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World Cup 86: Roleplay Thread

A battle ground for the sportsmen and women of nations worldwide. [In character]

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Audioslavia
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Audioslavia » Tue Sep 29, 2020 10:47 am



Original Script
Aguazul’s retirement lasts only a cycle, but rules are rules. *Whether temporary or permanent*. They get to keep their Lineal Championship until they return, but an Interim champion is crowned at the final of the World Cup that they miss. In the final of World Cup 60, held at the Ijak-Nash Stadium in Paris, The Babbage Islands, The Holy Empire beat Eura to win the Interim Championship, and Aguazul return with their lineal belt soon after.

The Unofficial Title will be split into two, but not for long. The Unification happens early in cycle 62.

Okay. Stats break. You’ve been sitting there wondering about the ten most lop-sided victories in the history of the Unofficial World Championship. I can tell. Here they all are.

First, in joint seventh place, a group of seven-goal victories. Here’s lineal champions Squornshelous running roughshod over Coocoostan in the qualifiers for World Cup 33.

Seven cycles later, Manhattan Prime smash their master-nation Commerce Heights 8-1 in the AOCAF Cup in the middle of their unlikely run as Lineal and Atlantian Oceanian Champions.

Later, Kinitaria thrash the beloved Queer Poco el Mono Ara 8-1 in World Cup 64.

In more recent history, Vilita defend their Unofficial title by beating Bysantia 8-1.

Even more recently, Equestria defeat Hapilopper by the same scoreline in cycle 84’s AOCAF Cup,

There are four eight-goal wins, three of which are 8-0 bear-downs that we scrolled over in the last chapter.

Starting the top three is The Holy Empire, defending the Interim belt they won after Aguazul’s hiatus by beating West Zirconia by nine goals to one.

In joint first, we have Vilita’s nine-goal demolition of Maldunia that we covered in the very first chapter of The Idiot Project.

As you might expect, every one of these thrashings has been administered to a challenger by the reigning Unofficial World Champion.

Except one.

Here, it’s the reigning, defending, Lineal, Unofficial Champions of the World that are thrashed - obliterated - by nine goals to nil. This wasn’t supposed to happen. The champions had gone into the game as favourites for the match, ranked 30 places above their opponents in the KPB rankings. Those opponents… had *also* gone into the game as the reigning, defending, Unofficial champions of the world. The holders of the Interim world championship.

This record thrashing is the second of the two unification matches in the history of the Unofficial World Title.

---

To say the scoreline is harsh on Kiryu-shi is a massive understatement. The Unofficial titles were only split for just over a cycle, but in this short era of uncertainty, Kiryu-shi had been the team to watch.

This graph shows each team to have won the UWC at least twice. It plots opposition strength - specifically how many UWC championships the losing side of a title match had held throughout their history - against total title wins. Here at the bottom, The Weegies and Europa Britannia won a few titles each, but did so by beating relatively unsuccessful teams. As we scroll up, Kiryu-shi aren’t at the *very* top, but they’re close.

The team at the very top is Nedalia, a capable yet limited outfit from the Jolt era. Look what happens to this graph when we replace this Strength of Opponent metric with Win Percentage in UWC title matches. Nedalia were the undisputed kings of losing in title bouts. It just so happened that, when they *did* win, it was against the two biggest teams of the Jolt era.

First Starblaydia and then, some time later, Bettia.

When Brazillico returned in cycle 10 they brought with them an aura of invincibility that only lasted three games. When Aguazul returned with the lineal belt in cycle 61, they proved to be more resilient. This team had a record to protect. They’d been defeated only once in their previous forty-seven competitive matches, a run that saw them win an unprecedented three World Cups in a row, and they started their comeback with a run of fifteen consecutive matches without defeat. The one cycle break had not harmed the side who have the utterly inarguable claim to be the greatest team of the 50s. They seemed as powerful as they’d ever been.

And yet Kiryu-shi destroyed them 4-1.

When The Kiri lost the belt themselves, it was to The Holy Empire, according to SRS rankings the number two side in history. When they won it back, it was from Valanora, the number one.

By the time of the unification bout, this 9-0 demolition, Kiryu-shi had just reached the second round of the World Cup and were 24th in the KPB rankings at the time. Audioslavia were 58th, would fail to qualify for the World Cup that cycle, and would be knocked out of the Cup of Harmony by Cuboneland. Yeah. Cuboneland. It’s a match I remember fondly.

Kiryu-Shi Nil, Audioslavia Nine is a freak result. A farce. A match that would have been meaningless in the story of world football had it not been played for the Unofficial World Championship.

This was Audioslavia’s first Lineal title win since World Cup 29. Their luck would continue throughout the next few cycles, racking up 30 successful defences over four championship reigns until cycle 68.

In World Cup 68, the nature of international football would change. The Unofficial Championship would no longer be contested solely in the AOCAF Cup and official NSWC games in the World Cup and Cup of Harmony. From World Cup 68 onwards, another of the multiverse’s sporting regions would claim ownership of the title and would defend it in their own regional championships. The football world was entering a period of dominance from the second greatest of the three sporting regions.


Trivia / Extras
  • An aww-shucks-I-have-to-write-about-my-own-nation-winning chapter
  • The two graphs from this video
  • I missed the chance to include this image due to having only been reminded of its existence weeks after the video had been completed.
  • That 2003 decision to base Audioslavia’s shirts on that of Brazillian club team Fluminense pays off. Though.. everyone is celebrating the ninth goal of a nine-nil win a little too enthusiastically aren’t they?
  • The first seven minutes of this video were pretty much entirely done by early May. The second half was done in late June, after the six-week break.
  • In retrospect I feel guilty about doing Rushmore like that. Nevertheless, the end of this video sets up the next chapter well.

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Valanora
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Postby Valanora » Tue Sep 29, 2020 11:51 am

Lathwen Raynor had completed a tour of the entire Empire, even traveling to Vyinta as well as Sabine and Caddonia. By the time she had booked her travel to the most recent addition to the Empire, the officials in the Senate could see what she was doing. There were still several holdouts that were refusing to endorse her and schedule a coronation. However with Lathwen's tactics of getting the Empire's population behind here, the mounting pressure from the citizenry would be too much, they had reelection campaigns to worry about after all.

So it was formally decided a week prior to the kickoff of World Cup 86 Finals that the Senate had reached a majority concensus to endorse Lathan Raynor's claim to the throne. With that announcement, the High Priestess quickly followed up with her own announcement that the clergy were coordinating with Kathleen to schedule her coronation. As it just so happened, the agreed upon date was set to be the day after the Final in the World Cup, with Kathleen recognizing that a large portion of her followers would be keeping a close eye on that tournament.

To that end she had appointed herself an advisor to give her greater insight into the sports that the Empire involved themselves in. She intended to be an Empress for all her people and though she did not enjoy sporting events that greatly herself, having attended one and been among the general population, she could tell it was important to her soon to be subjects. While she doubted she would ever become an expert in the matter, having a better understanding of the sport would be beneficial, especially as she was informed that her government was vastly invested in the running of some of the competitions.

Her advisor informed her that the Marauders had done remarkable in their qualifying campaign, having gone unbeaten during such. If not for the amazing feat of their subregional neighbors of Banija, who had somehow won every one of their matches, the Marauders performance would have been the talk of the tournament he believed. With a fourth placed ranking in the world, she was informed that the Marauders had been awarded a first seed in the draw but had been rather unlucky to have drawn another top 8 team in rivals The Holy Empire. She learned the Holy Empire was one of the teams that traditionally the Marauders seemed to struggle against and were also up among the best teams to have ever took part.

In addition to their rivals they also drew Reçueçn, a side that was very much on the up and up. She was informed that they were a side thatvwas being picked as a bit of a dark horse to make it deep into the tournament due to the amount of potential that people saw from them. It would not be an easy match at all for the Marauders but one that they would need to win if they wanted to advance. The fourth seed was Savojarna, a side making their return to the World Cup but was better noted for being an ice hockey powerhouse. It was supposed to be the only relatively easy match, if there are such things in the Finals, for the team and another one that winning was required of the team for advancement. Like her path towards being the Empress, the Marauders had a difficult ahead of them, but patience and persistence would likely be enough as it had been for her ambitions.
World Cup 40, 42, 43, 52, & 61 Champions
WC 47, 51 (2nd), WC 34, 38, 39, 41, 44, 45, 53, 60, 67 (3rd), WC 49, 58 (Semifinalist), WC 33, 35-37, 46, 48, 54, 55, 62, 63, 65, 72, 83 (Quarterfinalist)
WCoH VII, VIII, XVII, XXVIII, XXX, XXXII (1st), WCoH I, XXXI, XL (2nd), WCoH II, XXIX (3rd), WCoH XII (4th)
AOCAF 44, 46, 51, & 53 Champions, AOCAF 39 & 43 Runners Up
Co-Hosted: too many events to count

EPL Season 20,073

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Starblaydia
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Postby Starblaydia » Tue Sep 29, 2020 12:17 pm

The location of Oberyn Park, Starblaydia's new elite national performance centre, was chosen with great care and attention, as most things related to football in the country were. Set within a 330 acre complex and buried deep in the heart of the Calbavero Forest outside the capital, Oberyn Park was explicitly designed to be a place that the nation's footballers could get away from everything and just concentrate on honing their craft. The forest's edge was fenced off, with an array of both highly visible and entirely hidden cameras to catch anyone physically trying to sneak or peak their way towards finding out what was going on at the centre. Drones were zapped out of the air with some fancy electrickery-based solution, and even the actual security personnel made themselves largely invisible to the players and coaching staff. Oberyn Park was simply a place of football pitches, modern buildings of glass and shining steel, and the occasional bird that drifted overhead.

Birdcalls were, in fact, the most common thing to hear if you sat in the dugouts of any of the outdoor pitches on any particular day. The centre was not constantly in use, but when it was the air would be filled with shouts of men and women giving instructions, encouragement and admonishment at those running up and down the expertly manicured training fields. What was not heard very often - or at all before this instance, in fact - was the unmistakable sound of people playing Castles & Chimeras:

"Natural twenty!" The young man's gleeful cry was celebrated like an inch-perfect sixty yard crossfield pass in the practice drill.

The woman's voice was like that of someone drawing the line across the pitch with technology and looking for the perpendicular axis that would decide if the kneecap of one player was an eighth of a milimetre closer to the goal-line than the fourth remaining armpit hair of the other. "...For a total of?"

"Twenty-eight." The young man said with the smug confidence of someone who'd evidently collected that pass and half-volleyed it into the net at the first time of asking. The other three players, each with a filled in character sheet in front of them, nodded and murmured their appreciation of the roll and its obvious impact on their party's fortunes.

"Alright," the Game Master said, leaning back and putting her hands flat on the grass, looking the valiant young officer - or, at least, the young man playing him - directly in the eye as she began to describe the outcome of the attempted action, "your fingers fly across the controls of the holo-display, projected in mid air above the panel. Your fingertips, tapping away at the various keys and dials that you've trained for years to be able to operate at this speed - it's quite the perfect harmony of thought and action. With great speed and skill you manage to shunt the energy build up through the secondary power relays into the shields, momentarily boosting the power output by some eighty percent, which does nothing harmful but gives off a very distinct silvery glow on the bubble shape that is hanging - until then invisibly - around your vessel as it hangs in the vast, cold emptiness of space. The danger is averted, and the energy build-up has been contained, for now."

"And what, may I ask," came the soft, feminine voice of ultimate authority standing behind the GM, "is going on here?"

Hope Roshanak twisted around and looked up into the sky, seeing only the tall, slender form of Starblaydia national football team manager Ázëwyn Fëanáro, towering over her, set against a bright and clear blue sky. Hope was Starblaydia's current leading goalscorer, with forty-seven to her name that put her equal-tenth on the all-time list for her country. Considering she was only twenty-eight years old, there was surely many more to come. As one of the team's senior figures, she was looked up to by players from right across the age groups that trained here.

"Oh, boss," Hope said, "we're playing Cee-and-Cee - Castles and Chimeras - it's a tabletop rolpl-"

"I know what C&C is," Fëanáro cut her off with the clipped tones, "I am, more to the point, asking what this one is doing in this area. This is the Under-21s section, after all."

Hope looked back at the young man who, up until a few moments ago, had been set in her mind as the valiant young mid-shipman desperately trying to save the SS Lethargic Crab from a fusion core overload. Now he was back to being Sam Roshanak, her seventeen year old brother. Specifically, her seventeen year old brother who was still only supposed to be training with the Under-18 side. Her manager and even the administrator, Valrauncion, had been very specific in outlining the rules that players were only allowed access to certain areas, as befit their age group's status. Under-18s had the least amount of access, while the senior squad could go pretty much anywhere. The first time a player moved up into a more elite group and was finally allowed to enter the hallowed walls of, for instance, the first team's dedicated indoor training pitch was laced with meaning and importance, even just a scant few months into Oberyn Park's lifespan.

"Oh, Sam is just, um," Hope's mouth was moving faster than her brain, which was decidedly stuck and, having been caught red handed, could find absolutely no escape routes. Sam was definitely in trouble, which was kinda bad, but doubly-bad because no-one had actually been caught in a section above their clearance yet. Fëanáro did like to make examples of things and people.

"Isambard," Fëanáro said, using Sam's real full name, rather than the familiar version he introduced himself as, "you made - what was it - four appearances in the eleventh Under-18 World Cup, am I correct?"

"Y-Yes, gaffer," Sam said, "scored one, too, not bad from off the bench if I might say so."

"Yes," Fëanáro confirmed, but didn't seem too jovial about the statistic, "in the one-all against Tequilo; helped us qualify for the knockouts. Pity we met the eventual champions then, but what can you do. How old will you be, Isambard, come the next Under-18 World Cup?"

"Twenty, gaffer." The reply took a little longer than Hope was wishing for, but if it didn't include a dice roll and a proficiency bonus, Sam's maths was always terrible.

"Yet by my calculations that means you'll be eighteen for the next Di Bradini Cup," the manager's hands were on her hips, but the shoulders had relaxed somewhat, "so it's rather lucky that you're having this C&C session with Andvar, Dalton and Helena." The Dwarven full back Andvar Galdarhim, the teenage central midfielder Helena Herrera and the twenty year old central defender Dalton Aldridge were the other three players sitting on the grass, dice now subtly placed on their character sheets to show their full attention to the national team manager. "You'll not have to get used to all your team-mates at Under-21 level, at least."

"Y-y-yes, gaffer!" Sam managed to blurt out. "Thank you!"

"You deserve it," Fëanáro said as she turned to walk away. For a moment, however, she hesitated. "Oh, and Mister Galdarhim?"

"Aye, boss?" The twenty year old Dwarf looked up.

"I expect my captains to be a little better groomed. If you can play one in C&C, you can be one on the pitch for the DBC side. I expect you to pay a visit the Oberyn Park barber before we get on the... craft to Sonnel. Consider it a very important side-quest."

"Aye, boss!" Andvar said, with a sudden renewed twinkled in his eye, puffing his chest out proudly that had the unfortunate effect of emphasizing the greasy, scraggy beard he was currently wearing, calling after the elven manager as she strolled languidly away from the group. "Right away, boss!"

"Well," said Hope after a few moments to make sure that her coach was out of earshot, "that could certainly have gone worse. Gangway, where were we?"

"The wee midshipman had just vented all t'power out t'core," Andvar filled in the details.

"Ah-ha," Hope smiled, "you're absolutely correct, Captain. So, the danger is averted by some quick thinking, and the energy build-up has been contained, for now. On the bridge, however..."
Last edited by Starblaydia on Wed Sep 30, 2020 4:11 am, edited 1 time in total.
Six-Time World Cup Committee President (WCs 25-33, 46-51 & 82*)
Co-host of World Cups 20, 40 & 80 • Di Bradini Cup Organiser
World Cups 30, 63 & 83 Runner-Up • World Cup 27 Third Place • 25th Baptism of Fire Runner-Up
Seven-Time AOCAF Cup Champions • Two-time U21, One-Time U18 WC Champions • Men's Football Olympic Champions, Ashford Games
Five-Time Cherry Cup Champions • 1st Quidditch World Cup Champions • WGPC8 Drivers' Champion
The Protectorate of Starblaydia
Commended by WA Security Council Resolution #40
Five-Time NS World Cup Champions (WCs 25, 28, 41, 44 & 47)

Crazinesss Encouraged - An Unofficial History of the NationStates World Cup

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Hampton Island
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Capitalist Paradise

Postby Hampton Island » Tue Sep 29, 2020 3:50 pm

(The official team handover between Stafford City Stadium CEO and Hannah Sanders)

Sanders: A deal is a deal, my team of lawyers has drafted up this contract to officially process the sale of the international soccer team from you, to me. The terms that were discussed are included.

CEO: I will need time to read it over.

(After delay to read it over)

Sanders: So, as you have read, I have not included anything sneaky in there like you would probably have done. The terms are as was discussed.

CEO: I want to congratulate you, though, it was a great effort by the old guys over the second half of the campaign. Who could have imagined that they would have performed so well.

Sanders: It is a credit to the line of products produced by Freestyle Mobility.

CEO: I originally found them as a sponsor, don’t forget that.

Sanders: They are a good company, and an organization that seniors everywhere should want to do business with.

