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My apologies, it was all my fault.

So long as I was castigating the Russian team, it kept winning. But today I got too clever by half and jinxed it all.

This implicitly assumed Russia would beat Croatia and thus nullified my previous prediction:

Go frogs, go waffles, go whatever it is that Croatians eat. Just don’t let the Anglo win. If that happens, it will be more humiliating that if Russia had been nuked out of the group stage.

Rule, Britannia! Britannia rule the waves!

PS. On a more serious note, France, Belgium, England, and Croatia are #2, #3, #5, and #9 in the football Elo ratings respectively (Russia is #38, modestly up from #45 at the start of the tournament). It beat much weaker Saudi Arabia and Egypt handily, and just about managed to knock out Spain (#4) in the penalties – even though Spain played the better game, despite the Spaniards not having a manager. The Russians lost against Uruguay (#7) and Croatia (#9).

So, there have been no particular surprises in (1) the World Cup in general – all teams in the semifinals are in the global Top 10, nor (2) with respect to Russia in particular, sole exception being the victory over Spain. Russia’s performance becomes even less remarkable when one notes that the teams that are hosting the World Cup tend to play around 100 Elo points above their level.

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Football, Sport 
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  1. The doping rumors were there and annoyed the hell out of me. Fortunately I won’t have to hear them anymore.

    I think the Russian team was really good, against much stronger teams like Spain or Croatia. This match against Croatia was one of the most dramatic matches of the tournament.

    I hate the Belgians, I don’t like the French. I have nothing against the English (except being full of blacks), and I like the Croats. So it’d be great if they won.

    Hrvatska!

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  2. Beckow says:

    It has been a beautiful World Cup. If we get France-England final, will Macron sit there with May? What if Medvedev shows up? Those are the kinds of things even the best intelligence agencies are lousy it managing. Russia looked good, with a few moments of grandeur. Given what they had to work with, that’s quite an achievement.

    This implicitly assumed Russia would beat Croatia and thus nullified my previous prediction

    Well, maybe. But in general you took the morose, self-denigrating position all along. Peter Turchin wrote a good analysis of why Rome was powerful. To summarise: they were very good at losing. Even catastrophic defeats (like to Hannibal).was answered with more Rome resilience. Resilience requires patience and optimism. Russians are patient, but tend to see the world in a very negative light. The permanent ongoing suffering that Russians usually assume is their fate is probably their worst enemy. Get some bounce in your step, lighten up.

  3. But wouldn’t it be wonderful soft power if the English fans had the best memories of Russia? The French also bombed Syria, the Belgians host NATO, so why do you prefer those? The Croats at least somewhat like Russians, certainly relative to Western Europeans.

    • Replies: @AKAHorace
  4. g2k says:

    Will it be a humiliation if England win? In the run up to the world cup there was a tsunami of propaganda, telling fans that Russia was unsafe to visit. As a result, only a few have gone there, and those that went soon realized what bs it all was. If the team actually wins then there’ll be some resentment from fans that would’ve gone but didn’t.

    • Replies: @Cagey Beast
  5. England winning is preferable to “Belgium” let alone “France” winning. There are at least enough actual Europeans on the English side that you can sort of excuse the vibrants.

    Regardless Croatia, as the only actual European side playing, must win.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Anonymous
  6. DFH says:

    What did the big Anglo meanies do to AK recently?

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  7. utu says:

    Defeat is always a relief from anxiety for those fearing and secretly hoping for success.

  8. @DFH

    Whatever do you mean? I am one of the biggest Anglo supremacists on this forum.

  9. @Thorfinnsson

    I specifically hate the Belgian national team. Lukaku is now used in pro-refugee propaganda, because he told some journalists about the poverty he grew up in (in Belgium), and the story itself sounds suspicious. But I mostly hate them since the round of 16 at the Euro Cup 2016.

  10. It was a great performance by Russia, the team can be proud of what they achieved and the nation can be proud of hosting what is likely to be the best World Cup of all time. It would be a positive step if Russia made it easier to get tourist visas to capitalise on the good PR.

    I was surprised Sweden was so tame against England even accounting for the saves by Pickford, the English goalie. Maybe they were just tired after having to play four demanding matches while England only had to push themselves against Colombia and Tunisia.

    The semi-final participants are unexpected to an extent, first time there is no.representation from Brazil, Germany or Argentina. Germany’s underperformance has been the biggest shock. Although may be they can be said to be carrying on the tradition of German adventures in Russia not ending well.

  11. I think an England win would be amusing because of the cognitive dissonance it would set up.

  12. Dmitry says:

    I feel most people (in Russia) will now support team England for the semi-finals, so I wonder if there could be some slight feeling “home team advantage” atmosphere developing for England in the match by Wednesday.

    Of all teams entering the World Cup, the most expensive teams (in player valuations) were England (1), France (2), and team Belgium were also not so far below (5).

    So at least in this World Cup, the free-market of player valuations has been maybe one of the most accurate predictor of reaching semi-finals.

    Russia has achieved as I imagined before – reaching about quarter-finals with emotional support of being World Cup home team. Penalty shootout is a lottery – lucky against Spain, and bad luck now. (Not sure we can call this emotional rollercoaster “entertaining”).

    Hopefully there will now be some restructuring of the football culture, preferably studying the Belgium youth model which has produced many players with skill.

    Already, it seems the authorities will end the hooligan culture, which could have positive effects of encouraging more families in the stadiums, increasing revenues in domestic teams.

    • Replies: @Jeff Albertson
  13. Matra says:

    I feel most people (in Russia) will now support team England for the semi-finals

    Really? Why? I’m Ulster Protestant and even I’ll be cheering for the greasy bead-counting Balkanoids. That’s what I love about the World Cup, it brings people of all races and religions together.

    Unless there’s some Serbia thing going on I’d be surprised if Russians cheer for England.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  14. Dmitry says:
    @Matra

    It’s nothing related with politics.

    England seems a fashionable team at the moment (lots of people saying if Russia loses, they will support England).

    Probably people who love the culture of England, and football fans who remember the teams like Tottenham Hotspur, Arsenal Chelsea, Manchester United, etc.

    -

    But maybe now politics – is also not going to help it when the Croatian (Dynamo) players are doing this after tonight’s match.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  15. neutral says:

    What is truly terrible is that there are 3 African teams in the semi finals, and one of those is likely to win. The propaganda will be how these African teams are proof that more mass world immigration is a good thing.

    • Agree: YetAnotherAnon
    • Replies: @Parbes
    , @Dante
  16. @g2k

    If the team actually wins then there’ll be some resentment from fans that would’ve gone but didn’t.

    The ruling class in England can just double the Proles’ gin and cider rations for a week and they’ll forget about it.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
  17. Dmitry says:
    @Dmitry

    These guys played for Dynamo Kiev. So probably it’s not as bad or political as it sounds (they just love Ukraine, not necessarily with any politics involves)… Still lots of people going crazy on the internet about it.

  18. AKAHorace says:
    @reiner Tor

    But wouldn’t it be wonderful soft power if the English fans had the best memories of Russia? The French also bombed Syria, the Belgians host NATO, so why do you prefer those? The Croats at least somewhat like Russians, certainly relative to Western Europeans.

    I would think that the Croats would be anti Russian because of the historic Serb connection. Or is that old history now ?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @utu
    , @reiner Tor
  19. Dmitry says:
    @AKAHorace

    Croatia is pretty popular holiday destination in Russia.

    And besides, sports should overcome this bullshit, even for the politicians themselves.

    President of Croatia (left) with Prime Minister of Russia, after the match.

    • Replies: @AKAHorace
    , @reiner Tor
  20. Scratch this, go Anglos!

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @reiner Tor
  21. Parbes says:
    @neutral

    Exactly… as witness, for example, the snake-in-grass Russian Jewish shitlib commenter (or rather probable TRAINED PROPAGANDIST) “Dmitry” on this website, who keeps posting mendacious comments encouraging alien immigration and miscegenation in Russia under the sanctimonious moralistic cover of being “anti-xenophobic”.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  22. Dmitry says:
    @Parbes

    Umm I oppose immigration to Russia, and current open borders regime. Miscegenation between existing nationalities of the country is not a problem. Who are you weird dude anyway?

    • Replies: @Parbes
  23. @Dmitry

    “Penalty shootout is a lottery”
    Can anyone explain to me what the heck happened? My wife was peppering me with questions and all I could do was shrug and mumble.
    This was the only the second soccer match I’ve ever watched* and only because I so wanted Russia to win so they could go on to kick English asses.
    Seems like a coin flip would achieve the same results. I assumed they would just keep stacking overtimes until someone broke the tie.

    *Nothing in particular against “football”; I hate all sports

    • Replies: @Dmitry
    , @reiner Tor
  24. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Kholmogorov – lol the guy is definitely not a “traditional” sports writer.

    With England’s historical football culture, though, it might also be great for World Cup’s atmosphere if they are in the final. It’s increasing fanatical World Cup coverage in the English speaking media.

  25. Dmitry says:
    @Jeff Albertson

    There is some skill involved, and above all, a test of mental strength.

    (It’s not a secret that German team almost always win penalty shootouts – and there have been players that never fail with the penalties in an complete career: e.g. Alessandro Del Piero).

    But there’s also a large part which is pure lottery, like Modric’s penalty tonight which caught, and somehow falls into the other side of the goal in an evil chance. That is pure lottery.

    I wonder how many people died tonight of heart-attacks from this “entertainment”.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
  26. ussr andy says:

    OT important if true

    maybe it’s not only DC where they read unz.

  27. Parbes says:
    @Dmitry

    “I oppose immigration to Russia, and current open borders regime”

    I think you’re being disingenuous here. That’s not what your posts on this website imply. In other words, I think you’re LYING. Considering your sudden appearance on this website a few months ago and the steadily increasing volume and stridency of your posts here, it’s hard to believe you’re not a tasked troll… Most of your posts push the same attitudes and memes championed by Western “liberal” cucks (not that their so-called “liberalism” has any resemblance to true, classical historical liberalism) and neocon/neolib Zios – down to repeating emotionally loaded propaganda buzzwords like “xenophobia” and “racism”. If that’s not purposeful demagoguery, then it can only be due to stupidity and not knowing what you are talking about.

