Corruption, conspiracy (1 Viewer)


Martin

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2000
56,785
#1
The lesson of Rob Rensenbrink and Ronaldo

When people talk about a big competition that was heavily affected by corruption, they usually refer to the Soccer World Cup held in Argentina in 1978. The military junta that was keeping the country under a state of siege, needed a big win to boost its popularity and was going to try to do everything in its power to help Argentina to win it all. The big talk is particularly about the match between Argentina and Peru, which the hosts needed to win by a margin of at least four goals in order to advance to the final. Argentina won 6-0 and made it through, and since then proof of the bribery has more or less come to light, fueled by the fact that the Peruvian keeper, Quiroga, was indeed an Argentinean.

To be honest with you, I do not know if any corruption really took place, as people say. Surely, the environmental and political conditions were such that it is quite likely that something dirty really happened. What I know for sure is that the day of the final, when all was set and ready for the celebrations to take place, one man alone almost proved to be stronger than everything. The story is known by everybody. Argentina took an early lead with a goal of the great Mario Kempes, but Dick Nanninga, who came in as a substitute for Rep, headed it in with ten more minutes to go. In the dying seconds of normal time, with the score at 1-1, Krol played a long ball in the penalty box for Rob Rensenbrink who cleaned through on goal, and hit the post! The whole Buenos Aires almost had a heart attack… It wasn't to be Holland's day though, Argentina won the game 3-1 in overtime and became champion. But had that shot been deflected just one inch, just one tiny little inch, the elegant Ducth striker would have proven himself to be bigger than General Videla, the dictatorship, the environment, the Estadio Monumental, the bribery and all the rest. Would the cup have taken the route to Amsterdam? Definitely so! No lousy colonel could have stopped it with all the money on this planet!

The point I am trying to make is that, fortunately, it is possible for a human being to dismantle something that was planned by other human beings. For an event like the World Cup, which is broadcasted live in the whole world with such a big audience, there is no way for a group of people to meet in a hidden room, around a round table, and plan the route to the final in details. As I said in my previous column, there was no conspiracy of that sort against Portugal, Italy or Spain. However, like in Argentina, this does not necessarily mean that the competition has been clean and free of suspicious situations, like some people say. And although it is true that Conceicao, Vieri and Morientes, among the others, could have secured the victory for their teams, their inability to do so does not make everything else perfectly fair. Does the fact that Rob Rensenbrink did not manage to score imply that all the rest was clean? Not at all. Does the fact that Conceicao, Vieri and Morientes did not score mean that everything in Korea is clean? Not at all either.

In the Korean side of the competition, four games were heavily affected by the officiating, in a way nobody can say that the final result was fair. I am talking about two Round of 16's, S.Korea vs. Italy and Mexico vs. USA, and the two quarterfinals, S. Korea vs. Spain and USA vs. Germany. The resulting semifinal, which happened to be one of the worse games I have ever witnessed in my life, was everything but the outcome of a fair selection. Honestly, it could have been everything but that. Obviously Spain could have played in place of South Korea. The game between the Asians and the Spaniards was quite a shame: the men in black literally handed the victory to the hosts, who hardly managed to shoot even once. Italy could have been there as well, had the ridiculous Moreno awarded a crystal clear golden goal to the Azzurri. On the other hand, in place of Germany we could have had the United States, which outplayed them in the quarterfinal and clearly deserved a penalty. I mean, if one does not get a penalty when a defender stops a ball with his hand on the goal line, when does one ever get a penalty? But the United States might not have been there as well, if a criminal volleyball-style defensive play against Mexico was not inexplicably ignored in the previous game.

What a mess, gentlemen. Mistakes from the referees have always been present, but I do not remember anything similar in a World Cup, at least in the last twenty-four years. And the weight of these decisions has been huge, because in nowadays football the games are really tight and are often decided with a one-goal lead. I mean, I heard so many praise on the magnificent Germany, the powerful Germany that advanced to the final winning three games by 1-0…but then, how can we blame Italy and Spain for their shows, when they had clear situations turned around? Especially Spain was literally robbed; I will never get tired of saying this too often.

The political pressure in Korea was huge. I could go on forever talking about how the officials were designated, how suspicious certain things and coincidences are, but I won't go further. It is enough to consider that Mr. Chung, the head of the local organizing committee and vice-president of the FIFA, will be using the fake victories of his team and all the related success to climb his way to the presidency of the Korean republic. There was as much pressure from the local government as in Argentina 1978. The important difference is that, if the past recriminations were limited to one game and the situation was confined to Argentina or Brazil, here they extend much more; God only knows who could have been in the final, had one have fair officiating. Nobody will ever know for sure what really happened or could have happened.