CEO: What are your plans for the team in the World Cup?

Sanders: I want to win some games. I want to be able to beat Drawkland on the road. Hinode we have seen in the Campionato Esportiva, and Starblaydia we saw last time. We can get some wins.

CEO: I hope that they do well.

Sanders: Now are you going to sign that contract?

CEO: These things take time.

Sanders: Stop delaying.

CEO: Have you worked out the transportation to Sonnel?

Sanders: I’ve been on top of that, yes.

CEO: Right, right.

Sanders: Sign the contract.

CEO: (sighs, takes pen, and signs) There, done.

Sanders: Thank you. (takes contract)

CEO: Now destroy the evidence.

Sanders: The what?

CEO: The flash drive of our encounter.

Sanders: Oh, that. I destroyed that two years ago. Didn’t want to watch it.

CEO: You… destroyed it…. Years ago?

Sanders: Yes!

CEO: So, you lied to me. Completely an underhanded trick to get your way.

Sanders: Yup!

CEO: How could you do that?

Sanders: Because I think exactly like you. Byebye now! (leaves)
Campionato Esportiva 28 Champions
Two-time World Cup Qualifier (85, 86)
NSSCRA Also-rans

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Chromatika
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Democratic Socialists

Postby Chromatika » Tue Sep 29, 2020 5:42 pm

Part 1: The Barbed Inn, Chromia
Part 2: The Emerald, Ming
Part 3: Killjoy, Cortez River
Part 4: Jordan's Talk
Part 5: Islander Dome, Myana
Part 6: Busukuma/Mid-Qual Thoughts
Part 7: Triple B, Deprí Sanar
Part 8: The Date, Alnio/Chromia
Part 9: Questions and Answers
Part 10: Before the Last Day
Part 11: TJUN-ia Preview
Part 12: TJUN-ia Mid
World Cup 86 Qualifying Playoff, Second Leg:
Score: Chromatika 4-3 TJUN-ia, Capitalizt Dome, Chromia
Goals: Andisori, K. '18, Vidal '29, Armageddon '49, Dragana '72
Starting XI: Tioux; Xiao - de Aea - Ken - Ilya; Victoriane - Armageddon (C) - Dragana; Mora; Andisori, K. - Vidal.
Substitutes: Thorben -> Victoriane ('51), Kuzami -> Mora ('73), Dias -> Armageddon ('80)

They've done it! Chromatika has done it! A narrow victory for the Anomalies, but they've gotten past TJUN-ia. and into the World Cup Proper!

Their reward?

Mriin.

Banija.

Ko-oren.

Just how bad is this draw?

Mriin. Chromatika has never defeated Mriin. They've faced each other twice in World Cup 80 and twice in World Cup 84:
World Cup 80, Matchday 5: Mriin 1, Chromatika 0
World Cup 80, Matchday 14: Chromatika 0, Mriin 1
World Cup 84, Matchday 3: Mriin 2, Chromatika 0
World Cup 84, Matchday 14: Chromatika 1, Mriin 1
AOCAF 60, Quarterfinal: Mriin 3, Chromatika 0
Goals Scored: 1 Goals Allowed: 8
Record: 0-1-4
The two teams will meet in the first match of the Group Stage, in Emperor Michael IV Stadium, Pocono City, Newmanistan. Can Chromatika break the curse?

Banija. Chromatika just had them as the first seed of their group, losing twice. They've faced each other in World Cups 79 and 86, AOCAF 61, and Eagle's Cup 8.
World Cup 79, Matchday 8: Banija 2, Chromatika 1
World Cup 79, Matchday 17: Chromatika 2, Banija 1
Eagles' Cup 8, Matchday 1: Chromatika 1, Banija 0
Eagles' Cup 8, Matchday 4: Banija 2, Chromatika 0
AOCAF 61, Matchday 4: Banija 2, Chromatika 1
AOCAF 61, Quarterfinal: Chromatika 1–1 Banija (1–1 AET) (3–2 pen.)
World Cup 86, Matchday 9: Banija 4, Chromatika 2
World Cup 86, Matchday 18: Chromatika 3, Banija 5
Goals Scored: 11 Goals Allowed: 17
Record: 2-1-5
Chromatika's victory over Banija in the Quarterfinal of the AOCAF was quite dramatic, while the actual victories happened a long time ago. Banija has now become the best team in the multiverse, so this will be a very hard match.

Ko-oren. The last time that Chromatika was in the Proper, they faced Ko-oren. As one of the most defensive nations in the tournament, they'll be a unique challenge.
AOCAF 50, Matchday 3: Chromatika 1-1 Ko-oren
World Cup 75, Matchday 4: Ko-oren 1-0 Chromatika
World Cup 75, Matchday 11: Chromatika 0-1 Ko-oren
World Cup 84, Proper Matchday 1: Chromatika 1-0 Ko-oren
Goals Scored: 2 Goals Allowed: 3
Record: 1-1-2
The good news? Chromatika defeated them the last time around. The bad news? Scoring goals against Ko-oren is very difficult.

The goal here is four points. Is that possible? Yes. Is that likely? No.

Tie against Mriin. Defeat Ko-oren. Lose to Banija. That's probably the best circumstance.
23-Man Roster Announced

The following players were added to the Roster to go to Newmanistan for the World Cup:
01. GK Mia Ria
02. RB Kai Xiao
03. CB Henri de Aea
04. CB Giles Ken
05. LB Valence Ilya
06. RW Kaytlyn Victoriane
07. DM Enigma Armageddon (C)
08. LW Retta Conrad
09. AM Hermaeus Mora
10. ST Keira Andisori
11. ST Olimpia Vidal
12. GK Ferret Tioux
13. RB Dina Chapman
14. CB Kattie Will
15. CB Cierra Anderson
16. LB Jarret Rowles
17. RW Molly Thorben
18. DM Kai Dias
19. LW Jazmin Dragana
20. AM Mimi Kuzami
21. ST Rowena Sierra
22. ST Beaunia Andisori
23. GK Marseille Alexander
Five Notes:

1. Jarret Rowles called up to be the substitute. He's ready. It's about time that he got here.

2. Ga-yeong Han and Vasiliy Marten Kuznetsov await their turn. Retta Conrad and Jazmin Dragana get one more shot.

3. Keira. Andisori. Still here, still kicking.

4. Mia Ria returns - people say she's fine. But is she? If not, Ferret has shown he can step up.

5. Giles Ken is the starter. No more arguments now.
Team Selection
Matchday 1: Mriin vs. Chromatika
Starting XI: Ria; Xiao - de Aea - Ken - Ilya; Victoriane - Armageddon (C) - Conrad; Mora; Andisori, K. - Vidal.
Reserves: Tioux, Chapman, Will, Anderson, Rowles, Thorben, Dias, Dragana, Kuzami, Sierra, Andisori, B., Alexander.
Former User of the Nations of Yesopalitha and Falconfar

Regional Tournaments: 52 (2nd), 53 (4th), 54 (QF), 55 (Champions), 56 (Ro16), 59 (Ro16), 60 (QF), 61 (4th), 62 (Ro16), 63 (2nd)
WC Proper Appearances: 75 (Ro16), 76 (SF), 77, 78 (QF), 79 (Ro16), 80 (Ro16), 81, 83, 84, 86, 87 (Ro16)
CoH Appearances: 77 (Ro16), 85 (Ro16)
KPB Ranking: 15 (Post 87)
RP Population: 20 million

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Siovanija and Teusland
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Postby Siovanija and Teusland » Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:12 pm

RBC Sports
Prematch Coverage: Siovanija & Teusland vs Nephara


Stepan Stelik: Good afternoon, Siovanija & Teusland, and welcome to our studio here in Kayo, Drawkland, as we get set to take you over to Kanyo Field for matchday one of World Cup 86, with our Goldhorns taking on Nephara. With me today is former FC Teussen Stelburg midfielder and manager Joseph Grassl, as well as former national team winger Paulus Leistner, who earned 61 caps and scored 6 times for his country in his career. Gentlemen, welcome.

Joseph Grassl: And I’d like to say, Paulus, congrats on your retirement, you’ve had an excellent career.

Paulus Leistner: Thanks, Joseph - it’s always a sad day when you hang up the boots, but it was my time.

SS: Now, we all know that the Goldhorns have been handed a very difficult group for this tournament - it’s been called the ‘Group of Death’ in some foreign media. And it all starts in the hardest possible way for the Goldhorns - taking on world number 2 Nephara, who will be eager to avenge their loss in the World Cup 85 Final. Is there any positive for the Goldhorns going into this?

JG: One thing the national team has done very well throughout its history is get wins when no-one expects them to. You’ve seen it against higher-ranked opponents really all the way back to World Cup 80, but the list of triumphs is full of big-name countries.

PL: And you look at the semifinals of the last World Cup - you’ve got the Free Republics, Baker Park, Banija - the Goldhorns have beat all of those teams relatively recently, Free Republics and Baker Park both at World Cup 85 and Banija just a week ago now - and Nephara, whom the Goldhorns have never beaten in two tries back in World Cup 84 Qualifying.

SS: Let’s talk about that win against Banija. The Goldhorns’ played two friendlies before traveling to Drawkland, both at home, against Kelssek and Banija. With Kelssek the game ended all square, 3-3, but Banija - that’s the world number one, who had an undefeated qualification campaign - were defeated 3-1 in Borograd. What can the Goldhorns take from that?

JG: It’s a win that definitely gives you a boost. I know, I know - it’s just a friendly. But Banija have played 21 games this cycle, qualifiers and friendlies, and they’ve won 20 - that’s the only loss. And they’re certainly one of the teams to beat in this tournament, so you definitely take pride from that and you look to build off it here in game one.

PL: It’s a big motivator in the room, too. I remember one year back with Kaiserhaven, we beat Olympia Borograd in a friendly before the season when they had just set the league points record, we came storming out of the gate - you have a good feeling when you get wins like that, no matter the occasion.

SS: Nephara are a different task, of course. This one’s for keeps, and the Cormorants breezed through qualifying with a 17-1-0 record. It’ll be important for the Goldhorns to stay calm and collected to start the match - Nephara will certainly be wanting to press their advantage early, right?

JG: Nephara are one of the best sides in the world. Of that there’s no doubt. And with how it ended last time, there’s going to be 11 players on that side of the pitch that are eager to make a statement in this first game. They finished second last time, they’re second in the world ranks, but they want to prove why they are first. And I think the Goldhorns are going to have their hands full tonight.

SS: Paulus, you played with the national team in plenty of important matches - including Das Wunder von Northbrush, the 5-4 win over Vilita and Turori at AOCAF 57. How do you prepare for games like that, and like the one we’re about to see here today, where you are the massive underdogs?

PL: I think it’s almost easier than the games where you are the favourites. I know exactly what Gavin Hughes is telling the team right now, because I’ve heard it from him before: there’s no pressure, lads. They want this game to be a statement? Sure, let’s do it. But on our terms. It’s always easy to get yourself mentally psyched up for a game like this - you want to beat the best, and right now I’d say Nephara are right up there as arguably best in the world.

SS: Focusing on this World Cup as a whole now. Last time around, it was the Goldhorns’ forwards who were labelled as disappointing in the domestic media. The national team put up a pace of 3.08 goals per game in World Cup 85 Qualifiers, before scoring a dismal 1 goal in 3 games at the actual tournament itself. This time, the rate in qualifiers was 3.38 per game - who needs to step up at this tournament to keep that going?

JG: I think the criticism of Michael Ribbeck was a little unfair after the last tournament to be honest, Stepan. This is one of the top strikers - you look at his rate for his country, it’s quite frankly ridiculous. But I will say - this is on him. He needs to break through that negativity that is still lingering from how last time ended, and if he can get on the scoresheet today that can set him up to do big things here.

PL: Well, I was a winger, so I’m going to stick up for my comrades here - I think Lukas Tauscher and Mario Kogler are going to have a huge impact on this tournament. You look at how good they’ve been - it seems like Tauscher has really become a big star these qualifiers, and FC Teussen Stelburg fans won’t like me saying this but if he has a breakout tournament here what would that do for his possible transfer this summer?

JG: I hate to admit it, as a Teussen man, and I do think it's still up in the air now - but if he does well here, he's almost certainly out the door.

SS: One player neither of you mentioned, however, is Thorsten Kramer. The machine of this team, whatever you want to call him, he’s had an excellent year for his club - leading 1830 Cathair to another Champions’ League Final - and earned a nod as the Silver Galactico for the year. What impact can he have for this team?

JG: I didn’t mention him because I assumed it was a given he’d have an impact, that’s how good he is. Thorsten Kramer is the type of player that can take over a game if he wants to, and he’s done it plenty of times in the Qualifiers - and he arguably did it against Banija, too. For me, he’s one of the game’s best right now, and he has an impact just by being in the team. To deal with the Goldhorns, you have to deal with him - and that is not an easy task.

PL: I’ve played with Thorsten, and Joseph is exactly right - you almost feel on the pitch as if he just decides to win a game. I felt that more than once when wearing gold and white, haha, and I think every player who’s ever played with him has a story like that. But this is different again - it’s one of the best teams in the world, who will have seen all the tape and planned for this ever since the group draw was announced. It’s going to be a tough one.

SS: The Goldhorns and the Cormorants. Two sides eager to prove what they’re made of here at World Cup 86. For the Cormorants, it’s unfinished business - runners-up in 85, determined to go one better in 86. For the Goldhorns, it’s a chance to test their mettle once again against one of the world’s best. Siovanija & Teusland, Nephara, coming up after this.

Siovanija & Teusland 3-1 Banija, @ Olimpski-Stadion, Borograd, Siovanija


Starting XI: Heuser; Steimle, Jager, Klopfer (Niedermayer 46’), Vesele; Kramer, Mihailov (Bahr 60’), Bliznakov; Kogler, Tauscher, Ribbeck (Ilev 46’)
Goals: Michael Ribbeck 39’, Thorsten Kramer 55’, Leopold Bliznakov 62’
Man of the Match: Thorsten Kramer


Siovanija & Teusland National Football Team
Squad Selection - World Cup 86
Newmanistan & Drawkland


GK - Ewald Heuser, Anatoli Sveteikov, Dennis Eulenberg
LB - Edgar Steimle, Axel Richter
CB - Raphael Klopfer, Karl-Heinz Jager, Erich Thierse, Tristan Niedermayer
RB - Darijen Vesele, Pierre-Louis Lotbiniere
CM - Thorsten Kramer, Todor Mihailov, Heinrich Bahr
LW - Mario Kogler, Lojze Kokalj
CAM - Leopold Bliznakov, VIktor Dimitrov
RW - Lukas Tauscher, Ivo Romanov
CF - Michael Ribbeck, Stanimir Ilev, Krasimir Kynev

Starting XI vs Nephara: Heuser; Steimle, Jager, Niedermayer, Vesele; Kramer, Mihailov, Bliznakov; Kogler, Tauscher, Ribbeck
Last edited by Siovanija and Teusland on Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
The United Republics of Siovanija & Teusland
Capital: Borograd | Population: 74,245,000 | Demonyms: Siovanijan, Teus | Country Code: STL

World Cup of Hockey 40, 41 & 42 Champions ⋆ World Junior Hockey Championship 14 Champions

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Brenecia
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Posts: 666
Founded: Apr 14, 2013
Capitalizt

Postby Brenecia » Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:48 am

There was silence, and then an awkward cough from Anselm Lewis. Not quite enough shock to be a grand-slam jock, Lewis had carved out a decent career regardless on the airwaves. Good enough to get what he'd figured was a golden ticket.
He cleared his throat. "And that, ladies, gentlemen and others, was the official Brenecian anthem for World Cup 86..."

Forty minutes earlier ...

The bus stopped at the side of the shoddy little building and disgorged its occupants. Cheney Deal had never been sure what a local radio station would look like, but he supposed it might well be red-brick and full of graffiti. He was not disappointed.
A perky blonde aide spooled up the Brenecian national team, at least the sixteen or seventeen that had bothered to turn up. They probably wouldn't be noticed, after all. "Just come right this way, please?"
They were lead into an overly small office to just sort of... mill about, waiting. Deal eyed the shitty hors d'eovres. Really? Putting out fucking cheese and sausage for professional footballers? Well, if he wasn't on national duty... but here he'd be judged. The nutritionist here would probably kill him. The best nutritionist he had back at his club was just Kev, the cautionary tale. One look at him was enough to get most people to re-examine their diets...
"This is a crock of shit," muttered Opal Cairncross. She was third-choice 'keeper, and was it really worth all this sideshow to get on the most prestigious bench in the game?
"Yeah, but, c'mon," wheedled Creidne Lindauer. "It'll be fun. They'll bring the band in, they'll do all the heavy lifting, they'll just want us to go 'oo' and 'aah' and stuff."
"Couldn't I hire a guy to just ooh and aah and have 'em pretend it's me?"
"Yeah, well, too late now."
It was rude to point, but this had never been enough to stop Lauren Cheney. "Hey," she announced. "Why do they look so anxious in that cubicle? Looks like they got some news they didn't want."

