Archive for June 23rd, 2006

The Bliss of a Tie

Wonderful performance by the Socceroos last night in a nail-biting encounter with a ragged Croatian team who were busy pushing, shoving and pulling shirts rather than actually playing soccer. This match also showcased the most dismal refereeing I’ve seen with two clear penalties not awarded to the Australians. One for an almost rugby tackle that literally floored skipper Viduka, and the other for a fisted punch to the ball that is normally reserved for AFL, both inside the penalty box. Not only that, the ref seemed to be suffering from short-term memory loss that resulted in him giving Croatia’s Simunic three yellow cards! I hope this ref is sent home.

I watched the Aussie vs Croatia match at a place called Bliss which is a bar and restaurant run by a Dutch fellow. The set up there is pretty good with three large screen projectors which allowed them to play different matches at the same time. This suited me perfectly as it was a necessity to also keep a close eye on the Japan/Brazil match after Japan unexpectedly scored a goal, and if Brazil did not win it would’ve put Australia in a very dire position. However the crowd atmosphere was a bit lacking at Bliss with about 40 Brazilian fans booking the entire second floor, leaving just a handful of people downstairs. There was only 3 Aussies there including me, and we were the only people watching our match. I think next time we’ll go back to Brass Monkey as the atmosphere there is much better.

We didn’t however, expect to end up at Bliss. Originally we have planned on going to the Tavern, however we found out after a quick phone call that they expected to be full and referred us to Capone’s, an Italian restaurant / bar run by the same managers. The staff there was really friendly and were very accommodating to our unusual requests. They even bought us chairs when we were standing to watch the Italy vs Czech Republic match. We would have continued to stay there for the 3am matches, however they were way passed their opening hours and were staying open just for us. Feeling guilty we decided to decided to walk over to the Tavern to see if we could get a spot as it was likely that the crowd had dispersed. Well, that plan went down the toilet when the skanky girl told us we needed to pay NT$500 to enter. Good thing Bliss was only a short distance down the road.

Next crazy no sleep soccer night should be June 26th where the Aussies take on Italy which should be fun as my friend is a die-hard Italy supporter. Shouting match!

No appropriate photos for this post as I didn’t bring my camera.
But you can look at these from the celebrations in Melbourne.


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