World Cup 87 - RP Thread

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

WC87Q - MD14/15 - Tikariot

Postby Vilita » Thu Jan 28, 2021 10:45 am



Jungle Cats Climb atop Group 17 with Win over Tikariot

Lirai Asku Castle, Yeaddin, Vilita :: After scoring just one goal in their opening three matches of the World Cup 87 Qualifying Campaign, the Vilitan National Team have now scored two or more goals in twelve consecutive matches as they look to rebuild their World Cup 87 Qualification Hopes under the guidance of new manager Cavuna Aquafek. When the Jungle Cats hosted the nation of Khytonya, however, for the first time as Manager Aquafek also put on the uniform as a registered member of the substitutes bench for the Vilitans.

There was some question as to whether Aquafek - who appeared just once as a substitute for the National Team in the first half of World Cup 87 Qualifying, would still be available for selection from the National Player Pool after taking on the role as the teams head coach for the remainder of the Qualifiers and those questions were finally answered against Khytonya. While Aquafek did not call their own number from the bench at any point during the match, they did make a call to another veteran in the swan song of their playing career. Eastal Lunar netminder Zelkki Milake, famous for helping lead the Jungle Cats to the World Cup 68 title, was a surprise inclusion in the squad after having not appeared for the Jungle Cats since the start of the 85th World Cup cycle. Milake would become one of the oldest players ever to appear in a match for the Jungle Cats when they relieved Jungle Strike FC's Vernasa Sanamun with 23 minutes left to play in the match, after Turoki Tide midifielder Polaox Torerun scored to give Vilita a 2-0 lead. The match was being played at Lunar Park in Seraai and Milake was brought in for a ceremonial bench appearance that turned into active participation when Vernasa Sanamun appeared to pull a muscle about 8 minutes before Torerun's goal. With a seemingly comfortable advantage in the match, Aquafek made the call and sent the veteran Astronaut's goalkeeper into the match much to the adoration of the home crowd who had already seen one of their own score the eventual winner through Nii'arala Milaaso's 25th minute opener. Milake had little to do in their time on the pitch but held the fort to protect the shutout and secure the three points for the Jungle Cats.

Vilita [2] - [0] Khytonya

GOALS: Vilita :: 25' Nii'arala Milaaso:: 77' Polaox Torerun
STATS: Vilita :: Possession: 57%:: Shots: 7:: Corners: 7 Khytonya :: Possession: 43%:: Shots: 3:: Corners: 4
Lineup: [GK] Vernasa Sanamun, [D.] Lohani Riiyaaw, [D.] Jirak Trikala, [D.] Rojara Tiones, [ML] Intikko Kuhilana, [MC] Limu Katarakhna, [MC] Lentali Purama, [MC] Jyuola Mtalata, [MR] Kudii Davasarii, [FC] Clarana Refiami, [FC] Nii'arala Milaaso
Bench: [FC] Linvoi Warazil, [FC] Enzoril Alabonni, [M] Polaox Torerun, [M] Cywrenta Vlintejni, [U ] Cavuna Aquafek, [D] Monner Vileai, [GK] Zelkki Milake

The biggest match of the round, however, would come at the Lirai Asku Castle in Yeaddin when now second-place Vilita would host table-topping Tikariot in a match with the fate of the World Cup 87 Finals on the line. One of the sides would leave the match with a foot in the door of Taeshan and Ethane with just three matches to play while the other would be left in the clutches of Newmanistan and the rest of the Group 17 competitors looking to steal the second spot and their own path to the World Cup 87 Finals.

It was a much tighter affair that saw the twilighting Poloax Torerun on the scoresheet for the second consecutive match and fifth time of the qualification campaign, though Tikariot was able to come back and equalize after a mistake from surprise starter Striitca Virahat who got the position after Mako Canopii was deemed unfit to play at match time.

Ultimately, however, the Jungle Cats would outlast their opponents with second half goals from Jyuola Mtalata and Sipke Tarala to claim a vital three points and propel Vilita atop the Group 17 table for the first time all campaign. It was the deepest into a campaign that the Vilitan National Team had gone without leading the Group table before finally taking over spot #1 in modern recorded history. Now, under the leadership of Cavuna Aquafek, they had accomplished Goal #1 (Taking over the top spot in Group 17) and would be moving on to Goal #2 - Keeping the Top Spot in Group 17 all the way through the final three matches and the end of World Cup Qualification in order to secure a spot in the World Cup 87 Finals - with still just two points separating the Jungle Cats from missing out on the Top 2 places entirely..

Vilita [3] - [1] Tikariot

GOALS: Vilita :: 15' Polaox Torerun:: 69' Jyuola Mtalata:: 84' Sipke Tarala
STATS: Vilita :: Possession: 51%:: Shots: 7:: Corners: 9 Tikariot :: Possession: 49%:: Shots: 2:: Corners: 5
Lineup: [GK] Striitca Virahat, [D.] Jirak Trikala, [D.] Lohani Riiyaaw, [D.] Mileke Drokasorna, [ML] Lentali Purama, [MC] Kudii Davasarii, [MC] Limu Katarakhna, [MC] Polaox Torerun, [MR] Jyuola Mtalata, [FC] Nii'arala Milaaso, [FC] Enzoril Alabonni
Bench: [FC] Tenziki Kulakao, [FC] Sipke Tarala, [M] Cywrenta Vlintejni, [M] Jurzen Devmiko, [U ] Intikko Kuhilana, [D] Inbekira Ajhabekk, [GK] Vernasa Sanamun

Last edited by Vilita on Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Squornshelan Remnant States
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WC87 MD14 & 15

Postby Squornshelan Remnant States » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:04 am

Three Things
Salwan Mynhier

A good result, and a not so good result. Fourteen goals and two very lopsided matches later, it's three points for the Black-and-Reds, who are effectively eliminated from playoff contention. Effectively, but not mathematically. There does still exist a scenario, and a very simple one, in which we could still see them go through to the playoff. Let's get the pipe dream out of the way first. . .

  1. How can the Confederacy make the Playoff?
    With three matches left, the maximum number of points we can accrue is 35, one more than the current total for second-place Poafmersia. Since they hold the head-to-head tiebreaker against us, the Red Panjias must therefore lose all three of their remaining matches. A single point earned will make it impossible for the Black-and-Reds to catch them. Next, there's Krytenia to catch. The Dragons face off with the Panjias in their next match. Should they win that match, however, their point total will rise to 34 to match Poafmersia's. With a one-goal win apiece between us, the tiebreaker with Krytenia would come down to goal difference, a statistic in which they currently enjoy a commanding +21 to +7 lead over the Black-and-Reds. Therefore, practically speaking, any additional point earned by Krytenia after defeating Poafmersia would also eliminate the Confederacy. Therefore, the scenario is as follows:
    • Poafmersia must lose all remaining matches.
    • Krytenia must defeat Poafmersia, then lose on matchdays 17 and 18.
    • Squornshelan Remnant States must win all remaining matches.
    Incidentally, this is the exact same scenario that Gyatso-kai face. They need three wins, and the same combination of results from Poafmersia and Krytenia to keep their own hopes alive. With the Black-and-Reds and Bisons meeting in their very next match, Matchday 16, will see the mathematical elimination of at least one more team from Group 7, possibly two or even three. A Krytenian loss to Poafmersia by four or more goals would wrap things up entirely, though realistically speaking, even a loss that leaves the Krytenian tiebreaker advantage intact would likely doom the Dragons, as they would need to overcome a six point deficit in order for that tiebreaker to matter.

  2. The Attack is Back, How's the Defense?
    Getting into the details of the 7-1 beating the Black-and-Reds dished out in Arkintoofle is fun for the fans, and great for the highlight reel, but from an analytics standpoint, it's not the most interesting. We were the better team, by a lot, dominated possession, and the team's shooting was particularly accurate. The question is, does the complete reversal of form, not just beaten, but beaten badly in Farfadillis, highlight deeper problems with the team? Or are they an anomaly born of playing one of the best and most prolific attacking teams in the multiverse on their own ground? Is it fair, in short, to scrutinize the five goals allowed against Farfadillis? They were allowed against Farfa-fucking-dillis after all.
    Let's take a quick look at the opposition. Farfadillis are the second-highest-scoring team of the entire qualifying tournament so far, one goal behind Vdara, one ahead of Starblaydia and Baker Park. As an aside, poor Baker Park break fifty goals but can't even claim to be the highest scoring team in their group, with concentrated Essence of Takil apparently having been added to Group 4's water supply. Their starting lineup plays club football at elite teams across the multiverse. Hell, their backups play club ball for elite clubs too. Just take a quick scan over that lineup card, I'll wait.
    Yeah, pretty damn stacked isn't it? Gallegas, Edmün and Röémün Çídh, Faragó rue goddamn Cazade. When they have to invent a new positional term to describe how much everything a team's best attacking player excels at, you know you're gonna be fishing the out of your own net a few times. After watching how comfortable their domination was, and how surgical their dismantling of the Black-and-Reds defense, you really have to look back and be impressed at the effort to hold them to just two back in Matchday 6. Imagine going up against La Vherderoja in a two legged playoff. Would you be at all surprised by a 7-2 aggregate loss? Sure we'd hope for better, but anyone piling on the team after this has lost sight of reality. This kind of thing happens when you go up against top-5 teams. Groothuis will have already moved on, the team will have already moved on, and so should everyone else.