Five minutes later ...
It took a second to absorb the news, and a spokesperson was needed to unpack it all and put it back together again.
"So," said Esther Caitiff, hesitantly. "The band got lost in traffic. The band to play the official World Cup anthem, which has to be officially on the airwaves in half an hour."
The aide nodded, rictus-smile retained by panic. "Yes."
"And not just because of your schedule, but also we left it to the very fucking deadline to get it on the World Cup album to make this splashier."
"Yes."
"And nobody knows their planned song or their lyrics or anything."
"Correct. They don't want anyone to interfere with their vision."
"So you're saying..."
Jess Curtin cleared her throat, in her capacity as assistant. In their capacity as manager, Brelk-Xeral Erv had stayed home. This was what assistants were for. "I'm saying that the WCC will be very cross if they release a big World Cup album of every country's official anthem with 31 tracks on it. Let's get on it, shall we? Call it team-building."
Creidne Lindauer had procured a whiteboard from somewhere and a set of what would later turn out to be permanent markers. "Right! But there's twentyish of us, and we've got plenty of time. We've just got to sort this out. So, spitballing from the group - who here has any musical talent?"
Ten seconds of dead silence, before Caitiff picked up an electronic keyboard and tentatively hit the Demo 1 key. A ceaseless forty-second loop of muzak chiptune echoed out through the office.
"Perfect," lied Lindauer. "So that's music covered. All we gotta do now is... lyrics! Guys, what do we define ourselves as. Who are we."
More silence, broken by Finn Townsend, the least imaginitive of their number. "Big," he hazarded.
"Brilliant. Big. What else?"
"We're... good at football?" suggested Wright.
"Are we?" Cairncross sniped.
"Shut up, Opal. That's great, Scathach," crooned Lindauer, writing down more ideas on the whiteboard. "In fact. In fact. How about the people with... really clear ideas go ahead and write their own little verses. And come back at the end. You'll all perform your own bits, and then we'll crowdsource the chorus here, right, and the keyboard will be playing the little beeps and boops and it'll be brilliant. Nobody will even know the band never showed up."

Twenty minutes later ...
At the end of the day, Creidne Lindauer could be pretty proud of her handiwork. She'd even fit a moral lesson into the chorus! And, well... she was sure that the people assertive enough to write their own verses had their angles covered. She didn't need to hear them before performance.
Which, the producer informed them, was approximately 'now.'
Lindauer cleared her throat. "Right, lads. Listen for our cue."
"And now," Anselm Lewis declared, "after that charming story about the thylacine that learned how to fire a handgun - who knew you could do that without opposable thumbs? - it's time for, yes, the official announcement and performance of the Patriots World Cup 86 Anthem, which I am informed is called..."
The aide slid a crumpled piece of paper across the table. For reasons unclear to everyone but the Caza striker herself, Lindauer had written down her new song's title onto a scrap of paper she'd folded five or six times before handing off to the blonde.
"... Ah, uhm, yes, called 'Big and Cool'. WIth the-- sorry, not with White Noise, but with, uh... performed by the national team, themselves... ? Well. Well! Here we go, then."
The beautiful thing about ascending to Anselm Lewis' middling place in the radio world is you generally didn't need to know what was going on at any given time. Trust in your producers.
Well, trust was about to become harder to come by.
"Uh, shit, was that our cue?" asked Mhacha White, uncharaceristically sheepish.
"Yes," prompted Lewis.
"Oh, fuck, uhm."
Caitiff desperately mashed the Demo key. It was a different chiptune to the one that had played earlier. It did not matter, in the grand scheme of things.
Mhacha White launched into her verse. From the heart of someone who really knew what it meant to be Brenecian.

"There was a country where it rained all the time
And only had a relatively small population
And poor gross domestic income
And low quality of life"


Kara Ciogach belted out the next, with a personal touch:

"But they still had a footballl team
In navy and navy and white
All the best players wanted to go there
because it had better prospects than where they were actually from"


The third and by a distance most enthusiastic striker pitched in:

"And eventually we won some games
And spun some sick free verse
What's this motherfucking country called!
Kick-flip it! ... Fucking go! Chorus!"


The twelve or so voices not tasked elsewhere belted out:

"Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're big! (yeah!)
Gonna win some football!
Gonna score a lot of goals (yeah!)
more than we concede

Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're cool! (yeah!)
Win us a medal!
We don't do drugs! (yeah!)
And we stay in school"


Lauren Cheney flicked back her hair. Lindauer was about to regret smiling and nodding when she'd suggested that as the best player in the squad she deserved an entire free-form chunk to herself. Lindauer did not understand this also meant devoted to herself.

"We got all the coolest cats in town!
Lauren Cheney, rockin' the town!
She's cool, she's sexy, she's eligible,
Leaves a trail of broken hearts

On her way to goal, which is her crib
She's so smart she can sing this ad-lib
People's champion, wild stallion,
Gonna win her own World Cup medallion"


Linoan Waters frantically gestured at Lindauer and, for good measure, the world. The producer felt her career slipping away. Cheney sang on:

"Best winger in the world and it ain't close;
who the fuck are the Galacticos?
It's Lauren Cheney, remember the name
If we lose she's not to blame

So good she's a multi-millionaire
Call her a multi-skillionaire--"


Cheney started to falter after three of her beloved teammates started throttling the air and finger-slitting their throats.

"She's the best ... uh...
And then there's twenty-two other guys"


"Fucking finally," muttered Triss Roscommon, which was only a little picked up by the microphones as the chorus drowned her out and deafened tens of thousands across the nation.
Finn Leadbetter was next after the chorus. He'd been thinking about his part for a while.

"Tell all the plastic kids at school
This is an age of Brenecian rule
We're gonna hit the shags for six;
We're winning World Cup 86!"


And.
And he was pretty sure he'd written more words than that, too.
He'd taken Drama class back in the day. There'd been a faint memory nagging at him; 'never let them know anything went wrong. Pretend everything is intentional. Just roll with it.'
Leadbetter was a good child who did what he was told.

"We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!"


The producer knocked on the class. Lindauer leaned in.
'Is this meant to be happening?' she mouthed.
Lindauer's shrug was less than helpful.

"We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!"


"What the fuck is he doing?" said Roscommon, the dissident. This time, it was picked up.
Finn Leadbetter strained every sinew of his memory, trying to find the lost words he'd written down. The lost words he'd written down and left on a table right in front of them, that Linoan Waters was frantically pointing at and waving in front of his face.
All was blank. All was blank.

"We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning Worl--"


Ceridwen Fletcher seized the initiative, and her reedy voice cut across Leadbetter's to start another chorus. What she figured was the chorus, until Lindauer started talking something about a coda, which apparently meant they needed to belt out the chorus a second time.
"Guys, we can stop," Fletcher managed breathlessly. "It's been three minutes."
"-- fucking World Cup medal!" bellowed Lindauer with a final fist-pump as everyone else sank to their knees.
A silence settled across the room. One with the sense of a job well done, for Lindauer. Waking horror, for everyone involved at actually working with the radio station.
"I think that went well," Lindauer announced.
Lewis cleared his throat. "And that, ladies, gentlemen and others, was the official Brenecian anthem for World Cup 86..."

WHITE:
There was a country where it rained all the time
And only had a relatively small population
And poor gross domestic income
And low quality of life

CIOGACH:
But they still had a footballl team
In navy and navy and white
All the best players wanted to go there
because it had better prospects than where they were actually from

LINDAUER:
And eventually we won some games
And spun some sick free verse
What's this motherfucking country called!
Kick-flip it! ... Fucking go! Chorus!

CHORUS:
Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're big! (yeah!)
Gonna win some football!
Gonna score a lot of goals (yeah!)
more than we concede

Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're cool! (yeah!)
Win us a medal!
We don't do drugs! (yeah!)
And we stay in school

CHENEY:
We got all the coolest cats in town!
Lauren Cheney, rockin' the town!
She's cool, she's sexy, she's eligible,
Leaves a trail of broken hearts

On her way to goal, which is her crib
She's so smart she can sing this ad-lib
People's champion, wild stallion,
Gonna win her own World Cup medallion

Best winger in the world and it ain't close;
who the fuck are the Galacticos?
It's Lauren Cheney, remember the name
If we lose she's not to blame

So good she's a multi-millionaire
Call her a multi-skillionaire
She's the best ... uh...
And then there's twenty-two other guys

CHORUS:
Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're big! (yeah!)
Gonna win some football!
Gonna score a lot of goals (yeah!)
more than we concede

Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're cool! (yeah!)
Win us a medal!
We don't do drugs! (yeah!)
And we stay in school

LEADBETTER:
Tell all the plastic kids at school
This is an age of Brenecian rule
We're gonna hit the shags for six;
We're winning World Cup 86!

We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!

We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning World Cup 86!
We're winning Worl--

CHORUS:
Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're big! (yeah!)
Gonna win some football!
Gonna score a lot of goals (yeah!)
more than we concede

Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're cool! (yeah!)
Win us a medal!
We don't do drugs! (yeah!)
And we stay in school

LINDAUER:
Coda!

TOWNSEND:
Huh?

LINDAUER:
Again!

CHORUS:
Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're big! (yeah!)
Gonna win some football!
Gonna score a lot of goals (yeah!)
more than we concede

Brenecia! (yeah!)
We're cool! (yeah!)
Win us a--

FLETCHER:
Guys, we can stop, it's been three minutes.

LINDAUER:
-- fucking World Cup medal!
Last edited by Brenecia on Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
Puppet of Nephara.

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Nephara
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Posts: 1525
Founded: Jun 06, 2014
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Nephara » Wed Sep 30, 2020 4:18 am

Nephara 4 - 3 Damukuni
(4-4-2) 20 - Provost; 2 - Stride, 5 - Thorn (c), 6 - Brosch, 19 - Strassman (3 - Verlander 61'); 7 - Kuepper, 15 - Kastriot, 8 - Cromwell, 11 - Deventer (16 - Caracole 67'); 9 - Bastable (17 - Basilisk 78'), 10 - Lovelace
Goals: Lovelace 11', Brosch 24', Stride 37', Kuepper 81'

Sometimes you just know something's wrong the moment a player starts to fall.
Daniella Strauss' dreams of the World Cup involved Vivica Muscadin cantering to victory up and down the left flank. They did not involve crumpling to the turf in a routine training session with a three-fold cry of "Marica! Bitch! Fuck!"
The mood had been generally fractious in camp, yes, but... well, that was natural. They were Marchers. Marchers bickered. Strauss listened patiently as worried coaches talked about how Konrad threw a book at Kurtis or Kurtis threw a chair at Konrad or literally nobody knew where Latona had been for the past six hours, and smiled and nodded and let it seep through her head without trace.
Swearing on its own, fine. Swearing as you buckle to the ground after a late, heavy challenge from Kuepper, bad. But it was the fact that Marica Kuepper had actually managed to find the emotion of 'guilt' from somewhere in her calcified soul... that terrified Strauss.
"Uhm," said Kuepper. Muscadin writhed. Someone waved on the physio and, Christ, the physio waved on a guy with a stretcher. Kuepper paced uselessly. So did the rest of the team - nobody really knew what to say, especially as the stretcher-bearers hustled by with their cursing cargo, trying to paper over tears with bluster.
She knew what this meant, too.

Daniella Strauss was already weighing up replacements by the time she went to visit her stricken charge. Hers was a mind that never stopped, especially with the spectre of a tournament so near overhead. Sander Katarec? In patchy form at best across the season. Nike Rouphos? Too old. Who even were the in-form Nepharan leftbacks at the moment? Ferry Brandt at Southfell? Monika Strasbourg all the way out in Chromatika? But no way in hell was she handing out a debut cap in the World Cup. She'd have to gamble on Katarec, or... maybe just pack on another centre-half or midfielder. Or a defender who could flex over there. Cedella Verlander, perhaps, could she...
She came across the lead physio, Marcia Pollard, whose marshmallowy demeanor and, well, other attributes made her well-liked by the club, sitting faithfully by Muscadin's side. Unnoticed, the manager waited them out, listening to Pollard do her best.
"I just... I just... been waiting my life for this," sputtered Muscadin, nervous as an old horse being taken out the back of the barn. "Fuck, I don't deserve this. I worked so hard--"
"I know, dear," soothed Pollard.
"Worked so damn hard!"
"I know."
"Done everything ever asked, and... and... fuck! It's... I know, I know, there's no point saying things're unfair, life's unfair, but..."
"Breathe, Vivica."
The leftback tried to, but it kept coming back shallow.
"Breathe," said Pollard. "You'll be alright, okay? Don't panic. Take it easy. We'll have a look, we'll do our best to heal you, I know Sandrine at the Moths and know she'll take good care of you, too. The Cup's still two months out. There's room for you to make it."
Muscadin nodded, still pale but a little more calm at the very least. "Right. Right. Yeah."
"I'll just bring you a drink, get you hydrated..."
The physio got up, left through the door and startled slightly as she saw Strauss, her smile corroding into an anxious pout.
"So, how's our star patient looking?" Strauss ventured.
Pollard drew a thick finger across her throat. "Kkkhhhrhrt," she said, unnecessarily.
"Oh." Bedside manner only had to be at the bedside, she supposed.
"Still, she'd like company. She's got a lot to vent off her chest."
"Yeah, I could hear. I'll talk to her."
She walked inside, and Muscadin jolted slightly in bed. "Boss! You didn't need to come see me. What'd they say? A month out, maybe? I can take a month. Maybe a month and a half. But I'll be ready and able when we get to the gridiron lands, believe me!"
"I think Newmanistan are big into baseball more than gridiron."
"Whatball?"
"Nevermind." Strauss lowered herself into the seat, grimacing as a knee frayed by twenty good years of a decent career gave its usual complaint. "Anyway, look. You're from west Sabrefell, like me. No bullshit, right?"
"Right. I can take the truth, boss."
"Your World Cup's over before it begins."
Hm. Okay. As the colour drained from Muscadin's face, Strauss reflected she may have overdone it.
"Well, it might be-- I mean, you might recover faster than--"
Muscadin glared confused, teary daggers back at her. "You said no bullshit!"
"Okay, well. Yeah, that's what it's looking like."
"Fuck! Boss!"
"Well, hey. Hey. Listen to me for real, Vivi." Strauss reached over and put a steadying hand on her stricken defender's shoulder. "No matter what happens over the next weeks, let's be entirely clear about this; you have a future in the green and black. It doesn't matter where I see you this World Cup; you'll have the one after. And the one after that, and I'm sure after that."
Muscadin sniffed. "Yeah?"
"Yeah. You're a special player, Vivi. Hard as nails, quick as lightning, lethal on the cross. You've got everything it takes and more. I wish Morena had your pace, I wish Stride had your needle." She gave the shoulder a squeeze. "You've already won your first trophy with us, and it won't be your last."
Muscadin steadied, calmed. For a moment, she almost seemed at peace with the situation.
Strauss decided it was time for levity. "So it's fine. We'll go there this time and bring back the trophy to your bed. Maybe dedicate it to you in an interview or something."
After a second to process, Muscadin teared up for good this time. "Fuck's sake, boss! Don't win the thing without me!"

Roxelana Thorn never slept easily before a big match. Qualifiers? Out like a light. But the World Cup itself was special.
Every group stage game was so, so crucial, and there was a target on the Cormorants' backs from the start. Siovanija and Teusland had zero expectations. They also had perhaps a future world-class goalkeeper, one of the top emerging defenders in the Premiership, a prolific goalscorer in Ribbeck and the small matter of the second-best player in the world. And given that Rowena Strongbow was focusing on her club career / abandoning the Cormorants in their hour of need / still really mad about the FFR, Thorsten Kramer was the best at the World Cup.
Thorn found a warm body helped. Ilyana Brosch was that warm body, someone who slept with blissful ease. But tonight, even she couldn't stop her remembering.
She remembered the dread after the first defeat last campaign. She remembered throwing up after the second. She remembered the way that nobody had felt like talking. That Strauss was a dead woman walking, and everyone knew it. The weird shady guy the FA sent. The hedge wizard, and her censer.
She remembered walking out against NFX, remembered finding one rousing speech for the boys even if she couldn't find the words. How victory was somehow almost easy there, how it surely didn't matter, how it did in the end.
She remembered throwing up again.
She remembered how nothing could ever be taken for granted again. Battling through the satyrs with the bold call to conserve Strongbow's strength, Moxham returning from her punching-a-guy suspension to lead them to victory. She remembered unlikely heroes like Muscadin herself, forced to start against Eura and scoring within minutes, and Aristide Metzger seeming almost cursed with misfortune until they needed him most.
She remembered destroying every enemy in their path until it seemed inevitable that the Free Republics were just another bump on the warpath.
She remembered feeling too sick to throw up. Too broken to cry. Replaying every last moment of that damn final until she'd wiped them all from her mind from overexposure, all bar the Strongbow sending-off. She remembered throwing the first punch at the winger at the bar, after too many drinks, missing and stumbling and knocking herself out on the counter.
She remembered, most of all, her pledge to never feel like that again.
This time, they were going to go one better. This time, they were going to win the damn thing.
She opened her Annals to a fresh page, and began, once again;
This is our year.
WCC Grand Slam champion.
Accidental Gridiron Championship Silver Belt holders for six cycles??