    “Who are you weird dude anyway?”

    “Weird dude” applies much more to you and your ilk, than to me. Hey, I have a suggestion for you – why don’t you go immigrate to Israel and settle down and live there; and opine about Israel and Israeli affairs instead of Russia and Russian ones? It’d be better for everyone, including your neurotic self.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  28. Mikhail says: • Website

    (Russia is #38, modestly up from #45 at the start of the tournament).

    Russia was ranked 70th going into this World Cup.

    Hopefully, it’s impressive performance will encourage more Russian youths to take up the game. The US ice hockey win at the 1980 Winter Olympics did a lot to encourage American kids to take up that sport.

    An ongoing pressing issue is the gross injustice facing Russia in athletics (track & field).

    On the subject of mixing politics with Russian sports, this is an example of lousy journalism.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/posteverything/wp/2018/07/02/russias-world-cup-win-was-good-for-putin-russian-dissidents-loved-it-anyway/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.896fe7093724

    Excerpt -

    No one celebrated like this when Russia crushed the competition in the medal race at the Sochi Olympics in 2014 — a victory of which it was later stripped amid allegations of systemic doping. When Russia illegally annexed Crimea in 2014, the celebrations were fraught with anger and political division that broke up friendships and families.

    In point of fact, Russia wasn’t stripped of its first place tally at Sochi, because the put mildly suspect claim of “systemic doping” hasn’t been conclusively proven. Julia Ioffe didn’t do her homework on this matter:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2014_Winter_Olympics_medal_table

    The “Russia illegally annexing Crimea” mantra is sheer hypocritical demagoguery given the examples of Kosovo and northern Cyprus.

    One of the coddled brats in mASS media (JRL included) for sure. A related follow-up on her antics:

    https://www.eurasiareview.com/09062016-enhanced-russia-bashing-at-the-new-york-times-analysis/

    https://www.eurasiareview.com/13012015-enigmatic-russia-and-its-detractors-analysis/

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/10/03/russiagate-addendum-and-russophobes.html

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2017/05/18/covering-russia-what-cnn-and-fox-news-media-review-shows-omit.html

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2016/12/21/parting-shots-from-obama-and-clinton.html

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2015/09/21/getting-russia-wrong-again.html

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  29. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Dmitry

    For superstitious reasons (which this time had failed, I didn’t watch the second 15 minute half of the Russia-Croatia quarterfinal. On my car radio, I did hear that the match went to a shootout before going for a swim. At that point, I was cautiously optimistic, given that the Croat goalie appeared to be partially injured.

    It wouldn’t bother me to see the Hrvats win it all, which leads to an interesting observation. Despite their differences, I recall reading pieces saying that the former Yugos (at least a good number of them) tend to root for each other in events like the World Cup and Eurovision.

    Politics aside, the English team seem like good blokes. At the same time, the Brit government should be justifiably loathed. Hence, in the spirit of trying to separate politics from sports, I will not be upset if England wins.

  30. Meanwhile, the British government used the cover of the World Cup to announce what amounts to a capitulation on Brexit.

    Our only hope now is that the EU will demand Unconditional Surrender and we then get a no deal Brexit.

  31. Anon[312] • Disclaimer says:

    One trope of Anglozionist propaganda states that Hitler cried or something, when some American Black won some random running event at the Berlin Olympics. Given that there weren’t that many Blacks in Nazi concentration camps, and that the Nazi leaders were inspired by American eugenists, I find it hard to believe. But here it is, repeated every year by some random Will Self, in the hope that the dindus won’t go full Wakanda, thus deserting US Army.
    So today I was looking forward to a Russian victory, which would have taken us to an England-Russia game. Just imagine how many generations of liar would have repeated the story on how Beckham (or whoever is his equivalent in today’s English team) scored in front of the Soviet dictator Putin, thus revenging the slight indisposition that Putler caused to the Englishpeople Yulia Skripal and Her Father.

  32. AKAHorace says:
    @Dmitry

    Dimitry,

    thank you, this was beautiful to see.

  33. Admit it, you got played by Putin. You wanted the Russian team to crash out horribly out of this tournament, but ended up rooting for it anyway. :)

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  34. utu says:
    @AKAHorace

    At the end of 2016, Russian experts were cited as assessing Russian–Croatian relations as ″cold″.[107] Croatia is one of the anti-Russian countries in Europe, according to the voting on European Parliament’s 23 November 2016 resolution.[108] Croat and Ukrainian sports fans have put up hate messages towards Serbs and Russians during a match of their national teams in the 2018 World Cup qualifier.[109] Croatia’s position as a member of both NATO and the European Union can be contrasted to that of traditional Russian ally Serbia,[110] with which it has strained relations.[111] Croats are Catholic and Serbs are Orthodox (as the Russians are), and during the Ukrainian crisis mercenaries of the two ethnic groups were on opposing sides, Croats fighting for Ukraine and Serbs fighting for the Russian separatists.[112][113]

    Perhaps that’s why they could not be bought.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  35. LondonBob says:

    So England to lose to Belgium or France in the final. I hope the politicians don’t attempt to break their boycott, or if they do the Russian authorities refuse them entry. The media and political class have taken another hit to their credibility over this tournament.

  36. LondonBob says:
    @reiner Tor

    Ruasian players are fresh having not played a full season, given they play in Russia where it is a summer sport. They still looked dead on their feet last night. Glad we avoided an England Russia semi, the tabloids would have come out with all their nonsense.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  37. @Dmitry

    Who is the bald guy in the middle?

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  38. LondonBob says:
    @reiner Tor

    FIFA President Gianni Infantino.

    I assume Putin will attend the final, the question is who else will? Trump likes football and is in the area. I see Macron is going to the semi.

  39. @Jeff Albertson

    Seems like a coin flip would achieve the same results.

    Loser teams say that.

    Scoring a penalty is a game of nerves. After a long and tiring match, knowing the enormity of the stakes, do you still have what it takes to kick the ball with a perfect combination of power and aiming? A lot of players don’t.

    Playing extra extra time etc. would be pointless and dangerous to the health of players, besides extremely boring to watch.

    I think almost a century ago (maybe in the 1930s or so) they just played another match the next day, but there were cases of actually tossing a coin.

  40. @AKAHorace

    There were some surprising polls about half of Croats thinking that a strong Russia is needed to counter America. Way lower than in Serbia, but higher than Western Europe.

  41. Dante says:
    @neutral

    That ship has sailed, Europeans are shifting to the right and immigration is a real issue with Nationalist or Nationalist inspired parties emerging to address these concerns so sure (((msm))) will drone on but few people are listening anymore. People are waking up

  42. @utu

    Teams or players cannot be bought at a World Cup. They are playing for prestige, not the money.

    You can buy the referees, but yesterday there was no controversial decision.

    Or you can dope the players of one team so that they will be running for 120 minutes and something else to the other team so that they become injured more easily.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  43. @LondonBob

    They still looked dead on their feet last night.

    They ran more than the Croats. So that hardly excludes doping.

  44. @reiner Tor

    These are just idle conspiracy theories with no evidence behind them. But I keep hearing them.

    I think it’s obvious that the Russians are doping, as are the other teams. For example when years ago the Spanish police arrested the epo doctor, they just ignored the evidence of systematic doping with elite football teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid.

    • Replies: @utu
    , @LondonBob
  45. @reiner Tor

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Bliss
  46. @Mikhail

    Russia was ranked 70th in the FIFA rankings, which are useless. It was ranked #45 in the more reliable Elo rankings.

  47. @Felix Keverich

    1. And I was correct to do so. Football patriotism is so banally normie, even the liberal are doing it: https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2018-07-02/russians-love-being-victorious-underdogs

    2. And I should have continued wishing it ill. The Russian team would have won, then.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  48. utu says:
    @reiner Tor

    Never on World Cup?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_match_fixing_incidents

    2008 The Fix: Book by Declan Hill alleges that in the 2006 World Cup, the group game between Ghana and Italy, the round-of-16 game between Ghana and Brazil, and the Italy-Ukraine quarter-final were all fixed by Asian gambling syndicates to whom the final scores were known in advance.[10]

    https://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/01/sports/soccer/fixed-matches-cast-shadow-over-world-cup.html

    https://www.firstpost.com/sports/fifa-world-cup-2018-match-fixing-a-big-concern-for-authorities-monitoring-systems-in-place-for-suspicious-activities-4401325.html

    https://www.apnews.com/c17741b0cf414b64b16b74314f17f3ae/FIFA-bans-coach-for-2-years-in-World-Cup-match-fixing-case

    • Replies: @jimmyriddle
    , @AKAHorace
  49. LondonBob says:
    @reiner Tor

    If they are doping, then they aren’t doing any more so than anyone else. I remember Wenger saying that they often got strange blood results when they did medicals before signing players. I still have question marks against those Barca and Spanish teams, those players played so many games, at such high intensity.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
  50. @Anatoly Karlin

    It’s true that Croatia played shittier, or that the people will now support the English, but you need to put this into perspective: shittier teams have a tendency to win the World Cup.

    The case against Croatia gets weaker, though, because I’m supporting them. Based on that metric the abominable Belgians will win the tournament against England in the final. The most abominable Fellaini with his microphone head will be celebrating next week. It’s a pity he won’t be sacrificed to Huitzilipotchtli for having a microphone head or some other reason.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  51. What is Croatia’s problem with Russia anyway, I don’t quite get it.
    Having beef with the Serbs is not a valid reason.

    Nationalists from different countries supporting one another against a common enemy is normal, our IMRO were bros with the Ustashes against a common enemy (Serbs) but when/how was Russia ever an enemy to Croatia?
    I don’t get why Croats would support Ukrainian nationalists.

