Thursday, October 12, 2006

The Unicorns Ride High & Proud Across the Golden Plain

Big week in football. England lost. Scotland won, then lost. Wales and Ireland are just about to dissolve into nameless atoms. In fact, Northern Ireland—yes, we are all experiencing the same strange reality—is by far the healthiest of the five British Isles teams in Euro 2008 qualifying. (Why doesn't the Isle of Man have a team? I saw that the Channel Islands might be stepping up soon, and Gibraltar just got provisional UEFA status, so where is the Isle of Man? Some think it's unfair for the United Kingdom to be represented by four—or five or six or however many—national sides. But on present evidence, I'd say they need all the help they can get.)

But we all know that the really big news—THE REALLY, REALLY, REALLY BIG NEWS—is this: Albina Going FC won a game. For the first time ever. In a gripping Second Division encounter at Portland Futsal, my Mighty Unicorns held on for a white-knuckle victory over Real Sur. In a game "rich with incident," as they say, highlights included yet another half-court missle from Jan (The Croydon German) and my concession of four (4) goals in a single half as 'keeper. By my calculations, that's a goal every six minutes or so; you can't accuse me of failing to do my part to make football more attractive to American fans.

My chief fear right now is that the four Going players who could technically play for England might all be called up. (Of course, I'd be willing to consider the manager's post...) At the moment, however, we're content to bask in victory's tawny glow.


Anonymous said...

A sidenote - Isle of Man does have a team. Guernsey and Jersey and Alderney and Sark (4 Channel Islands, with separate governments) all have teams. So, that makes 10 British Isles teams. But then, you also have parts of the UK (Isle of Man and Channel Islands are NOT parts of the UK) who have teams. You have Cornwall (formerly a Celtic nation), you have Anglesey (Wales' largest island), you have Isle of Wight (England's largest island), you have Orkney, Shetland and Western Isles (Scotland's 3 largest island groups). So, altogether 16 representative teams for the British Isles. And every one of them has played games against other territories, even tiny Sark, with just 600 people. They lost 16-0 to Greenland and 19-0 to Gibraltar. in the 2003 Island Games in Guernsey. The reasons why none of them join UEFA are political. Basically, FIFA is against admitting any countries/territories that are not independent and UN members. So, all dependencies are shut out. This also includes Gibraltar - who actually had a case for membership because they had applied before FIFA brought in this new way of thinking.

Zach Dundas said...

I guess FIFA figures there would be chaos if they started admitting non-state teams...and since FIFA values control above all else, chaos cannot be tolerated.

So, when are we going to field a Cascadian team?