Think He’ll Make It Through The Night?

April 22, 2008 – 6:19 pm by McD

It’s the AFC Championship game. My beloved San Diego Chargers are playing the hateful New England Patriots only this time they’re winning. In fact, they’re kneeling on the ball to run the clock out as the Patriots are out of timeouts.

But wait. What’s this? The Chargers fumbled the exchange on the kneel-down and the Patriots recovered the ball in the end zone to win! Tragedy! Pain! Suffering!

That’s about as close as I can come to an American parallel for what happened in the Chelsea/Liverpool semifinal matchup of the UEFA Champions’ Cup.

Up 1-0 in the fifth minute of stoppage time, Liverpool needed only to kill another 60 seconds before they would win the first leg of their two-leg semifinal. Then, just when all seemed over, Liverpool’s John Arne Riise headed the ball into his own goal and tied the game for the evil Chelsea. Worse, the goal gives Chelsea the advantage in a potential tiebreaker because their goal came on enemy turf. Should the second game end in a tie, the teams would be even in goals scored and away goals would be the tie-breaker. Chelsea will have to play some D to make that happen, but still. Here’s the video. Apologies for it starting after the goal is scored. At least there’s multiple replays.

I’m sure this was even more painful if you cared about Liverpool at all. I actually don’t really like Tom Hicks (Liverpool and the Texas Rangers’ owner), so I’m OK with this. Speaking of being an American involved with sports we shouldn’t care about, the only painful own-goal I could think of was this one from the 1994 World Cup because it involved America (and those snazzy uniforms!). Oh, and because the Colombian Andres Escobar defender ended up dead because of it (allegedly).

Hopefully, nothing happens to John Arne Riise as a result of this embarrassing mistake, but we ARE talking about soccer fans, here.

Why am I writing about all this besides the obvious pathos? Because it’s NBA playoff time again, and it’s important for all of us to remember how great things are in America before I get too crazy and actually start to freak out about the Lakers’ chances at a title this season. In America, we have multiple sports in which we pay athletes millions to entertain us. Europe and the rest of the world put most of their athletic hopes into one sport and the resulting craziness is well-documented.

So when your favorite NBA team loses in a painful fashion, remember that it’s just basketball. Football (Americano) is much more important anyway, what with the draft coming up this Saturday and all. Plus, it’s just the beginning of baseball season! Then there’s NASCAR (for our “special needs” readers), the preseason of college football and, hell, even the PGA looks promising this season once Tiger is back.

There’s no need to go crazy, folks. Having too many options is part of what makes this the greatest country on Earth. And I love America.

I’m McD, and I approved this message…

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  1. One Response to “Think He’ll Make It Through The Night?”

  2. Imagine your team being five outs away from the World Series with a 3-0 lead and your ace on the mound before a ball drifts harmlessly towards foul territory… er, if your team was a Steve Garvey homer away from wrapping up the NLCS… ah crap, I’ll quit writing here.

    By Hick Flick on Apr 22, 2008

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