Italy’s having a good year

Earlier this year, the Italian group Maneskin won Eurovision

… and there’s more high profile Italian success to be celebrated.

I’ve been following Wimbledon this year (I love Wimbledon!) and an Italian player I didn’t know called Matteo Berrettini made it to the finals. I’d seen him in the semi-finals as well where he had been impressive but yesterday in the final he lost to Novak Djokovic in 4 sets (Djokovic held on to his nerves better and won deservedly). Still, he won second place at Wimbledon which is impressive and he sure is easy on the eyes as well. I’m sure I’ll be hearing more of this Italian in the future.

And then last night Italy thankfully won the UEFA 2020 European football championships…

I won’t go into it again why I supported Italy, already did so in my previous post with lots of discussion to boot, but suffice it to say I felt more than justified in supporting Italy. Not only did English football fans prove yet again how awful they are (again starting to boo the opponents’ national anthem and I think the TV broadcast then switched off microphones so that it wouldn’t be heard and then later in the game booing when Italy was at the ball) but the Italian play (apart from maybe the first 20 or so minutes) was better too, as confirmed in match statistics. It’s a pity the winner had to be determined by a penalty shoot out.

In the aftermath, the three young Englishmen who missed scoring during the penalties are now receiving a whole load of extremely ugly racist abuse. Thankfully that is condemned but wow, something needs to be done about these so-called ‘fans’. How about banning England fans from stadiums (and social media) altogether until they can behave themselves?

Anyway, back to Italy – I’m very pleased with the Italian win, they deserved it. Richard Armitage has been gracious about the Italy win too…

Congratulations, Italy! ๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น

My goodness, I never knew I could ever get so invested in football. It must be my daughter’s fault. Now that she’s been playing herself for these past two years, we watch it on TV far more. For now, it’s back to normal life and lower heartbeat rates.

43 thoughts on “Italy’s having a good year

  1. well done Italy (i didn’t watch) and twitter is all over the racists thankfully(even to the point where one guy has been unmasked and is going to be investigated at his work-an estate agents-for his vitriolic racist tweets).

    The absolute hypocrisy of our home secretary though who a week or so ago said it was fine for fans to boo players for kneeling and now is saying she’s disgusted by the racism! same with BJ

    and Richard? well he’s always gracious ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I didn’t really expect anything else from Richard. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I could barely watch either, so, with half an eye on the TV, I put in my headphones during the second half of the match and watched other things as well on my laptop, only tuning in to the match now and again and at the very end.

      Yes, on the hypocrisy! Someone on Sky News said it very well…

      Liked by 1 person

            1. Don’t know if anything will make those people listen, but i think given everything awful that happened yesterday outside the stadium ,inside, on social media, much much tougher measures need to be imposed around football matches. Imho alcohol should also be banned anywhere near the stadium and anybody even half inebriated should not be allowed in either. Crackdown absolutely necessary, ditto on social media.
              My big sympathy for the Azzurri took a hard knock yesterday with the nasty fouls on Saka (of all people…) and Grealish. I was never going to begrudge them the win, Italy played so good in the tournament and i always thought they might win it, but that was gratuitous and not nice, they are better than that. I was really grateful to them for taking the knee with the English team, that was a really nice gesture ๐Ÿ™‚ My heart broke for Rashford, Sancho and above all Saka and those penalties. It’s such a dastardly way to loose any game, but Donnarumma is amazing and so is Pickford by the way. But yeah, like probably all occasional football watchers and not so passionate fans, i just wanted to hug Saka at the end.
              Some really wonderful players, the most godawful fans.

              Liked by 4 people

              1. Servetus

                I remembered later what was bugging me about Italian soccer yesterday: all the game fixing scandals and the involvement of organized crime in youth sports. It’s kind of a “choose the situation you hate less” problem.

                Liked by 1 person

              2. We were saying to each other last night, while watching, that going in we would never have had a particular fave for the win. I don’t particularly love the Italian team (or any team for that matter, although I have come to like the Danes and Belgians during this tournament) and yes, maybe England would have had the edge for us over Italy. However, what England has emanated to the world has been so hateful, we definitely we felt Italy was the one to back.
                Oh, and one of the things I hate in football is the fouling and also the melodrama some players really seem to go for. Not Saka, him I also wanted to hug last night.

                Liked by 1 person

  2. Servetus

    Actually, Richard, no, I don’t feel even a bit Italian (with no prejudice toward Italians). Everybody is Irish on St Patrick’s Day, though!

    My memory is that back in the early days (before 2010), Armitage was interviewed and said his favorite city was Rome, and then there were other statements here and there about Italy as a place he had often vacationed and so on.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. I was there when I was 15 for a few days and loved it and then 11 years ago we went as a family with the kids. We stayed just outside Rome for 3 weeks during a very memorable holiday. I’d go back again any day. ๐Ÿ™‚

          Liked by 2 people

          1. Servetus

            I would, too, but I would want to refresh myself on history before I went. The week I was there I got so much in from different eras, but I’d want to do more next time. So many churches, not enough time!

            Liked by 3 people

            1. There seem to be around 900 churches alone in Rome – if you live there for a year and see two a day you might be able to get through them. ๐Ÿ˜‰

              Like

              1. Servetus

                You’d have to plan very carefully as not all of them are open all the time.