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Newmanistan
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Posts: 5277
Founded: Feb 17, 2005
Compulsory Consumerist State

Postby Newmanistan » Wed Sep 30, 2020 6:19 am

THE ROCKET REPORT

WORLD CUP 86 ABOUT TO KICK OFF


By Brianne Henry,

This is a moment that we have been waiting for ever since we were awarded the right to co-host World Cup 86, along with Drawkland. This is a monumental honor that has been bestowed upon us here in Newmanistan. Personally, I have made an individual decision to make covering this competition my final tour of duty with The Rocket Report. I will be retiring at the conclusion of this tournament. This has been discussed with my superiors here, so they all knew it was coming and left it on me to make the public announcement when I saw fit to do so. I am not sure who my replacement here will be. All signs point to it being Taylor Larson, as she has the most international experience after me, and she has come a long way after an interesting start to her career as a journalist.

Anyway, enough about me, that is not why you are reading this. Very soon, soccer stadiums across the Empire will be full with passionate fans from some of the greatest nations in the sport. Among the 16 nations competing here will be top ranked Banija, who had a perfect qualifying campaign and will be hoping that they have not peaked too early. World Cup 84 champion Farfadillis will be playing here, as well as former champion Eura. The greatest soccer nation of all-time, Valanora, will be playing games in Newmanistan as will the longest tenured, The Holy Empire. Mix in aspiring nations looking for greatness, and our half of the tournament will provide plenty of excitement. On the Drawkland side, there are more legends of the sport, highlighted by Starblaydia and Vilita, as well as other former champions like Nephara, Cassadaigua, and Audioslavia. Hungry nations like Turori and Baker Park, that are getting close to that first World Cup title are also present. That side has their splattering of up and comers too looking to make a statement. The knockouts will be thrilling, but within the group stage, there will be so many entertaining head to head matches.

So, what made Emperor Michael V agree to present a bid for this competition in the tournament, when we as a nation have not had success in the World Cup itself. Jeremy Brooker, of the Newmanistan Soccer Association said it was important to bring the nation to the forefront in this sport, “Most nations think of Newmanistan sports and think baseball, or think of us as the guys that run the stock car racing association. You can go to some places and talk about Newmanistan soccer and they will interrupt you and ask, ‘Newmanistan has a soccer team?’” he began, before continuing, “They are just being sarcastic, of course, but we have never been able to establish ourselves as a nation that participates in the World Cup. You can mention the three Cup of Harmony titles, or the Baptism of Fire win, and that will get a head nod and a shoulder shrug. But this, hosting the World Cup, is not about our soccer team, it is about showing to the world that the Newmanistanian fan knows the game and appreciates it. We have great venues that can provide a great atmosphere, and that has been proven in the other sports that we have hosted. Now, we can showcase them to the biggest audience out there!” Newmanistan did host World Cup 49, but the current generation of fans wants to have their own experience, something also not lost on Brooker. “There has always been that voice from this generation of fans that they would love to experience what we once did 38 World Cups ago. For some nations, that is 76 years ago, for others it would be twice that. Some might be less. But regardless of the calendar used by a nation, it has been a long time, and our fans have earned the right to have this competition on home soil.”

Like World Cup 49, the championship game will be held at the Tundra Falls Proving Grounds. Things are expected to be calm and normal for this one, even with the possibility of The Holy Empire making the final again. We all have heard the stories of what happened with them back in World Cup 49. On the morning of the match, at sunrise, there will be a special blessing of the turf by Church leaders and requests to the Spirits to look out for the safety of the players and the fans. We’ll talk more about that later.

Now, this is also the point in an article where we should talk about the team. After all, Newmanistan is in the World Cup for the first time since returning to the international scene. The last time Newmanistan qualified for the World Cup was the 54th edition, so using our calendar, it has been 64 years. That will make it the first time in my lifetime, and even in the lifetime of many of the athletes composing the roster of Hampton Island that we will be in the most prestigious tournament in the World. When former manager Miguel Hernandez was relieved of his duties in the middle of the tough first half of World Cup 85 campaign, the Newmanistan Soccer Association wanted to find a manager that knew how to get a national to qualify. Drawkland native Michael Starre became the first foreign manager ever to lead the Rockets, and he did a good job for the remainder of qualifying, using the personnel that he had. Newmanistan did not make a run that led to qualification, but they did well even if the ensuing Cup of Harmony was a disaster. Now, in World Cup 86, Starre will be leading the Rockets in the World Cup. Sure, he did not have to do it through the conventional means, but now the nation is hoping that his experience can lead to success.

What would be considered a success for Newmanistan, however? They enter the World Cup as the #38 ranked nation in the world, along the lines of a Chromatika, who are #37. So, the question would be, what are Chromatika’s expectations? I took a look at a recent publication of theirs and they mention a 1-1-1 record. Seems fair enough for them, and maybe for us. Beating The Sarian needs to be the win. Of course, The Sarian sees us in the same light. The draw? Is that Zwangzug in the opener and we lose to Brenecia? Can we go 2-0-1 in this group, or even 1-2-0? We have one thing over the comparably ranked Chromatiks being that we are a pot 1 team. We don’t have a Banija, we just have a Brenecia. Home field advantage will be nice, too. We have seen Brenecia in the Campionato Esportiva. Can we sneak into that round of 16 for only the second time in our history? That is a reasonable hope.

The first match is against Zwangzug, and people all around the Empire are getting all the baseball cliches and terminology out to use for this matchup. They, too, are known first and foremost for baseball, whether they want to admit that or not. Their soccer program, however, has come a long way recently, and they are far ahead of where we are. They aren’t an Aguazul, of course, but they have to be happy with where they are at this point. More than likely, they love what the group draw provided them, but we know that they will not look past us. Don’t strike out in this game. Hit it out of the park with this opportunity. There, I reached my quota of baseball cliches to use for the match.

The excitement and anticipation is picking up. Enjoy the entire World Cup.
Six-time World Baseball Classic Champions
NEWMANISTAN SPORTING ACHIEVEMENTS:
CHAMPIONSHIPS: DBC 4; 27th BoF; CoH 34, 36, & 37; Oxen Cup 12; WBC 10, 12, 15, 17, 41, & 43; IBC 4, 5, & 29; CE 26; WLC 1
Runner Up: DBC 5 & 6; Oxen Cup 6; WBC 7,9 11, 14, & 45; IBC 1; WB 4, 6 & 34; WLC 2 & 3
World Cups qualified for: 46, 48 (R of 16), 49, 50, 54
Hosted: WORLD CUP 49, WB 1, 2, 5, & 35; WBC 8, 11, 14, 19, 38, 44, & 46; CoH 33, 35, & 39; CE 25, WLC 2, 4 & 5; WCoH 10, IBC 24, NSSCRA, Multiple NSCAA Basketball Tournaments, and a horse racing series

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Savojarna
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Postby Savojarna » Wed Sep 30, 2020 10:17 am

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@SFFB_international

We're incredibly excited for the start of #WorldCup86 tonight, and so are @Pitchnerds_off who sent us a new installment of their preview series, covering #Savojarna #Valanora #TheHolyEmpire and #Reçueçn! Make sure to check it out before the fun begins... #weareBACK

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7km7yIWogs
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Banija
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Postby Banija » Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:30 pm

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The man with a plan- How Kadongo Kamu manager Marcus Waters rose from obscurity in Equestria to coaching a World Cup contender

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National team manager Marcus Waters looking on during Banija's final World Cup Qualifier against Chromatika


OLYMPIA, NEWMANISTAN- The Kadongo Kamu have finally arrived in Newmanistan for the AOCAFs World Cup Finals, with the top-ranked Banijan national team being drawn into a group strictly full of regional rivals- Ko-oren- a team that we've played in the knockout stages 2 out of the last 3 AOCAFs. And then, we will face Chromatika in a competitive match for a shocking fifth time during this World Cup cycle, having played them twice during the AOCAFs(with them eliminating us in the quarterfinals), then twice in World Cup Qualifying(where we triumphed both times), and now, here in the World Cup Finals. And then, on the final matchday, it'll be Pot 1 v. Pot 2, where we'll take on Mriin at the cavernous Tundra Falls Proving Grounds. There will surely be a lot to play for- Banija has never won two games in a row to start a World Cup before, so like the past five consecutive World Cups, we will likely have something to play for on that final matchday.

It is a big World Cup for Banija. On one hand, that goes without saying- all World Cups are "big" World Cups. It's the World freaking Cup. In team sports, it literally does not get any bigger than this. And yet, for Banija, it is a crucially important tournament. As we seek to finally ascend to the mountaintop, and become one of those rare nations to win this tournament, this is as good of an opportunity as we've ever had to finally bring home the gold. We're coming off of a strong Qualification campaign, where we went 18-0-0 in World Cup Qualifying. We're ranked #1 in the KPBs. We've brought home bronze medals both in World Cup 83 and World Cup 85, meaning that we've come so close(the semifinals twice) with this generation, and yet, haven't reached it. But now is as good of a time as ever, eh?

It makes it interesting to see how Banijan fans will approach this. There will, of course, be the joy of a World Cup. And the thing about being favorites- everyone wants to see if they can witness history. Banijan fans will be heading to Newmanistan in droves for this tournament. And famously, Banijan fans are known to travel without tickets when their allotment has been sold out. Can it create chaos for host nations? Yes, but Banijan fans are well behaved. Still- there should be plenty of green and orange in those fan zones, and the national team jersey everywhere in bars. They might approach it with a point of pride- hey, we're #1! But the joy of expectations can come with a crushing weight. Can the players handle it?

The man tasked with attempting to guide the Kadongo Kamu to glory is none other than Marcus Waters. The Equestrian, a key architect of our national team program, is the focus of today's article. Who is he? He wasn't an especially heralded manager at the club level in Equestria- how did he go from club football in the United Hoofball Association, to leading the #1 team in international football? His own personal story, his own rise, alongside Banija's, is one of the most fascinating. There are plenty of non-Banijans who have benefited from Banija's rise in this sport- Aaron Aiza, Brian Emerson, Mark Grayson, just to name a few, but none more so than Marcus Waters.

Marcus Waters- Before Banija

Marcus Waters was simply a club manager in the Second League of the United Hoofball Association, managing a team known then as Whitetail Rangers HC(and known now as simply Rangers HC). For most of his tenure, they were in the Second League, which was the UHA's second tier. The UHA, of course, is the domestic football governing body of what is unofficially known as 'greater Equestria'- Freeport Isles, Crystal Empire, and the Equestrian States all have their professional clubs as part of this association.

The highlight of his own career was Season 10 of the United League, when the Whitetail Rangers won promotion to the United League by winning the Second League title. But of course, once you win promotion in a league, that does get you attention. Banija isn't that far away- and back then, our league wasn't worth much of anything. Now it is, of course, but not true back then. But winning promotions are the kind of things that will get you attention.

How did we find him?

It leaves the question- how did he get to Banija in the first place? Well, first, the scene must be set. World Cup 73, we all know how that went. World Cups 74-77, middling performances. 5th out of 7 in World Cups 74-76, 4th out of 10 in World Cup 77. All four cycles managed by Jan Cassallerus. But then, financial disaster. It'll have to be gone through in depth in another article, at another time. But what happened, of course, is clear. The Royal Banijan Soccer Association was mismanaged to the point of domestic bankruptcy. While league play was continued, we missed World Cup 78 entirely. When the associations' affairs are not in order, there is no other option.

But we came out of that. Enter the World Cup 79 cycle. New leadership- the RBSA's Executive Chairman is Adama Sowe, the future WCC Vice President. Adama Sowe was determined to look abroad. In an interview for this article, he told us that was how the Banijans could get respect. "Coming out of bankruptcy, it would be tough to find a foreign manager. We had to find one who we recognized had the talent to help us realize our ambitions." But even then it would be hard. The RBSA just coming out of bankruptcy- would they be able to pay their bills? Sign the paychecks?

After a failed effort to get Samantha Owens, another Equestrian, the RBSA settled on Randolf Cherry, from Drawkland. The Drawkian manager was ambitious, and wanted to succeed. While Marcus Waters was also interviewed for the job, he was given the assistant manager job, with special responsibilities for youth development. That meant, while he was the assistant manager from that point forward, he would also be the senior manager for the U21 squads. And that leads us to his first appearance as the Banijan manager- the U21 World Cup.

42nd Di Bradini Cup

Of course, this has been overtaken both in importance and in fame by the 47th Di Bradini Cup, of which the Banijans were winners. But this tournament, arguably, was the one that launched Banija from "capable of playing a strong match or two" to true rising power status. It was surely Gitonga Kahara's breakout tournament, the present national team captain. So many key national teamers through the years were from that DBC 42 squad- Kabir Jobateh, Alanso Tamba, Okonkwo Okparro, Jalang Ba, Ensa Camara, and Jumu Sanneh, just to name a few. But the Banijans came into that tournament with almost no expectation- although plenty of hype surrounding their star player, Gitonga Kahara.

The way that he got that team to perform was incredible. Nobody expected much- simply some highlights from Gitonga Kahara. But it turned out there was talented players all over the pitch for that version of the Vijana Kadongo Kamu. They rolled towards winning a group that contained Schottia, Filindostan, and Northwest Kalactin, as well as a 5-2 victory over the Commonwealth of Baker Park in the quarterfinals. Finishing the tournament strong, with a 2-0 win over Kita-Hinode in the 3rd place playoff really put him on the map. Maybe he'd be considered for some domestic jobs- could some of Banija's big clubs come calling?

World Cup 80 Qualifying- Interim to Only option

And how Marcus Waters got to be the manager. World Cup 80 Qualifying started disastrously for the Banijans. Only earning 8 points across their first 9 Qualifying matches, including losing to both of the group's unranked sides, was a massive disappointment for a program that was generally on the upswing. Off a high from their first ever AOCAF quarterfinal appearance, and the encouraging performance from their youngsters of course, they expected to compete for a spot in the Final. But opening with just 2 wins and 5 losses in 5 of your first 9 games? It was absolutely unacceptable.

Despite the progress Randolf Cherry had made in the World Cup 79 cycle, he was fired just halfway through the World Cup 80 cycle. Was it fair? That's the eternal question. They were probably trigger happy? But that's not really important to this conversation. Here is what's important- at the halfway point, following their fourth consecutive loss, Randolf Cherry was fired by the RBSA, for taking that step backwards. And Marcus Waters, as the assistant, was named the interim manager.

What happened from that point? Well, the national team started winning. All names were starting to float about, as many had given up on Banija's World Cup hopes- 8th place halfway through Qualifying, there was no way right? But Waters started leading this team to wins. They won six of their first seven Qualifiers under Waters, the other being a drew with Jeruselem. Needing likely four points against the top two sides in the group to have a shot at third place and the playoffs, Waters had a challenge.

And what was going on the backdrop? Oh yea- the Banijan-Equestrian War. Country divided, our home games being played all the way in the Royal Kingdom of Quebec. And then Waters continued to work his magic. Matchday 17- clinch three points in a must win against Turori. Matchday 18, away to group winners Ethane- Kiggwe Mavuto earning a late draw to send the Banijans to the playoffs. A 3-0 win against Mercedini in the first leg of the playoffs that sent Banija to the World Cup Finals for the first time ever(5-3 on aggregate). And after an interim run like that, you had to hire Waters as the manager, right?

Since then- Success

And Marcus Waters has been a home run of a hire. Ever since he ascended to the top, he has instituted a plan to build a winning national team. Building through the youth, investing in youth talent, keeping close kinship- he has been adept at adjustments, and he is a major reason this team has ascended to become #1 in the multiverse. He's always been ambitious- striving for his team to push for more. But look at the emphasis he places on youth football.

He's pushed for the youth national teams to perform. Banija has won the U18 World Cup(Sporting World Cup 8 ) in recent years, as well as the U21 World Cup(DBC 47). He does a fantastic job of promoting Banijan talent, and ensuring competition for playing time. All the players competing for a spot not only on the final 23, but in the starting eleven, keeps everybody on their toes. Now, of course, Kahara, Bultum, and Nzo would never get benched- but everybody else has to be on their toes.

People come in and out of games, he ensures a spirit of cohesiveness and togetherness. The higher you climb, the harder it is to do. Players like Kuma Bultum have big money contracts at big time foreign clubs. Keeping foreign and domestic based players on the same page, ensuring that the team is always working towards a common goal. He's a strong manager, and he is fit for purpose, to manage on the international level. He probably has the most job security in all of international football for that reason. Now, of course, there is a rising crop of Banijan managers who would love to take a crack at managing this national team, but barring maximum calamity, Marcus Waters has this job until he retires.

He'll hope to lead them to maximum success at this tournament. Can he do so? His opening match will be against Ko-oren. A team that Banija has had struggles against in the past, we defeated them in the Round of 16 of the most recent AOCAFs. But they are a tough team to break down. They defend well, and as a unit, and are expected to sit back and let the game come to them. Can he push the right buttons to break through against the Dragonflies and earn Banija a Matchday 1 win at the World Cup Finals for the first time since World Cup 83? We'll have to see. But, as always- in Marcus we trust.

Go Banija!
Last edited by Banija on Wed Sep 30, 2020 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Alasdair I Frosticus
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Alasdair I Frosticus » Wed Sep 30, 2020 2:06 pm

A Statement From the Holy Empire Football Association


HEFA would like to reassure the mundy nations in our group that they have nothing to fear from the MARG-20 probability virus.

Probably.

In particular, we would like to reassure the other nations in our group that there is absolutely no evidence that elves are more susceptible to MARG-20. Though we also concede that the lack of evidence likely reflects the lack of testing on this front.