  3. A Win over Gyatso-kai would all but Clinch a Top-Four Finish
    It's been a tough qualifying run in a tough group. Yes, there was the mid-qualifying swoon that led to five points being left out on the field against Socialist New Britain and Southwest Eastnorth, but apart from that, you can't really be too upset with the end result. Two losses to Farfadillis were always on the cards, but the home and home split with Krytenia is a good result. We might've hoped for the same against Poafmersia, but they've been on excellent form the whole way through, and taking at least one point against the team looking most likely to head to the playoffs from our group is at least respectable. There's still plenty of time for letdowns of course, but so far there've really only been two bad results. For a team from well outside the top 50 to look like a threat to finish top two for as long as we did is an accomplishment, and one that can be built on in the Cup of Harmony. A win over Gyatso-kai would leave the two remaining matches against teams that seem destined to finish in the bottom half, and could even bring third place into play, depending on the result between Krytenia and Poafmersia. It would also establish a three point lead over the Bisons, as well as giving the Black-and-Reds the tiebreaker.
    All of that goes out the window if the teams crashes to a mid-table finish. A loss to Gyatso-kai would knock the Black-and-Reds back into fifth place, and put them in striking range of Southwest Eastnorth. Needless to say, finishing below our seeding in the group would be a major disappointment especially considering how promising the start was. It's all but certain that the Confederacy will be eliminated, if not this matchday then the next, but the remaining three matches are still crucial for carrying momentum into what promises to be a very competitive Cup of Harmony.

SRS Qualifying Schedule and Results:
MD1  SWE 1-2 SRS @ First Coast Stadium (cap. 33,000), Auberlin, SWE
MD2 SRS 2-1 KRY @ Megabrantid Financial Field (cap. 69,245), Brantisvogan, Megabrantis, SRS
MD3 PFA 3-2 SRS @ Libira National Stadium (cap. 68,000), Fiskadaha City, PFA
MD4 SRS 1-0 CAR @ New Rudlit Arena (cap. 31,200), Rudlit, West Flania, SRS
MD5 WZA 2-3 SRS @ Edge Hill, Bradley, WZA
MD6 SRS 1-2 FFD @ Bridger Lane (cap. 72,406), Damogran, Algolia, SRS
MD7 GKI 2-3 SRS @ Stadia Capital (cap. 78,050), Beijing, Jing, GKI
MD8 SRS 2-0 BGJ @ Synesoft Arena (cap. 38,600), Syneca, Sivoliva, SRS
MD9 SNB 0-0 SRS @ [redacted]
MD10 SRS 0-1 SWE @ Reinallt Arena (cap. 41,230), Golgafrincham, Megabrantis, SRS
MD11 KRY 1-0 SRS @ Oxley Park, Emberton, KRY
MD12 SRS 2-2 PFA @ Slavnarzeczpospolitastadion (cap. 61,230), Lublova, Molvania, SRS
MD13 CAR 2-3 SRS @ [redacted]
MD14 SRS 7-1 WZA @ Olympiastad (cap. 47,550), Arkintoofle, Megabrantis, SRS
MD15 FFD 5-1 SRS @ TBA
MD16 SRS v GKI @ Castle Street (cap. 57,300), Jaglan, Algolia, SRS
MD18 SRS v SNB @ Ralph Wilson Memorial Stadium (cap. 48,700), Han Dold City, Han Dold, SRS
The Confederacy of Squornshelan Remnant States
True Democratic Successor to the nation of Squornshelous
Trigram: SRS
KPB Ranking: 15.10 (60th)
World Cup:
Did not Qualify: WC81, WC82, WC83, WC84, WC85, WC86, WC87
Cup of Harmony:
Quarterfinalist: CoH73, CoH75
Round of 16: CoH74
Round of 32: CoH79
First Round: CoH76, CoH77
Third Place: IAC8
Quarterfinal: IAC10
Second Round: IAC6, IAC7
First Round: IAC9
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Postby Juvencus » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:06 am

Let's go take a look at history!

It comes as no surprise that prior history of football, or anything really is a mystery in Juvencus. Recording the history of the country is a tedious task to do along the large minefield that are the fields of the south, the scorching hot desert to the east and the dense rainforests inbetween. Juvencus, believe it or not is and has always been a pretty divided nation, both religiously, physically and linguistically. Wars have raged on for ages and for the majority of its lifetime, history was written by the victor of the most brainwashed masses.

"Why is it that it is hard to track and record the history of the country?" you may ask, confused and probably with a thirst for knowledge. Do not worry as I have come here to enlighten you in the simplest way I can think of.

As we said, history, in its majority is written by the victor of the most brainwashed masses. "What masses?" you may also ask and that is a very complex subject. The Juven populace, as is well known, is a multilingual populace, with the majority speaking Italian and French as well as a majority of the romance languages. This did not happen by chance, the variety of landscapes that Juvencus has provided has made linguistic isolation a real thing and as such minor local identities that change from region to region, village to village and even nation to nation are apparent. This comes with the challenge of big ego, feuds and rivalries between different sides of the nation that came along in the period of feudalism. As such, there were a lot of skirmishes and wars between the people for the control of the land, the victor, who usually wanted to shape-shift history to their side would write of themselves as glorious victors over the "villains" of the losing side. The losing sides would often avoid to write anything remotely related to a defeat so as to avoid staining their marks in history which makes searching for multiple sides and opinions over war outcomes -and not only- a very hard challenge.

Now with both your questions asked, you might think. "How does this have anything to do with football?" and I would be glad you asked. Football is a modern sport, it has been around almost ever since the discovery of different portals to the greater multiverse and how could we just not record our history properly? Well, this feud raged on even in modern times. Football is a religion and it is getting treated as such, it is also a form of war. You defend your turf against opposing invaders while you try to counter the invader and win the game. There is always a truce or armistice but the outcome must be in your favor to stay in history. As such there are multiple recordings of the same games from different teams and if there's any rivalries between 2 sides, especially local, as was Juvencus' football for the majority of its history, the outcomes and trophy cabinets are very different and the creation of fictional trophies has been a thing that makes tracking official data prior the Campionato's history a significant task in itself.

The only known confirmed information about Juven football prior to the Campionato is as such. Football was introduced in 1875 by explorers Adamo Carabinieri and Maximillian Lacoste to people in Scudelli after they went on an "illegal" expedition to a distant multiverse where they found a different group of humans, which we call as the mythical Osstruti who played a sport played with the feet and the purpose was to score goals. Initially the invention of the sport was accredited to them, until different notes from each of them making fun of the general population were surfaced in 1989, much to the shock of everyone. Different leagues were played accross the nation, usually in the metropolitan areas of large cities or between large chains of small towns and villages. Professional football was introduced in 1990, with the creation of regional leagues West, East, South and Desert on which the winners of each region would enter the play-offs in a knockout format with the winner being crowned the champion of Juvencus until recently.

As for the national team history, ALL OF IT, is thankfully well-recorded and reasonably well-kept as the creation of a unified Juvencus national team is a recent invention being created in 2016. However, regional teams were considered equal national teams for each of the regions as regionalism is a strong feeling from Juven to Juven. The discovery of a multiversal world cup competition, spoiled by our friends in Drawkland was a major shock for everyone in the nation and the result of it was the creation of a real unified team with a properly recorded history as well as a trophy cabinet and to a lesser extent participation record they can be proud of. However even that has major holes and forgotten moments and with the installment of better record-tracking people and machines, these should be covered properly as the times pass.
The Holy Empire of Juvencus

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Postby Darmen » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:07 am

The Ultimate Guide to the 2049 Darmeni General Election
Current polling
LIB   28%
REP 25%
NLP 23%
F&UU 8%
PCP 4%
PG 4%
PPF 4%
Other 4%

There are 38 parties contesting the 2049 Darmeni general election, but only seven of them will have any major impact on national politics in the coming four years. So who are they and what do they stand for, or against?

Fascist & Ultranationalist Union
Leader: Evandrus O'Mooney - MP for Scott City (2037-present)
2045 Vote Share: 14.62% (4th, up 7.64% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045: 23 MP's, 0 Mayors, 101 MC's
Ideology: Far-right; Fascism, Darmeni ultranationalism, Anti-Valladares
Following the 2036 general election, the Fascist & Ultranationalist Unions’ predecessor, the Coalition for Darmen, led by León McReynolds, was able to include itself in some governing coalitions at the local level. However, four years later when Evandrus O’Mooney completed his ascendancy to become party leader, a cordon sanitaire was placed on the party by all other parties in Darmen, in large part due to O’Mooney guiding the party even further to the right and openly describing it as Fascist. It’s a move that seemed to work at first for the F&UU, in spite of the cordon sanitaire the party made gains in the 2041 elections and polling prior to the 2045 election showed a potentially major increase in the far-right party’s share of the vote. At one point a swing of 10% or more was forecasted in the F&UU’s favor, causing many observers to fear a major increase in the F&UU’s political power, which they termed the “Fascist Wave.” While the “Fascist Wave” might not have been enough for the Fascists to take power, it would have given them a significant voice in opposition and nevertheless created an extremely problematic situation for whichever party or parties found itself in government.

While the “Fascist Wave” that was feared in 2045 never fully occurred, the 7.5% increase in the F&UU’s share of the vote was still enough to give them 23 seats in Parliament and a larger role in Darmeni politics. But O’Mooney’s leadership and his party’s obstructionist tactics in Parliament have left many F&UU voters unimpressed over the last four years and the F&UU is not expected to repeat its 2045 performance in this election year.

To label the F&UU hard anserisceptics is to convey only a partial truth: the F&UU are outright isolationists. They are anti-Common Rushmori Community, anti-World Assembly and perhaps, aboveall, anti-Valladar. While the party’s rhetoric asserting Darmeni sovereignty over the Valladar Westlands state has fallen out of use in the present campaign, the F&UU have been some of the most outspoken critics of the potentially forthcoming negotiations with Darmen’s southeastern neighbors. More specifically, they have been outraged by Liberal Party leader Joshua Rademacher’s silence on whether or not he would consider ceding sovereignty of several Darmeni municipalities in the southeast with Valladar ethnic majorities to Valladares in exchange for improved relations between the two countries.

The Fascists, as do most other parties on the right, view even the consideration of ceding sovereignty of Darmeni territory to a foreign nation as treason. But unlike other right-wing parties, who are certainly concerned but willing to give Rademacher the benefit of the doubt, the F&UU’s rhetoric in response has been particularly nasty and vulgar. They’ve called Rademacher just about every name in the book and while there are those that share their concern, many will be turned off by the at times violent rhetoric being espoused by O’Mooney and his minions.

