From the Press box

Nicole Carroll: A one woman mission to make a name in football

The best discoveries of the World Cup

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It’s all over. Four long weeks have come to an end, and fans and journalists will be trooping onto planes home on their way to back to their non-World Cup homelands. As well as footballing displays, the World Cup is almost an education as we discover new people, items and situations which add to our experiences of the World Cup.

Here are just five things I think the World Cup has given us:

1. Colin Udoh

Outside of the twitter world, this name might not mean alot. However, I added @ColinUdoh when there were reports of disturbances inside one of the stadiums (which was to do with stewards and pay), I was pointed towards this twitter user and journalist who was giving us the real time, live info on everything happening in the stadium. Since that night, he’s kept us informed on the matches, the people who he’s encountered during the tournament, and has even found the time to interact with his followers. Now the tournament is over, he is more than worth a follow to discover more about African football. Journalists are often criticised, but Colin has done a fantastic job during the World Cup and has allowed people who were miles away from South Africa to feel they were a bit closer to the action.

2. Vuvuzelas

The sound of the vuvuzela has been the soundtrack to this tournament. It has divided opinion massively, with some hating these buzzing instruments, whilst some not minding them at all. With the popularity of the vuvuzela in our supermarkets, there seems a possibility that some may emerge at early Premier League games next season. I doubt they’ll last long when it’s one vuvuzela against 15,000 people.

3. Paul the Octopus

This will be the last time I mention the Octopus, I promise. Paul has captured the imagination of many, even if he is essentially a sea creature who chooses the away team every time. At first he was only interested in the German matches, but he also successfully predicted the final to prove his “mental prowess”. We’ve had imposters try to steal Paul’s thunder, but they didn’t capture the minds and hearts of the football fans.

Now the tournament is over, Paul can have a nice relaxing couple of years before the European tournament in two years time.

4. Bafana Bafana

With South Africa hosting the tournament, people seemed to favour Bafana Bafana somewhat, and when they played during the opening group stages, twitter trending topics always included the South African side. The team were banned until 1992 by FIFA because of the Apartheid system, and their highest achievement was winning the African Cup of Nations in 1996. People were definately behind South Africa in the opening stages, and some even felt they could get out of the group. Despite beating former winners France 2-1, that was their last game in their own World Cup tournament and people had to adopt a new second team.

5. Diego Forlan’s goal scoring ability

Many English fans wrote off Diego Forlan years ago when his time at Manchester United was deemed a flop. Fast forward to 2010 however, and Forlan was last night awarded the golden ball for best player at the tournament. In fact, he was close to winning both the golden ball and the golden boot, which was eventually decided by assists and went to Germany’s Mueller. English papers have been speculating a move for Forlan back to the Premier League, but why would he want to. He’s proven himself on the biggest stage of all, he doesn’t need to be successful in the English league to be seen as a World Class player.


Written by Nicole Carroll

July 12, 2010 at 9:31 am

One Response

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  1. Thomas Mueller.

    Virtually uncapped before the tournament, he won the golden boot (as he had the most assists as well as goals).

    Top player, top find, and probably wouldn’t have played if Ballack had have been fit.


    July 12, 2010 at 9:35 am

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