French make the Final Match; Stéphanie Frappart World Cup Final referee

The French will have a place in Sunday’s Final in Lyon.  The teams on the Pitch will be  Holland and The USA.  The French will be  represented by Stephanie Frappart.  She officiated last weekend’s match between Sweden and Germany. Ms. Frappart will keep a firm hand on the activities on the Pitch.  She made history as the first female official in the French men’s Amien’s Ligue.

The Guardian 4.24.2019 (archive)

A French top-flight match will be refereed by a female official for the first time when Stéphanie Frappart takes charge of Amiens’ Ligue 1 home match against Strasbourg on Sunday.

Stephanie Frappart II 7.5.2019

Frappart, who will officiate at her second Women’s World Cup in France this summer, has been picked by the French Football Federation to prepare her for “World Cup conditions”.

The 35-year-old Frappart first refereed a Ligue 2 match in 2014 and has overseen 13 matches in the men’s second tier this season as well as one French Cup tie. She took charge of England’s semi-final defeat by the Netherlands in the 2017 Women’s European Championship.

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“Fifa has invited the federations with a chosen referee for the World Women’s Cup, to prepare them under the best conditions for this high-level competition,” an FFF statement said.

“Their preparation, technical and athletic [ability] will also be focused on the use of video assistance, which will be in function at this World Cup.”


Disgraced FIFA Boss Sepp Blatter: to meet with Qatar World Cup investigators

The Women’s World Cup Final this Sunday between Holland and America is getting the well deserved Buzz.

It’s Outrageous  that the Men’s World Cup 2022 was awarded to Qatar. The foul atmosphere surrounding the selection of Qatar shows no sign of going away.  The world’s top sporting event must be moved to a more suitable venue when the corruption and payoffs finally see the light of day.

Excerpted from The National 7.4.2019

Former Fifa boss says questioning of Michel Platini suggests concerns extend to ex-president Sarkozy over 2010 vote

Sepp Blatter, the disgraced former head of Fifa, said he is willing to speak to French anti-corruption investigators investigating the award of the 2022 World Cup to Qatar.

Qatar 2022 7.5.2019

Mr Blatter, 83, said he was “at the disposal” of officials to discuss the frantic horse-trading in the days before the award of the world’s largest single sport event to a state with no history of hosting major tournaments.

Mr Blatter, who was head of the world’s global football body for 18 years, is currently suspended from football for six years over a secret £1.3 million payment to former Uefa boss Michel Platini, just months after the award of the tournament.

Mr Platini was questioned last month by French investigators over matters including the award of the 2022 tournament.

Investigators were seeking to check if Mr Platini received bribes in exchange for his support for Qatar, according to French media reports. He has denied any wrongdoing.

Mr Blatter has previously spoken to French officials in 2017 in Switzerland as a potential witness but told the BBC that he was ready to be questioned further following the grilling of Mr Platini.

“I am prepared to help to clarify all these situations,” he told the British broadcaster. “I heard that they would like to speak with me.”

Mr Platini was seen as a likely replacement for Mr Blatter when he eventually stepped down as the most powerful figure in global football.

The succession planning was thrown awry by the corruption scandal that engulfed the sport following the award of the tournament to Doha. The were both toppled from their positions in 2015.

Mr Blatter had favoured a US bid but Mr Platini switched sides to back the Middle Eastern bid following a private dinner at the Elysee Palace, hosted by French president Nicolas Sarkozy, and included officials from Qatar including then crown prince Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad al Thani.

Mr Blatter has claimed that Mr Platini’s switch was key to deciding the outcome of the vote, which came just nine days after the dinner.

He claimed that Mr Platini told him that he was switching because of potential trade deals between France and Qatar. Mr Platini has denied the claim and said that he voted in the interests of football development.

“Sarkozy never asked me to vote for Qatar, but I knew what would be good,” he told the Associated Press in 2015.

Mr Blatter told the FT in 2015 that there had been a “gentleman’s agreement” among Fifa’s top brass to back the US bid within 22-strong executive committee who decided the venue before a secret ballot.

He blamed the “governmental interference of Mr Sarkozy” for the change.


‘Men grab their sacks’: Morgan says celebration criticism is double standard

The Team USA leader has a point.  Guys can say anything. The women are supposed to be polite. Look what happened to Hillary Clinton in 2016 for a political example.

It gets worse when women criticize women for expressing themselves in a robust manner.