Aside from the aforementioned anti-CRC, anti-WA and anti-Valladares stances the Fascists have always promoted, the only other issue the Fascists seem to care about in the current campaign is military spending, where they wish to see a 20% increase over the next three years, as well as the creation of a fully fledged navy, separate from the Coast Guard currently in existence.

Liberal Party - merged with the Society of Internationalist Liberal Localist Yuppies
Leader: Joshua Rademacher - Foreign Affairs Secretary (2037-2041), MP for Scott City (2041-present)
2045 Vote Share: 17.31% (3rd, up 3.40% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045: 27 MP’s, 1 Mayor, 283 MC’s
Ideology: Center; Liberalism, Pro-Rushmorism
The Liberals are running what is virtually an identical campaign to the one they ran in 2045, except this time it appears as though it will truly work. Party leader Joshua Rademacher’s message of a Darmeni future within the CRC has finally begun to resonate with voters, and the party appears headed towards large gains which had been hoped for four years ago but never quite materialized.

But it's not all rainbows and sunshine for the Liberals. A major obstacle to the Liberal’s aim of Darmeni membership in the CRC is Darmen’s relation with its southeastern neighbor: Valladares.

While there are indications that the two countries could sit down together soon to work out their differences and improve cross-border relations, Rademacher’s silence on just how far he’s willing to go to secure a deal is causing him and his party problems. While just about every other party gunning for seats this year has quashed the idea of an exchange of Darmeni territory to Valladares, Rademacher has remained tight lipped about how he might handle negotiations, leaving many, especially those living in Darmen’s southeast, worried about the possibility of living under Valladar rule at the end of the negotiations.

Rademacher seems to have his sights set solely on CRC membership, it is afterall the number one reason support for the Liberal Party has risen in the past few years and all other concerns are of secondary importance to him. And that is his and his party’s achilles heel. While Liberal supporters are certain that Rademacher will not exchange any Darmeni territory with Valladares, non-Liberal supporters aren’t so certain, limiting the Liberal’s draw among unaffiliated voters.

The Liberals do have some other plans however, even if they are afterthoughts: the Liberals intend to reform income tax for individuals, lowering the number of tax brackets from the current seven to six and decreasing the tax rates for the lower brackets; they also plan on introducing a special corporate tax on Darmen's many sports teams, who as of yet have been untaxed under the Republican administration.

National Labor Party - formerly the United Left
Leader: Dean Alamilla - Finance & Treasury Secretary (2041-2045), MP for Liverpool (2037-2041, 2045-present)
2045 Vote Share: 27.76% (1st, down 9.44% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045: 52 MP’s, 13 Mayors, 434 MC’s
Ideology: Center-left; Social democracy, Democratic socialism, Pro-Rushmorism
The issue of Darmeni membership in the CRC has led to a split in the United Left coalition, leading to the creation of a new party: the National Labor Party, as well as a number of former United Left members leaving for the People’s Communist Party. The National Labor Party, representing the right-wing of the United Left coalition, has thrown its lot in with the pro-Rushmori Liberals, joining their neighbors immediately to their right in a pre-election coalition. This marks the first time in Darmeni political history that two parties have entered into a coalition agreement prior to an election, something which normally happens post-election.

Based on the 2045 election results, you might expect National Labor to be the senior partner in the coalition, but Labor leader Dean Alamilla has deferred to his Liberal colleague Joshua Rademacher and accepted the junior position. Rademacher is largely seen as the more charismatic face of the coalition, able to promote his idea of Darmen in the CRC with almost poetic beauty. Alamilla meanwhile falls into a more intellectual categorization; as potentially Darmen’s next Vice President, he’d likely serve as the brains of the operation.

Aside from joining their Liberal colleagues in promoting Darmeni membership in the CRC, National Labor has also been promoting a continuation of the public works projects that have been in place since United Left served as the junior coalition partner in government between 2041-45. Their proposal for the period of 2049-53 is the construction of 10 mid-sized airports in Darmen’s largest cities currently without air travel options, at a combined cost of $3.3 billion. In addition to creating close to 25,000 construction jobs over the next four years, National Labor argues that the new airports would help strengthen transport connections between many of Darmen’s leading municipalities and offer “fast, safe and cheap” options for Darmeni travelers to move about the country. Their proposal for the public works project is not only significantly cheaper than the Republican Party initiated project over the 2045-49 period, which cost just shy of $29 billion, but it would also employ approximately 5,500 more Darmenis.

Party of Patriotic Forces - formerly the Royalist Party, merged with the Capitalism Party, Temperance League and Think Tank
Leader: Neacel Wembley - MP for Scott City (2041-present)
2045 Vote Share: 3.37% (6th, down 1.14% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045 (as Royalist Party): 4 MP’s, 0 Mayors, 10 MC’s
Ideology: Right-wing; National conservatism, Economic liberalism, Anseriscepticism
Following the death of their chief figurehead, Maxwell Romanov, the remnants of the Royalist Party have been forced to reimagine themselves. Gone is their promotion of a return to the old monarchical system and in its place is a message of “Faith, Family, Tradition.” They’ve been joined in this new endeavor by several other right-wing parties, with the new party referring to itself as the Party of Patriotic Forces and presenting itself as an alternative to the Republican Party and Fasicst & Ultranationalist Union. The former they normally label as “wishy-washy” moderates and the later as “hate mongering idiots.”

But in many respects, the PPF isn’t unlike their two right-wing counterparts. They’ve spent much of the campaign making it very clear that any transfer of sovereignty away from Darmen, be it either by joining the CRC or by exchanging some of Darmen’s southeastern municipalities for a better relationship with Valladares, is absolutely unacceptable.

The one area where they do significantly differ from the Republicans and the Fascists is on economic policy. The PPF has called for large swathes of Darmeni industry and business to be deregulated and has criticized the dirigisme policies of Tor Tong Lee’s administration over the past twelve years. They’ve been particularly keen to point out their belief that it was these policies which kept Darmen’s unemployment rates so high for so long, although the fact that unemployment has been cut in half over the past four years seems to indicate otherwise.

The PPF has also promoted the idea of reeling in certain portions of Darmen’s social welfare system, in particular the provisions for free collegiate education for Darmeni students, which the PPF has decried as a “behemoth strain on the national budget and significant obstacle to reducing the public debt.” They’ve made it clear though that they have no intention of making changes to retirement pensions, childcare benefits or the healthcare system.

People’s Communist Party
Leader: Gladwine Hayden
2045 Vote Share: 1.26% (8th, new party in 2045)
Politicians elected in 2045: 0 MP’s, 0 Mayors, 7 MC’s
Ideology: Far-left; Marxism-Leninism, Anseriscepticism
The People's Communist Party hopped onto the scene in 2045, winning 1.26% of the national vote in their first outing, a surprising feat for an outspoken communist party that had chosen not to affiliate itself with the United Left. The part did especially well in New Istria, where they finished second to the Defiance Coalition but picked up seven municipal councilors in the process. Now that the United Left has split, the People's Communist Party has been joined by the left-wing of the former coalition and is looking ahead to major gains.

Aside from its calls for nationalization of all of Darmen's major industries and the redistribution of wealth from Darmen's wealthiest, the People's Communist Party has made a name for itself by its opposition to Darmeni membership in the CRC. Only the Fascists have stronger anserisceptic rhetoric than the communists, but the PCP has been very careful to frame its opposition to the CRC on purely economic terms and avoid the callous xenophobia and jingoism of the Fascist & Ultranationalist Union. The PCP views the CRC's commitment to free markets and free trade anathema compared to its goals of a centrally planned economy perfectly set up to provide for the many Darmeni workers that have been and currently still are, unemployed.

The PCP has also called for significant investment in the healthcare sector, expanding the number of hospitals and clinics in Darmen to improve access to care. The party has also called for the expansion of Darmen's public healthcare system to lower the deductibles patients must pay before becoming eligible for free healthcare. Currently, patients are responsible for paying roughly the first $300 worth of care per year, while the government covers whatever remains. The PCP has called for the deductibles to be lowered to no more than $100, but only for those making less than $200,000 per year.

Progressive Greens
Leader: Lorraine Summerfield - Environment Secretary (2045-present), MP for Scott City (2041-45)
2045 Vote Share: 4.36% (5th, down 0.94% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045: 3 MP’s, 0 Mayors, 17 MC’s
Ideology: Left-wing; Green politics, Social progressivism, Pro-Rushmorism
The biggest question for the Progressive Greens in this election is whether or not they’ll form part of a governing coalition. For the past four years the Progressive Greens have propped up the Republican government in a strange, but well working, relationship. It’s a relationship that has provided some results for the Progressive Greens: they were able to turn Plan 2075 - Darmen’s transition to completely renewable energy sources - into Plan 2065, as well as making progress to close the gender pay gap and increase the percentage of women working in certain professions.

But for some in the party, particularly those who lean towards the socially progressive rather than environmental side of the party, the ends don’t justify the means. The party’s relationship with the socially conservative Republicans has left a bad taste in the more radical wing of the party. Although not a perfect fit, they argue that working with the Liberals and United Left would have been the better option, forcing the Republicans into a minority government and strengthening the bargaining position of the opposition parties.

The current election presents an opportunity for the Progressive Greens to work with the Liberals and National Labor to bring about even greater change in Darmeni society and environmental protections, with one large caveat.

Neither the Liberals or National Labor has expressed a willingness to bring the Progressive Greens into their government.

And that leaves the Progressive Greens in an awkward position. Rather than being able to fight an offensive campaign, much of the Progressive Greens efforts in the lead up to the election has been spent defending the past four years and its relationship with the Republicans. A campaign run like that is not a winning campaign; the party’s only hope is to try and cozy up to the Liberals and National Labor and potentially serve as a small part of that coalition.

Republican Party
Leader: Donald O’Donahaue - Vice President (2037-41, 2045-present), Foreign Affairs Secretary (2041-45), Defense Secretary (2037)
2045 Vote Share: 26.38% (2nd, down 1.32% from 2041)
Politicians elected in 2045: 100 MP’s, 55 Mayors, 1,119 MC’s
Ideology: Center-right; Christian democracy, Liberal conservatism, Civic nationalism, Leeism, Soft anseriscepticism
The Republican Party has essentially accepted defeat.

