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Archive for June, 2008

The days leading up to the final kick off of this Euro were obviously dominated by news surrounding the German team and the big shock came on yesterday afternoon. German captain Michael Ballack seems to have injured his calf muscle (strained or something like that) and now the whole country seems to wait for news on if he will be able to participate in the final tonight. This somehow feels like when everybody was waiting for some word out of Vatican city when John Paul II. was facing death.
Ballack had injured his calf before the 2006 World Cup which caused him to miss the opening match against Costa Rica, leading to headlines about “the calf of the nation” in the tabloids. (more…)

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One of the greatest rivalries in French sports might well be the one between ASM Clermont Auvergne and Stade Toulousian. Clermont-Ferrand, a small town in the Auvergne region has never won one national championship in the club history and to make matters worse they have lost a lot of finals against their arch rivals from Toulouse. They have reached the finals eight times and I was lucky enough to be in Clermont in 2001 when they played their semifinal match. At that time my sister was studying in the town and me and my mother were visiting her. While we were walking through in inner city in the evening after dinner we were wondering why all the streets were deserted. (more…)

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It has been quite some time since I have been to two shows in one week and it has been even longer since I have seen two very good shows in just a few days. First there was the wonderful evening with our Greek friends from Düsseldorf at the “Sonic Ballroom” and then on Friday Troisdorf’s best dancers Deny Everything were celebrating the release of their new 7″ EP “Speaking Treason” (YoYo Rec.) with a concert at the “Bauwagenplatz”. (more…)

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The most important thing about last night’s game is that it seems that everything stayed quiet all through the night. Although there some scuffles here and there it looks like the Turkish and the German fans celebrated together. In Cologne a group of stupid hoolings wanted to start a riot at some bar in the inner city but that was surpressed by the police quickly and so everything stayed calm. After all the rave and hype that preceeded the match it is relieving to see that nothing happened. Turkey was the better team after all and Germany did what they are known for: never give up. This is what most of the European newspapers lined out that germany are the team to beat. (more…)

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This game is so big, it even made the headlines in the USA (New York Times article). I failed to grasp any excitement on the street today although there were quite a few people dressed in jerseys of either Germany or Turkey. The radio was reporting about the game the whole day, all of Germany’s newspapers were writing about it, I guess the TV was all over it as well. This will be huge. I wonder if there is a single person out on the street tonight. I would really like to see this, but I won’t be leaving my place in front of my television set. (more…)

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This one almost slipped away under my radar as I only took notice of it when I was reading a newspaper supplement at my parents’ house over the weekend. Free Yourself have always been a band who I hold very dear. I can’t quite remember how we met but the boys have been so kind to me to let me accompany them all across Germany when they played shows over the weekend at the end of the 1990s. They were always featured in Düsseldorf’s Blurr Magazine and that’s where I heard about their 7″ first. I got a hold of a copy at a show in Cologne. (more…)

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What a contrast it has been weather-wise to the happy days two years ago. I can remember that it was a horrible May in 2006 and my boss at the internship I was doing back than was never tired of announcing his weather forecast for the upcoming World Cup. “I say this, when the tournament starts we will have sunshine all the way”. And he was right. It’s been completely this year and today it seemed like the end of the world when the rain came down. The humidity is aweful and I#m sweating like I played two hours in the sun.
Everybody seems to have fallen in love with Russia yesterday, the reactions have been jubilous. Whoever will win tonight’s game will face a very tough task. (more…)

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