  52. LondonBob says:
    @reiner Tor

    England will do Croatia no problem. They are exhausted and I just don’t rate their defense or strikers, set pieces look problematic too. Modric and Rakitic can only get you so far.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  53. @LondonBob

    They played two matches to extra time, and have one less days to rest. Based on that alone, they should lose. England is also a more valuable side. England has played better. The odds probably favor the English.

    But football doesn’t always work like this. The Croats still have a chance. We’ll see.

    • Replies: @jim jones
    , @RadicalCenter
  54. @Spisarevski

    These two players play for a Ukrainian club. I’m not sure Modric or Rakitic give that much thought to Ukraine.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Dmitry
  55. Bliss says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    And with that, 147 million Russians just became England supporters. The World Cup semi final is going to be like a home game for Gareth Southgate’s team now.

    I was thinking Russia losing to fellow slavs Croatia in the quarterfinals was better than getting humiliated by England in the semifinals. This development makes it so much better that they lost. Russians wholeheartedly supporting England at a time like this could have significant geopolitical consequences. It will be harder now for the British deep state to paint Russia as an enemy.

    As a bonus, it will annoy the hell out of the racist haters of the alt-right to see Russia loving black and white team England and hating all white team Croatia.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  56. @reiner Tor

    Played in the past there.

  57. @Bliss

    I agree with your first paragraph, but I’d say the second is only partially true. For what it’s worth, I’d support any fully African team (like Senegal or Nigeria) against the abominable Belgians or French.

  58. Bliss says:

    So, there have been no particular surprises in (1) the World Cup in general

    What? This World Cup has been full of surprises:

    Russia beating Spain, and South Korea beating Germany (kicking them both out of the tournament with their wins) are 2 of the biggest upsets in World Cup history.

    A Semifinals without Brazil, Germany and Argentina was unheard of, until now.

    Italy and Netherlands didn’t even qualify for this World Cup, their absence is certainly a surprise.

    The Group Stage was surprisingly good and competitive. The best ever.

    • Replies: @Spisarevski
  59. @utu

    There was a notorious case in 1974? where Germany and Austria colluded to draw a match in the group stage. They just passed the ball around aimlessly for 90 minutes.

    Then there are a lot of rumours about the DGSE spiking Ronaldo with some psychotropic drug the day before the 1998 final.

    • Replies: @for-the-record
  60. jim jones says:
    @reiner Tor

    England has the best songs:

  61. @Bliss

    ^This (don’t have enough recent comments to simply click “Agree”).

    I am not quite sure why does Anatoly comment on football related matters.

    Never agreed with the people shitting on him for supposedly being too americanized and not a “real Russian” but after calling the Uruguay team “second-class” he may as well call the game “soccer”.

    Also let’s not forget that he was quite skeptical about Saudi Arabia and Egypt too, he wasn’t even sure that Russia would beat them. Not to mention Spain.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    , @Dmitry
  62. Mitleser says:

    I am not quite sure why does Anatoly comment on football related matters.

    It is currently an important issue in Russia.

  63. @Spisarevski

    Brazil, Spain, Germany, and sometimes France are the first-rate teams. Uruguay is not in the very top rows.

    I thought Russia would beat Saudi Arabia and Egypt, but lose against Uruguay. So I was correct on all of that.

    I thought it would lose to Spain. I was wrong on that. But considering it won on penalties, plus the much better performance of the Spanish team, that was an understandable error.

  64. @Anatoly Karlin

    I would route for France but I have yet to see their team play at this world cup. All I saw was north Senegal.

  65. @Anatoly Karlin

    Brazil, Spain, Germany, and sometimes France are the first-rate teams.

    Argentina, Italy and Uruguay at least are also first class. Uruguay’s 2 world cup titles may be old (though they still show a strong football tradition) but it won a Copa America as recently as 2011 and has always been one of the strongest South American teams along with Brazil and Argentina.

    The way I see it, a class system indicates that the entries within the same class are not too different in skill and have all decent chances against each other.
    Uruguay was beaten but if they defeated France instead and even if they won the World Cup nobody would have been too surprised, and that means that they are a first class team. If Russia does this, like what they did with Spain, it’s a sensation because it’s a second class team and is generally not supposed to win against first class ones.
    Egypt etc are third class.

  66. Mitleser says:

    How wrong is he?

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  67. Kutepov apparently played with this injury for 100 minutes

    “Neymar would have died”

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  68. Anonymous[189] • Disclaimer says:
    @Thorfinnsson

    No no no Thorfinnsson. Gérard here

    Germany and Belgium play as if trying to make a virtue of multiculturalism and their politicians capitalise on it. France make no secret that their team are separate groups of Frenchmen and Africans . Thats why so often, even if they win the World Cup ,they always appear disjointed and often disinterested, albeit with very talented players. French team also appear to have holocausted all skillful and passionate Arabs out of their team because the black Africans are quicker and stronger.

    If Fifa ban this inbred cretin Vida, then I might support Croatia,
    Russia would have trampled on England next match,which makes the ending versus Croatia so sad

  69. Dmitry says:
    @reiner Tor

    Yes guys in the video played for Dynamo Kiev for years and Vukojevic is now staff member working in Kiev.

    In the video it is Vukojevic who sounds like he tries to politicize the football result for this bullshit. But Vida’s comment could be interpreted just harmless support to country he lived in, and he’s the only one of the two that plays for team Croatia. (Vukojevic is just working as some kind of staff member for the team).

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Anonymous
  70. Alliumnsk says:

    Why this ever worth discussing?

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
  71. Dmitry says:
    @Spisarevski

    Karlin’s viewpoint was quite mainstream in Russian fans, media and sports journalists.

    (People are not idiots, and were perfectly sophisticated, even pessimistic about chances to win with this team, including after the early matches).

    The problem with Karlin’s predictions earlier (his slight failure as sports journalist):

    1. He forgets the host country almost always does better (in football history, only South Africa as host country have not reached last 16).

    2. He overestimated Spain. (like he hasn’t been watching football since 2012). There has been something broken in Spanish football team since then.

    3. Writes too certainly the predictions, ignoring large randomness factor in football. Russia had a small possibility to win the whole World Cup. (Greece won Euro 2004, when they were not even host country, and with even less skilled players).

  72. Dmitry says:
    @Parbes

    Parbes you don’t need me to tell you that you are a strange man.

    Just click on your profile, and see that all your comments are angry attacks on people you don’t know.

    Also notice all your writing is only using phrases and labels that you copied from other blogs, which shows an unoriginal person.

    But we can go through your post.

    I think you’re being disingenuous here. That’s not what your posts on this website imply. In other words, I think you’re LYING.

    No. But there is something about your personality that you react to other people’s clearly written opinions like this.

    Considering your sudden appearance on this website a few months ago and the steadily increasing volume

    No I am fan of writing on Karlin blog – it’s more enjoyable, educational and addictive entertainment than watching television, and it’s free entertainment.

    and stridency of your posts here, it’s hard to believe you’re not a tasked troll

    Commenting on Karlin blog for a job? – a dream job.

    Most of your posts push the same attitudes and memes championed by Western “liberal” cucks

    This is a man that wants another man to fuck his wife – sorry I do not share your hobbies.

    (not that their so-called “liberalism” has any resemblance to true, classical historical liberalism)

    I am quite a liberal, but like “neoliberal”, not “Obama liberal”. I admire the policies of Pinochet, Lee Kuan Yew, etc, and would like to discover how they succeeded.

    down to repeating emotionally loaded propaganda buzzwords like “xenophobia”

    Xenophobia is the Russian word, nothing to do with the West. Neither do I use it though, so no idea what you are talking about.

    If that’s not purposeful demagoguery, then it can only be due to stupidity and not knowing what you are talking about.

    Being called stupid, by a stupid person – probably a compliment.

    applies much more to you and your ilk, than to me. Hey, I have a suggestion for you – why don’t you go immigrate to Israel and settle down and live there;

    I’ve already lived several months in Israel.

    It’s not my favourite country in the world to live in though – that is a country in Western Europe.

    and opine about Israel and Israeli affairs

    My opinions on the topic are written many times – it is close to being suicidally liberal country for its situation with all the charms (positive aspects) and costs (negative aspects) of liberal countries.

    The optimistic (good news) thing about Israel is they are becoming more neoliberal (in economic sense)

    instead of Russia and Russian ones?

    My nationality, and where are almost all my friends and family.

    I’m not particularly interested hearing about this county here though.

    I come here to hear information about other countries and foreigners of the difference commentators.

    Even you Parbes might even become interesting, if you would tell me about your country.

    But do not write again your boring copied phrases that you read on other blogs – I would like to hear from you real information.

  73. vinteuil says:

    It was great to see Russia come so close, last night. I’m in Moscow, just now, and everybody was going totally crazy.

  74. Dmitry says:
    @Spisarevski

    “Neymar would have died”

    If you have a long enough memory about the Brazilians? (or childhood memories…)

  75. @Dmitry

    Thanks for your classical music recommendations, I’ll check them out.

  76. @jimmyriddle

    There was a notorious case in 1974? where Germany and Austria colluded to draw a match in the group stage. They just passed the ball around aimlessly for 90 minutes.

    It was in 1982, but it was a bit more complicated. In those days, the final matches of the group stage were not played simultaneously, so that Germany and Austria knew the situation before the match (Algeria and Chile having played the day before). Germany, having lost to Algeria (in one of the greatest shocks in World Cup history), had to win against Austria to qualify. Austria, which had already won twice, would qualify so long as it did not lose to Germany by more than 2 goals.

    Germany scored after 10 minutes, so that at that stage both teams would qualify if there was no further scoring. Which is what happened, with the final 80 minutes being a total farce. The local Spanish newspaper reported the match in the “crime” section.