After twelve years of Republican led government (the first eight being under the Movement for a New Darmen moniker), President Tor Tong Lee has given up the reigns of power after failing to fulfill a campaign promise he made prior to the 2045 election. Lee and his administration came tantalizingly close to meeting his promise to reduce the unemployment rate to below 12% by Christmas 2048, but ultimately fell just short, with the figures of that week reading 13.23%. Now, Vice President Donald O’Donahaue is at the helm of the Republican Party, albeit with reluctance and a complete lack of urgency as Lee retreats from politics towards a private life.

O’Donahaue has made it clear that his leadership of the party will only be temporary, he is hoping that the party can find a new leader in time for the 2051 municipal elections. O’Donahaue has basically refused to run a national campaign, aside from making it clear that Rademacher’s silence on whether or not he is considering a transfer of sovereignty over several southeastern municipalities to Valladares is dangerous for the country. Instead, the Republican Party has focused on running various local campaigns, with each local unit of the Republican Party focusing on the issues that matter most in each municipality.

The failure to run a campaign with a national scope and unified message has meant that the Republican voter base has been left unenergized; lethargic and apathetic, they are unlikely to turnout in the numbers they have in the past. The Republicans could be heading to their lowest vote total in history and they show no intention of trying to prevent this. As one party member put it, “Why try to win when everything seems against you? People aren’t excited by the prospect of another four years of Republican leadership, so it's best if we take this time to reset and stage a come back in four years when voters might have more of an appetite for us.”

Another obstacle to the Republican Party’s chances is the fact that O’Donahaue comes from the conservative wing of the party, which represents perhaps as little as eight percent of the party's total membership. The vast majority of the party’s membership falls into the moderate “Leeist” categorization and many of those members do not believe that O’Donahaue will uphold the Leeist values the party has promoted over the past decade plus. While there is a truce between the different factions to prevent intra-party fighting for the time being, party members, especially those in a position to challenge for the party leadership, are no doubt aware that the gloves will come off quickly following the election. Some of them have likely already started their maneuvering now to get ahead of their opponents.
The Republic of Darmen
President: Joshua Rademacher (LIB) | Capital: Scott City | Population: 8.6 mil | Demonym: Darmeni | Trigramme: DAR
Factbook (WIP) | Encylopedia | Domestic Sports Newswire
Champions: CoH 51, CR 13, GCF Test 9, WBC 25, QWC 7 Runners-up: CoH 53, CR 10, GCF Test 11, T20C 2, T20C 4, RLWC 10, WBC 42
Third: CR 20, T20C 10, R7WC 4, WBC 21, BC 6 Host: CR 9, RUWC 18, RUWC 26, RLWC 12, RLWC 18, BC 6, BC 10, WVE 4

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Founded: Jan 10, 2020

Postby Saint-Domingues » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:13 am

Zwangzug 1-0 Saint-Dominge: Tough defeat to take as Avengers lose ground
HT 0-0

Saint-Domingue's head coach Camilo Canisbro admitted that they had just received a "tough blow" in their hopes of making the World Cup playoffs, losing narrowly in Zwischen.

It is another harsh blow for Dominguan chances of qualifying in their maiden campaign, with Edwin Cherenkov-Nguyen's second-half winner meaning that they have fallen from 3rd to 5th, level on points with Zwangzug and Netop by lagging 3 points behind Abanhfleft, the current occupiers of the playoff spot.

Despite the loss, the Avengers may be left wondering what might have happened on another day, as they were prevented from getting on the scoresheet courtesy of an inspired performance by Laurel Tinker-Witt. Tinker-Watt had replaced first-choice goalkeeper Fedya Troy-Vee, who was dropped after a series of poor performances. Troy-Vee did not cover himself in glory during the last fixture between these two sides, conceding three goals during that famous upset at Saint Dominic's Park.

Things were much different today, in the dugout as well as between the posts. Manager Brandon Sonnabend was sacked at the conclusion of gameweek 9, in the aftermath of an embarrassing 1-1 draw with lowly Hafamarimet. At the time of Sonnabend's dismissal Zwangzug had fallen to as low as 7th place, with his team going on a 6-game winless run (of which the humiliating loss to Saint-Domingue formed a part) that left them with 12 points after 9 games - 10 points off top spot. He was replaced by Kate DiMarini on an interim basis, and the results have been absolutely transformative. 8 points from her first 5 games has breathed new life into Zwangzugian qualification hopes, turning into 11 points from 6 after the victory today. Zwangzug are now in third, and breathing down Fleftic necks. If they win the fixture between the two in the next match, Zwangzug will be well on their way to the playoffs.

Chances were fairly even for the first 45, as both Tinker-Witt and Jules Binet were called upon to perform their duties. The Saint-Dominguan 'keeper had to be at his best to deny Cherenkov-Nguyen and the follow-up effort by Gordon Blum, whilst Tinker-Witt saved from both Julien Babesco and Diego Palacio respectively.

After half-time Tinker-Witt had to make a couple more saves, keeping Josep Carpeña and substitute Nico Pozo off the scoresheet before Zwangzug struck.

Saint-Domingue head coach Camilo Canisbro: "This was the pot one side, the fifteenth-placed team in all of the multiverse. Yes, we beat them last time we played. Yes, it was three-nil. Yes, they had a very poor start to qualifying. But no, we were not expected to beat them again. When I see people say that, I have to say I think my players are victims of their own success, the lofty ambitions that they encouraged by defying all the odds for the first ten or so games, it wasn't going to last. Sometimes we rode our luck at the beginning, games like the one at home to Koniglich Wasserstein or the two-one against Sharktail, that was how we got results. Sometimes it goes against you too. Expecting it to continue in our favour isn't the norm. I will admit, if you consider us as the team that has to make the playoffs then it is a massive blow, but we are not that team. We were in pot eight, today we have pushed Zwangzug - one of the best teams in the game right now - all the way. They beat us by a narrow margin, and their goalkeeper and defence were worked very hard. The performance was good, it has so many, many positive signs for how we want to progress as a footballing nation. The result was not what we wanted but the performance was good. If we play like that again, we will have a great chance of getting something next game which is another really hard fixture."
Campos <- Charbonneau 78'
Sanabria <- Keller 88'
Gimenez <- 53' Pozo

Zwangzug: Cherenkov-Nguyen (66')
Saint-Domingue: N/A
Venue: Zwischen Soccer-Specific Stadium

Saint-Domingue 2-2 Savojarna: Avengers hold leaders to draw
HT 1-1

Ahearn <- Pareja 85'
Carpeña <- Lacourse 78'
Babesco <- Jeune 85'

Saint-Domingue: Carpeña (43'), Babesco (74')
Savojarna: Pedersen (7'), Smolov (64')
Venue: St Dominic's Park

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Founded: Jun 06, 2020
Democratic Socialists

Postby Tikariot » Thu Jan 28, 2021 11:39 am

OOC Disclaimer: Soundtrack: Primordial - Wield Lightning to Split the Sun

The picture fades in to a view of the Khazagh Mountains fairly close by, its peaks white with snow, standing out against the bright blue sky, wind driven snow blowing off in pale white clouds. The cawing of a crow breaks the silence and suddenly the image lifts and the wings of a majestic snowy owl come into view as we rise up into the air, above the snow-covered tree it had been perched on. It catches an air current, effortless riding further above the gently rolling hills, forests full of snow stretching out in the distance. The Shadow's voice, half-whispered, comes in.

The Shadow: The time is drawing nigh for a showdown as we enter the land of the ice and snow...

As the owl continues to glide across the serene wintery landscape, we see small rivers snaking in and out of the forests and plains, some of them ice-covered, some sparkling in the weakening rays of the setting sun as it slowly inches towards the mountains in the west. A herd of reindeer is drinking at one of these ice-free spots of a riverbend, briefly pausing and glancing up as the owl passes over them.

The Shadow: One by one the pieces of the puzzle have fallen into place and the picture it has been painting is one of crass, ever changing contrasts, the pieces constantly shifting shapes and colours, turning majestic palaces into crumbling ruins and phoenices rising from the ashes of their competitors in turn.

Much of the snow-covered ground is pristine, untouched by animal or human, just nature in all of its majestic beauty. The shriek of an eagle can be heard from far above, circling, the owl briefly glancing up, relieved that it is paying no heed to the soaring black and white bird itself. The owl itself is gliding across a snow-covered lake, a lone track of prints crossing the vast expanse.

The Shadow: The campaign has seen the most upheaval in decades, with giants faltering and nations reaching for spots previously thought unreachable for them. The equilibrium is shifting, yet it is still fragile, more fragile than ever, like the ice across a lake, not being able to tell where it is thick enough to hold the weight under the blanket of snow and where it is deceivingly thin, ready to crack at a moment's notice.

As it approaches the edge of the lake, the owl swoops down to see two shapes break into a run through the adjacent forest, one black as night, the other white as the snow. Aided by the wind, the snowy owl manages to get ahead of the racing shadows that become more and more dazzling as the sun is quickly sinking beneath the peaks of the mountains, casting ever deepening shadows across the majestic landscape below. As it settles down on the branch of a lone, barren tree at the edge of a ravine dropping off steeply, the two shadows break clear of the trees and come to a stop on an outcropping overlooking the ravine, revealing themselves as two wolves, briefly looking up at the owl before continuing on, relentlessly looking for a way to cross the ravine, the owl taking to the air again, following them.

The Shadow: The giants are wounded and are trying to pull themselves across the finish line in the hopes that the bloodlines they have left in the snow will not have the predators catch up with them as quickly and as strongly as they seem to be coming for them.

In the distance the owl sees the lights of a city come into view and it glides down lower towards the wolves. A distant fire quickly comes closer at the edge of the city and the last copse of trees between the wild nature and the fire sees a remarkable transformation from the two wolves entering the dense copse and The Shadow and his raven-haired companion exiting it, wasting no time in stopping, but accepting a thrown torch each while passing and marching towards the dark wall surrounding the former fortress of Bul Khungur.