The Netherlands meet Team USA on Sunday in the World Cup final.

Excerpted from the Guardian 7.5.2019

  • USA striker mimed sipping tea after goal against England

Alex Morgan has said that criticism of her goal celebration during USA’s defeat of England in the Women’s World Cup semi-final is an example of double standards.

Morgan mimed sipping a cup of tea after she scored what proved to be the winning goal against England, provoking a backlash with some claiming she was guilty of gloating. Former England international Lianne Sanderson, who played alongside Morgan at Orlando Pride, called the celebration “distasteful”.

“I feel that there is some sort of double standard for females in sports,” Morgan said, “to feel like we have to be humble in our successes and have to celebrate, but not too much or in a limited fashion. You see men celebrating all over the world in big tournaments, grabbing their sacks or whatever it is. And when I look at sipping a cup of tea, I am a little taken aback by the criticism.” She added that she was disappointed Sanderson was among her critics.



Anti-Semitism. Growing concern for majority of Europe’s young Jews

Germany, responsible for the horrors of Nazism, has since 1945 addressed the issue head on. Time spent in Germany makes it perfectly clear that Germany has not buried the Holocaust it perpetuated from 1933-1945. This Deutsche Welle article is just one example of shining a light on anti-semitism. Still, in Germany anti-semitism, neo-nazism and xenophobia are on the rise.

Excerpted from Deutsche Welle 7.4.2019

Young Jewish Europeans believe anti-Semitism is on the rise in their countries. An EU report shows young Jews are concerned about safety and blame social media networks for a rise in anti-Jewish sentiment.

More than 80% of European Jews aged 16 to 34 strongly identify with being Jewish, and an equally high number of respondents believe anti-Semitism is a growing problem in their countries.

Anti-Semitism II  7.4.2019.jpg

According to the “Young Jews in Contemporary Europe” report by the EU’s Agency for Fundamental Human Rights (FRA), close to 90% of those surveyed think that anti-Jewish sentiment has risen on social media channels and the internet in general in the last five years.

The report comes amid a rise in anti-Semitic crimes in Germany, with the country’s anti-Semitism commissioner, Felix Klein, cautioning Jews against wearing the yarmulke — or kippah — in public.

Other key findings

  • Young Jews are “considerably more likely” to experience anti-Jewish harassment than their elders.
  • 44% experienced at least one incident of harassment in the 12 months before the survey.
  • 73% of respondents say that they have not worn anything that may identify them as Jewish on at least one occasion due to safety concerns.
  • 41% have considered emigrating from their country because of safety concerns, mostly to Israel.
  • Holocaust denial or trivialization, suggesting “nefarious uses of power by Jews” or that Jews themselves are to blame for anti-Semitism top the list of anti-Jewish “tropes.”
  • 52% said they are being blamed for anything done by the Israeli government “frequently” or “all the time.”
  • 31% of those harassed identified the perpetrator as “someone with a Muslim extremist view.”
  • “Violent physical anti-Semitism” was most likely to be attributed to Muslim extremists.
  • 21% of harassment was attributed to “someone with a left-wing view,” closely followed by “someone with a right-wing view” at 14%.
  • Young Jews are “noticeably more likely” than their elders to identify intolerance towards Muslims in their countries as a problem.

Read more: Opinion: Is the only safe Jew in Germany an invisible one?

Sample size: The survey polled some 2,700 Jews aged 16 to 34 in 12 EU member states where more than 96% of the bloc’s Jewish population live.

Jews killing Jews. Color matters. Protests grow. Cop killed Jewish Ethiopian teen

Skin color makes a difference whether it’s in Israel, France, Germany, USA. Everywhere.

Deutsche Welle 7.3.2019

Solomon Teka, a 19-year-old Israeli of Ethiopian origin, was shot dead by an off-duty police officer on Sunday in a town near Haifa. The teenager’s killing stoked accusations of racism and police brutality in Israel.

Ethiopian teen Israel I 7.3.2019.jpg

Teka’s killing has sparked a debate in Israel about racism and police brutality. The Ethiopian Jewish community in Israel is particularly outraged by the incident, saying they live in constant fear of police harassment due to their black skin color.

Israeli activists and Ethiopian Jews protested for a third straight day on Wednesday against the killing of a young Ethiopian Israeli by an off-duty police officer.