    As a result, beginning with the Euro 1984 the 2 final matches in the group stage are always played simultaneously.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Disgrace_of_Gij%C3%B3n

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  77. @for-the-record

    But that’s not exactly the same as fixing the match.

    A similar case was the Sweden-Denmark at the 2004 Euro Cup, where the last match was Italy playing against a weaker side (maybe Ireland or Northern Ireland?), and at the same time Sweden played against Denmark. Italy would’ve gone through if it won against the weaker side (which it did), together with the winner of the other match, or if it was a draw, still Italy would have gone through together with Sweden. Except… if the Sweden-Denmark was a draw, but Denmark managed to score two goals (i.e. if it was a draw with both teams scoring two or more goals), then it would’ve been those two teams going through, with Italy being out.

    And of course that’s exactly what happened, a 2-2 draw. A benevolent (and likely) explanation is that once the result favorable to both teams was reached, they simply stopped putting in the effort and were unwilling to risk injury for nothing.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
  78. AKAHorace says:
    @utu

    If a team knows that they will probably loose anyway and they are poorly or not payed, then
    throwing a match becomes very attractive.

    Generally when there is match fixing there will be a lot of early goals, if you have made promises to the Asian mafia, you don’t want to wait until the final minutes of the game to forfill them.

  79. @Mitleser

    100% wrong. Good memories of the World Cup will be buried under non-stop propaganda campaign.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  80. World Cup BOYCOTT could be dropped if England make final hints May

    THERESA May has hinted that her World Cup boycott on royals and ministers attending the football tournament in Russia could be dropped if England were to make it to the final.

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/985497/world-cup-boycott-england-russia-theresa-may-latest

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    , @Mikhail
    , @neutral
  81. Mitleser says:
    @for-the-record

    One good reason to root for Croats.

    • Replies: @for-the-record
  82. Mikhail says: • Website
    @for-the-record

    A go with the flow front running you know what.

  83. Dmitry says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Success of the World Cup can be quite objectively determined if increases in longrun foreign tourism revenues will return money expended on it.

    Tourists can be non-reactive to political attitudes with destinations they visit, as long as they feel safe.(Many people who hate politics of Turkey, go on holiday to Turkey, without a need for political changes or positive media about it).

    The World Cup has been very successful in showing the safety of the destination, and the interest of the destination has been cultivated (television around the world has shown a nice summer atmosphere in these cities).

    Increases in tourism revenue would not make this country rich, but it could easily refund the billions expended, and contribute to diversifying a little the economy.

    Tourism revenue also spreads quite evenly to local businesses, without government mediation (e.g. random tourist is lost in a city, buys a bottle of water on the way, and foreign revenue is flowing to local people working in that shop).

    Moreover, tourism revenue can produce funding and motivation for repairing and improving cities’ streets and historical areas, and preservation of historical buildings, in cities which attract tourism.
    E.g. In Ekaterinburg, if had even a small fraction of the tourists of Paris, all the embankment area above Sevastyanov House could be opened up and redeveloped to look like the River Seine. (Potential is there, just lack of funding and vision).

    It will be looking at tourist numbers of 2019 and 2020 when it can be judged the success or failure financially (if there is a increase in tourism compared to 2017, then we will know World Cup is returning revenue expended on it).

    • Replies: @Matra
  84. neutral says:
    @for-the-record

    I wouldn’t allow May in if she wanted to see the finals. Why would Russia want to have that hostile hag in their country?

    • Agree: Dan Hayes
  85. @Mitleser

    One good reason to root for Croats.

    Not necessarily. If England beats Croatia, “poor” Theresa will literally be between the proverbial rock and a hard place (Scylla and Charbydis, if you prefer) . If she doesn’t go to Moscow for the match, she will seem disloyal to the “boys”, but if she does go it will be quite humiliating for her — her Road to Canossa, in a way.

    Let her squirm, say I.

  86. Anonymous[189] • Disclaimer says:
    @Dmitry

    Come on Dmitry…….this is plain wrong for a smart guy like you. There has been no significant meeting in European football between Ukrainian and russian teams, no big rivalries, no controversial matches. The notion that a Ukrainian position is anti the Russian football team is an absurdity…….particular for some inbred with an inbred haircut playing for CroatiA

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  87. Dmitry says:
    @Anonymous

    For the comment of Vida, I would agree. But watch what Vukojevic says in the video, it is clearly intended politically (although he is only a staff member and not open to disciplinary sanctions).

    -

    Anyway, team England has seemed probably the most fashionable foreign team to support from the beginning of the tournament. The reason why is something related to football culture.

    Even though England always fail in international tournaments, there are always published more newspaper articles about team England, or stories about David Beckham, etc, than for such an unsuccessful foreign team.

    English Premier-League football is the most popular foreign league to watch in Russia, which will be a reason.

  88. Matra says:
    @Dmitry

    The World Cup has been very successful in showing the safety of the destination, and the interest of the destination has been cultivated (television around the world has shown a nice summer atmosphere in these cities).

    Increases in tourism revenue would not make this country rich, but it could easily refund the billions expended, and contribute to diversifying a little the economy.

    I could see people taking an interest in visiting Russia after this successful World Cup. Then they’d go online only to discover that they need $176 for a visa, an invitation from a hotel, followed by a visit to a Russian consulate. I think most EU residents also need a Russian health insurance certificate. So an increase in tourism revenue isn’t likely to be all that significant unless they have plans to change their visa policy.

    • Agree: RadicalCenter
  89. Anonymous[266] • Disclaimer says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    The NHL Stanley Cup-winning team Washington Capitals was captained by one of the best players ever, Russian Alex Ovechkin. Yesterday Ovechkin was in Moscow and at the World Cup showing off the Stanley Cup. It looked like hundreds of thousands cheered him on. Some Washington Post sports reporters were over there and reporting it all. He was accompanied by two other Russian teammates on the Caps, Evegeny Kuznetsov and Dimitri Orlov.

    In the U.S. the NHL has the richest and most educated fans. Don’t know if that holds for Russia and Europe.

    https://mobile.twitter.com/tomgulittinhl/status/1015971649420713985

    • Replies: @Dan Hayes
    , @RadicalCenter
  90. @Matra

    $176 for a visa, an invitation from a hotel,

    That’s standard for anywhere with a visa requirement. Sometimes you can buy the visa at the airport on arrival, but the standard is the letter of invitation etc. I needed more when I visited Australia, for example they required proof of employment. I lived in Western Europe and was a Hungarian (EU) citizen.

    followed by a visit to a Russian consulate

    But is it required, or just a possibility that they ask you to come? I know people who visited Russia recently (for a hockey World Championship Division I, if I recall correctly), and they surely didn’t visit the consulate.

    • Replies: @Matra
  91. AP says:
    @Spisarevski

    What is Croatia’s problem with Russia anyway, I don’t quite get it.
    Having beef with the Serbs is not a valid reason.

    For same reasons Serbs are opposed to Ukraine, which itself never did anything to Serbia.

    • Replies: @Mikhail
  92. Dmitry says:
    @Matra

    It is a good observation.

    Visa-free travel increases tourism a lot.

    And countries that can enter Russia without a visa (visa-free) are not matching with the largest tourist markets.

    These are the countries which can enter Russia without a visa.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visa_policy_of_Russia#Visa_exemption

    Many South American countries – even though almost nobody from South American countries visits as a tourist Russia (no South American countries are in top 50 source destinations for tourism to Russia).

    However, there is a reciprocity situation here – Western countries require Russian citizens to obtain visa, and they make a lot of money from this bullshit. To get Schengen Visa is quite cheap and multi-country. But for the visa some countries like the UK and USA – is comparatively expensive, and even as a tourist it requires (in latter case) consulate’s interview, fingerprints, etc.

  93. @Dmitry

    consulate’s interview, fingerprints, etc.

    One has to ask, why are the rules are so cumbersome for Russian tourists, while a Mexican only needs to cross the river, and he can get a driving licence, find a job, vote in US elections, and basically feel at home?

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Dmitry
  94. @Spisarevski

    We can take solace in knowing that they are a small and dying people. Croatia’s population is set to fall below 4 million somewhere around 2021.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demographics_of_Croatia#Vital_statistics

    • Replies: @anonymous coward
  95. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Russian illegals can do all these things also, the difference is that they can’t simply cross a river from Russia to get here.

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  96. @Dmitry

    Correct, Russia operates by the principle of reciprocity. I don’t think it’s worth abandoning it and the powerful signal it sends just for a few more tourism gibs from the white masters.

    I think we should work on visa liberalization with China, perhaps up to open borders. Russia won’t be flooded with workers (urban salaries in China are higher), nor would Russia lose as many people to brain drain relative to if Europe was to open up to it. OTOH, the Chinese tourism market is now comparable to the all European one.

    • Replies: @JL
    , @anonymous coward
    , @Dmitry
  97. Dan Hayes says:
    @Anonymous

    Anonymous[266]:

    …”the richest and most educated fans” AND the most white fans!

  98. JL says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    More open borders?! I find this idea to be eminently logical, but it won’t be popular, especially among the security services, who seem to fear and despise the Chinese more than anyone else. Not to mention the Sputnik and Pogrom crowd.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  99. @AP

    I suppose they could fly to Mexican border, and then cross the river. My point is US can’t really argue that they are collecting fingerprints for security needs, because their border security is non-existent really.

    The real reason why American visa rules are so tough for Russians is that US is using them as a form of collective punishment against the Russian people. The hope (in Washington) is that Russian people will pressure their government to improve relations with America.

    Likewise negotiations between Russia and Europe about visa-free travel failed in early 2010s, because Europe was trying to use “bezviz” as a carrot to extract tangible political concessions out of Putin.

    The assumption in both cases seems to be that Russian people are desperate to get out of Russia and into “civilised” countries, which is quite offensive, so I can see why our government would respond with reciprocal measures against the Western tourists.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @JL
    , @AP
  100. LondonBob says:
    @Felix Keverich

    The US is a lousy tourist destination.