                In 1995 I joined a German Graduiiertenkolleg as part of my German doctoral research — in Wintersemester. *just* before I got there, they had spent the whole previous year studying Rome, Roman church history, and the Holy Roman Empire’s interactions w/Rome, and at the end of the year, they went on a two week excursion to Rome (so that is what they were all talking about when I joined the group — made me so jealous). Anyway, they stayed in a convent and they visited something like two and half dozen churches (on top of the other stuff they saw), and some of the people got up earlier in the morning than the group and went on their own separate church sight-seeing trips!

                Liked by 1 person

              2. Servetus

                I would maybe have less stamina now than I did ten years ago. I also found that it wasn’t necessarily the ideal way to spend a whole day. I did a weekend of seeing all the medieval churches in Cologne (13), and while I loved it, the experience started to overwhelm me, even with the excellent guidebook I had.

                Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel a good deal Scottish, tiny bit Welsh maybe, probably quite a bit German,my own though maybe estranged and so on. I love Spain and am very much an Italian and Greek foodie ๐Ÿ˜‹ I guess I am English too by adoption though less clear what to link that bit of identity too. More British I guess. I’ll never be quite sure what patriotism means and where nationalism start,never seen the latter bring anything good. I can love people, traditions, places…. countries come with baggage

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Servetus

        “countries” come with baggage — so true. I have a much less ambivalent relationship with being a German-American than with being a US-American. I’m a total Wisconsin patriot, though.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Servetus

            I haven’t been watching, but I honestly didn’t anticipate the result of the last game, so I’ll maybe I will watch game five tonight. The fans were really lucky with game 4 — everywhere else in the state it was raining cats and dogs but in Milwaukee they were able to be outside and got fireworks. (Public events everywhere else were canceled due to lightning.)

            Liked by 1 person

            1. My son gets up at 3 am to watch the games live. He bought himself a Milwaukee Bucks Finals 2021 t-shirt online which just arrived this week. Ever since becoming a Antetokounmpo fan he’s been wanting to travel to Wisconsin. Good PR, this basketball success. ๐Ÿ™‚

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Servetus

                Yeah — this and the response to the George Floyd murders last year suggest that the team is a bit “more” than anyone realized. Let me know if the dream of a visit becomes more concrete.

                Liked by 1 person

  3. Unfortunately the European Cup was tainted by many things, and yesterday was just the bitter icing on top. During the tournament I actually felt that maybe it was time for England to win; for a football nation like them it has been such a long time indeed. In typical German self-hating fashion I was willing to assume that the (vocal) ENG fans were only so abusive, disrespectful and nasty to the Germans, for the same old Nazi reason as always. But then they did it with Denmark, last night with Italy – and now even subjecting their own players to it. That is not sportsman-like, it taints not only those who behave that way but also those who ignore and thus condone such behaviour. Iโ€˜m very disappointed with the lack of response by the ENG officials/coach. Overall a disappointment.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Servetus

      They don’t think it’s their problem IMO. I just saw an article where Southgate said that “some of” the racist abuse of the England players “comes from abroad.” So now people are traveling to England to abuse non-White English players? Give me a break. The rot is right in the team leadership.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, I was just reading that as well, about racist abuse from abroad! What the…. ? Mind boggling how any form of self reflection or self criticism seems impossible, there is always someone else to blame (just as my brother was saying to me on the phone from London the other night).

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I read that in the Irish Times this morning and nearly spit out my tea. Southgate quite clearly is in denial if he thinks that “a lot of that abuse” comes from abroad. And you are spot on, it’s the leadership that has to change, including UEFA, who are all putting money above humanity.

        Liked by 2 people

    2. it was shameful, again why i don’t like football because these people use it as an excuse for being violent. If England had won we would have seen similar outcome tbh-they would have been vio;lent and trashed stuff cause they were happy. You only have to look at twitter to see that majority find it abhorrent, quite how these people can be tamed-I don’t know. But you only have to look at Wimbledon to see we don’t act that way at other sporting events!

      Liked by 3 people

      1. The culture of violence and abuse that goes along with football (not just in England but other countries, too) has to stop. And can only be stopped if the FAs themselves take action beyond the lip service of the “fair play” badge on players’ shirts.
        Not sure whether the Wimbledon comparison is fair. Is that really a mass sport, attracting team supporters? It also seems to not be focussed on “contest of nations” but “contest between individuals”, so it’s not as pointedly nationalistic as the football cups? But I agree with the gist of it – it’s possible to have peaceful mass sports events that do not inevitably lead to violence and abuse.

        Liked by 2 people

    3. Yes, the sportsmanship was hard to find. And I too am appalled at the lack of response from officials. Yes, they are calling out the racism but none of the behaviour that went before. Yuck.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I had forgotten about Maneskin too, Italy is having a golden year. Again those thugs, the vocal minority, spoiled something fun. The storming of the stadium had disturbing echoes of Capitol Hill. The disgusting racism has got to be tackled in a way that punishes the offender.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Yes! And leaders condemning peaceful racism protests (like taking the knee) should take a long hard look at themselves and change their tune.
      I too had Capitol Hill flashbacks when I saw that storming of the stadium. Sickening.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. aradaghast

    Un รฉchappatoire aprรจs tant de souffrances et de morts par le Covid, en Italie.
    Aprรจs Marx ร  propos de la religion, il existe la citation: “Le football est lโ€™opium du peuple”.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.