The Shadow: So tonight the last remaining giant has come to Tikariot with Newmanistan, for one final head to head. And while it is not the be all, end all of the campaign, it will be a watershed moment for both nations concerning their immediate future. And the Dark Tide is ready!

After entering the city's old town through a narrow gate, the number of followers carrying torches through the dark, narrow cobblestone streets quickly grows, with a large, dark and foreboding looking structure visible in a large square ahead. Partially built into the side of a mountain, it is a far cry from the modern temples of glass and steel that most stadiums are these days, but it is built from the same black basalt blocks as the city's walls making it look more like a temple or citadel than an actual sports stadium. The group comes to a stop right in front of one of the sides of the building and the Shadow holds his torch up high before setting fire to the ground from where a line of flames spreads out towards the basalt of the stadium's wall, following a pattern that eventually forms the outline of an attacking owl.

The Shadow: Newmanistan, welcome to the place where your dreams came to die, welcome to the Temple of the Crow...

And with that blackness swallows the image, replaced by the Shadow's logo.

Tikariot - Rushmore - Trigramme: TKT
Sporting achievements:
Football (27th): Ro16 (and group winner) WC87 | Winner - IFC 1 | Quarter final - BoF 73 | 3rd in group WCQ86
Baseball (16th): Winner - International Baseball Slam XI | Round of 16 - World Baseball Classic 49/50
Lacrosse (25th): Round of 16 - World Lacrosse Championships 34
Hosting: IBS XII, Copa Rushmori 36

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Founded: Feb 09, 2009
Liberal Democratic Socialists

Postby Pasarga » Thu Jan 28, 2021 12:49 pm

The mood in the camp was sour, this was far from where the entire team had thought they were going to be with three matches left to go in the qualifying campaign, especially after the side had started out the campaign in such high form. For a side that had nearly gone unbeaten in the first half of the qualifying campaign and had a solid five point lead at the top, to now be three points behind and even on the verge of missing out on the playoffs completely, nevermind actually trying to right the ship and automatically qualify, it was a state of pain and shock. The worst feeling was that in five of their last six home games, in front of the legions of supporters who came out to support them regardless of their fortunes, they had failed to grab the three points that were expected of them in those fixtures. Even worse was that they suffered their worst loss of the campaign in the Stade de Torgos against a team that had been completely in free fall themselves up until that point, a team that they could have completely eliminated from the World Cup picture with even grabbing a draw. Instead, they saw their tie at the top of the table gone and allowed Hampton Island to remain without a shout of of knocking the Wanderers out of the World Cup altogether.

To complicate matters, there was still very difficult fixtures to go for the Wanderers in the last three, making that six point gap that they have above Hampton Island feel even less sure than it should be at this stage of the campaign. First off the squad has to travel to Garifunya, the team that came into the Stade de Torgos in the first half and escaped with a three all draw with the Wanderers that had began their tail spin into this wretched run of form through the second half of qualifiers and at home. With only four wins from their fifteen matches, a loss against them is not exactly to be expected, even if the Wanderers are traveling to take on their foe, yet on the same token the Garifunya team has only lost six of those matches as well, making them a difficult out for all the teams that have come across them in the group, with their five draws a testament to their resiliency and desire to not lose (and be part of an iconic synthwave montage by some crazy person over in Audioslavia who has far too much time on their hands) made evidently clear to all inside the group who thought they might have been easy pickings. Add in the mental advantage they might have for being the side that gave the Wanderers their push off the top in that upset back on matchday seven and you have a very difficult matchup the Wanderers will have to overcome just to keep pace.

Should the Wanderers manage to persevere through that obstacle in their way, they then get their home finale in the qualifiers against Bluecliff League. While on paper this might seem like an easy matchup for the Wanderers and a sure three points, putting any risk of failing to at least make the playoff out of mind, this is the same team that was leading the group for the first few international weekends and has six wins to their belt. Despite seemingly being in a poor run of form, the Wanderers will have to take them seriously even after besting them by three goals to nil in the first half of the campaign, as what happened against Hampton Island is all too telling a sign of what can happen to the team when they think they have one over on a team is in in a poor run of form. Besides the three points that will be on the offering, there is also the matter of pride, pride to give back to those thousands upon thousands of fans who have come out in support and yet have been let down all too often by the team this campaign. Whatever happens in the last three games of the season, the supporters have deserved more from their team and this will be the last chance the team will have to offer up efforts and gratitude to those people who do support them.

And to finish off qualifying, the Wanderers will travel to The Gothanita Isles, one of the three teams that currently sit six points behind the Wanderers, alongside Hampton Island and Tumbra. The Isles are the biggest obstacle remaining by what happened in the first half of the qualifiers, as they were the first side that managed to beat the Wanderers all the way back on matchday nine. A shock home loss to the Isles at the time was just supposed to be a blip in the radar, the Wanderers still had a five point lead at the top of the table through the halfway mark and had looked very strong against the rest of the group. Yet that shock loss to the pot six team, right after the unexpected draw to the pot five team, should have been a sign of things to come and provided a blueprint that the rest of the group has used to turn the tables literally on the Wanderers. Away days are seldom easy, especially when you know you have to get a result to be within touching distance of your goal, but it will be what is on the cards for the team, and all three of these games are difficult, rife with challenges, but they are games the Wanderers are going to have to get results out of if the want to at least be in the playoff and still try to tip the group title back their way.

South Newlandia is in the form of their generation, yet like all good things, it will have to come to an end at some point and the Wanderers will have to hope that it happens before the end of the qualifying campaign and not during the Finals. Eight wins in a row, their last loss was away to The Gothanita Isles, since then they have torn apart the group like a hot knife goes through butter, having edged out the top seeds and put stamps the weaker seeds. Yet if teams like Nephara, Baker Park, The Holy Empire, Banija, Vilita all hit a poor patch, then so the same can happen to South Newlandia, for all flashes of brilliance to eventually dim and fade to black. They host the Isles in their first of the last three games, with the Isles knowing that a win is needed if they still want to automatically qualify, making it a good chance for the six seeds to pull a double over the current group leaders. After that they travel to U-Koro, which is a match that should be an easy win for the Elephants, but will overconfidence be their undoing? The last match then sees them hosting Tumbra, whose fortunes might rest on the outcome of the match, making it another game where the group leaders could lose points. It is all there to play for, difficult ties all around, and the Wanderers have to hope that their misery is behind them while South Newlandia's has yet to arrive.

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Alasdair I Frosticus
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Founded: Antiquity
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Alasdair I Frosticus » Thu Jan 28, 2021 1:53 pm

OOC: my thanks to Chromatika for the scenario

The good news for Juan Tzimisces: Trolleborg were finally dropping points. The bad news for Juan Tzimisces: so was the Holy Empire. Every Trolleborg loss was now matched by an upset of the Holy Empire. Three points remained in it; qualification would go down to the wire - but goal difference slightly favoured Trolleborg. If Juan now regretted ever calling Margaret 'a bitch who must be bedded on a mattress of corpses', he was keeping it to himself; but his on and off ex might well be having her revenge. In the meantime, a contact in Chromatika had passed on some curious information about an incident during the latter nation's famous Rainbow Revolution, an incident possibly involving the Tzimisces playing right forward on the World Cup 87 squad, when a rebel outpost deep in the Eyrodii Jungle faced seemingly insurmountable odds...

"It's the fifth day, Lucjusz; I don't know how much longer we can hold out."

"You have to believe, Nadezhda. Our cause is just! This is the best chance we'll ever have to overthrow the Chromatik Party's colour caste system. Instead of Gold and Silver and Bronze ruling over all Chromatik, colour can be discarded; reds as able to rule as any gold."

"I believe in the revolution, Lucjusz; I do. I just don't believe that our little corner can hold out. Five days in the jungle, surrounded on all sides by Chromatik Party security forces. Every day they pick off another two or three of us. It was Kaia and Miles yesterday. Derron and Victoire the day before. There are so few of us left. We don't stand a chance."

"I... I know, Nadezhda. I've known since day one of the siege."

"Then why, Lucjusz? Why let so many die?"

"There were two reasons. The first was that by holding off the Chromatik Party here, we've distracted them from the search for our leaders. We've allowed the entire rebel leadership to evacuate Chromatik City - we've allowed the revolution to live on, Nadezhda. Our sacrifice..."

"I understand Lucjusz; but perhaps let's not tell the others. Let them have hope. You said there were two reasons..."

"Yes; the second... No; you'll think I'm a fool."

"Tell me, Lucjusz. I think I've earned the right to know the truth..."

"I'm not sure you'll believe me..."

"Lucjusz.... the truth."

"Alright. On the first day of the siege, I found a message..."

"A message? To us? Out here? But this is a rebel camp in the middle of the Eyrodii Jungle! How would anyone know we would set up an outpost right here! Or that we would stay in this godforsaken tomb?"

"I don't know, Nadezhda."

"Could it by a Chromatik spy?"

"I... I considered that. But no, the message was quite clear."

"What did it say, Lucjusz?"

"Hold your outpost. Do not retreat. Do not surrender. Look towards the eastern hill on the morning of the fifth day..."

"But this is the morning of... what that sound?"

"It sounds... it sounds like a trumpet!"


Legends would be told of that morning for generations to come. Some say that a divine force rescued the defenders of the Eyrodii Jungle outpost. Some say that one of The Enlightened led the relief. All say that it marked a turning point in the Rainbow Revolution; that the unexpected defeat of the Chromatik Party's crack security forces deep in the jungle not only allowed the rebels to regroup, but to also show that the Chromatik Party could lose - that the revolution could win.

But in interviews with the surviving defenders immediately after the siege, another story was told - a story that until now Chromatik historians have been unwilling to share, lest they undermine belief in the role of the divine in liberating Chromatika.