    Hope Trump will be at the WC final to cheer on England, that will wind up all the right people.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  101. JL says:
    @Felix Keverich

    You have this all wrong. Up until 2016, US visa rules for Russians had been gradually liberalized to the point where the acceptance rate was among the highest in the world where visas are required. Indeed, there was a realization somewhere in the US bureaucracy that almost all the Russians who had wanted to emigrate already did so, and the ones going now were going to spend money. Also, everybody, including Europeans arriving on the visa waiver, is required to be fingerprinted, either upon entry to the US, or beforehand if obtaining a visa. The Southern border may not be secure, but the airports certainly are.

    Collective punishment against Russian citizens began after the US embassies were closed and their personnel slashed in 2016. I actually think this may have been a local decision, and not one higher up in the State Department, as embassy employees were demoralized and angry at having their colleagues lose their jobs while their workload subsequently increased. Do you know how it works now? The embassy takes the visa application fee of 10K RUR and tells you to make an appointment on line for an interview. When you go to make the appointment, the system tells you that no appointments are available. It’s petty and insulting, they’re essentially stealing your money.

    I can see why our government would respond with reciprocal measures against the Western tourists.

    But the Russians haven’t reciprocated in this case. Getting a Russian visa in the US is the same process as it’s been since before 2016. The Russians have been very explicit that they do not wish to make ordinary US citizens suffer because of poor relations between governments. I suppose it could be argued that, either, this is weakness on the part of the Russians, or that they’re taking the high road.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
  102. @Anatoly Karlin

    I think we should work on visa liberalization with China, perhaps up to open borders.

    It’s already liberalized. Travel to/from China is visa-free for those that are a) living in regions adjacent to China, or b) traveling in organized tour groups.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  103. @Felix Keverich

    There’s no such thing as a ‘Croatian people’. They’re the same people as the Serbs, ethnically. (Or, rather, the ethnic boundaries over there don’t correspond to the political ones.)

  104. @anonymous coward

    No, it is not liberalized, as you demonstrate yourself in your second sentence. a) is time-limited and highly geographically restricted; b) tour groups are lame and gay in the age of Airbnb, online reviews, and translation apps, and prove nothing anyway, because by those standards, Russia also has a “liberalized” visa regime with Europe, because Baltic cruise passengers can disembark in Saint-Petersburg without a visa for three days.

  105. @JL

    Since when have I been a fan of Russia’s hypertrophied security services? I am not Martyanov.

    And I have pointed out S&P’s illiteracy on all China matters a few times now.

    • Replies: @JL
  106. LondonBob says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Tour groups and cruises are all the rage amongst the fast growing and lucrative grey hairs. Cheapskate millennials with their translation apps and budget Airbnb are to be avoided.

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
    , @Dmitry
  107. JL says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Since when have I been a fan of Russia’s hypertrophied security services? I am not Martyanov.

    My wording was clunky, I didn’t mean to imply that you were a fan of the security services, I was simply suggesting that such a pro-Sino policy may not be realistic considering the amount of pushback you’d get from a very powerful constituency. Martyanov is a good example of military/security service thinking, he’s very antagonistic towards China and seems quite bitter that failed relations with the West have meant a closer relationship with the Chinese. I’ve found this attitude to be ubiquitous among security service personnel.

    I have pointed out S&P’s illiteracy on all China matters a few times now.

    Well, I missed that, somehow. I also wasn’t aware that you were so positively inclined towards the budding Russia-China alliance, tbh. I tend to agree, but see quite a few problems that are inhibitive. The political will at the top is definitely there, but there are many problems with the follow-through lower down, due to bureaucratic inertia, cultural barriers, etc.

    • Replies: @Mitleser
    , @Anatoly Karlin
  108. Here in Croatia, people are ecstatic. Personally, I’m rather detached re these matters, but I’m glad for this show of national unity (needless to say, Soros-funded marginal papers & news portals are in deep, deep depression). As for England, we’ll see… I like the English (although less than Russians), but their team is an image of future no mentally sane white male would like to be in. Add the entire cultural-political climate …. No thanks.

    • Replies: @AP
  109. @Anatoly Karlin

    tour groups are lame and gay in the age of Airbnb, online reviews, and translation apps

    Maybe they are, but it’s the only way for Chinese tourists to visit Russia, and vice versa. If you think you can visit China or Russia with American apps and websites, then think again. Both countries actively push back against the new globalist world order, apps and websites and the English language won’t work there.

    Also, lameness and gayness is sound business sense. Chinese tourism in Russia is exploding, precisely because we managed to cut out the American globalist cultural middleman.

    Russia also has a “liberalized” visa regime with Europe, because Baltic cruise passengers can disembark in Saint-Petersburg without a visa for three days

    I think that’s true for all cruise passengers everywhere. Isn’t that the point of cruises in the first place?

  110. Mikhail says: • Website
    @AP

    For same reasons Serbs are opposed to Ukraine, which itself never did anything to Serbia.

    More accurately put, they’ve a beef with faulty anti-Russian propaganda.

    Somewhat related:

    https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2018/07/07/two-pronged-attack-orthodoxy-and-russia.html

  111. Mitleser says:
    @JL

    I also wasn’t aware that you were so positively inclined towards the budding Russia-China alliance, tbh.

    It is one of the areas where he is a Putinist.

    Russia is close to a real New Cold War with the West, but at least Putin has been successful at striking up a strong strategic partnership with China. I doubt Russian nationalists could have pulled that off.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/putin-2018/

    This is why Russia’s development of China ties has been Putin’s single greatest foreign policy success, besides which everything happening in Syria is basically irrelevant. No wonder that this development has been consistently decried by the liberal fifth column.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/punishing-putler/

    • Replies: @Sean
  112. Mitleser says:
    @JL

    But the Russians haven’t reciprocated in this case.

    There is no good reason to bully Americans who are interested in Russia and want to spend money.

  113. Matra says:
    @reiner Tor

    That’s standard for anywhere with a visa requirement

    When I got a Turkish e-Visa it only cost me $20 or so. It was also easier to obtain and more flexible. (This was four or five years ago). Russia’s is much more expensive and involves more bureaucracy, at least from the point of view of nearby EU residents. Chinese tourists are another matter.

    • Replies: @g2k
  114. @reiner Tor

    Speaking of lack of rest, should there be a slightly longer break before the semifinals and finals for this reason? We would more often see two well-rested teams and thus a truer measure of which is the better team (and perhaps a better quality of play, as well).

  115. @LondonBob

    Certainly older people traveling without kids can usually afford to spend more than travelers in their 20s and 30s with or without kids,

    But I am getting closer to the greyhairs than the millenials, but I’ll note that many of us older-than-millenial people will be so-called Airbnb cheapskates if we want to afford bringing our families abroad.

    When you’re paying for five, six, seven airline tickets, you can have quite a good income and NOT be a “cheapskate” and still need something cheaper than a hotel.

    And we use translation apps too ;)

  116. @Alliumnsk

    Because even the pessimistic and angry Unz commentariat needs something lighter than racial tensions and nuclear war sometimes ;)

    I enjoy the baseball and World Cup discussions on here.

    Also hope to see some columns and comments here when the World Cup of Hockey rolls around next.

    • Replies: @Matra
  117. @Anatoly Karlin

    France has been in the World Cup Final twice since it began in 1930,and has placed third and fourth three times. And they have a chance still to win it all this year. So France you might put in the highest NON-elite tier historically.

    Spain doesn’t even belong there. Spain has made it to the final only once, winning in 2010, has never come in third, and has come in fourth only once, in 1950.

    England has won the Cup as many times as Spain (once) and has likewise never come in third and once come in fourth.

    The elite top-tier of teams over the whole run of the World Cup are these four only, with Germany and Brazil standing alone:
    GERMANY … 8 Finals (4-4) plus three thirds and one fourth place
    BRAZIL … 7 Finals (5-2) plus two third place and two fourth place
    …………………
    followed by Italy 6 Finals (4-2) plus one third and one fourth place
    …………………
    then Argentina 4 Finals (2-2) and never reached third or fourth otherwise

    Uruguay won in 1930 and 1950 and hasn’t been back to the finals in the nearly SEVENTY YEARS since. They finished fourth in 1954, 1970, and 2010. Quite impressive for a tiny country, though.

    It would be great to see Croatia break into the ranks of winners against the non-English “England” team, the non-French “France” team, or the Islamic Republic of Belgium team.

    • Replies: @Bliss
  118. Matra says:
    @RadicalCenter

    Also hope to see some columns and comments here when the World Cup of Hockey rolls around next.

    It’s a joke tournament set up by the NHL to cash in on the popularity of the best-on-best they had at every Olympics from Nagano 1998 to Sochi 2014. Gimmicks like an U23 North American team and a generic ‘Team Europe’ for Slovaks, Swiss, etc., were almost universally derided by fans on both sides of the Atlantic. The old Canada Cup which was held from the 70s until 1991 was better. When they rechristened it the WC in 1996 something was missing. The collapse of the USSR might’ve had something to do with it.

    • Replies: @RadicalCenter
  119. @Matra

    The visa cost is a deterrent especially for larger families. A couple with four children would have to spend more than one thousand dollars before even buying airfare and paying for lodging.

    We wouldn’t justify that extra expense, even though we definitely want to visit Russia.

  120. @Matra

    Thoroughly agree about the gimmicks. But a World Cup of Hockey is something the sport needs, with normal national teams playing against each other.

  121. @Anonymous

    In the USA, we have hockey fans (overwhelmingly white, with some Asians and Hispanics) compared to a general population that is about 12% african (almost no hockey fans) and about 12% Mexican (almost no hockey fans outside LA area — Mexicans do attend Kings games).

    There won’t be such a racial contrast in some major hockey countries —especially Russia and Eastern European countries — because they are blessed with no african and Mexican presence to speak of.

    I wonder whether non-Russkies in Russia — who I understand to be mostly people from Armenia and Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan)— get into hockey like Russkies.