The sequence of mildly improbable events that have impacted the Holy Empire's training ground are nothing to be concerned about. The nudity, the deflation of balls, the uprooting of goalposts, the breakfast buffet where all of the eggs were softboiled, the unfortunate incident involving Juan Tzimisces and the seagull - these could have all happened to any team, irrespective of any outbreak of a probability virus.

HEFA are also taking steps to avoid transmission of MARG-20 to you cute little mundy nations. The imperial squad is staying in a bubble next to the match sites; this is a literal bubble, specially imported from the Holy Empire for this purpose - though said bubble will not be operational during the actual football match. Imperial squad members are staying at least 2 metres apart from each other at all times, though since this is using non-Euclidian geometry and up to 11 dimensions at any one point, players may appear to be closer than 2 metres to mundies using Euclidian three-dimensional geometry.

Even if none of the above points turn out to be true, and none of the above measures turn out to be effective, the very worst that can happen to you is that mildly improbable events may occur to the infected. While we concede that this may lead to some slightly unusual events during our football matches, we do not believe that anyone is in any danger of lethal harm; or so we're told anyway.

We hope that this places everyone's minds at rest prior to the kickoff of the finals.

The Holy Empire Football Association
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Kandorith
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Postby Kandorith » Wed Sep 30, 2020 2:44 pm

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Shinonome Kyoai - International
News From The Empire



Back On The World Stage

Hayabusa has done the impossible for the Kandorese team. With winning the play-offs the Lotus Warriors have joined the ranks of the world's best once again. For the first time since World Cup 74 the Kandorese will be standing proud and tall in the upcoming event. For Hayabusa; an absolute triumph and his goal ever since he became the manager of the Kandorese national football team.

"An amazing feeling" Hayabusa chuckled when asked about Kandorith reaching the final tournament. "However this is not where it ends. I promised the nation and the people that I would go as far as we can go and that the group phase of the final tournament was one of the absolute aims. I think we can even have a lasting impact after this. Yes, we did struggle during the qualifiers but we can do better; we can show the world what we are made of.

With the players we currently have, I think we can be a very surprising side. I am however, very disappointed in multiple predictions, as apparently we do not stand a chance. We were the underdog in the Cup of Harmony, in the qualifiers and we are the underdog now. I think we can take the nations we have to take on with quite a surprising punch. I am absolutely glad we made it to the World Cup, but we have to think greater than this."

Even Though the Kandorese group is not the "group of death" for the team itself it is a tough group on paper; facing Turori, Baker Park and Audioslavia, the team has to be at their very best to maybe even score a single point. Hayabusa is optimistic about Kandorith showing their best, their best however, might not be enough. The largest obstacles are Turori and Baker Park; where Kandorith basically needs a miracle to win. Audioslavia is one of the nations which has been an absolute example for the Kandorese when it comes to football, to win against them would be the ultimate victory and morale boost.

Of course for Kandorith the first game will indeed be: Kandorith versus Audioslavia. A matchup which for Kandorese fans will be one they will never forget, no matter the outcome. For the first time, at least in recent memory, Kandorith will face one of the nations which served as an example for the Kandorese football style and culture.
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Turori
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WC86 Cocoa-bo Index - Groups E-H

Postby Turori » Wed Sep 30, 2020 5:14 pm

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World Cup 86 Cocoa-bo Index - Groups E-H


The "Cocoa-bo Index" is a concept that associates on the Cocoa-bo Marketing team orchestrated in coordination with the Turorian delectable outfits marketing campaigns designed to take advantage of widespread but largely disproven accusations that Cocoa-bo could be a performance enhancing supplement. The marketing campaign is, naturally, also designed as a way to drum up free exposure for the brand on social communication outlets such as twii.tur.

Combining both the accusations as laid out in the Dreamed-Realm led Cocoa-bo Commission and the perpetual Cocoa-bo marketing campaign "Everything's better with Cocoa-bo", the delectables giant created the Cocoa-bo index as a way of assessing the odds that each Nations competing in the World Cup 84 finals and used those scores to project which nations might advance to the knockout rounds of the World Cup Finals would advance to the knockout rounds of the competition. While the index has 'no formula', it is believed that a combination of Cocoa-bo sales in country, number of physical Cocoa-bo locations and number of 'shares', 'impressions' and 'overall twii's' referencing Cocoa-bo and originating from each competing World Cup Nation were factors in determining that nations's score on the Cocoa-bo Index. The Index for any individual nation would be rounded only to the nearest Cocoabo with Cocoa-bo unwilling to divulge the exact calculated scores or contributing factors on an individual nation basis.

Group E: Average Cocoa-bo Score: 2.0

1. ImageImageImageImageImage Starblaydia (9)
2. ImageImageImageImageImage Drawkland (26)
3. ImageImageImageImageImage The Hinodejin Empire (16)
4. ImageImageImageImageImage Hampton Island (32)

Group E: Top 3 Average KPB Ranking: 17.00


The host nation Drawkland are benefited in the World Cup 86 Group Draw by having no opposition ranked inside the Top 8 of the KPB rankings - a stark contrast to the Drawkland half of the draw's so-called Group of Death, Group H, which sees two Top 8 teams. While Drawkland's chance of advancing to the knockout rounds of World Cup 86 will be benefited by their comparatively weak class of opponents, so benefits their Cocoa-bo index and their projected odds of advancing based solely on that country's Cocoa-bo intake.

Despite a fairly tame Cocoa-bo score of 3, Drawkland easily walks out on top of Group 3 along with reigning AOCAF Champion nation Starblaydia. While Starblaydia remain a geographical Cocoa-bo hotbed, Drawkland have received a surprising boost in their Cocoa-bo Index with the anticipation that pop-up Cocoa-bo sites will be permitted at the World Cup 86 Finals and the delectables company will be able to establish a new revitalized stronghold within Sonnel. Drawkland was previously a target of the Better with Cocoa-bo during the 79th World Cup Cycle however the same care and attention was not at the time given to sites within Sonnel due to ongoing Cocoa-bo expansion plans elsewhere in the multiverse.

On the outside looking in for Group E are the Hinodejin Empire and the Hampton Island National Team. There is no H in Cocoa-bo nor is there a strong chance of these nations progressing to the Round of 16. Fresh off their first regional triumph in generations and a Runner-Up showing in World Cup 83, Starblaydia have their sights set on a record 6th World Cup title. Likewise, host nation Drawkland will be motivated to take charge of the group as their seek a best ever World Cup Finals showing.

Taking a look at the Average KPB Ranking of the Top 3 nations in the group; those who on-paper would be expected to challenge for the 2 group place in the round of 16; Group E's Top 3 average of 17.0 is the highest of any group in the Drawkland half of the draw.

Group F: Average Cocoa-bo Score: 2.25

1. ImageImageImageImageImage Equestria (15)
2. ImageImageImageImageImage Vilita (3)
3. ImageImageImageImageImage Pasarga (24)
4. ImageImageImageImageImage Terre Septentrionale (27)

Group F: Top 3 Average KPB Ranking: 14.00


In a heavily unbalanced Group B, Five-time World Cup champions and Turorian colonial rivals Vilita and World Cup 83 champions Equestria far outpace their opposition in the Cocoa-bo Index. Equestria itself is a former 5-Cocoabo nation though it has recently been downgraded from 5-Cocoabo to 4-Cocoabo by the Cocoa-bo Marketing Team. Equestria is often used as a proving grounds for new products in the Cocoa-bo repertoire and is also home to the greatest number of sit-and-chat style Cocoa-bo Cafe's. However, the recent Cocoa-bo Inquisition softened the fast-pace growth of the product within Equestria.

Geographical proximity and tax-free imports on Turorian goods also result in an abundance of Cocoa-bo throughout the Tropics of Vilita, although it is not a forefront product there is plenty of Volume to justify the 4-Cocoabo rating of one of the Top 5 nations in the multiverse.

It is a clean split in Group F both in the Cocoa-bo Index and on the KPB Rankings with 15th Ranked Equestria and 3rd ranked Vilita - both recent World Cup Champions, sharing a Cocoa-bo Index of 4-Cocoabo while on the other end of the spectrum, 24th ranked Pasarga and 27th ranked nation Terre Septentrionale carried Cocoa-bo Index scores of 1-Cocoabo and 0-Cocoabo respectively. With Rushmori side Pasarga being one of the lowest ranked Pot 3 nations in the draw, the average KPB of the Top 3 nations in Group F sits at 14.0.

Group G: Average Cocoa-bo Score: 1.75

1. ImageImageImageImageImage Cassadaigua (13)
2. ImageImageImageImageImage Siovanija & Teusland (20)
3. ImageImageImageImageImage Nephara (2)
4. ImageImageImageImageImage Trolleborg (39)

Group G: Top 3 Average KPB Ranking: 11.67


With Equestria getting dropped from its 5-Cocoabo rating into a 4-Cocoabo score many would have been looking at what the next nation to elevate themselves to the 5-Cocoabo level. Many would look at Cassadaigua to potentially fill that gap. The Dagan nation initially didn't warm up to the presence of Cocoa-bo on its shores - that was until Cocoa-bo made its way to Starksville and established overnight a permanent presence in the city and the potential for enhanced corporate relations as Cocoa-bo have also taken over as naming rights sponsor of the main footsport arena in Starksville. Now Cassadaigua is challenging Equestria as one of the top nations for Cocoa-bo sales per capita outside of the Vilitan Cove and most certainly the top of the charts in the Rushmori region.

There is little to no challenge in Group G for Cassadaigua who are the only nation in Group G to earn a score higher than 2 on the Cocoa-bo Index. The three remaining nations would be locked in a tight battle for the second and final transfer spot into the knockout rounds with Atlantian Oceania nation Siovanija & Teusland narrowly besting Nephara and Trolleborg for the honors of joining Cassadaigua in the Top 2. Siovanija & Teusland earn their second Cocoabo perhaps due to proximity as well as a series of recent battles in what has been quipped the 'Ampersand Rivalry' when Siovanija & Teusland have squared off against Vilita & Turori in AOCAF Regional Competitions, in the World Cup of Hockey and even in the Olympic Games.

Group G is the first group on the Drawkland side of the World Cup 86 Finals where the top teams in the Cocoa-bo Index for that group are not also that groups two top seeded nations in the KPB Ranking. Nephara, currently ranked #2 in the multiverse in the World Cup Committee's KPB Rankings, are ranked at just 1-Cocoabo by the Cocoa-bo Index and are not projected to advance among Cocoa-bo's World Cup 86 twii.tur based marketing campaign. This fact creates a statistical anomaly within Cocoa-bo's Group G projections as the group is the lowest rated in Drawkland on the Cocoa-bo Index with an average Index score of 1.75; but is just tenths of a point off the best mark for a Top 3 Average KPB Ranking in the group at 11.66 - over 5 points stronger than the hosts Group E.

Group H: Average Cocoa-bo Score: 3.00

1. ImageImageImageImageImage Turori (6)
2. ImageImageImageImageImage Baker Park (7)
3. ImageImageImageImageImage Audioslavia (21)
4. ImageImageImageImageImage Kandorith (36)

Group H: Top 3 Average KPB Ranking: 11.33


The Final group in the Drawkland half of the draw is also by far the most competitive across the board, both when considering the Cocoa-bo Index and the WCC KPB Rankings. As the home of both Cocoa-bo and the Cocoabo, it is no surprise that Turori are scored at the 5-Cocoabo mark on the Cocoa-bo Index and sit atop the projected Group H Standings. Of course it should be no surprise that the group Turori is in has one of the highest average Cocoa-bo scores in the entire World Cup draw. In addition to being Cocoa-bo's Headquarters, local affinity for the delectables and the numerous sponsorships that Cocoa-bo has throughout the country including as kit sponsor for Mliona-Lpaka AFC and as sponsor of the Cocoa-bo Fair Play award in the Vilitan League also contribute to the Nations 5-Cocoabo score.

Just behind Turori, however, is the Commonwealth of Baker Park with a Cocoa-bo index of 4. Cocoa-bo has been present in the homes of the locals in Baker Park for a number of years due to the unique licensing arrangement that Cocoa-bo established with the BCEL Beverage Corporation. As a result, the citizens of the Commonwealth had already shown a taste for the treat that was expanded upon three fold as Cocoa-bo descended on Cassadaigua & Baker Park for the World Cup 84 Finals.

With both Turori and Baker Park occupying the top spots in Group H there was no room left at the inn for either of Group H's remaining sides, Audioslavia and Kandorith. For its part, however, Audioslavia earned a Cocoa-bo Index of 3 which would have been sufficient to be projected to advance from any other group in the Drawkland half of the draw. In Group H, however, it would leave Audioslavia on the outside looking in.

With or without Cocoa-bo, it will be a tough hill to climb for the Bulls in Group H as some will consider it the dreaded "Group of Death" as the only World Cup group with two Top-7 ranked nations competing head to head. Turori and Baker Park will clash on the opening day of the tournament to set the stage for Group H and inform teams like Audioslavia which team they will need to take care of the most to improve their chances of overcoming the odds and advancing to the Round of 16. While 21st ranked Audioslavia are a respectably ranked Pot 3 side, their 14 place gap to the next ranked team ahead of them in the group is the largest of any Pot 2-Pot 3 differential in any of the Drawkland based groups.


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:: Cocoa-Bo Eatery

Cocoa-bo, an establishment taking its name directly from the beloved national animal of Turori, started as a small dessert shop in Kionao. However, it was only after they added chocolate topped drinks to their menu that their popularity started to soar. As more and more patrons scooped up their chocolate flavored pick-me-ups, demand for the Cocoa-bo product skyrocketed and soon new franchised locations were popping up all throughout Turori. Shifting to more of a social 'hang-out' then just a casual place to drop in, get a dessert, and leave, the new locations started adding small foods such as Bagels for the morning, Soups and Sandwiches for Lunch or Dinner and Salads for the entire day.

Cocoa-bo has expanded outside of Vilita & Turori. Their first regional location was opened in Andossa Se Mitrin Vega and Cocoa-bo has opened temporary locations during major internationstatal events such as the World Cup Finals with past locations appearing in Drawkland and Cosumar. Cocoa-bo has a permanent presence in South Covello and is also continuing to grow its presence in Starblaydia, the Equestrian States and the Free Republics. The company continues to further increase its image by partnering with Motorsport teams and expanding the company footprint across Atlantian Oceania and beyond. Cocoa-bo are also the kit sponsor for Mliona-Lpaka AFC in the Vilitan League.

Cocoa-bo's largest current markets are, in order, Turori; South Covello, the Equestrian States, Vilita and the Free Republics. Cocoa-bo has recently expanded to the region of Rushmore through its hub in Starksville, Cassdaigua and has a bottling, distribution and local product exclusivity license with the BCEL Beverage Company in the Commonwealth of Baker Park to maintain a product line of Cocoa-bo drinkables in the Commonwealth.


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<Silexhera> Why does Turori make sense? :p

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Eura
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Postby Eura » Wed Sep 30, 2020 5:53 pm

emplor.eur/main/sport/football
THE REVIEW: EURA REGAIN FORM IN LAST QUARTER TO QUALIFY
Key players overcome double Pasarga defeat, on-pitch brawls and an embarrassing home loss to seize second in group

Report by our Euran international team correspondent Isabel Haynes


Eura 0 – 1 Pasarga @ Bastion Arena, Bastion, Eura
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox, 4. C Roberts (sub T Sutton 84), 5. D Steele, 3. S Burns, 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw, 11. D Bowman, 12. R Griffiths (sub H Patterson 67), 7. M Woakes, 9. B Bond (sub J Fletcher 71)

Eura’s desire for revenge against Pasarga for the latter’s victory in Torgos was disappointingly lacking in this critically important qualifier. The team looked lacklustre on all fronts and created sparingly few chances in the first half. Pasarga then took the lead in the 52nd minute through the gifted feet of Bastion’s Jan Gersten. Gersten spurned further opportunities to score at his club ground and it was only in the final twenty minutes, as Eura took on a much more attacking shape, that the hosts began to threaten Ambrus Galambos in the Pasarga goal. No equaliser came and Eura were forced to take a long hard look in the mirror at themselves after the game, having not just lost, but lost poorly.

Megistos 5 – 6 Eura @ a stadium in Megistos
Woakes 10, 35, Bond s/o 12, Burns s/o 12, Griffiths 21, Roberts 55, Fletcher 58, 67
Eura – 30. V Simm, 21. S Fox (sub D Steele 45), 4. C Roberts, 19. J Newton, 3. S Burns, 6. M Rowland, 8, 18 H. Patterson (sub F Bevan 15), 11. D Bowman (sub J Fletcher 15), 12. R Griffiths, 7. M Woakes, 9. B Bond

An obscene scuffle and four red cards marred one of the highest scoring games in Euran international history. The 12th minute flurry of fists came after Eura had taken the lead through Moira Woakes, at which point an exchange of words between Fri and Stanley Burns ended with Fri assaulting the Euran defender, throwing a punch right in front of the referee. Burns reacted and so did the rest of the players, leading to a disgraceful brawl that mostly engulfed the Megistos players but also the Eurans. In the end all four of Fri, Burns, Fran (another Megistos player) and then Bond were sent off, much to the fury of the Eurans who felt Megistos should have received four or even five reds.