According to this alternative story, on the morning of the fifth day a figure wearing a cape of gold and red - uniting the colours of the traditional ruling elite with the colours of the oppressed labouring class - rode over the hill on a white horse, leading a motley force on horses, on motorbikes, on foot, and a single armoured car painted in all the colours of the rainbow. It was said that the leader played a trumpet as his horse crested the hill. It was said he called himself 'Zi-miss-keys' - a nonsense name in an unknown language.

But the strangest part of this other story - the version that excludes The Enlightened - is that after the Chromatik Party forces had been routed, that after the jungle outpost had been relieved, this gold and red caped figure insisted on refereeing a match of football between the relieving force and the survivors of the siege. And when he left, before he mysteriously disappeared into suppressed myth, he simply said "go forth, play football; but play it as equals in a uniform that shows no shades of colour - only black and white'.

But the besieged were tired, they were hungry, they might well have been delusional; and there are few who can back their version of events.
Last edited by Alasdair I Frosticus on Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Founded: Mar 22, 2019
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Flavovespia » Thu Jan 28, 2021 1:58 pm


Frustrated Flavovespia lose close game


Flavovespia’s chances of World Cup Qualification took another critical blow, with a home loss to Havynwilde. 85 places in the KPB Rankings made no difference, as Havynwilde completed a double over Flavovespia.

The same squad was selected for the match-up with Havynwilde, the 3rd time in a row the 11 players started together. Although the attack of Flavovespia had dropped off a little in recent games, Flavovespia looked very solid at the back, with 2 consecutive clean sheets on their travels.

Early stages showed that concerns over attacking prowess may have been merited. Steven Hall was making some great passes to create opportunities, but both Scott Coleman and Mark Paul seemed to be wasteful in their shooting. Mark Paul in particular was twice one on one with just Michael Nicholson, but was off target both times. It had been a frustrating qualifying campaign so far for Paul, not getting on the scoresheet at all yet, and this game wasn’t helping.

For Havynwilde, away from home, chances in the first half seemed few and far between. However they had the best chance of either side in the opening 45 minutes. A deep free kick seemed relatively unthreatening, but a deflected header fell to Turner Sears, at point-blank range. He instinctively shot towards goal, but straight at Aarif Muhammad. Anywhere else and that would’ve been the opener, but it was to remain 0-0 for the half.

The deadlock was broken by Havynwilde in the 55th minute. It was a quick break that left Turner Sears and Taran Tinó with only the centre back pairing of Tony Gardner and Alexander May in front of them. Turner Sears got the pass through the gap for Taran Tinó, and his drilled effort was well beyond the reach of Aarif Muhammad. 0-1 to Havynwilde, and audible frustration amongst the home fans.

Scott Coleman got the equaliser in the 72nd minute, just as Havynwilde began to look comfortable with the lead. It was Steven Hall’s pass from the edge of the box that played in Scott Coleman. The striker’s first time curling shot was well placed, and into the corner of the goal. 1-1, the game was back up for grabs for Flavovespia, but Havynwilde were determined to re-take the lead.

It took just 3 minutes for the eventual winner to be scored. A loose pass by David Clark was intercepted by Taran Tinó. He was held up by Alexander May, but still got the ball out to Liam George out wide. George shot from a wide position, but the ball squirmed past Aarif Muhammad and into the goal. The optimism from this game had gone for Flavovespia in a matter of minutes.

The final minutes saw Flavovespia try for an equaliser, with more risky passes and players thrown forward. Havynwilde’s response saw more players drop back, and the deployment of time-killing tactics. It wasn’t the prettiest of tactics, but it worked, and Flavovespia couldn’t create a clear cut chance, to the frustration of their players. The game was scrappy in the dying minutes, some pushing and shoving for position for a free-kick not helping, but in the end it was Havynwilde finishing with a smile on their face.

Cassadaigua’s 2-1 win over TJUN-ia still means Flavovespia are mathematically alive, but nothing but a win over TJUN-ia in the next game will suffice. Acronius win 4-3 over Muralos, keeping up their chances of 2nd place. Busoga Islands were upset 2-1 in Central Shaneville, the former also nearly out of contention. Hispinas recorded their second win of the tournament, 0-2 keeps up the “perfect” record Nacaltora dearly want to end.


Flavovespia eliminated from qualification in TJUN-ia


An entertaining 4-3 loss for Flavovespia means their World Cup Qualifying dreams are over. It was always a tough ask the second the draw was made, but soon the post-mortem on what went wrong these qualifiers will begin.

A few changes were made to the line-up ahead of this game. Kieron Player returned to the starting 11 over David Clark, and Ramon Martin replaced Mark Paul. Flavovespia had previously lost to TJUN-ia, and were out looking to make amends, and show the loss against Havynwilde wasn’t a sign of a slump.

TJUN-ia were making their home advantage felt in the early stages of the first half. They needed 3 points, not just for 2nd, but to keep the pressure on Cassadaigua and to potentially earn an automatic place in the World Cup. They seemed to have control in the midfield, successfully moving the ball around and depriving Flavovespia of any chances to build a strong attack. It was a surprise in the first half-hour they didn’t score, Aarif Muhammad in good form in the early stages.

The opener in the 34th minute for TJUN-ia wasn’t a surprise. Vladimir Podolov got the ball a little outside the area, and drove forward at goal. Aarif Muhammed closed the angle, but Podolov found enough room to squeeze the shot beyond the keeper, and into the net. Podolov would then double the lead a little before half-time, a whipped cross in was met by his header, to beat Aarif Muhammad.

Flavovespia needed something to recover at the break, and Scott Coleman delivered. First, a long clearance from Aarif Muhammad was met by Martin with his head. Martin’s header flicked the ball on into the path of Coleman. Harold Gylfisson came out to block, but Coleman rounded him to score. Almost from the kick-off following the goal, Hall won possession back. A quick ball forward opened up the space for Coleman to get in and shoot. Coleman went for power, leaving Gylfisson with no chance. From 2-0 down, it was 2-2 after 50 minutes, a real game was on in Szensky.

TJUN-ia were a bit rattled, but recovered and retook the lead in the 67th minute. Flavovespia weren’t able to clear their lines, leading to Archer Andrews having a free shot at goal at the back post. On target, Aarif Muhammad was beaten by the pace of the shot, and TJUN-ia were back in the lead. A close game swung back in their favour.

The lead was doubled in the 78th minute. Aarif Muhammad did well to punch away a dangerous cross into the box, but only as far as Prince Carter. Carter took the chance for an opportunistic volley at goal. It worked, with Aarif Muhammad still out of position from the clearance, and Tony Gardner unable to quite get his head to it in time to knock the ball away. At 4-2 things looked easier for TJUN-ia going into the last stages of the game.

Flavovespia had to go for broke, and they got partially there in the 89th minute. A scramble in the TJUN-ia box saw the ball eventually fall to James King with an open goal at close range. A practically unmissable shot, he easily got Flavovespia’s 3rd. It made no difference to the outcome, TJUN-ia were able to run out injury time without a serious threat to goal by Flavovespia.

That result ends the Flavovespian dream of World Cup Qualification. The group was considered one of the tough ones on paper. However, elimination with 3 games still left to go does hurt Flavovespia and the team. Whilst Alan Young is not rumoured to be on his way out yet, there’s questions being asked at all involved, about why there were so few wins over Pot 1-6 sides, and how again Flavovespia didn’t even get to the final few matchdays with a chance of qualification.

Acronis won 0-1 at the hapless Nacaltora to keep up their hopes of a Top 2 finish. Cassadaigua’s 1-2 win in Busoga Islands also eliminates the hosts from World Cup qualification. Havynwilde drew 2-2 with Muralos, in a midtable battle and Hispinas get their 3rd win, 1-0 over Central Shaneville.

Formerly the Republic of Greater Waldster, internationally known as Greater Watford. IC It's a long story (OOC I didn't like using real place names)

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Postby Gyatso-kai » Thu Jan 28, 2021 2:19 pm

Pulled from Avatarian Sports Blog KickMeWhenImDown.blogstain.gki

Well, it’s been an exciting tournament to say the least…

For starters, the Bisons have amassed what is their best record to date since The Silence; an impressive 8-2-5, which equates to the most wins in a football tournament since our return nine campaigns ago. The Bisons have also racked up their highest goals for in Post-Silence history, coming in at 42 GF, which puts us tied for fourth in the group.

All and all, even if we lose out the qualifying stages, this will have been a very successful campaign for the Bisons.

But why? What was done differently this campaign than in tournaments past?

For this sports connoisseur, it comes down to three key factors (and sorry for taking the layout from ASPN. I just love the style >.< )


What is arguably the biggest factor in our turnaround from tournaments past is the addition of National Ice Hockey Head Coach Ishii Hakoda to the team in the role of “Cultural Consultant”. In that role, he has taken a team from around the Four Nations and brought them together under one shared culture. Of course, if you follow the Ice Bisons any, you already know the banner these men have unified beneath is the Banner of Mandalore. We have not heard so much mando’a spoken on the pitch since before The Silence, in the times when Vhett Boba was our coach.

Why is this a positive?

By giving the team a unified culture, it gives the players something to drive for. In the past, players are set on pride for their Nation, for their college team, or for some, to increase their stock in upcoming trade deals. As history as shown, players who are Mandalorian have a tendency to seek glory for themselves and for their teammates. In one famous interview with ASPN, Kad’e Tay’haai came forward when asked what drives him to succeed, and thinking back to that quote is likely why he brought Ishii onto the team for this tournament:

So often, us mandos get a bad reputation as ‘glory-seekers’ and ‘attention-starved’; whereas our teammates from the Four Nations will wear more-conservative clothing, we always wear our beskar’gam when not in uniform. Whereas our teammates will make speeches after victories about ‘bringing glory to Gyatso-kai’, we speak of ‘bringing glory to our team’ or ‘play for so-and-so’. Whereas our teammates will make a goal and celebrate themselves – pointing to their chests and celebrating – we will often run to our nearest teammates and celebrate a victory of the alit. That’s what drives me. To succeed for my brothers, for my coach. No better feeling than victory with your fellow ade.

It seems as though Ishii has done well in infusing that mentality in the team.