  122. Dmitry says:
    @LondonBob

    The US is a lousy tourist destination.

    I have the opposite experience – travelling in the US last summer.

    America seems to have relatively few tourists (relative to population), but for me this fact makes it feel like a more authentic adventure compared to Schengen countries.

    Although I wonder if psychologically their addition of extra bureaucracy to get there results that people appreciate their holiday more.

  123. Dmitry says:
    @Felix Keverich

    One has to ask, why are the rules are so cumbersome for Russian tourists

    There’s some bizarre incompetence in the American system though, when there are now so many travel companies advertising to arrange to give birth in America on a tourist visa.

    The tourist visa does not distinguish between people who will go on a shopping trip in New York, and people who will get their children automatic American citizenship.

    If you want a tourist visa for a shopping trip in New York, or you want one so your children have an American passport – the bureaucratic level is exactly equal (consulate interview, biometrics).

    • Replies: @Felix Keverich
  124. Dmitry says:
    @LondonBob

    Cheapskate millennials with their translation apps and budget Airbnb are to be avoided.

    I use it for cheap travelling. But there are a lot of people now doing luxury travel with this website as well.

    Once your expenditure is higher than $200 a night, you can rent a luxury apartment in most cities. On Airbnb search function, you can add options like “gym” and “pool” to see apartments in more luxury buildings.

    There’s even option of “castle” in Airbnb – click “castle” in Airbnb and you can rent a luxury, multi-room castle. In France there’s a lot of them, for around $1000 a night.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
  125. Dmitry says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    I think we should work on visa liberalization with China

    For Chinese tourists, and also for Japanese tourists, which is a high expenditure tourist market (Japanese tourists are famous for high expenditure while travelling).

    Issue of reciprocity is already partly there – visa for Russian tourists to visit Japan is very simple and cheap.

  126. AP says:
    @Bardon Kaldian

    Croatia has a lot of fans in Ukraine :-)

    • Replies: @Bardon Kaldian
    , @Gerard2
  127. AP says:
    @Felix Keverich

    I suppose they could fly to Mexican border, and then cross the river.

    I know of a Ukrainian who did this in the 1990s. It led to problems because he got married in the USA and had no status – even no illegal status (which could have been fixed had he simply arrived legally but overstayed a visa).

    The real reason why American visa rules are so tough for Russians is that US is using them as a form of collective punishment against the Russian people.

    No, it has been just as tough for people from many America-friendly countries.

    The assumption in both cases seems to be that Russian people are desperate to get out of Russia and into “civilised” countries, which is quite offensive

    Many people from these places do overstay their visas.

    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
  128. Bliss says:
    @RadicalCenter

    GERMANY … 8 Finals (4-4) plus three thirds and one fourth place
    BRAZIL … 7 Finals (5-2) plus two third place and two fourth place
    …………………
    followed by Italy 6 Finals (4-2) plus one third and one fourth place
    …………………
    then Argentina 4 Finals (2-2) and never reached third or fourth otherwise

    Uruguay won in 1930 and 1950

    Lots of Italians in Argentina and Uruguay. Messi is Italian. The Uruguayan team (which looked majority Italian) went further in this World Cup (into the quarterfinals) than Germany and Argentina.

    • Replies: @Gerard2
  129. @Dmitry

    What kind of Russian goes shopping to NYC anyway? I hope they’ll introduce a mandatory rectal exam for such people.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  130. Bliss says:

    Energized England will beat exhausted Croatia. Making Russians happy and the English delirious.

    France vs Belgium is tough to predict. But since Belgium resorts to underhanded tactics (think Fellaini) I will root for France.

    So, England vs France in the finals.

  131. LondonBob says:
    @Dmitry

    My mother’s generation always seem to go on holiday either through cruises, river and seas, or tour groups. I remember a marketing guru give a talk and one of his jobs was marketing tourism for the Hungarian government. He specifically avoided British stags groups and targetted elderly Germans, they spend a lot more and are more congenial visitors. Russia should capitalise on the WC, lower and ease visa fees, as well as launch an advertising campaign aimed at the right customers.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  132. It was a blow to watch Sweden and Russia being booted out on the same day, and after such displays of spirit and fellowship! But lovely tournament so far. All my football-crazed friends agree that this is the most entertaining World Cup in years.

    This episode with the Croatian Banderites (maybe) I think Russia should take in stride. For every one Ukrainian who cheers them on, two others will be even less drawn to West-Ukrainian jingoism.

  133. Dmitry says:
    @Felix Keverich

    Lol. But let’s be honest, normal family says they go to New York for a week to see museums and skyscrapers.

    What produces the most excitement about America are its stores – where expensive things costs half the price in America that they sell the same product in Russia.

    Even for a ordinary guy who just needs Levis and Nike.

    -

    It would be interesting if someone knows the economics that allows so much price-gouging in Russian market.

    It’s not only Americans which do this. For English shoes – it’s twice the price to buy English shoes in Russia than in England, but it’s also twice the price to buy them in Russia than in America, even though the distance from England to Russia is less, and there is no special tariff on them coming into Russia. It seems the manufacturer itself is just doubling the price.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Anatoly Karlin
  134. AP says:
    @Dmitry

    I found Italian shoes to be cheaper in Russia than in America, however.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  135. Dmitry says:
    @LondonBob

    I agree. I could imagine type of tourists probably important to look at than just number of tourists.

    In places like World Bank, they analyze things like “expenditure per tourist”, and not just number of tourists.

    In expensive streets in London, you see many groups of young Japanese women walking around with shopping bags of the most expensive shops (I was thinking each rich Japanese girl that visits is probably worth dozens of ordinary tourists).

    But I’d guess Switzerland is the country – through an ancient genius in marketing – which receives the highest expenditure tourists. In hotels in Switzerland, there are people who are receptionists, that can receive higher salaries than doctors in many countries.

  136. @AP

    I know, I know….

    • Replies: @Mikhail
  137. Gerard2 says:
    @Bliss

    Lots of Italians in Argentina and Uruguay

    ……and Brazil.

    Italians might dominate even more than the African descendents in the great Brazil teams from 58-70,1982,57,94 but not 2002

  138. Dmitry says:
    @AP

    English shoes that really cost more in Russia: ones like Church’s, Crockett & Jones.

    And people need to put on shoes in real life before they buy it (to know the correct size), so that’s probably one quality of this product, where they can be sure most people still go to the expensive department store, instead of importing internationally from the internet.

    • Replies: @LondonBob
    , @Anatoly Karlin
  139. Gerard2 says:
    @AP

    [MORE]

    Croatia has a lot of fans in Ukraine

    LOL!!!….you arent anywhere near Ukraine to know that you fantasist fuckwit, you dont know Croatia, you don’t anything about Ukraine..and you sure as fuck know zilch about football you dumb prick….you can’t even post anything in Ukraine except some shit from some Nazi fucktard lunatic expat group in Canada or US.

    I can post numerous videos and posts of Ukrainians desperate for Russia to win and enjoying Russia’s run as if it was their own ( well, it is), plus my own experiences…..opposite type of videos, pretty much dont exist, only blatant propaganda and attempts by pathetic fuckwits.

    Also this week note the fucktard fake President Valtsman/Poroshenko on state visit and begging (as usual) to…..Serbia.

    Croatia “loved” Ukraine so much , they like all teams, except France who loved Donetsk, refused to even have their base camp in Ukraine for Euro 2012. “Tourism” for western Ukraine was that “great”….not a single team wanted to or were based there……..an embarrassment for eternity for an (artificial) nation that has no shame.

    • Replies: @AP
    , @Swedish Family
  140. AP says:
    @Gerard2

    you don’t anything about Ukraine

    Says the guy who posts a video of people speaking Ukrainian in Rivne and claims they speak Russian.

    I can post numerous videos and posts of Ukrainians desperate for Russia to win

    Ukraine has 40 million people. You can find numerous videos of anything there.

    But the funniest thing is when you find a video of someone speaking Ukrainian in Rivne and claim it is Russian :-)

    fake President Valtsman/Poroshenko

    You believe the fake news that Poroshenko is half-Jewish and his real name is Valtsman. Very funny.

    • Replies: @Gerard2
  141. Mikhail says: • Website
    @Bardon Kaldian

    As a Swede noted at this thread, many Ukrainians aren’t like that. I’ll add that not all Croats are such as well.

    The US based Cold War era founded Captive Nations Committee, has been dominated by Banderite diaspora Ukrainians, who succeeded in getting the US Congress to pass the bigoted Captive Nations Week, which recognized Nazi creations as being captive nations under Communism unlike Russia.

    https://books.google.com/books?id=w1u0BQAAQBAJ&pg=PA19&lpg=PA19&dq=richard+sakwa+captive+nations+frontline+ukraine&source=bl&ots=yHw7f96xif&sig=WrLlPhPs_GXlGJwzoCC2Taa0xPI&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwigjfLJ5ZPcAhXLwFkKHWLFAaUQ6AEIRjAF#v=onepage&q=richard%20sakwa%20captive%20nations%20frontline%20ukraine&f=false

    Footnote 33 regarding pages 7-19

    https://books.google.com/books?id=w1u0BQAAQBAJ&pg=PA19&lpg=PA19&dq=richard+sakwa+captive+nations+frontline+ukraine&source=bl&ots=yHw7f96xif&sig=WrLlPhPs_GXlGJwzoCC2Taa0xPI&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwigjfLJ5ZPcAhXLwFkKHWLFAaUQ6AEIRjAF#v=snippet&q=%20bernadine%20bailey&f=false

    Benardine Bailey’s aforementioned pro-Captive Nations Committee book lauds Bandera and the pro-Ustasha Pavelic, much unlike Mihailovich and Vlasov.

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
  142. @Gerard2

    opposite type of videos, pretty much dont exist, only blatant propaganda and attempts by pathetic fuckwits.

    Perhaps they don’t, but I know myself at least two Ukrainians who rooted for Croatia, so they do exist (a friend from Dnipropetrovsk explicitly wrote that the game was “political”).

