Why has a 1937 alignment of literary stars not featured in Vienna in the European Championship’s cultural program? Vladimir Nabokov lectures in a Parisian literary salon and espies James Joyce “sitting, arms folded and glasses glinting, in the midst of the Hungarian football team.”
Zurich, Apr 1 | Suits at FIFA, the governing body for the world game, apparently are a bit miffed at the license being taken with Joseph “Sepp” Blatter‘s honorific. Gliding unopposed into a third term as FIFA president, Blatter has on occasion been heralded in press reports as the FIFA “boss,” “supremo” or, sometimes, “kingpin.”
Madrid | With pledges “to leave it all behind” and to start playing the game with children, archetypal playmaking midfielder Zinédine Zidane has announced his retirement from football following the World Cup finals.
Typically, the 33-year-old player for Real Madrid and France looked sheepish facing the bank of microphones and cameras at Wednesday’s press conference. “Yes, he is shy,” said France teammate Thierry Henry.
Istanbul | Having scaled heights in the esteem of world football, Turkey perhaps made a serious misstep Wednesday given post-game violence directed against the native country of the FIFA president. Sepp Blatter promised an inquiry into the mêlée that hospitalized Swiss defender Stéphane Grichting following a wild 4–2 Turkish victory that nevertheless delivered a World Cup [...]
Geneva | A diplomatic thaw? While the atmosphere at Sunday’s Argentina–England friendly at Stade de Gení¨ve perhaps lacked the requisite hostility, “[t]he latest encounter featured punches on the terraces, songs about the Falkland Islands, jibes regarding players’ sexuality and general churlishness.” Some England supporters were heard chanting standard nationalistic ditties such as “You’ll never take the [...]