We'll make the grand tour. Jk3 is going to take up a collection to cover our expenses. Seriously, if/when we come, we'll try to plan for enough time to meet and greet all you pandas with the funny time zone. And we might just plan the trip to include some football. :-) Megan likes it too, although she might be more excited about meeting pandas, sightseeing, going to the theatre, etc.
I'll try to find out about de-regionalizing a DVD, John. Not really sure if it's just a PAL vs. NTSC issue or something else.
There's a lot of anger at EUFA for the ridiculously small allocation to the fans of the finalists (about 16,500 to each club), and to some extent the way in which LFC have worked out who gets a ticket.
It's difficult to get exact figures, but about half the tickets are for the two clubs, the rest going to the sponsors, the "UEFA Family" and the local Athenians.
It's become a charter for the ticket touts as the distrubution does not match the demand.
That's really a shame. An event like this should be in a stadium large enough to accomodate at least 25,000 for each team's supporters, plus the sponsors and local neutrals. How many tickets, for example, do Ford or Heineken really need? The corporate sponsorship agreements must dictate how many tickets they get for the final, but leaving LFC with only 16,500 is poor planning by UEFA.
it's the same for our NFL. if your team makes it to a super bowl the season ticket holders from the 2 teams get to enter a lottery for tix. i'd be surprised if half the tickets go to actual fans who bleed (
green!) their team colors year in and year out waiting for a shot at the big game.
UEFA are renown for for poor stadium management and bowing to political pressure e.g. holding finals in certain cities not because it's good for fans but because it looks good on that city's/county's CV.
The major clubs (the ones likely to be in final) warm/advise UEFA well in advance of the short comings, but UEFA take no notice. Heysel in 1985 is a classic example, and while I'm not a MankU fan, the same applied to one of their recent fixtures in France.
The great worry about this year's final is that thousands of fans will travel to Athens without match tickets, hoping to get one when the arrive, and there'll be tension and aggro, all of which could have be avoided by a better choice of venue, e;g Glasgow, Munich, Madrid, Rome, etc. where they are used to handling huge crowds on a weekly basis.
It's not difficult to foresee.
Meanwhile. my son Huw got his picture in today's (13th May) programme for the Liverpool v Charlton game. It's of him and his friend Rich in the Nou Camp (in the Barcelona end!) where Liverpool beat Barcelona 2-1.
We put in all the forms and credit card numbers into the Anfield Ticket Office this morning. We had to sign that re-selling the ticket was criminal act, so there's going to be at 20,000 criminals in Athens next Wednesday. They've got names, addresses, phone numbers, fancard numbers, passport numbers, shoe sizes, my granny's bra size, the lot.
> > I can watch the Gerrard DVD on my computer!
"I've got one from Wyane, but that's an England shirt. No Mank shirts allowed in here."
"I had to put one of Jamie's in the cabinet, so as not to upset him when he comes round, as he's not world class"
Meanwhile, Chelsea and MankU are ranked 7th= in Europe. A loss of 0.4 of a ranking point would have meant one of them would not have been in the "top pot" of 8 for next seasons Champs League. (Liverpool are ranked 3rd). More at:
>They've got names, addresses, phone numbers, fancard numbers, passport numbers, shoe sizes, my granny's bra size, the lot.
Just so long as you get the tickets! Are you guys confirmed for three? Too bad you'll miss it John, but that's very noble of you to send Huw to go with Stuart and Luke, if that's how it plays out.
I saw a Premiere League call in show on Fox Sports where one caller said the FA Cup final is the real Champions League final, and one of the two hosts (a Scouser) said, "Yeah, in your dreams" and hung up on him in less than .01 seconds! I got a good laugh out of that!
Sevilla retained the Uefa Cup with a 3-1 shoot-out victory against Espanyol in Glasgow tonight after being 2-2 after 120 min.
So the winners of LFC v Milan next Wednesday will play Sevilla in the UEFA Super Cup, staged each year in Monaco in late August between the winners of the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Cup, acting as the curtain-raiser for the new European season.
Stuart's Upper Management, aka Elaine, collected the tickets this morning, so it's all go for the gang (
She phoned me to say:
a) the ticket will be on FleaBay in a minute as she really needs some new clothes, and
b) there's still a few tickets available as for whatever reason the person to whom they were allocated had not responded.