Now the competition is over and all the true football lovers must try to look at the good things of this event. Brazil was most of all a deserved winner, and teams like Senegal and Turkey surprised everybody with their innovative and entertaining way of playing. If they keep it that way, they can go very far in 2006. Other than that, this World Cup has really produced some of the worst spectacles ever, technically speaking. If we neglect the emotions caused by the poor officiating and the three teams I mentioned, everything was quite boring and streamlined. We have seen the suicide of powerhouses like France and Argentina, who did not manage to have their collection of stars to play better than any average second division European team. We have seen the underachievement of Portugal and Italy that, although fighting until leaving their last drop of blood on the field against a fourteen-man Korea, did not produce decent football. We have witnessed the surrender of England, their total lack of effort against a ten men Brazil. And the level of play produced by Germany was frankly quite boring. As it happened many times in the past, they went in the final as underdog in order to lose as expected.

To tell you the truth, Ronaldo has been the light in the darkness. He scored eight goals: this made the difference for his team. Let us take a look at the previous topscorers in the last thirty-two years.



1970: Gerd Müller (GER) ...........................10
1974: Grzegorz Lato (POL)...........................7
1978: Mario Kempes (ARG)............................6
1982: Paolo Rossi (ITA).............................6
1986: Gary Lineker (ENG)............................6
1990: Salvatore Schillaci (ITA).....................6
1994: Hristo Stoitchkov (BUL) & Oleg Salenko (RUS)..6
1998: Davor Suker (CRO).............................6
2002: Ronaldo (BRA).................................8


Nobody has done better than Ronaldo since Gerd Muller and he has all my sympathy, because he had the strength to achieve this result coming from a career-threatening series of injuries. Some of his goals were also quite beautiful too: his performance was remarkable. Hat off to Ronaldo.

However, this does not make a beautiful World Cup alone. I am aware that many people are quite satisfied with what they have seen, but it is also true that many others are very disappointed as well. My opinion is that important changes in many aspects will have to be made in order to return to the level that is proper to a competition of this sort. My hope is that in four years from now we will all be able to talk only about the game, without any mention to the FIFA, the local politicians or the referees. See you in Germany then, and a sincere good luck to the organizing committee: they need it.


Ciro Cerretelli for worldcuparchive.com
 

Dj Juve

Senior Member
Jul 12, 2002
9,618
#2
i understand what u mean bouut ronaldo, but...it's just that he's so damn ugly :D ;)

BTW, was Moreno the stupid referee killed? my friend says that he was killed by an Italian mobster :eyepatch: is this true? :confused:
 

Desmond

Senior Member
Jul 12, 2002
8,938
#3
++ [ originally posted by [DJ Juve] ] ++
i understand what u mean bouut ronaldo, but...it's just that he's so damn ugly :D ;)

BTW, was Moreno the stupid referee killed? my friend says that he was killed by an Italian mobster :eyepatch: is this true? :confused:
i read it on the papers too,but it turned out only to be a rumour.
 

Loppan

Senior Member
Jul 13, 2002
2,528
#4

Corruption, conspiracy
There was something funny going on that's for sure.
 

dpforever

Prediction Game Champ 2003 & 2005
Jan 12, 2002
3,794
#5
++ [ originally posted by [DJ Juve] ] ++
BTW, was Moreno the stupid referee killed? my friend says that he was killed by an Italian mobster :eyepatch: is this true? :confused:
The a****** is vacationing in Florida.



About Ronaldo, any decent striker (Vieri for example) in his place would have done the same, playing against: China, Costa Rica, Belgium, Turkey (twice), England, and Germany. No big deal.

P.S. In every match of those, Ronaldo missed a handful of easy chances before scoring goals.
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#6
I just have one real point:

Isn't it better to miss a call than to make a bad call?

In my book it is. Referees and Linesmen don't seem to understand this. Every call that was even close (especially on off-sides), they blew the whistle. I think that this led to the poor offciating, not a conspiracy. However, there is still a large possibility that there was a conspiracy indeed. I remebering reading a conspiracy theory during the first round that put Korea in the Semis and Brazil to win the cup. Powerful forces (Nike, Fifa) benefitted emmensely from this. It certainly isn't out of the relm of possibility.
 

Vinman

2013 Prediction Cup Champ
Jul 16, 2002
11,480
#7
It's pretty obvious that S. Korea had a "golden ticket" to the quarterfinals. From there, they were on their own, and look what happened !!
 

Bongiovi

Senior Member
Jul 12, 2002
587
#9
I know this might be a stupid question, but why don't they use video evidence like they do in rugby (league or union) don't know which one it is.....it doesn't seem to stop their games for long????
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#10
The game doesn't stop in foot ball if a goal is taken away and the ball stays in play. There would be no time. Therefore, only allowed goals, or dissallowed ones where the play is stopped, would be reviewed. Consequently there would be an inbalance. right now, some goals are wrongly dissallowed, and some are wrongly allowed. It creates an over-all balance. If video replay were introduced it would throw this off.
 

