World Cup online

The internet, eh? What did we do without it? Got shit done, that’s what. Anyway. Here’s your guide to the cup online.

Marca’s impressive calendar keeps you up to date in style

Here’s the The All Whites official site, complete with video and the all important player profiles

Local lot Public Address have set up the speaker page for the tournament, with guest bloggers Peter Darlington and Dan Slevin, along with Hadyn Green

The Guardian as usual have impressive coverage, from the tournament guide to the daily podcast, to the ambitious and all encompassing fans’ network featuring NZ sporterati’s Sportsfreak

Alan Davies is a gooner, but he’s very funny, so he’s OK – he’s hosting the World Cup Armchair podcast every week. I had a listen doing the supermarket shopping Thursday night, its quite a larf

FIFA’s site is actually quite good

Brainy magazine The New Republic have a World Cup blog, with a fairly exhausting output

Twitter sneaked out an impressive World Cup page today, and will tag your country tags with flags (ahem) if you’re on the web page – #sco doesn’t work, I checked

DDyerNZ is a blog about a gaggle of pommy Kiwis traveling to the cup – entertaining stuff , can’t wait to see how they go

I must also mention Giovanni Tiso’s epic and touching post about Brazil v Italy 1982, a tournament dear to most NZers’ hearts

Yo Dodger Blue

Harry Nilsson, of the great songs, magnificent voice and the going on the piss with John Lennon a lot in the 70s is a big fav here at sportreview.

Later in his career, he attempted to write a stadium chant (along the lines of creepy Gary Glitter’s Rock and Roll (Part Two)) for the LA Dodgers, who, like Harry, were originally from Brooklyn.

01 Yo Dodger Blue (L.A. Loves You) – Harry Nilsson (MP3, 6MB)

via For The Love Of Harrry

Book review – Moneyball

Moneyball is about a new approach to baseball, hiring Harvard statistics nerds to scout talent, going deep inside the stats to find the most effective players. Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane, portrayed as an obsessive perfectionist lead the A’s to the play offs several times early in the noughties with a fraction on the budget of most teams. Using number crunching to scout meant the A’s recruited players who were fat, old or just had weird technique who, crucially, got the job done – on paper.

Michael Lewis is one of the smartest writers around, and he brings this world of number crunching and hours alone with Excel to life. This book caused a storm in Baseball with theories that flew in the face of what ‘traditional baseball guys’ valued. It would be fascinating to see this approach applied to Cricket, another sport that lends itself to statistical obsession.

Recommended.

Michael Lewis article on Moneyball in Basketball (NY Times).

Roman Abramovich checks in

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Didier Drogba: Yeaaaaaaaaaaah!

Roman: Greetings. We have not spoken for some time, but I have not been idle. No, I work hard to realise my vision of a world where my enemies pray for the swift, merciful death a chainsaw brings.

Didier Drogba: Number ONE baby, yeah!

Roman: This man Scolari disappointed me deeply. I saw him as my dark prince, sitting beside my throne, amusing me whenever I poked him with a sharp stick. But when I took him in to my Sloane Square rook, and he recoiled at my taxidermy Chelsea fans, I knew I must let him go.

Didier Drogba: Look at this big shiny trophy – IN YOUR FACE!

Roman: And so I walk alone once again. My only amusement is punching dogs in the face. This ‘Football’ is for the weak and fat, but remains the perfect cover for my operations.

Didier Drogba: Paaaaaaaarty!

Roman: Sleep well, my friends. Soon, you will know the triumph of riding trained bears through London streets awash with blood. Await my signal.