Security was beefed up in the town of Kiryat Ata in northern Israel, near Kiryat Haim where Solomon Teka was shot dead on Sunday.

The Wednesday protest was relatively calmer than the first two days of demonstrations, when protesters burnt tyres and blocked roads.

In Tel Aviv, Israel’s economic capital, around 100 people scuffled with police on Wednesday in an attempt to block a road.

At least 111 police officers have been wounded by stones, bottles and petrol bombs during the three days of protests.


Dutch Orange and their hyper fans head to the Pitch for World Cup Final vs USA

Deutsche Welle writes disparagingly about the sleepy World Cup semifinal between Holland and Sweden.   Team USA will come with its usual theatrics and hi-octane attack on Sunday to liven up the proceedings before a worldwide audience.

The weak Swedish performance was surprising given the manner in which the team dismantled the Germans earlier and played a very tough match against Team USA.

Deutsche Welle  and Wall Street Journal 7.3.2019

Breaking News 4.15.2019.jpg

Netherlands 1-0 Sweden
(Groenen 99′)

Jackie Groenen’s (Shown above and below) fine extra time strike settled a forgettable World Cup semifinal against Sweden and set up a World Cup final against the United States on Sunday in Lyon.

The Dutch team has been one of the best-supported sides in France. While Americans traveled in the largest numbers, Dutch fans have made themselves more obvious, pouring into city streets and turning entire stadium sections orange. On Wednesday night, they even had two bugle players providing a 90-minute soundtrack in the stands.

Back home, their games have set viewership records. Their quarterfinal against Italy, for instance, drew an audience share of 80.3% in the Netherlands, according to FIFA. Sunday’s game will likely be another record-breaker for the Dutch, but the team itself is under no illusions. Against the three-time world champion Americans, it will be a clear underdog.

“Now we have to party,” defender Stefanie van der Gragt said, draped in a Dutch flag. “And tomorrow we’ll talk about the USA.”

The thought of Dutch orange blobs in the stands — not to mention the novelty of relative newcomer playing for the title — was irresistible. Also appealing: the Dutch horn section belting out kitschy numbers and the unbridled joy of the fans.

Holland World Cup I 7.3.2019

Morgan Tea time. Goalkeeper saves the Game. The Colonies prevail over England

Goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher saved the game when she blocked a penalty kick by England in the 84th minute.

A dismayed team of Lionesses fought on only to watch the Americans party on the pitch in Lyon, France.  It appears the Brits are equally upset over Alex Morgan’s “Tea time” moment after scoring what proved to be the winning goal in the 2-1 nailbiter.

The Americans, along with their England born Coach Jill Ellis will play in next Sunday’s final against either Sweden or Holland.

Breaking News 4.15.2019

The Guardian 7.2.2019

Tea Time on the Pitch.

US goal celebrations were a talking point yet again during Tuesday’s World Cup semi-final against England. After Alex Morgan scored USA’s second goal of the game, she raised her fingers to her lips, miming a sip of tea. (shown below)

“In the highest pressure game of this World Cup, Alex Morgan still had the presence of mind to produce a bespoke England celebration: She mimed sipping a cup of tea. “(Wall Street Journal).

“The Americans’ second goal was a matter of when not if. It came courtesy of Alex Morgan. The Californian’s bullet header was her 106th in US colors and ultimately proved the winner in a game where the scoreline didn’t truly reflect America’s superiority on the night. Her tea-drinking goal celebration were perhaps a further reminder of the confidence that runs through this US team.” (Deutsche Welle)

USA England VI 7.2.2019.jpg

The meaning was not clear, although public opinion seemed to be balanced between the motion being a shot at England’s fondness for tea; a reference to the ease with which Morgan scored; or the fact that Morgan’s goal came on her 30th birthday. Piers Morgan called it “a declaration of war”.

USA England III 7.2.2019

Christen Press celebrates her goal in the 9th minute. She took over for Megan Rapinoe, forced out of the match with a hamstring injury.

USA England VII 7.2.2019

U.S. forward Alex Morgan heads the team’s second goal past England goalkeeper Carly Telford. PHOTO: RICHARD HEATHCOTE/GETTY IMAGES

“Credit to the U.S.A. They do it time and time again. That’s why they’re winners,” England midfielder Jade Moore said. “If we want to start to turn the screw, if we want to be champions of the world, we’ve got to take a leaf out of their book and find a way to win.”