Slagathor

Bedpan racing champion
Jul 25, 2001
22,708
#12
I can't believe I missed this thread... :embarass:

Well, what can I say. There wasn't any bribery in the '78 final. Every Dutchman knows that. We simply sucked throughout the tournament. The side in the '78 WC was a mere shadow from the 'Total Football' side of '74 and we didn't deserve to win that game anyway.

Was this World Cup fixed? No, it was just another failure of European teams to win the trophy outside their continent. This failure was probably the worst of all but hey, Germany 2006 should see us do better!
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#13
++ [ originally posted by ErikP ] ++
I can't believe I missed this thread... :embarass:

Well, what can I say. There wasn't any bribery in the '78 final. Every Dutchman knows that. We simply sucked throughout the tournament. The side in the '78 WC was a mere shadow from the 'Total Football' side of '74 and we didn't deserve to win that game anyway.

Was this World Cup fixed? No, it was just another failure of European teams to win the trophy outside their continent. This failure was probably the worst of all but hey, Germany 2006 should see us do better!
I have to dissagree. Teh more I think about it, the more it seems like the whole thing was written like a script by some one from the Nike advertising department.
 

denco

Superior Being
Jul 12, 2002
4,679
#15
Let me get this straight, Brazil did not deserve to win the wc but it was all orchestrated by Nike

All this because Italy decided the way to win the wc is to sit back, be extremely lazy and negative, were knocked out by South Koreaand all of a sudden the world cup was rigged by Nike

Why did they wait 4 years, why didn't they rig it for Brazil to win in 98.

The reason Brazil won the world cup was that Argentina and France for whatever reasons didn't turn up

England were never gonna be a good enough, Spain lost Raul at the wrong time, Germany were terrible and Italy were cowardly

Brazil didn't have the best team but had the guts to play their individuals, something Italy never ever do

If you dare you win
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#18
++ [ originally posted by denco ] ++
Let me get this straight, Brazil did not deserve to win the wc but it was all orchestrated by Nike

All this because Italy decided the way to win the wc is to sit back, be extremely lazy and negative, were knocked out by South Koreaand all of a sudden the world cup was rigged by Nike

Why did they wait 4 years, why didn't they rig it for Brazil to win in 98.

The reason Brazil won the world cup was that Argentina and France for whatever reasons didn't turn up

England were never gonna be a good enough, Spain lost Raul at the wrong time, Germany were terrible and Italy were cowardly

Brazil didn't have the best team but had the guts to play their individuals, something Italy never ever do

If you dare you win
I can only conjecture, but this may have been a spur of the moment thing. I mean the conspirators could have looked at France and seen the two slowest people on earth in the middle of their defence, and their two creators (Pires, and Zidane) injured. THey could have even paid off Argentina. I mean what reason was there for them to play Batistuta instead of Crespo? Everyone in their right mind knew England wasn't going to win. How do you know that the plan wasn't to have Brazil beat Italy?

What I am trying to say is that there are a lot of coincidences, and when there are a lot of coincidences, it usually isn't coincidence.
 

denco

Superior Being
Jul 12, 2002
4,679
#19
To answer your question about Argentina, I don't feel any money in the world would have bribed those guys not to win the wc if they could nad to make it worse to allow Brazil win it..

There would have been an outrage in Argentina if they started with Crespo ahead of highest goal scorer Batigol

The unfortunate thing about Argentina was thats Crespo and Bati had relatively poor seasons with injuries and loss of form

Ortega should have been dropped but they persisted with him and it didn't pay off to me

Saviola was inexplicably left at home and he was the striker in the best form

It just didnt happen for Argentina as it didn't happen for France

Brazil got very lucky as the only teams that could have stopped them self destruct e.g Argentina, France, Italy

And the teams that were placed in front of them they defeated
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#20
++ [ originally posted by denco ] ++
To answer your question about Argentina, I don't feel any money in the world would have bribed those guys not to win the wc if they could nad to make it worse to allow Brazil win it..

There would have been an outrage in Argentina if they started with Crespo ahead of highest goal scorer Batigol

The unfortunate thing about Argentina was thats Crespo and Bati had relatively poor seasons with injuries and loss of form

Ortega should have been dropped but they persisted with him and it didn't pay off to me

Saviola was inexplicably left at home and he was the striker in the best form

It just didnt happen for Argentina as it didn't happen for France

Brazil got very lucky as the only teams that could have stopped them self destruct e.g Argentina, France, Italy

And the teams that were placed in front of them they defeated
So it may have been a combination of skill and luck, but it may also have been a combination of skill, luck, and conspiracy. I sure as hell don't know. The only people who do know are the conspirators themselves, if they exist at all.
 

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