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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Wednesday, May 22

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Fire Mon Jun 16 2008

Three Things At Once

There are plenty of good reasons for leaving your couch and watching any sport in a bar, but with soccer there are more than most. For one thing, being in a noisy, boisterous crowd does a better job of being at a live game than the mostly bored sounding American commentators. For another thing, there’s always a soccer game going on somewhere in the world, and usually more than one. And lastly, beer.

But getting back to point #2, on Sunday being in a bar with multiple screens showing different games really came in handy. On one screen, the Chicago Fire were doing their best to match their away form with their home form, losing 1-0 in Dallas. Uh, it should be the other way around, guys.

Thankfully, there were things to watch besides the Fire’s listless display. The first group of the Euro 2008 was decided today, which meant that Portugal kicked off against Switzerland at the same time the Czech Republic faced Turkey. The way the group worked out, Portugal was already through to the next round while Switzerland had been eliminated, so the game didn’t really matter. Don’t tell that to the single flag-waving Swiss fan that went absolutely crazy after Switzerland beat a weakened Portuguese lineup 2-0. And the Swiss definitely deserved to take one moment away from a tournament they co-hosted.

Most eyes were inevitably drawn to the Czech Republic – Turkey game, a must win for both teams. The Czechs went ahead 2-0 and looked to have a place in the quarterfinals booked. Then somehow Turkey scored 3 goals in the last 15 minutes. The bar went pretty crazy, not because it was particularly pro-Turkey so much as they had just given us the most exciting 15 minutes of soccer this summer.

Oh, and then the US beat Barbados 8-0 in a World Cup Qualifier. Not exactly exciting, but it does virtually insure this US Qualifier in Toyota Park this September will happen, although Trinidad’s 2-1 loss to Bermuda puts the opponent into question.

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