The integrity of the game was no doubt undermined by this incident which threw both sides off tactically and left Eura in need of two substitutions due to injuries incurred in the fight. What followed was more or less a glorified training match, with neither side in a fit state to complete the game professionally. Megistos took advantage of the situation and overcame their lack of quality to score five goals, but the Eurans superior talent gave them the edge. Once the “match” was finally over, the EFA condemned the behaviour of Megistos’ players, management and the inability of the referee to control the game. ‘In our many years in international competition we’ve seen a lot of foul play, however this was an extraordinary level of bringing the game into disrepute.’ It is understood that after an attempt by authorities in Megistos to press unspecified charges against Burns, the EFA and Euran Government have retaliated by deciding to ban all Megistos fans from future international fixtures in Eura.

Eura 2 – 3 Grand Quebecois @ Bastion Arena, Bastion, Eura
Coles 49, Robshaw 56
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox (sub S Coles 45), 4. C Roberts, 5. D Steele, 23. L Almwood, 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw (sub H Patterson 78), 11. D Bowman, 12. R Griffiths (sub T Sutton 74), 7. M Woakes, 14. J Fletcher

The farce against Megistos left Eura in a spin, especially after appeals to overturn one match bans for Burns and Bond failed. Eura returned to as near full strength as they could get against Grand Quebecois. However they appeared disorientated by recent events and fell to a shock 2-3 defeat, just as they had against Acronius in the first half of qualifying. This time there was no unlikely comeback; Eura went 2-0 down in a shocking first half display, before recovering to 2-2 (thanks largely to the intervention of veteran substitute Scott Coles), only to concede a penalty in the middle of the second half that saw the visitors steal a winner. Eura were unusually booed off the pitch in Bastion at the final whistle. Few would argue the hostile reaction was undeserved – Eura were now fighting for their lives to secure a playoff, let alone qualify automatically.

Acronius 2 – 5 Eura @ a stadium in Acronius
Bond 22, 79, 83, Patterson 46, Robshaw 88
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox, 4. C Roberts, 5. D Steele, 3. S Burns, 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw, 11. D Bowman, 12. R Griffiths (sub H Patterson 45), 7. M Woakes (sub B Malone 67), 9. B Bond (sub M Fox 89)

After two defeats in three games this was a must win fixture for Michael Brandon with press speculation mounting about his future if he put Eura through the ringer in qualifying a second time. Last time Eura had played Acronius, they had succumbed to an improbable late comeback. It seemed that another humiliation was on the cards at half time, with Eura 2-1 down despite Bond scoring a terrific free kick on his return. Brandon responded to the situation by bringing off Griffiths – yet another disappointing performance from him – and replacing him with Henry Patterson. The Directus midfielder made an immediate impact, lashing a shot into the roof of the net from 25 yards.

It looked like Eura might fail to win the game, only for them to turn the tables on Acronius from their comeback in the previous fixture. In an unusual twist of fate Eura scored a superb trio of goals in under ten minutes. Bond got his second in the finest style possible with a spectacular overhead kick from a Bowman cross, before completing a hat-trick by dribbling past three players and making Acronius goalkeeper Charlie Rowland look sheepish with a nutmeg finish. Vincent Robshaw then completed the rout with a beautiful curling effort from range to make it 5-2.

Eura 3 – 0 Fujai @ Bastion Arena, Bastion, Eura
Robshaw 17 (pen), Burns 60, Woakes 73
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox, 4. C Roberts (sub J Menard 80), 5. D Steele, 3. S Burns (sub L Almwood 67), 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw, 11. D Bowman (sub A Woodman 33), 12. R Griffiths, 7. M Woakes, 9. B Bond

The same side that beat Acronius came back to Bastion and ran out 3-0 winners against Fujai as Eura regained their composure and confidence going into the final run of games. Robshaw scored his second in as many games from the spot (he’d won the penalty so Bond gave up the kick), before Burns doubled the lead with a low flying piledriver from range after half time. Woakes then put the game beyond Fujai’s reach with a stunning third, continuing her fine form by beating two players with ease before finessing a sublime finish into the bottom left hand corner.

Timuria 1 – 2 Eura @ a stadium in Timuria
Bond 7, Woodman 27
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox (sub S Coles 69), 15. J Menard, 5. D Steele (sub J Newton 60), 3. S Burns, 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw, 16. A Woodman, 18. H Patterson (sub R Griffiths 81), 7. M Woakes, 9. B Bond

It was a near repeat for Brandon’s team in the return fixture against Timuria, with the exception of Kevin Belgrave being denied a clean sheet this time around by a late Ertan Renda consolation goal. Eura once again scored twice and did it much earlier this time, taking the lead in only the 7th minute when Bond turned in a low Patterson corner, before Adam Woodman tapped in from close range from a Woakes free kick on the other side of the pitch. Timuria’s defensive focus and fortitude left them unable to find an equaliser after Benda gave them the chance to do so with his goal.

Eura 1 – 0 Drunk People at the Local Tavern @ Bastion Arena, Bastion, Eura
Humphreys 30
Eura – 30. V Simm, 25. A Watts, 15. J Menard, 19. J Newton, 23. L Almwood (sub A Ingram 45), 24. F Bevan (sub C Ashton 45), 22. H Humphreys, 20. F Wright, 18. H Patterson, 16. A Woodman, 14. T Sutton (sub M Fox 64)

In the first half of qualifying rotated sides were more common for Eura, who were now starting to tire under the demanding schedule, with the first team carrying the weight of the recovery in the last few games. Therefore a full rotated team took to the field in front of a rare sight in Bastion – a below capacity crowd. The regulars, both fans and players alike, were not missing much. Eura never looked threatened by the Taverners and were content to sit on a 1-0 lead throughout, having earned it early through Harry Humphreys neat finish.

Vdara 1 – 4 Eura @ VdarArena, Chania, Vdara
Bond 18, Woakes 34, Robshaw 44, Griffiths 90+1
Eura – 1. K Belgrave, 21. S Fox (sub S Coles 86), 4. C Roberts, 5. D Steele, 3. S Burns, 6. M Rowland, 8. V Robshaw, 11. D Bowman, 12. R Griffiths, 7. M Woakes (sub J Menard 77), 9. B Bond (sub J Fletcher 65)

Doing justice to the fans should always be one of the top priorities of a football team. At this stage the battle for second place in qualifying Group 3 appeared to be over after a series of setbacks for Vdara in previous fixtures, while Eura had now won four on the bounce. That meant pride was on the line as the VdarArena’s capacity crowd of 52,500, packed in for the visit of Eura, waited in anticipation of the home side giving the fans the performance they deserved. Instead were forced to witness the noisy contingent of 5,250 Euran fans drive their team on to a thrilling victory. Eura put their qualification credentials beyond any kind of doubt by sweeping away Vdara’s resistance with a series of precise attacking moves that dismembered the home defence.

Their attacking masterclass was something to behold. It was 2-0 before the home side could regroup thanks to goals from Bond and Woakes, before Robshaw made it 3-0 with a powerful volley on the stroke of half time, a memorable goal to mark an important victory. Vdara could have thrown in the towel without too much judgement but they did not relent, instead looking for a way back into the game, giving themselves a sliver of hope in the 70th minute when Chirstoforos Lazelis skilfully controlled a difficult floating ball and dispatched it past Kevin Belgrave. Eura did not panic and managed the game professionally, grabbing a deserved (if a bit harsh on Vdara) fourth in stoppage time when Griffiths swept home on the counter.

Eura 6 – 2 Vangaziland @ Bastion Arena, Bastion, Eura
Fletcher 20, 26, Woodman 41, Patterson 48, Robshaw 62, Malone 75
Eura – 30. V Simm, 21. S Fox, 15. J Menard, 5. D Steele, 23. L Almwood, 6. M Rowland (sub C Ashton 63), 8. V Robshaw, 16. A Woodman, 18. H Patterson, 20. F Wright (sub B Malone 58), 14. J Fletcher (sub I Tomlinson 60)

All Eura needed to do on the final matchday of qualifying was secure one more win to guarantee automatic qualification to the 86th World Cup. They did so with ease despite going behind to Vangaziland in shocking fashion when inexperienced Simm deflected in a cross off his gloves. Simm made up for his error by setting up an equaliser in the 20th minute, his long goal kick catching the visiting defence off guard allowing Fletcher to race in and score. Further goals from Fletcher, Woodman, Patterson, Robshaw and a first international goal for Bobby Malone put Eura into an unassailable 6-1 lead. Vangaziland managed to score a second goal without the help of Eura’s goalkeeper this time, however the result was a good one to finish qualifying on for Eura. The crowd in Bastion were satiated for now after a challenging qualifying section had put both Michael Brandon and his players through several kinds of trouble on their way to the World Cup.
Last edited by Eura on Wed Sep 30, 2020 5:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
United Federation of Eura - Sporting achievements
Champions: WC66, WC73, CR23, CR27, CR34, Market Cup I, Next Generation Trophy, Gold Medal (Mens Football) Olympics IX
Runner up: WC60, WC72, WC78, CR16, CR20, CR32, CoH51, COH79
Host: CR24, CR37, BoF60, CR Under 21's and Under 17's



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Pasarga
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Postby Pasarga » Wed Sep 30, 2020 6:32 pm

To say that the Wanderers are severely disappointed with their World Cup draw would be putting it very lightly. Not only do the Wanderers have to deal with a recent champion, in Equestria, but they also have to try and deal with one of the all time greatest nations of the competition and still remarkably strong in the form of Vilita. These two Atlantian powerhouses are the bookies favorites to be advancing out of the group, coming in ranked fifteenth and third in the world respectively, heads and tails above the Wanderers at twenty-fourth in the world. The gulf in talent is not huge, it in fact is probably akin to the gulf in talent, or lack therof, between the Wanderers and that of Eura from the qualifying stage. However the advantage that the Wanderers had against Eura, such as getting one of those matches in Torgos, while also being intimately familiar with the Euran way of playing the game due to the amount of players based in Eura are missing from these tussles against the superior teams in the group. While taking points off one or even both of them is not an impossible thing to imagine, it does seem rather improbable going into the group as it is.

That being said, the Wanderers do have a bit of an unknown quantity to them that comes from their qualifying campaign, besides being able to do the double over their regional rivals and able to win a rather competitive qualifying group. Meriadoc Griffiths was appointed as the manager of the Wanderers because they had a pedigree of fluid and technically sound football that would put up goals by the plenty and keep the team competitive in even the most dangerous of groups, which the Wanderers have seen in both of the qualifying campaigns that Griffiths has been at the helm for. Something that was not considered to be part of the Griffiths package was that he could have the tenacity and wherewithal to be able to get his charges to win ugly even when the matches or form were not favorable for the squad. With the campaign that the Wanderers just had, where only a handful of their victories were of multiple goal varieties and having had to bounce back from several poor results at home, that ability to win ugly has been proven and could be a key tipping factor for the Wanderers as they look for the chance to advance out of a very difficult group.

The Wanderers will start their journey in Drawkland against Vilita, the third best team in the world if you are to believe the WCC rankings. Like many of the most successful team of the World Cup, the Vilita team likes to employ a variation of the 3-5-2 formation, much like Valanora and The Holy Empire, though theirs seems to have more of an anchor center midfielder compared to the attacking midfielders of the Vanorians or Frosticans. This means that the usual strength of the Wanderers, their stern and disciplined midfield, will be put up to a stern test as they will be outnumbered in the middle of the park. However they also like to push their wingers far more forward, meaning that our side should be able to get in behind and put a lot of pressure on their back three. That sort of pressure is exactly the situations where the speed and technical grace of Júlia Müller to be able to exploit. If ever there was a match where the Rozelle striker was meant to shine and perhaps snag the Wanderers some points that they should not be getting on paper, it would be this one with the way that the two formations and tactics look to line up. Yet the backline will have to be up to the task as they were against Eura or the talented Vilita attack could put them to the sword.

However it is not just the two Atlantian powerhouses and champions that have the Wanderers a bit upset at their draw, the fourth seed in the group is actually one of the toughest that the group could have. In fact, Terre Septentrionale is ranked twenty-seventh in the rankings, just three ranks below that of the Wanderers and were among the best fourth seeds in the entire tournament. In what was hopefully a match that the side was banking on to be a sure victory against in theory the weakest team of the group is now likely to be another very competitive fixture. The Wanderers will be taking on Terre Septentrionale on the second matchday and given that the two will have taken on the top two teams respectively in the group, it could be very likely that they will be fighting one another for the right to still be alive in the tournament. It is not a team that the side is very well versed against, meaning that the scouts are likely to be doing overtime to try and get a gameplan for the Wanderers prepared after watching their match against Equestria. Should the Wanderers still be in contention on matchday three, it will be the Ponies that they will be taking on. The group is difficult, the group is top heavy, but the Wanderers have escaped these sort of groups before and if Griffiths could find a way to get the side to win their qualifying group, advancing out of this Finals group is not out of the realm of possibility.

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WC86 - Recycle Time 1

Postby Vilita » Wed Sep 30, 2020 6:55 pm

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Recycle Time... Back again... Nikkii's Back... Back again...

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What? Old Tunes? Thats the point of Recycling isn't it? Well its time to get back in the slog and I'm here on site in Drawkland ready for the World Cup Finals! Woo! I'm ready to cheer on the Jungle Cats just like you are, right?

I've been enjoying my time in Raikennax so far - I got in town a little early just to experience some of the World Cup festivities especially knowing the Whirlwind that the later matches can be moving from city to city. This place is old. Real old. Pre-Drawkland old. They've got some great female athletes which is awesome. Maybe I can interview some of them while I am here. Really though that can be done from anywhere. I've mostly just focused on enjoying the sights. I haven't seen the stadium yet - its called "Castle Stadium" so I can't help but think of the Lirai Asku Castle in Yeaddin - home of the Yeaddin Owls and the 14th Winter Olympic Games. I know it won't be quite the same or nearly as cozy, however, as one of the biggest stadiums in the region with a capacity of about 150,000.

Now, lets talk turkey. Look we were all a little down in the dumps when we lost the World Cup Final to Farfadillis. We had never gotten so far only to fall so hard. Together, we had each others back. The Vilita National Team and its fans. They never allowed us to get our hopes up before. They never made it all the way to the Final only to lose at the final hurdle. They either won the whole dang tournament or crashed out early.

Speaking of which, tangent time. This is the part where I was supposed to transition super smooth into the fact that the Vilitan National Team crashed and burned in World Cup 85. But they did it early. They did it for you, the fans. But hold that thought. We'll get back to it.

CHECK THIS OUT!. Just so you know that you are not alone. That you are not a special breed of Vilitan National Team fan that is experiencing this on an Island. Lets go full Recycle and take a page out of forever ago. Literally from #the-archives.

World Cup 26 : Vilita

Vilita is most famous for their win in World Cup 20 over perennial losers Audioslavia. Apart from that time, they have never made it past the quarterfinals, and have not made it past the group stage for over thirty years. Despite that, they are still a team to be respected.


Raise your hand if you know what this is. Quickly. I see you out there raising your hand. Now we find out how smart you were.

This is the inscription that was on the plaque under the flag of Vilita at the NS World Cup Nation Hall of Fame walk-through in Spaam before the facilities untimely demise. There are some key aspects to this quote. Of course, back then they didn't know Audioslavia could actually win something. But it highlights the dichotomy that existed between these two equally famous nations at that time.

In Vilita, you had a nation that had achieved the ultimate sporting glory, Vilita was a nation that had won the World Cup. Every Vilitan Citizen alive at the time knew exactly where they were that day. They were proud. No one could take that away from them. Yet outside of that one triumphant tournament, Vilita had a history of being terrible. Sure, they would always make the finals. Then they would lose. During the legends era, they never once made it past the Quarter Finals - outside of course for World Cup 20. Although neighbors Turori were famous for having the most Quarter-Final Defeats without ever advancing beyond that stage as immortalized in their own Hall of Fame plaque just two Cups later, Vilita were just as good if not better at crashing out of the Finals at an early stage. The only difference was they could lean back on their World Cup Trophy and shrug. Who cares. We won when it counted.

On the other hand, a nation like Audioslavia - just imagine being a fan of the 'Slaves. Cycle after Cycle they would drag their fans on the ultimate emotional roller coaster, slicing their way through the knockout rounds only to run out of energy at the very end, when their fans needed them most. Losing the World Cup Final. Again. and Again. and Again. and Again.

Sure, if you were alive at the time the Jungle Cats won the World Cup, you might not have cared. But we have entered a new era. Some of you, incredibly, may not have even been alive then. Thankfully we have been blessed to live in an era where Vilita were the #1 team in the Multiverse - something they never fully experienced even after their initial World Cup title.

But now lets circle back. We, the Jungle Cat faithful of modern times, did experience something that no Vilitan supporter before us had ever experienced. A defeat in the World Cup Final. It may have felt very Audioslavian but lets be honest. It wasn't. Audioslavia managed to lose approximately 1093 World Cup Finals before ever winning a single one of them. Vilita on the other hand had won two in this decade alone before suffering defeat.

Sure, we all had dreams of becoming the first nation ever to win Six World Cup titles. We were the better team. We deserved it. We lost to Farfafukingdillis of all teams. Come on, right?