This is something that gets brought up quite frequently whenever a team begins to falter. While, yes, age is wisdom and older players do inspire younger players with tales of past glory and experience, the youthful vigor of a player ten years their junior cannot be ignored.

In two of our most pronounce victories – MD 1 vs Caryton and MD8 vs Socialist New Britain – we started Hamada Roshi who, at 22, is six years younger than Zhao Baoli. Not to mention, the inclusion of Uthan A’den and Tercar Shuajo in our defense has given the team significant boost in energy on the back half of the pitch. Watch the footage from World Cup 84 when we had Aurnaq Itawaku and Somchai Kikwan as our key defensemen and you will see. Sure, Somchai is still on the team, however, placing him out on the right while Uthan and Tercar hold central points and drive balls up the pitch to our aging midfielders has prevented many a faltered goals from getting to the net.

Speaking of midfielders, all of whom on the Starting XI are over-30, it is perhaps a telling sign of where we are our weakest and what needs to be done. Sure, Guanyu Jun and Fei’kao Song have gotten a few reps here and there, and we cannot overlook the contributions Takahasi, Ma, and Hisakawa have made to the team – attributing to more than 60% of goals scored by the team in the tournament so far – but we must continue to push younger players into the lineup, or we are soon to face a great loss. Eventually, the Big Three will retire, and we need experienced players to take over the reins for them. We need to see Penlu Saito of Chomain State and Dik Up’lis make their way into the lineups and start getting reps. We need to see Guanyu moved from Offense to Defense, taking over for Takahashi as the ‘Northern Spear’ begins to show his age. We need to see Ma taking a few of the younger defensive midfielders under his accomplished wings before the Sword of the “Northern Duo” as they are so lovingly referred to by ASPN seeks retirement.


Yes, not every part of our success comes down to our own teams skill. For this tournament, we can look to our opponents and thank the spirits for such an even field. As opposed to tournaments pass, which saw the fortunes unfavorable, we received a fairly even distribution of opponents this campaign:
  • Under-300: Caryton300, Socialist New Britain355. West ZirconiaNR
  • Under 100: Southwest Eastnorth142, Bongo Johnson142
  • Under 50: Squornshelan Remnant States66
  • Top 5o: Farfadillis3, Krytenia39, Poafmersia48

This even spread, as well as how the matchdays lined up, helped our team essentially ramp up to the difficult opponents. For example, the Bisons opened the tournament with a strong home game showing against Caryton, and that momentum allowed them to travel to Farfadillis where they were able to hold the third-ranked team in the world to a lone goal. Further, when the Bisons came out of a 3-2 loss against the Remnant States, they were able to rebound off of Socialist New Britain and take on Krytenia in their own home stadium to the sound of 3 goals against one.

Now going into the last trio of games, we have to wonder if the past patterns of falters and momentum will help us. The Bisons sent West Zirconia a strong message, defeating them 5-1 in front of a sold-out Republic City crowd… so we can only hope that momentum will carry us through Squornshelan and New Britain onto Krytenia.

If we can win against Squornshelan and Krytenia… we might advance for the first time since The Silence.

And that would be something else...
The Avatarian Republic of Gyatso-kai
Denomyn: Avatarian || Trigramme: GKI || Located: Avatar Incarnate
Factbook || Armed Forces Holocron
Champions: World Cup of Hockey XXIII
Runner-Up: World Junior Hockey Championship III, World Cup of Hockey XXI
Third Place: World Cup of Hockey XV, XVII, XVIII
Qualified: Baptism of Fire 44 (Mangolana Quaterfinals), Cup of Harmony 50 (4th Place), World Cup 59-63, World Cup of Hockey XV-XXVI
Participant: World Women's Hockey Championship I (9th Place), World Cup of Hockey XVI, World Cups 57-63 Qualifying, Republic Cup I, Cup of Harmony 49
Rankings: 5th in Ice Hockey (Before WCoH 21), 22nd in Association Football (after WC 64)

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Postby Omerica » Thu Jan 28, 2021 2:45 pm
All the football news that’s fit to print!
WCQ87 run-in: Omerica finally climb into and Equestria fall out of the top two of Group 12
By Anastasia Saint-Martin

What seemed unthinkable at the halfway mark has become a reality: Equestria have slipped out of the top two for the first time in the qualifying campaign and would miss the World Cup finals for the first time since co-hosting the eightieth edition if qualification ended tonight. Meanwhile, Starblaydia would top the group by six points and Omerica would face Baker Park for the chance at a first World Cup finals since Nephara’s solitary championship victory at World Cup 74.

It was not really anything that Omerica did that swung the qualifiers this way. The Incorrigibles did take a hard-earned point off of Starblaydia in Jhanna, but dropped the ball in the first half of the crucial six-pointer in Equestria, where the home side raced into a two-goal lead. Thom Magalhaes secured a second-half brace and the Incorrigibles left south-west AO with a draw, but all that result did was put Starblaydia—who demolished Yuezhou in at the Stadii di Bradini—further out of reach at the top.

Ultimately, an unlikely spoiler came in to poop on the Ponies’ party: Lorrana. Sitting second-last after fourteen games with ten defeats in total, Lorrana stunned the world by eking out an unlikely 3–2 win against a team who had not long ago won two AOCAF and one world championship on the bounce. Handed a crucial lifeline by Lorrana’s greatest game of the cycle, the Stade Rue de la Victoire appropriately bore witness to a convincing home victory against Beepee, giving Omerica a one-point lead over Equestria in the battle for the playoffs.

Equestria had successfully ripped the Incorrigibles’ fate out of their own hands, only for the Incorrigibles to successfully recover the Ponies’ fumble to borrow a gridiron metaphor. Now Omerica are the team in control of their own destiny, while Equestria must hope that Omerica slip. Unfortunately for these United Republics, Equestria have two key advantages over Omerica in this cycle’s run-in.

Firstly, Equestria currently hold the advantage over Omerica on a tiebreaker. Head-to-head results provide the first tiebreaker this cycle, but Equestria and Omerica could not help by draw both the match in Romainbourg and the match in Canterlot 2–2. Thus any tie on points will be sent to a goal differential tiebreaker, which Equestria currently edge out +18 to +16. The margin is small enough that it could easily flip, but the differentials tighten an already tight run-in.

Secondly and more importantly, Equestria have an easier fixture list. Both Equestria and Omerica will host unexpected strugglers Yuezhou in the run-in, on matchdays 16 and 18 respectively, so the real difference is in the other two games. Equestria have their final away game of the qualifiers against last-place Mexi Catcha on matchday 17 before closing out at home to the second-last-place Grearish Union. In contrast, Omerica have back-to-back away games against known spoilers before Yuezhou visit Éternare: a visit to the Darkmanian capital Örkendrem, followed by a trip to Lorrana City.

Realistically, Omerica’s best chance is to win both of those games and pray that Yuezhou defeat a stumbling Equestria. If so, the Incorrigibles will be at least four points clear of the Ponies going into matchday 18, rendering the Omerica–Yuezhou match a dead rubber. If the Incorrigibles need a result in Éternare, the playoff spot can realistically go either way.

On the cusp of a record
In fifteen games, Omerica have already collected one more point than in all of last cycle’s qualifiers. Furthermore, the Incorrigibles sit just one point short of Omerica’s highest-ever point haul in a World Cup qualifying campaign currently stands, achieved in the World Cup 81 cycle under Anne-Sophie Groothuis; just two points from the last three matches would be enough to best that record. Omerica’s points-per-game record will remain untouchable, however: 30 points in 12 games during Omerica’s successful World Cup 74 campaign cannot be bettered even if Omerica win their final three matches.

Furthermore, even if Omerica ultimately end up short of the playoffs, the Incorrgibles could nevertheless record a second-straight top-three finish in a difficult qualifying group. And unlike last cycle, where any challenge to Turori or Siovanija-Teusland was quickly snuffed out, the Incorrigibles have consistently remained a contender for the top two against Starblaydia and Equestria. Even more encouragingly, the Incorrigibles have only been beaten once so far this campaign: the familiar refrain of defeat to Starblaydia in Romainbourg.

Conversely, Omerica have only collected six points in a matchweek once this campaign, namely against Mexi Catcha and the Grearish Union when the qualifiers resumed after the halfway point. Last cycle, where matchweeks were arranged slightly differently, Omerica had four six-point matchweeks: Norralesse and Garifunya in weeks 1 and 6 and against the Holy Junta and Gopnikea in weeks 3 and 9.

Similarly, Omerica have struggled to string three qualifying wins in a row during Alexis Stephanidis’s tenure, as her Incorrigibles have only done so once: wins against the Holy Junta, Gopnikea and Blampano in the second half of last cycle’s campaign. In contrast, Omerica’s World Cup 81 qualifying campaign kicked off with five straight victories. Much of that can be chalked up to the Incorrigibles’ most testing matches being spread out across the calendar these last two cycles, but the draw at home to Darkmania in the first half of the qualifiers does not exactly inspire confidence that Stephanidis can conjure consistency in the Omerica change room.

And for Omerica to ulimately stand on the cusp of a long-awaited finals ticket, Stephanidis needs to find the kind of short-term consistency that her Incorrigibles have never truly had before. If she can find it, the Incorrigibles will be just two games away from a first appearance at the World Cup finals in twenty-six years. If she cannot, we still have plenty of positives to take away from the national team’s valiant effort. ◇
Other Football News:
• The Rumour Mill: Federation and League officials may be in negotiation for an “Omexit” from independent association football
• Off the Pitch: Former Omerica midfielder Casimir Paquet is the clear favourite to become the United Republics’ 21st president
• WCQ87 run-in: The first five sides to secure top-two finishes — Cassadaigua, Turori, Farfadillis, Valanora and … Trolleborg?!