Second ballot gives fans a glimmer of hope.
It's a case of don't phone us, we'll phone you
May, the 23rd, 3:45pm in Brazil. With luck, some merciful soul will bring a telly to the studio. One eye on the 'puter, one eye and two ears
in the tv. Prolly the only one cheering for Liverpool. But
Reds Never Walk Alone. Lookin' forward to it.
>With luck, some merciful soul will bring a telly to the studio.
Can you borrow one? Does the studio need cable telly to get the game, or will it be broadcast on telly over the airwaves? Good luck. If all else fails, I could mail you a vhs tape of the match, which I plan to record on our TiVo and VCR.
There's a gang of high school seniors (they just graduated) that are coming to my house (10:45am here in Anchorage) for the match, along with my son and his friends and a few of my friends. We're having a morning party! I'd be at work normally, but I set my own schedule and right now--let me look--next Wednesday at 10:45am I have a meeting on my calendar with Steven Gerrard!!
99% of the Anchorage fans I've talked to locally are for Liverpool. Many who weren't convinced before were converted by Gerrard and LFC after watching the 2005 heroics.
Thanks for the offering, Roger, but it all will work fine (hopefully), as we'll have open broadcast on tv.
>99% of the Anchorage fans I've talked to locally are for Liverpool.
The folks I work with (as most Brazilians) tend to support Milan due to the large presence of Italians in our country and culture, alongside with the fact of having many Brazilian players there.
As for me, I have that 2005
burned in my memory.
>As for me, I have that 2005
battle match burned in my memory.
Me too, Guido. I'll never forget Gerrard's reaction after that first goal he scored--racing back to the center circle--imploring the fans and his teammates to believe they could do it, raising everyone's concept of what was possible--and letting them know he intended to lead the way. That attitude makes me think a lot harder when I catch myself thinking I can't do something in my life.
From Alaska to Brazil, LFC have more fans than they know. :-)
> > From Alaska to Brazil, LFC have more fans than they know.
Scousers here, scousers there, scousers every ****ingwhere!
Yep, there's a few Brazilians playing for Italy, but they're appearing in England too now. I can't be for the weather, maybe it's to join all the other top players in the world, or the ££/$$/ or the robust style of play!
Anyway, the match will be another cracker, and whatever Ancelotti says in the pre-match sparring, he knows he's up against a much harder team than the nancy boy Manks!
The match is live on at least two channels here, and you can always try http://www.sopcast.org/ if you want to watch on-line.
Game time in 22 hours! (2:45pm ET in the U.S., ESPN2) for the biggest match of the year!
AC Milan is formidable, and Liverpool FC is, well, Liverpool FC--'nough said! There is only one team in Europe that could derail AC Milan's quest to make up for the 2005 final, and they'll be on the pitch! Here's how the teams made it to the Final in Athens:
Liverpool won group C to advance.
Milan won group H to advance.
First knockout round Milan 1-0 Celtic
Liverpool 2-2 Barcelona (last year's Champion)
(Liverpool advance on away goal rule, having scored more goals on the road)
Quarter-finals Milan 4-2 Bayern Munich
Liverpool 4-0 PSV Eindhoven (Dutch league champions)
Semi-finals Milan 5-3 Manchester United
Liverpool 1-1 Chelsea
(Liverpool wins on penalty kicks, 4-1)
Final Wednesday, 23 May, 20:45 Athens
Away Milan - Liverpool
> "More than 13,500 fans are expected to fly from Liverpool's John Lennon airport as Operation Zorba gets into full swing. Thirty-seven charter flights will leave the airport from 2.30am today, carrying 8,000 supporters."
"Despite the difficulties in obtaining tickets, Liverpool's chief executive, Rick Parry, forecast that "by hook, or by crook" 40,000 of the 63,800 seats would be occupied by Liverpool fans."
Liverpool fans outraged over ticket prices)
I think there's a few more flights now, and loads of alterations:
I'm re-reading some of the choice sections of Gerrard's autobiography as I get pumped up for the Final!
"For me, tackling is an adrenalin rush. It's a chance to beat an opponent one-on-one, win the ball and then launch an attack. The sight of the other team with the ball makes me sick . . . It's my ball, and I'm going for it. Tackling is a collision which sorts out the cowards from the brave. I never hold back in a tackle. I put my heart and soul into it, as well as my body."