But, would you rather ride the energy all the way to the World Cup Final, only to lose it on penalty kicks as we did during World Cup 84? Or would you rather just bow out early if we aren't going to win it at all, like we did in losing 2-1 to Banija in Farafafukingdillis itself during World Cup 85?

I'm in it for the ride. We've already won a couple of World Cup's so our players know what they have got to do to get it done. We may not be #1 in the Multiverse anymore but we are still #3. Thats pretty damn good.

Clean Slate. Fresh Start. Don't get drawn against Banija. If we can get a knockout round match-up against Turori we're almost guaranteed to reach the final again. Lets go for it. Come on Jungle Cats!!!


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-¤-¤-¤World Cup 20 Champions¤-¤-¤-¤-¤-¤World Cup 68 Champions¤-¤-¤-
-¤-¤-¤World Cup 77 Champions¤-¤-¤-

Region: Atlantian Oceania - The Home of Sport

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Farfadillis
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Postby Farfadillis » Wed Sep 30, 2020 7:16 pm

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The Shango-Fogoa Basin is one of the major basins located in Atlantian Oceania. The oval-shaped Shango-Fogoa Basin broadly extends from the Banijan coastline to the middle of the Southwestern Sea, and from Farfadillis to the Busoga Islands. The basin is relatively small in size, not even accounting for half the surface area of the surrounding sea.[1]

The average depth of the Shango-Fogoa Basin is 3,050 m (10,000 ft), which makes it the deepest in the region. It is notable for the very steep descent it presents, close to the coastlines of its surrounding countries. This has made it come to be baptized “the Abyss” in Farfadillis.[2]

Biologists have found no evidence that the Shango-Fogoa Basin’s arbitrary delimitations would change the conditions for life in a significant way; nonetheless, it is one of the biodiverse places in Atlantian Oceania.[3] Almost all species found in the Basin are not found outside it, with the most notable exception being the Farf Kraken. The Farf Kraken has only been observed to reproduce at the deepest parts of the Basin, which has lead to the term Kraken Nest being coined.[4] The Krakens have historically presented a problem for trade involving Farfadillis. However, there have been no sightings close to non-Farf coasts, despite all relevant conditions being nearly identical.[5] In Farfadillis, this is known as the Why-the-fuck-do-these-krakens-hinder-only-our-trade Problem, and most sociologists agree it is one of the key factors behind Farfadillis’ underdevelopment when compared to the region.[6]

The origins of the Basin are completely unknown to geographers, despite vast access to geological data. Scientific concensus currently favors a theory of “extreme improbability” in which extremely unlikely events, which would not happen due to the laws of physics that other places in the region follow, lead to the creation of the Basin.[7] There is intense scientific debate surrounding the reason behind these extremely improbable events.[8] Before the collapse of Farfadillis, Alex Terán, then-President of Farfadillis, claimed Farf scientists had found the answer to this question. The collapsed followed shortly after his declarations, rendering the veracity of his claims unknowable. However, the scientific community does suspect there was truth to them.[9]

During the last ten years, the Basin has showed signs of rapid shrinking, an unprecedented phenomenon.[10] However, the trend has reversed this year, with the Basin looking likely to recover its former size.[11]

All species in the Shango-Fogoa Basin are considered endangered by virtue of their neighbours irresponsible manipulation of nuclear weapons, as well as nuclear waste. Notable examples of this include the Banijan Nuking of Farfadillis and the Farf nuking of Farfadillis. Farfadillis also has a long history of mishandling their nuclear waste.[12]

Ӿ Ӿ Ӿ Ӿ Ӿ

Alex Terán finished reading the article. He had many responsibilities — such as leading the country of Farolera and, more importantly, the FFFF — but he always found time for some good old procrastination.

“That’s it!” He exclaimed, then went to grab the phone. He had to make a few important calls to some important foreigners. He also had to, as he now realized, burn the FFFF headquarters to the ground.
The Outlandish Lands of Farfadillis Ӿ Population: 20,814,000 ± 11,186,000
Capital: not applicable Ӿ Demonym: Farf, plural Farves
ffffofficial.com.fa Ӿ FFL Results by Season Ӿ How to get any WA Category Ӿ Map of Farfadillis Ӿ Name Generator

Champions: World Cup 84 and AOCAF Cups 43, 48 and 57
Hosts: World Cup 85, Baptisms of Fire 54 and 68 and AOCAF Cups 38 and 60

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Commonwealth of Baker Park
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Founded: Jan 10, 2018
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Commonwealth of Baker Park » Wed Sep 30, 2020 7:33 pm

WC Opener no walk in the Park
Scott McCrae
The Daily Mail National Soccer Writer

There'll be no hiding for the Commonwealth of Baker Park and Turori National teams when they square off in the Group H opener at The Root Field in Elstrund--the 133,000 seat stadium constructed entirely of wood--as the #6 & 7 sides in the multiverse meet for the first time.

The Eels finished behind Siovanija & Teusland in Group 5 during qualifying, but present a formidable challenge for the Black & Gold.

BP were prolific offensively during qualifying averaging 3.6 goals over the 18 match schedule, with Annabeth Westmoreland, Lorenzo Taborn and Lainey Wadsworth all picking up the slack in helping out Jamari Bozeman, Sabrina Patton, DeAngelo Simmons and Tyrek Jones with timely goals.

Westmoreland in particular has shown a willingness to create chances for herself much more than in the past, her 11 tallies the most she's scored in a NT tournament. Her fellow Gallactico Taborn has risen to new heights during WCQ 86 at both phases of the game.


Lineup vs Turori:
Coffey; Briggs (c), Rasanamira, Stephens; Callum, Westmoreland, Taborn, Fernandez; Bozeman; Simmons, Patton
AOCAF LXII Champions
2x Under-18 World Cup (SWC 5&9) Champions
Baptism of Fire 67 Runner-Up
AOCAF LVIII (co-hosts), LX Third Place
World Cup 85 Fourth Place
World Cup 84 Co-hosts
World Cup 81/82/83/84/86 Round of 16
World Cup 80 Group Stage
Basketball
AOBC 5 Champions
Football
NSCF 21 Mineral Conference Champions
playoff semi-finalists
NSCF 18 Mineral Conference Champions
playoff quarterfinalist
NSCF 19 & 20 Mineral Conference Champions

Lacrosse
WLC Vice President
WLC 34 Fourth Place
WLC 30/31(host)/32/33/35 Quarterfinal
WLC 29 Playoff Round

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Newmanistan
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Compulsory Consumerist State

Postby Newmanistan » Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:00 pm

WORLD CUP 86 - NEWMANISTAN/DRAWKLAND


It's time to get World Cup 86 started!

If you are in Groups E-H, this cutoff is for you!
Six-time World Baseball Classic Champions
NEWMANISTAN SPORTING ACHIEVEMENTS:
CHAMPIONSHIPS: DBC 4; 27th BoF; CoH 34, 36, & 37; Oxen Cup 12; WBC 10, 12, 15, 17, 41, & 43; IBC 4, 5, & 29; CE 26; WLC 1
Runner Up: DBC 5 & 6; Oxen Cup 6; WBC 7,9 11, 14, & 45; IBC 1; WB 4, 6 & 34; WLC 2 & 3
World Cups qualified for: 46, 48 (R of 16), 49, 50, 54
Hosted: WORLD CUP 49, WB 1, 2, 5, & 35; WBC 8, 11, 14, 19, 38, 44, & 46; CoH 33, 35, & 39; CE 25, WLC 2, 4 & 5; WCoH 10, IBC 24, NSSCRA, Multiple NSCAA Basketball Tournaments, and a horse racing series

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Recuecn
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Liberal Democratic Socialists

Postby Recuecn » Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:07 pm

"Thanks for, uh, taking the time to meet with me," said Franky, Reçueçn's best striker, fidgeting as he he adjusted his seat.

"My pleasure!" Ägidius Heissler was smiling. He had retired from the team—and the sport—a couple cycles ago, but now he was back as the équipe nationale's new paraclete. "I know that you might think I'm just doing this because it's my job, but I genuinely am looking forward to this. I've been enjoying all my sessions with the rest of the team, and it's been great catching up with the boys. I think you're one of the last to schedule a session."

"Yeah..." Franky looked at the floor. The thought crossed his mind that this was a strange reversal of attitudes. Normally, between the two of them, he'd be the exuberant and excited one, while Ägidius would be the one more reserved. But this was making Franky uncomfortable enough that for once, he was shutting up. "I probably should have come a long time ago," he said. "I've had some stuff on my mind."

"I thought you might," said Ägidius. "I mean, there's a lot going on, after all. I'd love to hear what you're thinking."

"I talked to Gerauld about it a bit," said Franky. "I've just been feeling the pressure more lately than I ever did before. Nothing ever used to bother me, but now somehow it feels like, as a team, we're getting to the point where people are starting to pay attention, and that stresses me out."

Heissler looked surprised. "You're saying that when you feel like there's a lot of public attention on you specifically, it makes you feel... anxious?"

"Well no, not exactly. For one thing, I wouldn't really call it anxiety? I'm not worrying about anything specific. I just feel sort of on edge all the time like something's hanging over me. And the other thing is that I don't really mind when people pay attention to me. Like, I like that, I want it. I always wanted to be a star. I love that part, getting recognized in public and stuff and reading about myself in the news. I don't really care about keeping everybody else happy—I mean, if I'm honest with myself, I think I'm alright at that. But it feels like I can't keep myself happy. Like I'm scared I won't meet my own goals or something. And that's connected with the increased focus on the team, but I guess I'm not totally sure how."

"Ah, that's difficult," said Ägidius. "You're definitely not the only one to struggle with self-worth."

Franky cut him off. "I feel like that makes it sound worse than it is. I wouldn't want to say I have a negative self-image. I don't think I do."

"Labeling things always does make us take things more seriously than we did before," Ägidius conceded. "But that's part of exactly why it's so important to do that—to think about ourselves and do a little self-analysis. It sounds like you're already doing that, which is great. So I'm hoping I can help you as you go through that process." Franky didn't say anything, so he continued. "For example, earlier you said you don't think you have anxiety. And again, it's a natural response to want to reject labels, especially negative ones. But 'being on edge', like you said, or 'feeling like something is hanging over you' are great descriptions of anxiety."

Ägidius could see he was only making Franky more uncomfortable. "Maybe I could use a different word and it would make you feel better. What I'm saying is that, to me, it sounded like you were describing anxiousness. Not a condition, not a state of being: a noun, an emotion. It's great that you can identify your feelings and put your finger on that. It may not be healthy to feel that way all the time, but it's healthy to realize that this is how you are feeling."

"Hmm. You really dive right in, Äg, huh."

Ägidius laughed. "Yes, I sure do. The perk of not being a therapist is that I can do things my way."

"Wait, this isn't a therapy session?"

Ägidius was glad to see Franky in a joking mood again. "I mean we do have a team therapist and by all means, I encourage you to go see him. My interest in you is probably more personal. It's been so long! And then, professionally, of course, I'm interested in how you mesh with the rest of the team. But obviously it seems like you're doing pretty well on the pitch lately."

"Yeah... I guess."

"How are you liking Newmanistan so far?"

"It seems pretty nice! I'll be excited to visit Loudon when we go up tomorrow for our game against Savojarna, it seems like there might be a bit more to see there than all the car factories here in Centralia. But I mean, it's always exciting visiting new countries for these tournaments. Have you been doing anything fun?"

"I've been kept pretty busy!" laughed Ägidius. "I did go to a car museum with Bonheur yesterday."

"How was that?"

"It was fun. I guess they're really into NSSCRA here. It's like their national sport."

"I almost don't even think of car racing as a sport. I always thought of it as a hobby or something."

"Yeah, there's not much interest in racing back home, is there?"

"No... yeah, I can't even think of a single racer from Reçueçn."

"Me either."

There was a pause. Franky got up. "Well, thanks for chatting, I guess I should go, but I'll be back soon. We need to catch up more, and you've given me a lot to think about."

"I'll be excited to pick your brain again!"

"Alright then! I'll probably have some questions for you, too."

"It better not be about how I'm supposedly replacing the Coach," Ägidius groaned sarcastically.

Franky's look of surprise told Ägidius that that had indeed been exactly what he wanted to ask about. "Why, have you been getting a lot of questions about that?" asked Franky.

"You wouldn't believe it. I come back because I love the guy and want to work with him, and everyone thinks I'm here to end his career. It's the worst. I look up to him so much and I'm constantly being told I'm trying to stab him in the back."

"He gives us all something to look up to." Franky's thoughts turned from LaVoyard to Gerauld, and then to himself. The comparison with the two stars was not favorable, and he felt that wave of unease run through himself again. He shuddered. "Well, I'll be back soon."

"See you then!"
rəswɛsən

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Independent Athletes from Quebec
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Founded: Mar 20, 2020
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Independent Athletes from Quebec » Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:15 pm



Present Time…

‘Congratulations, Lionel. You had done it once again.’ Chochera Castillo sat right next to him on the first class seat of Aeroquebec Flight 8501, the specifically chartered flight by Aeroquebec for the Grim Reapers, as they headed to Newmanistan. Being an older man at age 74, and with all the age he had accumulated over time, the Guayabalense closed his eyes and lied in the full layover seat. ‘After all this time, I had believed in you.’

‘Thank you, Chochera. It wasn’t the easiest of journeys.’ Sir. Lionel nodded, as he started writing down his pregame notes ahead of the Quebecois national team’s first matchday against Eura. ‘The playoff leg against Graintfjall...was probably the toughest series I could have played in my managerial career. Glad that we have won it, though not without 97 minutes of exhilaration and maximum effort from everybody.’

Unlike his predecessor, Sir. Lionel could feel the tension all around him. Part of it was on how the Grim Reapers had come back to their tenth World Cup after eighteen years of absence. If all faith had to be said, the Grim Reapers did not play up to their expectations- their shameful performance against Devonta on both legs being one of them- and many had still felt that they wouldn’t have been through, if it weren’t for the crash course on the final leg of the stretch for Main Nations Ministry. Fortunately, they were lucky enough to have survived against Graintfjall, the reigning Baptism of Fire Champion, on away and then win it at home, which for now have drawn a storytelling ending for Lionel Mah.

‘You see, Lionel. I admit that the boys and the girls on your team….they are quite different than the Grim Reapers. Quite silly of me to tell this to you, but you have done well with this team.’ Chochera continued talking, trying his best not to say too much that’s out of line. ‘You have been through everything with those back in Quebec City. Meeting with RQFA, gathering your players at the Reneegrad Complex, full-scale flights for the first time in fourteen years…’

‘I know what you mean, but this was nothing, Chochera.’ responded Lionel, trying not to make too much out of his situation. 'I had done what was expected of me, and am glad the RQFA gave me the trust the Schottians had given a decade ago.' The 72-year old manager didn’t want to overblow his contribution nor his part with how the Grim Reapers, from a couple of mishaps, a poor Baptism of Fire run, and whatnot, to qualifying for the World Cup. Being a disciplinarian at heart, he had believed in his team fighting for each other, and that there’s only so much a manager can do...especially as long as they had each other. That’s how he always believed in things.

‘No, no, no, Lionel! I know it wasn’t easy.’ responded Chochera, trying not his words be misinterpreted. ‘But you knew what you wanted to get out of this team all along. After all this time, Team Quebec job was something you had wanted, and when the time came for the Grim Reapers to return, the Lord had called upon you to be a globetrotter once more. And then, you have done it!.....you have outdone late Sir. Kim Ji-Choon's legacies.’

'Since when did I tell you about those days?' Sir. Lionel asked, his memories slowly hazy and in loose as he got older. 'He's been a goner for two decades.'

A slow nod came from Chochera. 'Yes. But the team remembers. You know, like the salmon crossing his river upstream.'




Thirty Four Years Ago….

The Grim Reapers had done it! Royal Kingdom of Quebec are through to the 2012 sixty-ninth World Cup, the first in its history! Can you believe it?

It’s a good team, but did take longer than expected. Lionel Mah thought to himself, as the radio broadcast of the second leg of Grim Reapers’ playoff series against Taeshan rang loudly at his small apartment in the CSKA Complex, on the east end of the nation’s capital. Small but still holding two rooms, Lionel had found himself at relative ease with the comfort the space provided, especially on the after hours from the tenuous time he had spent- first as a player and then as a coach- with CSKA Quebec.

As he drank a glass of whiskey, he couldn’t help but to realise how quickly time flew by, and how life sometimes seemed to go past him quite unnoticeably. A native of Natashquan, Nord-Est, he had spent twenty years here after being recruited as a high school freshman by Sarah Acosta, then a rookie scout with the CSKA system who had since moved up a couple of ladders to the RQFA U-23 Technical Committee. Since then, life had just passed on him like he didn’t expect to- four years of academy, six years as a player, and then a freak injury that ended his career. Of course, the final part wasn’t easy to recover- he remembered spending being away from the team, going back to school at age twenty-four, and even had completed a Masters degree at St-Croix- before returning to the team at twenty-eight.

Now I’m thirty-eight, with three more decades to go.

