of a new wrestler (Swift Justice, dressed up like a judge with the finishing move: "The Gavel") and continued berating of Alexi Lalas ("Why did ridiculing Fifa officials during the hour leading up to the announcement seem like a good idea?"). There's a lot to like about these decisions: it spreads the game to new parts of the world, it lets us all share in the fun, it may lead to great innovations in solar technologies for the Qatari world cup which benefit the world, and it stops Vladmir Putin from going on an assassination spree throughout Europe, which is also appreciated. There's a lot to fix too (Russia's venues being spread out throughout that massive continent, the fact that Qatar know...Qatar) but throughout that time, we'll be here to analyze the World cup and all its ancillary silliness straight through to the end. From three Montanans lost in the lonely East, I'm Ben MacKenzie. Good night.

11:22 ET--Quoth Simon, who has just woken up and gotten the news: "Money always wins, and Alexi Lalas shoudl shut his damn mouth for jinxing us!"

11:20 ET--Meanwhile Qatar is going to have a 30 mile ring containing the best soccer players in the world (except the poor blokes from Wales), playing at Stadiums that they have to find a way to cool, and ensuring security at a level high enough to convince fans/corporate partners to buy in, while offsetting the lost alchohol revenue that's hampered by Sharia law...and then they will tear it all down and send it to Malawi

11:11 ET--Matt and I have been jibber-jabbering about the other issues related to this outcome, and we still think that England's been a little too smug in their bids. But all that can be fixed if Dame Helen Mirren sends out a come hither look. (Keep your Hiedi Klums, Charlize Therons and Nicole Kidmen...just give us the DAME!)

10:53 ET--All Xenophobia in this post was brought to you by George W. Bush's new memoir: Deciding Things, exclusively at Borders

10:51 ET--The award for first vaguely racist comment from Nick on ESPN's live chat: "Security nightmare 2022" Matt's rebuttal: "I would think that would be the one time it doesn't happen. 'Yo, let's go blow up a place!' 'Nah,'s on!' "

10:50 ET--Before 2022, says Matt, "needs to improve its defense but it has tremendous upside potential and length"

10:47 ET--We should note that Matt's super-hot Scorching-burn on England was brought to you by TGIFs brand Jalapeno Poppers, available in your grocer's freezer section

10:44 ET--Matt says it best: "WOWZA!"

10:43 ET--Here again is Sepp doing his old man bit fumbling for the envelope and the winner is........................................Qatar

10:42 ET--Matt's gut is 1 for 1...he claims it never lies. (He also notices that England has a great deal of other things going for it...but it really ought to progress past the Quarter Finals in a cup held outside of England before we're impressed)

10:41 ET--Slightly awkward moment, Blatter thanks the losers...but I didn't hear him mention England...that'll teach you to criticise FIFA England

10:40 ET--Attention shifts to 2022, and the question is Qatar, Australia or the USA...but a little more blather before we get there

10:39 ET--England comes up short again...good thing Prince William got the proposal in before coming up empty here.

10:37 ET--2018 goes to.......RUSSIA!

10:36 ET--Blatter keeps picking up the envelope and putting it down, "and now, and now"...get it done SEPP!

10:35 ET--High drama has occured as I had to run quickly and do my actual job, but fortunately Sepp Blatter has been blathering. So nothing has been missed

10:30 ET--"Lazy Setup, brought to you by sonic Drive in. Sonic, we give you Dialisis" (Matt)

10:29 ET--Here comes Jerome Valke...the Jimmy Fallon of Fifa

10:28 ET--Here we go!

10:25 ET--Same logic holds for Russia, FIFA's attempt to deliver the deathblow to Hockey... Matt: "Soccer V.s. Hockey Deathmatch? I'd go with the Hockey Players."

10:22 ET--Quick debate, Matt: Does the world's most popular sport need growth?, Ben: Not really, but they'd love to have more countries like America who take a hosting turn and then become bigger consumers of the game over the next 20 years Matt: "So the Aussies are a more desirable target because Soccer isn't the No. 1 Sport behind swimming, Aussie Rules and what...Alpine Skiing? Quidditch? Mad Max Recreation Derbies?" Ben: "I think it's keg standing actually"

10:16 ET--Our colleagues at CNN (Aka Uncle Ted's Big Ol' House O' News) says that the announcement will be made at 9:30... Matt: "Way to build the suspense Blatter!"

10:13 ET--Our penatrating analysis (Matt: The Cup in the desert in the middle of the summer is a bad idea/Ben: And the idea of 9 stadiums with super huge air conditioning systems seems like a lot of electricity to use up for a supposedly "green World Cup")

10:11 ET--Our Mideast expert, Matt MacKenzie says: "just an oil deal, they happen at every meal"

10:10 ET--ESPN (the evil empire to our plucky rebel batallion) is reporting that there's a short delay, but Qatari bid reps are shaking hands happily....

10:08 ET--Wondering why things are still not announced, Matt's theory: Russian mafia pulling some last second strings, or Putin with a sniper rifle on a nearby rooftop, (Bourne Supremecy style)

10:06 ET--Matt and I once tried to launch our own cable news channel "MacKenzie Low Budget Sports"--stupid ESPN...their monopoly avoids soccer coverage

10:03 ET--And in 1 minute Matt has come to the same conclusion I arrived at over a month of research

10:02 ET--And Matt makes his predictions: "Here's my complete and total gut reaction prediction, which is based on nothing other than guts, know how and stomach-ness, Ready? 2018 Russia, 2022 Aussies

10:01 ET--And...they're late getting started...stupid Swiss...BUY A WATCH ALREADY!!

9:56 ET--Matt MacKenzie is in the house! This is his first live blog...mine too come to think of it

9:54 ET--And meanwhile in the 2018 race:

England (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #1/FIFA #2)

Netherlands/Belgium (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote # 3/FIFA #4)

Spain/Portugal (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #4/FIFA #3)

Russia (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #2/FIFA #1)

9:51 ET-- Just to play an amusing game to pass the time, Here are the bids again as well as who I would vote for/who I think FIFA will vote for)
2022: Australia

(Our Bid Analyses) (My vote: #2/FIFA #1)

Japan (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #5/FIFA #5)

Qatar (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #4/FIFA #3)

South Korea (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #3/FIFA #4)

USA (Our Bid Analyses) (My vote #1/FIFA #2)

9:46 ET--
In 15 minutes or so the world's soccer nerds will turn their attentions to Zurich in order to hear which countries have been selected for the billion dollar boondoggle known as the FIFA World Cup. 9 bid teams are dreaming and hoping of the day when the world will come to play on their shores (bringing lots of money with them).

Here at the Montana Hooligans' World Cup Center, we've (okay, I've) been analyzing the bids and have come up with my own opinions and biases...but the odds that my opinions and biases are the same as a bunch of sextagenarians in Zurich are relatively scant, so...take all of this with a grain of salt.

I'll try to blog as I see things, so keep hitting refresh, and hopefully witticism will come with it.
--Scruffy Rube