  143. Sean says:
    @Mitleser

    Russia has retained an awful lot of lot of old battlefield nuclear weapons along the border with China.

    • Replies: @Daniel Chieh
  144. @Mikhail

    As a Swede noted at this thread, many Ukrainians aren’t like that. I’ll add that not all Croats are such as well.

    Possibly even a majority, I think. I’ll ask around when in Kiev next week.

  145. LondonBob says:
    @Dmitry

    Church’s should be avoided since they were taken over by Prada. The Church people took over Cheaney after they sold out to Prada.

    https://www.ft.com/content/bf86c084-009b-11e6-99cb-83242733f755

    My great grandfather was a Northampton cobbler, as were his fathers before him, so I like to see the industry do well.

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
    , @Dmitry
  146. Dave Pinsen says: • Website

    No surprises? Russia knocking out Spain was a surprise. As was a Russian player ending the tournament with as many goals as Ronaldo, including this beauty.

  147. herp derp says:

    “So, there have been no particular surprises in (1) the World Cup in general”

    the number 1 ranked FIFA team did not make it out of pool play.

    time to stop commenting about soccer.

  148. Gerard2 says:
    @AP

    [MORE]

    Says the guy who posts a video of people speaking Ukrainian in Rivne and claims they speak Russian.

    Hahaha….pitiful to again see the certified nutjob (you) actively promoting lies in order to try and gain credibility image among posters on here!

    This is the video

    Pretty much 100% proof in Rivne that Ukrainian is a dialect of Russian, you idiot. I can post this proof again and again because it is so damning for a clueless POS like you

    You believe the fake news that Poroshenko is half-Jewish and his real name is Valtsman. Very funny.

    …errmmm true news you r*****d………and that his father was a mafia criminal who served time in jail

    There is the even more true news that his son is married to a Russian and likes walking around in England with a ‘Russia” shirt on.

    But the funniest thing is when you find a video of someone speaking Ukrainian in Rivne and claim it is Russian :-)

    but the funniest thing is we’ve already established that is another lie. It is as clear as day this proves Ukrop is a dialect of Russian….and even for a zero-shame f-wit as yourself I even recall the cringeworthy monent of you admitting this for Yushchenko ( albeit with some laughably BS excuse/use of mental gymnastics)

    The Yushchenko clips can be played again and again

    Ukraine has 40 million people. You can find numerous videos of anything there.

    But you can’t until some loser retard OUN blog from some dipshit in US or Canada posts it….such is your lack of knowledge of Ukraine and “Ukrainian”

    Point is of course that huge swathes of Ukrainians were supporting Russia…..and Russia already had won by getting out of the group and scoring many goals

    • Replies: @AP
  149. @LondonBob

    My great grandfather was a Northampton cobbler, as were his fathers before him, so I like to see the industry do well.

    Respect. Traditional British lasts are the best! I’m a Loake man myself (as is Kevin Spacey of #metoo ☺), but even their shoes are made to a very high standard.

  150. Mikhail says: • Website

    This piece notes a second Vida video with him saying “Glory to Ukraine” and “Belgrade is burning”.

    https://www.101greatgoals.com/news/croatia-vida-england-ban-ukraine-video/

    If so, then his claim of not being political is bogus and given the PC manner of FIFA (which I’ve some issues with), he could be banished from the match with England.

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Anonymous
  151. @Sean

    Nuclear artillery really needs to be in a game someday.

    • Replies: @Sean
  152. AP says:
    @Gerard2

    Pretty much 100% proof in Rivne that Ukrainian is a dialect of Russian

    You claimed the they spoke Russian in the video. They do not.

    So you must not know Russian, or don’t bother watchng the videos you post.

    Anyone can watch the video and confirm what language is being spoken.

    The Yushchenko clips can be played again and again

    The one where your “proof” demonstrates that Russian is the same language as Polish and Ukrianian. Even more funny :-)

    • Replies: @LatW
  153. @anonymous coward

    There’s no such thing as a ‘Croatian people’

    Yes, there is.
    Croatia is a real country with a real people and real history, it’s nothing like the Ukraine.
    Yes, of course they are genetically similar to Serbs, and they speak the same language (which is as Croatian as it is Serbian and this is why it’s called “Serbo-Croatian”).
    Still different and distinct people, though, and always have been.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
    • Replies: @AP
  154. @Mikhail

    The other guy has already been sacked by the Croation Football Association.

    • Replies: @Swedish Family
    , @Mikhail
  155. @JL

    … I was simply suggesting that such a pro-Sino policy may not be realistic considering the amount of pushback you’d get from a very powerful constituency.

    Not sure. Early Putin was giving lots of unilateral concessions to the Americans in the early 2000s, when his domestic footing was much less secure. And the China alliance has been moving ahead strongly, despite any silovik misgivings. There are certainly powerful individual siloviks, but I don’t know if their opinions count for much as a class.

    I’ve found this attitude to be ubiquitous among security service personnel.

    I once corresponded with a British defense analyst who was unusually sympathetic to Russia. His claims about China (that its military power was a small fraction of Russia’s; that its exercises in the Far East were about baring teeth at the Chinese) were a mirror version of Martyanov’s.

    I also wasn’t aware that you were so positively inclined towards the budding Russia-China alliance, tbh. I tend to agree, but see quite a few problems that are inhibitive. The political will at the top is definitely there, but there are many problems with the follow-through lower down, due to bureaucratic inertia, cultural barriers, etc.

    I have written quite a bit about that over years, so I don’t know you’d get the impression.

    I certainly agree on the cultural barriers. I wrote about here: https://www.unz.com/akarlin/russian-sinology/

  156. LatW says:
    @AP

    Anyone can watch the video and confirm what language is being spoken.

    Ukrainian, of course. The kind they speak on TV, typically.

    Maybe subjectively it seems like a dialect to him since he’s from Ukraine and has been so immersed in it. If it’s something one hears every day (in a bilingual society like Ukraine one would), it gets so familiar that it might start sounding like a dialect at some point (some vocab gets picked up, too). I suspect he himself speaks surzhyk but I wouldn’t speculate.

    The Yushchenko video was much more simple and easy to understand, he used more simple phrases. This other one is more complex and spoken at a naturally fast speed. I understand the gist of it but not nearly every detail.

  157. @AP

    It led to problems because he got married in the USA and had no status – even no illegal status (which could have been fixed had he simply arrived legally but overstayed a visa).

    Do you know what eventually happened to him?

    • Replies: @AP
    , @AP
  158. @Dmitry

    My guess, from observations:

    1. No deep market for such products. If the only place where you can buy these things are such and such a store in one city, of course they can charge whatever they want – up to the point where its cheaper to fly over and buy them in their home country.

    2. Related to that, people not looking around. While I don’t buy Nike or Italian shoes, I do buy electronics. I have found them to be at least as cheap (sometimes cheaper) than in the US. For instance, the cell phone I got is ~20% cheaper than its price on Amazon, which tends to have some of the very lowest prices in the US. The company I got them occupies a small office on the Gorbushka and imports them directly from Dubai, which has some of the lowest prices in the world for that model; all they have to do is the Russian localization.

  159. @Dmitry

    Then there’s people like me who buy those same types of shoe from Zenden that are Russian manufactured and probably 5x cheaper.

    I spent 12 years in the UK and haven’t even heard of those brands LOL.

    • Replies: @g2k
  160. @reiner Tor

    The other guy has already been sacked by the Croation Football Association.

    Good on them, but I still expect some serious booing whenever Vida possesses the ball tomorrow.

  161. AP says:
    @Spisarevski

    Yes, of course they are genetically similar to Serbs

    Southern and eastern Croats are. Northern ones are Slavs genetically, unlike Serbs and unlike southeastern Croats.

    Croatia is a real country with a real people and real history, it’s nothing like the Ukraine

    Wishful thinking by a Balkan Russian fanboy. Ukrainian language is far more different from Russian than Croat is from Serb. Genetic differences are not as great as between northern Croats and Serbs, but probably greater than between southern Croats and Serbs. Ukrainians and Russians are all eastern Christians so religion is more similar. In terms of history – Ukrainians and Russians were historically separate for centuries. Galicians longer than Croats and Serbs, other Ukrainians not as long, but still they were divided by centuries. Croatia was part of Hungary until 1918, Ukraine part of Poland until 1648 (eastern Ukraine) or 1793 (central and western Ukraine) or Austria and Poland until 1939 (Galicia) or Hungary 1918 then Czechoslovakia 1939 (Transcarpathia).

    • Replies: @reiner Tor
    , @Spisarevski
  162. g2k says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    They’re ultra high end, all hand made in and around Northampton using the same materials, techniques and machines unchanged for about 100years. There’s about 10 companies is like that still left; they were about to go extinct in the 90s, but then the market for luxury goods took off and those that survived are doing quite well.

    Zenden have synthetic soles, so they’re equivalent to Clark’s or something. If you want to splurge on shoes and still be patriotic(ish), then there’s always Armo

    https://armo-group.com/

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  163. Sean says:
    @Daniel Chieh

    No-one thinks you can win by using it, except maybe Russia.

  164. AP says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    IIRC he lives okay, but is nearing retirement age and has no way of collecting social security or medicare because he has no status at all and can’t change it. It’s bad for the wife, who will have the burden of retirement all to herself and will presumably pay for his healthcare out of pocket if he gets sick, unless he makes the hospital eat the bill (in which case everyone pays collectively). I don’t know if he created a retirement account. He was a skilled laborer (electrician, former Soviet-trained engineer) so he wasn’t a lumpen. He did work for one of my relatives, I’ll ask her what became of him.

    That’s what you get for breaking the law, of course.

    • Agree: Anatoly Karlin
    • Replies: @LatW
  165. g2k says:
    @Matra

    If you pay an agency an extra $20 or so, then they give you an invitation from a ‘hotel’. They still want you to visit a visa center to submit fingerprints though.