Frankly, Lionel knew he wasn’t far away from a major gig. Since his return from schooling, he had come back with greater successes than his maman had expected. He had helped CSKA U23s to win three-straight titles, helped out with a couple of DBC national teams, and was shortlisted for the most recent World Cup qualifying team coaching staff that unfortunately did not happen. Of course the opportunity did not materialise- the assistant manager job went to Joseph Abanakewon-Masapik, who was a younger and more deserving candidate anyway- but the promises made by the RQFA gave him enough hope for now.

It’s a long race, don’t feel fussed over it, young man. That’s what 72-year old Sir. Kim Ji-Choon told him the very next day over the phone, as Lionel struggled to collect his breath in the middle of a drive to his son’s Baccalaureat examination.

Now, while listening to postgame commentaries, he was thinking more about the mistakes he had also made since moving to Quebec City. Sometimes, we all make mistakes and they are just as likely to bring unexpected joy as our checkmarks would. He couldn’t help but to agree with that statement, as he looked out the window. It was a festival outside, with fireworks, trumpets and Banijan Vuvuzelas- people were out in the streets like they hadn’t done before, and they were singing familiar tunes of the Army club.

Had I really celebrated those? He wondered to himself, as he just watched the sight of joy and pleasure that was unfolding before his eyes. Of course, he knew the answer to that- yes, and those endedly horribly. Discipline, the brand that he got Lionel to be well-loved and feared alike by his players, may have been true on the surface, but it definitely wasn’t always the case when he was still a player.

Lionel, like every ‘average Quebecois sportsman’ in his twenties, made enough embarrassments and plenty of mistakes, but then that’s probably not enough to describe it. Sure, the punishments for a lot of those deniliquents varied, whether it be suspensions, broken bank accounts, or even being stabbed on the street by loan sharks. Fortunately he didn’t end up on fans’ bookies because of that- Lionel, whose series of financial investments and savings have doubled and tripled over time, was too normal for such troubles.

Instead, he had just as bad of reputation in his player days as a fuckboi, and as someone who couldn’t keep his pants when watching Netflix with an apartment host. Ultimately, that’s how Lionel, after a few years of practicing the love bed with his work ethics, ended up being a father of three by age 23.

My boys, Theo, Robert and Gaston, my pride. He smiled, as he thought of how they had come into his life. Being a young footballer who was five-hundred miles foolisher and seven-hundred yards short of understanding the world, he had expected none of their arrivals. But life had brought them anyway, and he was glad for it.

Due to his coaching career, as well as FC CSKA Quebec’s strict living quarters requirement for the unmarried players and their coaches, he was rarely able to spend time with them. Still, he had loved all his three children equally, and did his best to visit them and have meals whenever possible. Sometimes it’d be at CSKA complex’s dining halls, where his eldest son played basketball, but he’d also fly on occasional weekdays to wish happy birthdays to his second, a London native, and third, who was attending prep school in Fort Lowe, Manitoba, that he billed all the fees for.

The least I could do, especially as a public individual, he nodded along, as he heard The Red and the Black being played by musicians along rue Isabelle-St-Bavard. He knew it wasn’t going to be enough for them, especially given how he was far from being ever-present in their lives, but at least he had never lost his contact on them. That’s something his late father, who had passed when he was twenty-one, would not have approved to start with, and Lionel knew better than to be a man known for abandoning his biological children.

Close yet distant. Perhaps that’s what had kept him from really deciding to find a married - the guilt of not really assuming full responsibility for their childhoods growing up.
Last edited by Independent Athletes from Quebec on Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:20 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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Drawkland
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Founded: Aug 27, 2013
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Drawkland » Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:24 pm

Image
WORLD CUP 86 - NEWMANISTAN/DRAWKLAND

Cutoff for World Cup Finals MD1

I'm Back In The Saddle tonight! Let's get the second half of MD1 in the books.

Results
Last edited by Drawkland on Wed Sep 30, 2020 9:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
United Dalaran wrote:Goddammit, comrade. I just knew that someday some wild, capitalist, imperialist interstellar empire will swallow our country.

CN on the RMB wrote:drawkland's leader has survived so many assassination attempts that I am fairly certain he is fidel castro in disguise
The INTERSTELLAR EMPIRE of DRAWKLAND
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Nephara
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Founded: Jun 06, 2014
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Nephara » Thu Oct 01, 2020 5:57 am

Siovanija & Teusland 2 - 4 Nephara
(4-4-2) 1 - Mercator; 18 - Rostock, 5 - Thorn (c), 6 - Brosch, 19 - Strassman; 7 - Kuepper (13 - Belgrade 68'), 4 - Shone, 21 - Moxham (8 - Cromwell 80'), 11 - Deventer; 9 - Bastable (17 - Basilisk 72'), 10 - Lovelace
Goals: Lovelace 13' 76', Deventer 52', Bastable 57' pen

It was the save of a career.
Spearhead Michael Ribbeck had turned provider, taking a ball on the chest from Bliznakov before turning inside, scraping across Brosch and curling a perfectly-weighted forward pass right into the path of Lukas Tauscher. The winger took a deft touch, had pace to burn on Thorn, and bore down on goal. Mercator came flying out to deny him, the boot flicked out and so did Mercator, somehow interposing a foot with enough force to send the ball looping... horribly... up and on top of the net.
The Ulsa keeper allowed herself a moment to lay out on the deck, before picking herself up off the floor. It would be dissected for a while to come, the way she'd perfectly weighted herself, judged Tauscher's trajectory and then - the save itself! - pure, luscious instinct and reflex.
But it would always be a little soured in Mercator's memory by the fact that Dimitrov's corner found the big centre-half Jager at the free post outmuscling Bastable to head home.

"We left ourselves open to that!" Strauss told them at the interval. "It's what happens when we don't finish our chances. Right? Kurtis doesn't drag his wide, or Konrad stays onside, or Morena shoots when the chance is there... this game's two or three or four one, and dead. Now we're in the shit. Can we dig ourselves out? That's the question. But let's not pat ourselves on the back about how productive a half we just had and how pretty we were on the ball when we're here with the scores level."
Ivy Herrick kept it more succinct. "Win or there will be consequences." There was more than a hint of murder in her eyes. It got the point across.

It came in a flurry, in the end.
Roxelana Thorn came out of the gates clapping and shouting encouraging platitudes she forgot the moment they left her mouth. Once the game was on, she went in flying on Ribbeck.
And missed. Shit.
Ribbeck played provider again, and again down the right to Tauscher, who thankfully fired first-time this time around. A low grass-cutter of a shot, too close to Mercator, beaten away with enough ease. But it had come close to something more damaging.
The pundits would talk for a while about this game's midfield battle, and how Shone and Moxham had stood up to the formidable challenge their way. Yes, every now and again something slipped past Moxham, never the most diligent at tracking back - the sort to press aggressively at Mihailov but clap her hands and curse when he found Thorsten Kramer - perhaps the best player in the world - behind her regardless. But that's what Shone was for, and saw him racing into free space.
Tawny Shone knew she had one caution to burn, and took no chances. Kramer went down like a sack of bricks.
"We need more bodies," Herrick muttered to her boss as the card went out, but Strauss dismissed her with a wave.
"Shone's brighter than you give her credit for. She'll adapt. And the two bodies up front are worth keeping. You'll see."

It didn't take long.
The Cormorants clicked into gear after the caution, and after Roxelana Thorn shouted at them to "fucking get it together, Christ", and other such minor profanities. The key was to press forward with intensity, and this was a task that Kurtis Bastable excelled at. For all Karl-Heinz Jager's world-class ability as a defender, something in him paled at seeing an inked-up Marcher hurtling at him full pace. Some primal instinct at the back of his mind played a crap pass halfway to Steimle that Konrad Lovelace stretched, actively slid to block away and desperately hooked back forward into the box from prone, Bastable and Jager wrestling for it, the striker winning and hacking the ball over to the other end of the penalty area, before going down and shouting for a penalty and stopping, suddenly, as Deventer smashed the loose ball home and wheeled away in celebration.
It was an ugly goal, but they all counted. The third was not much prettier, with Bastable again decisive, holding up the ball for seeming years, pressed up right into Niedermayer before pulling the ball off to meet Linde Rostock, racing into the box on the overlapping run.
Edgar Steimle, alongside, rashly put out a leg. Rostock tripped up on it, at first sincerely but then, presented with the split-second decision to stay on her feet or go to ground.
She fell. The whistle came, and Bastable blasted the penalty into the underside of the crossbar.

The Goldhorns were strongest down their core. Heuser, Jager, Kramer, Ribbeck - no squad in the world would turn down those four. It was down the wings that fatigue began to tell, the relentless runs of the fullbacks tearing holes in the defence. It was Rostock that nipped inside and played Konrad Lovelace in past the last man - a little too far past, while Lovelace managed a spectacular finish past Heuser it was flagged rightly for offside. It was Bremusa Strassman stepping out of Muscadin's shadow for long enough to rifle in a low cross that was just pulled wide by Bastable thanks to Niedermayer's gentle pressure. But this came as well with a downside - the space they left behind them, and the pace a canny operator like Tauscher could exploit. Just so long as someone could get the ball to him.
This time, Strassman didn't get in a cross, but hesitated for long enough for Vesele to nip the ball away from her feet. They tore off down the pitch, and she couldn't catch up quick enough, bundling him down right after he'd sent the ball forward to Mihailov - referee played the advantage - who took advantage of the midfield triangle to loose Kramer down the middle, who didn't even need to look up to send a beautiful long ball over the top where Strassman would have been standing, under normal circumstances...
... and where Tauscher was, here. The remaining three at the back shifted left. Thorn took Ribbeck, Brosch took on Tauscher herself, but Kramer was here to receive and fire back the one-two past Brosch, who was never going to match Tauscher for pace...
... and then it was just Mercator left. She stood strong, yet again, and this time parried the ball into the dirt when Tauscher fired. But it didn't spin clear, and the winger just leapt over her and her clawing hand and smashed the ball into the empty net.

3-2 wasn't 1-1. But momentum was a bitch, and the Goldhorns had established they could land a hit with a minimum of wind-up time.
Herrick, again, put it the most directly from the touchline. "FUCKING KILL IT ALREADY CUNTS," she bellowed, as it happened, near-directly into a pitchside mic.
Ysabet Belgrade raced on, all energy and frisk. Soon after followed Latona Basilisk. This was less popular. He was their best striker, yes... but exhausted, and slightly favouring one leg after an agricultural challenge from Jager. They had other players. It was time to use them.
And it was the two young guns who combined in the end to kill the game off. Belgrade, for her part, did more or less nothing but charge directly at Edgar Steimle and try to destroy his career every time either of them had the ball.
It felt right that the secondary assist came from a sliding challenge in this most concussive of games, Belgrade flattening Steimle in a fatal moment of hesitation.
That left one dangerous-looking ball plodding innocently towards the goal-line, and a variety of millionaires running like hell after it. A tired Bastable might not have been the quickest of them. Basilisk was, with ease, and had the presence of mind to nip inside. Cut back, cut back! prayed every Nephar, seeing Moxham unmarked and open and in a deadly position.
The impetuousness of youth disagreed. Basilisk fired low and hard at an impossible angle, the shot beat Heuser only to clank against the upright... and kept going to where Konrad Lovelace desperately stretched out a leg to tap it into the net.
Score ugly. Win ugly. It had been billed as a midfield masterclass. The fans had got a brawl. But the Cormorants had the privilege of not giving a damn; they had the points, after all.
WCC Grand Slam champion.
Accidental Gridiron Championship Silver Belt holders for six cycles??

Masculine, Feminine and Mixed-Sex Name Generators

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Siovanija and Teusland
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Posts: 598
Founded: Mar 01, 2017
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Siovanija and Teusland » Thu Oct 01, 2020 9:24 am

RBC Sports
Prematch Coverage: Siovanija & Teusland vs Cassadaigua


Stepan Stelik: Good afternoon Siovanija & Teusland, and welcome to Drawkland and RBC Sports’ coverage of World Cup 86. I’ve got Joseph Grassl and Paulus Leistner beside me, and we’re here to get you set up for matchday 2 of the tournament, as the Goldhorns take on Cassadaigua. First of all, gentlemen, let’s go back to that Nephara match - a 4-2 loss on the opening day, take us through it.

Joseph Grassl: A lot of the time when we come back to the studio after a loss, I’m usually not feeling very good about the game - you know, they got outplayed, or they made bad mistakes. But really - it was a rough, physical game, something both sides are comfortable with. The Goldhorns played a very good game, I thought - the Cormorants are just a better team. There’s no shame in that.

Paulus Leistner: I agree with you overall, but there was the one mistake - Karl-Heinz Jager giving the ball away with a poor pass that led up to the penalty. I know it’s just one thing, but when you’re playing a team like that you need to be perfect to get a result, and they weren’t. That’s ok, it was a good game overall, but it means that they will need to be perfect in these last two games.

SS: The Goldhorns already scored more goals in just those 90 minutes than they did in 270 minutes at World Cup 85 - goalscoring concerns lifted?

JG: I don’t think it’s fair to say lifted yet, they did look good today - especially Ribbeck playing as a bit of a playmaker at times, helping set up that Tauscher chance in the first half - but at the same time, it’s one game. And they’ve got a huge challenge coming right up today, with a team who looked pretty much perfect in game one.

PL: I’d agree with Joseph, it’s tough to say - they created a lot of chances for themselves, yes, but if they don’t get anything today or look poor then we’re right back to square one. I have to say, Kramer and Tauscher were both brilliant, and if that Tauscher chance in the first half had gone in, I think it’s a different game. That being said, that’s why Hesterine Mercator is one of the best keepers in the world, what a save she made their to keep it 1-0 for her side.

SS: So a good performance overall, but they did come up short. They can’t afford that today, though - it’s pretty much a must-win game, isn’t it?

JG: Yeah - a draw doesn’t do you any good, because you’ve still got to swing 6 goals your way on the final day to advance now. Honestly, it’s a very tricky situation for the Goldhorns. If Cassadaigua had only beaten Trolleborg 1 or 2 nothing, it’s a bit different - but 4-0 means the Goldhorns have to attack them here, and they have to get the win today. You can’t tie, you certainly can’t lose.

PL: Yeah, like I said - against Nephara they were 98% great, today they’re going to have to be 100%. I think it’s definitely possible, they can certainly pull it out, but at the same time I don’t think you can really blame them. It’s difficult to start out so well in your first game, but immediately be in a do-or-die situation for the second one.

SS: Can that be an advantage for the Goldhorns though? They know this is do-or-die, while Cassadaigua might have it in the back of their minds that they’ve got another chance?

JG: Not at all. We all saw how clinically they took care of business in game one - they want to finish up here today, and leave no doubt going into the final matchday, especially since they have to face Nephara.

PL: I think if the situation was different and Cassadaigua weren’t playing Nephara on the last day, you might see that - but no, especially with how they failed to get out of their group last time, Cassadaigua are going to be just as much in do-or-die mode as we are.

SS: Gavin Hughes is going with the same lineup for this game as the XI that faced Nephara. Would you have liked to see any changes to the squad, gentlemen, and do you feel it’s the right call?

JG: I don’t know who you’d have sit down. You aren’t going to bench Karl-Heinz Jager, one of the best defenders in the world, because of one mistake - and really, the core of this team all did very well. The only thing I might say would be to put in Lojze Kokalj for Kogler - Kogler wasn’t great, especially tracking back, and Kokalj might give you a bit of an injection of pace. But he’s also going to be an ideal option to bring on in the 60th minute or so if you need a goal.

PL: Who do you take out of that squad? The only position that you could even consider up for grabs going into this tournament, was that centre back spot right beside Jager. But Niedermayer - the guy was on the bench for the Best XI in the best league in the world, the Premiership, and he played well too. Klopfer - everyone loves him, but I don’t know if he’s still the main guy, and Thierse is good, but Jager and Niedermayer just seem to have more chemistry. I think this is the best squad we can make, and it’s the only choice Gavin has.

SS: What are the keys to this game going to be for the Goldhorns?

JG: You’ve just come off a very physical, tough, game against Nephara, and you were very good at matching their intensity the whole way through. Now you’ve got to do pretty much the exact same thing, be tough, be strong, be intense, for 90 minutes again. There’s no more room for error, just get the job done.

PL: For some of these players - Romanov, Klopfer, guys from that first generation. This might be the last chance they get at a World Cup to try and make something memorable of it. So they need to be up in the room before the game, and up on the bench during the game, encouraging their teammates, making sure everyone knows the situation, and if you get called on, be ready to give it your all.

SS: Siovanija & Teusland, Cassadaigua. On the ice, this would be a clash of titans - the last two champions of the World Cup of Hockey going head to head. On the grass today, however, it’s a do-or-die battle that could decide who advances from Group G. We’ll be back right after this.

Siovanija & Teusland 2-4 Nephara, @ Kanyo Field, Drawkland


Starting XI: Heuser; Steimle, Jager, Niedermayer, Vesele (Lotbiniere 67'); Kramer, Mihailov (Ilev 88’), Bliznakov (Dimitrov 72’); Kogler, Tauscher, Ribbeck
Goals: Karl-Heinz Jager 37’, Lukas Tauscher 64’
Man of the Match: Lukas Tauscher
The United Republics of Siovanija & Teusland
Capital: Borograd | Population: 74,245,000 | Demonyms: Siovanijan, Teus | Country Code: STL

World Cup of Hockey 40, 41 & 42 Champions ⋆ World Junior Hockey Championship 14 Champions

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