  166. Mikhail says: • Website
    @reiner Tor

    It’s easier to sack a coach over a key player.

  167. Anonymous[224] • Disclaimer says:
    @Mikhail

    What he said is “Beograd gori”, which basically means “Belgrade is lit”, “Belgrade” being his Serbian friend’s (Jovan, who he sends his love to in the video) bar in Kiev, where people were watching the game and cheering for Croatia.

    This whole episode has been kinda silly. Don’t get me wrong, what Vida and Vukojević did was unnecessary, but this whole drama that unfolded after it has been even more so. Pronouncing a whole nation russophobes or whatever because of the actions of two guys, who did what they did because they played for Dynamo Kiev, not because they are Croats, is ridiculous. Most Croats don’t feel strongly about the Russia/Ukraine situation either way. It’s a far away conflict that most people hear and know very little about.

    And Vida himself is obviously and unsurprisingly pro-Ukraine, but he’s no hateful Banderist/Ustasha/whatever else some have called him after the first video, he’s just notoriously not the sharpest tool in the shed.

    • Agree: reiner Tor
  168. LatW says:
    @AP

    How in the world does one even get married in the US without permanent residence…? Don’t they have to file taxes together?

    • Replies: @JL
  169. @AP

    Ukrainian language is far more different from Russian than Croat is from Serb.

    The language is “Serbo-Croatian.” It’s basically the same language. Though twenty years ago some Croats did insist to me that Croatian was a totally different language, for example “milk” (mleko vs. mlijeko) was supposed to be different. I told some Croats later, and they laughed at it on multiple occasions, telling me that it’s like some Croats and some Serbs use one and other Croats and other Serbs use the other.

    But Croats are a real people, there’s no question about that.

    • Replies: @for-the-record
  170. @anonymous coward

    The blue and purple parts look like a partition plan for Irredentist Italy and Greater Germany.

  171. @reiner Tor

    But Croats are a real people, there’s no question about that.

    Yes, that’s why we have cravats (Fr. cravate, Sp. corbata,Port. gravata, Ger. Krawatte, etc.).

  172. JL says:
    @LatW

    All that’s needed in the States to get married is some kind of valid identification, it can be a foreign passport. No one checks your immigration status. And, no, they are not required to file taxes together.

  173. @AP

    Apparently clearing the cookies resets the “commenters to ignore” list so I saw your reply.

    Wishful thinking by a Balkan Russian fanboy.

    Well of course Croatians are not as real as the Ancient Ukrs that dug out the Black Sea. Their history only starts from the 7th century.

    The only military defeat that Simeon the Great ever suffered, at the time when Bulgaria was arguably the strongest country in Europe (yes there was such a time, ~1100 years ago) was by the Croats. Just two years prior said battle, in 924, he casually wiped Serbia off the map.
    So yeah, Croats are very much a real people. And different enough from the Serbs.

    I, being a Balkan retard, don’t understand what language has to do with ethnicity.
    Chinese languages are completely mutually unintelligible, yet Han Chinese rightly perceive themselves and are perceived by others as one people.
    On the other hand Belarusian and Ukrainain languages are very similar, yet the people are quite different, Belarusians being first quality Russians while Ukrainians are third quality Russians.

    Of course you are the erudite who said that mulattoes are more Slavic than Bulgarians, which is why I don’t bother reading your comments and will be adding you back to the ignore list after this.

    • Replies: @AP
  174. AP says:
    @Spisarevski

    Apparently clearing the cookies resets the “commenters to ignore” list

    Poor Balkan got tired of being proved wrong.

    I, being a Balkan retard, don’t understand what language has to do with ethnicity.

    First thing you’ve said that was right.

    Of course you are the erudite who said that mulattoes are more Slavic than Bulgarians

    I wrote that a half-Russian, half-African is more of a Slav by origin than is a Bulgarian.

    Just as a half-Spanish, half-Indian Mestizo is more of a “Spaniard” than is an Italian.

    Hard for you to understand?

  175. @Niccolo Salo

    It is amazing that people can say that to each other so often and still have so few accusations of necrophilia thrown around.

  176. Dmitry says:
    @g2k

    Church’s are the most famous English shoes all around the world.

    But there are more expensive English shoes like Edward Green, or John Lobb, (they sell a lot around the world as well).

    • Replies: @utu
  177. Dmitry says:
    @LondonBob

    Interesting article. I have actually some Cheaney’s (normal Oxford ones). I bought them very cheaply on ebay website in 2015 , and they are still in good condition after walking a lot in them to work. I was wondering then if they were stolen or something (but maybe the cheapness was related to the company selling its old products after these events described in the article).

    They are always cheaper than Church’s anyway.

    I read Church’s quality supposedly fell down and then recovered. (And now they produce a lot of weird designs, and rubber soles – but classic ones still look the same).

  178. utu says:
    @Dmitry

    Are you related to Imelda Marcos? You seem to have a shoe fetish. For a guy you know way too much about shoe brands.

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  179. Dmitry says:
    @utu

    Only one I collect a bit are Nikes, but not so much. Main things I collect too much are CDs.

    One of my uncles has about 20 pairs of Church’s shoes (same guy collecting thousands of CDs and gramophones), and my dad is collecting old cameras that don’t work .

    Maybe some genes encouraging collecting shit you never use.

    • Replies: @utu
  180. utu says:
    @Dmitry

    20 pairs of Church’s shoes - about $12,000

  181. I have seen this on Facebook. The guy was called Viktor Kozlov, and was shared by an acquaintance.

    Почему сегодня я буду болеть за Хорватию
    “Спорт вне политики” – это от лукавого. Как не старайся – не отделить одного от другого. Например, футбольный матч “Сербия – Косово” может быть вне политики? Труднее представить, что он вообще когда-либо состоится. Ну вот “Армения – Азербайджан” – попали в одну отборочную группу на Евро-2008, но играть не стали. Но Сербия и Хорватия, к пример, уже играли в официальных матчах.
    Сегодня играют между собой две державы, мягко говоря, недружественные России. Среди европейских стран, возможно, самые недружественныеесли не брать в расчёт Украину и страны Балтии.
    Англичане давно наши враги – со времен начала “Большой игры”, хоть и были нашими союзниками в двух мировых войнах. Сейчас отношения между нами хуже, чем во времена Холодной войны. Пожалуй, хуже, чем со Штатами. Хорваты извечные враги наших братьев – сербов. Усташи совершили много преступлений против них и во времена Второй мировой, с Гитлером за спиной, в 1990-х, когда их покрывало НАТО. Ну это политика.
    А вот футбол. В отборочном турнире перед Евро-2008. России, Англии и Хорватии выпало играть в одной группе. В последнем туре России мало было победить у Андорры, нужна была победа Хорватии над Англией. Только победа, без вариантов. И вот это казалось невозможным. Играли в Лондоне на Уэмбли. Кроме того, Хорватия уже обеспечила себе путевку в финальный турнир. Игравшая дома Англия, была мотивирована больше, и ее при любом исходе игры с участием российской сборной, устраивала даже ничья.
    Помните этот день – 21 ноября 2007 года? Матчи, как положено, начались одновременно. Уверен, что большинство, как и я, больше внимания уделяло игре в Лондоне, чем в Андорре. Хорваты уже к 15-й минуте вели 2:0. Но во втором тайме, Лэмпард с пенальти и Крауч с игры, казалось бы похоронили все надежды России. Наши вели в Андорре всего-то 1:0, и было видно, что осознавали всю безнадежность своего положения. Но хорваты не играли в политику, они играли в футбол, и победили 3:2. Англичане не попали на Евро. А российские болельщики несли к хорватскому посольству розы (цветы), розы (шарфы), мячи и пельмени.
    Сейчас хорваты наших не спасут, они сами остановили Россию в четвертьфинале. Но в игре с Англией. Я им желаю повторения “Чуда на Уэмбли”, сотворенного в 2007-м.
    И моего отношения не изменила реплика Виды. Он пять лет играл за киевское “Динамо”.
    Да простят меня сербские братья, и ополченцы Донбасса, но сегодня я буду болеть за Хорватию. Спорт должен быть вне политики, хоть я сам не верю в то, что такое возможно.
    #football #coldwar #grategame #semifinal #Croatia #England #Russia #WC2018 #футбол #полуфинал #ЧМ2018 #политика #спорт #Россия #Хорватия #Англия

  182. Mitleser says:

  183. AP says:
    @Anatoly Karlin

    Okay, I asked. Basically, to change his status he would have to leave the country but would not be allowed to enter for 10 years (as a penalty for entering without a visa) before applying to enter the USA as a spouse. There was no way around this. Either leave the country for 10 years and apply for change of status after that, or live with no benefits and subject to deportation at any time. Fortunately the guy had no run-ins with the law.

    However in 2013 a law was passed allowing people like him to complete this process in the USA if he could prove that a 10 year separation would be a hardship for his American spouse and that his spouse was unable to live in his country for 10 years. His wife did have some health problems so they hired a lawyer, got medical documents, made a case that she needed him around as a caretaker and that she would struggle in Ukraine due to its healthcare system being bad, corruption, war, etc. (there was probably some exaggeration involved). The person reviewing the case was sympathetic and he got the 10 year absence requirement waived. As a result he was able to apply for change of status in the USA quickly, and recently obtained his green card.

    • Replies: @AP
  184. AP says:
    @AP

    Actually, he had to fly to Ukraine to get the status changed. But he didn’t have to be there for 10 years – that part was waived. Fortunately for him and his American wife, the interview went well.

  185. @Cagey Beast

    One obvious story that’s missing from the UK press is “we went to Russia to follow England and had a great time“.

    While the English fans were out there, the press couldn’t ignore their surprise and pleasure with their hosts. Pretty much every question on Russia was answered positively.

    But now they’re home, no mainstream media’s going to commission a long-form piece on “my Russian Odyssey – from Nizhny Novgorod to Moscow with England“.

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