Uniting Omerican sport fans across the United Republics — blogdefootball: a proud member of the Gryphon Pride network

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Darkmania v Omerica
World Cup 87 qualification — Matchday Sixteen
Örkendrem Nätionaljë Foëtbäll Arëna, Örkendrem, Darkmania

— and —
Lorrana v Omerica
World Cup 87 qualification — Matchday Seventeen
Lightspeed Arena, Lorrana City, Lorrana

Omerica lineup (4–3–3): Valentin Augustin; Alphonse Notley, Charity Kayode, Raphaël Martin, Sacha Sepulveda; Red Bolton (captain), Fearchar Mac Cléirich, Thom Magalhaes; Jessie Beckett, Jean-François Fernand, Jamal Ahmad
Substitutes: Alexandra McGuire, Annelise Betancourt; Darcy Francis, Frédérique Marquetti, Justin Thyme, Felix Zanetti; Maxime Fournier, Soraya Archambault, Nadiya al-Hashim; Maïa Bustos, Alexis Chrysanthos, Adélaïde Argyris
TLA: OME, HUClavia
iTLD: .or
Demonym: Rubbish Omerican
Every Omerica football match
This nation does not necessarily reflect my actual political views
Discontinue use if rash develops
Don’t ⬋ play ⬋ with ⬋ fire
Omerica – 27/09/2017
Any further and our feet will probably be in our stomachs
Kanoria - 27/09/2017
I for one love the reflux uniquely generated by self-gluttony of limbs, where the flesh meets the acid
This space intentionally left
OME sweet OME

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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Trolleborg » Thu Jan 28, 2021 2:53 pm

Greetings, compatriots!
This is TTV with latest news about our national team. Two very different games was played by our lads in the last batch.


The match against Yerapia, which had long since given up hopes for a high place in the table, nevertheless seemed to require a lot of concentration. Such matches often determine the outcome of the struggle for the first place. And we are glad that our players played with due dedication, showing their best qualities.

But there was some drama, in the first half our guys stubbornly attacked, but could not score, although they had the plenty of opportunities to do so. And in the middle of the half, the hosts opened the scoring. After a pass from the flank, an accurate shot followed, right into the upper corner, and the ball ricocheted from the bar into the net


Fortunately, this goal did not take the breath away for our players, and they continued to siege the hosts' goal, definitely could equalize the score twice, but the goalkeeper make some wonders. But either our lads did not allow the hosts to create opportunities to raise their goal tally. And the confidence was growing among the fans that success would eventually come, but the teams went for the break with the score 1:0. Only after the exchange of gates did our guys get game the way they want. Finnsnes first took advantage of the second of freedom and make a powerful shot straight into the corner.


Then he made a wonderful clever sharp pass to the exit, the defender was confused for a second, Skaloed sucessfully acquire ball, shot from an acute angle and although the goalkeeper parried his effort, Severin was the first to reach him.


In four minutes the game turned upside down, and now it’s the host who needed strength and speed, but have a problems with that. By the end of the match, the defenders were already moving a little hard, apparently, Yerapia team lacked physical fitness to play at the pace required, and our lads were able to take advantage of this.

Closer to the end of the game, Finnsnes make a calculated throw “behind the collar of the goalkeeper”, and Severin was in time to finish attack before anyone else


A few minutes later, a pass into the penalty area followed, the goalkeeper parried the first shot, but Severin was again first where he needed to be the


And, perhaps, if it were not the heroic game of the hosts' goalkeeper, the score could have grown even more. But all in all but our guys must be happy with this result.


In order to avoid damage to household appliances and property, we will not show again what was on the field. Now, if enemies attack our country, and for some reason the population of Trolleborg catch mope at the same time, we will play through the recording of this game, and, undoubtedly, after that even the calmest of the calmest will reach the required degree of anger.

Two penalties in our goal, one of them looked absolutely unfounded, and two disallowed goals of our team, and, moreover, by the end of the game, the guests' players themselves expressed sincere surprise at the decisions made by the refereeing team.

We are forced to apologize for the excesses of our commentator who right on the air live hurled dirtiest abuses into the referee. He was in such outrage, that after game he need a medic and was hospitalized with a suspicion on hypertensive emergency. We also must admit, that usually reserved FA CEO Torben Mortensen and head coach, a man of exceptional self-control, spoke about this game and referee qualities in such a words that we wanted to wash ears immediately, and not without reason.

Obviously, the refereeing was completely biased and in no way corresponded to the high level required of those who undertake to conduct world cups. The leadership of our federation should, as they finish their quite exusable swearing, bring it on to the organizers.

Yes, Holy Empire lost points too, but we are for fair football, not for our personal success. Problems with the quality of refereeing in the second half of the qualifying tournament are evident in almost half of all qualifying groups. What is happening is, in our opinion, a rather scandalous.

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Left-wing Utopia

Postby Mytanija » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:00 pm

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6
Part 7
Part 8
Part 9
Part 10
Part 11
Part 12
Part 13

“Oh look, here they come now.” Mladen, cap firmly back on his head, started. “I wonder what they were up to.” The two cops came striding past, heads down, aware that eyes were on them. The whole group followed their progress across the square. Nobody said a word, but the man looked over towards the group, Tomica bowed his head a little, keeping his eyes uplifted slightly to try and catch a sight of them. To see if the man saw him. In the end he looked away and the pair got into their car.

“They did look like cops,” Tomica said, sipping on his beer. “Thanks for the warning lads.”

“No problem mate.” Mladen replied. “Why would they have had a problem with an old-timer like you anyway?” The younger man chuckled slightly. Tomica raised an eyebrow.

“Nothing mate, none of us like getting stopped by them lot though, do we?”

“Nah you’re right, anytime man.” Mladen said.

“If I’ve a free hour or so and I see you lot around here I’ll come down and bring a beer. Nice one.” Tomica said.

“Aye sure, we’ll see you around man.” Mladen nodded as Tomica turned away before throwing his head back and emptying the rest of the can down his throat. Tomica wished he was still young enough to do that, he wished he was back at that age when a heist as big as the one he had carried out would have seemed too big and he wouldn’t have done it as a result. The mess he had created for himself was potentially unsalvageable. Now his mind was racing, had Éléonore set him up? Would there be cops back at the flat waiting for him? Had this been some sort of elaborate distraction? He wondered if he should leave, but the paintings were stored in a lock-up on the ground floor of the estate that Éléonore owned. He would have to go back to even be able to get them. He couldn’t go anywhere without them, they were his ticket out of Mytanija. He needed to get in touch with Vedran too, to see if he had any success with the buyers. Tomica felt like things were closing in on him.

He walked back to the flat whilst every fibre of his being was telling him not to. His mind was dragging him in every direction but that of the flat, but his body was doing something completely different and he felt like he was stood at a distance watching it unfold. Surely she wouldn’t have ratted him out, not after everything. They had talked of moving away, to Prahecq or even Loronha, to end their lives of crime for once and for all. They wanted to lead simple lives, free of the cops. Surely Éléonore hadn’t forgotten those conversations. He couldn’t believe she would, but he hadn’t come this far by trusting anyone fully. As he approached her door he didn’t know whether to knock or just walk in, as he usually would. There was a sense of foreboding telling him to run. The door flew open. It was Éléonore.

“Thank fuck you’re back!” She exclaimed, diving towards Tomica and hugging him.

“What the fuck is going on Éléonore?” Tomica said, pushing her away.

“What are you doing?” She replied, a look of astonishment on her face.

“What am I doing?!” He shouted. “What do you mean? What are you doing?! I’ve just had to wait with a group of wasters because they spotted an unmarked Policija car out on the estate. I thought surely that’s nothing to do with me, but then they say that the pigs went in the direction of your flat and I begin to think, hey, what if Éléonore has absolutely rat-fucked me here?”

“They were here, they came here.” Éléonore replied. “But it’s nothing to do with me. Well—”

“Well?!” Tomica yelled before Éléonore could finish her sentence. “Have you fucking sold me out?!” He shouted, throwing the plastic bag against the window of the flat. The contents fell out, vegetables were strewn all over the walkway. Tomica was shaking with fury whilst Éléonore began to hyperventilate slightly.

“What do you mean?! Why would I do that Tomica?!” She started. “If you would let me finish..” She continued, but a door opened up at a flat further down the walkway and an old man poked his head out. He looked at them before turning the other way and looking towards the stairs.

“Everything alright love?” The old man asked. “Are those pigs causing trouble?”

“Yeah, yeah,” Éléonore replied, trying to slow her breathing and appear calm. “Everything’s okay. They’ve gone now.”

“My wife and I were playing cards here when they walked past, but we decided to move inside once we saw them go into yours.” The old man said. “You’ll want to be careful love, even getting visits from those bastards can rub people up the wrong way around here. I know you’re not a rat, but some get the wrong impression, you know?”

“I know, we’re nothing of the sort mate.” Tomica said. The old man gave him a stern look.

“You treat her right, you hear me? I don’t want to hear no shouting out here again.” The old man glowered at Tomica, Tomica was left speechless.

“Yeah, yeah, sorry about that.” Éléonore said. “It won’t happy again. Thanks for looking out for us.”

“Anytime love. You know where we are if you need anything.” The old man said before turning inside. Éléonore looked at Tomica and began to pick-up the food which was on the walkway. Tomica didn’t say anything. He went inside and into the bedroom to see if they had searched the place. He never left any of his stuff outside there, but they had evidently been in the flat, it wouldn’t have taken much to have a look in the bedroom. None of it was disturbed, it was all where it had been before he had left. The door slammed behind him and Éléonore was stood there, tears flecked her cheeks though she still had a fierce look on her face.

“Everything where it’s supposed to be, then?” She asked sarcastically.

“Yeah.” Tomica answered. “What did they want then?”

“You could have asked me calmly like that before assuming that I had sold you out.”

“How was I supposed to know? With these things it’s impossible to know who to trust.”

“After everything that’s happened do you really think I’d sell you out? I can’t believe you’re even saying this. I could have done it years ago when you were pushing drugs. Even though they fucked me up I never did!” Éléonore shouted.

“That’s nothing to do with this! Can you just tell me what they wanted, please? I’m sorry for shouting, but you know how hectic this is, it’s not like some small drug bust if they catch me. It’s four of the most famous Mytanar paintings ever, they’re going to shoot me if they think I’m going to run. It’s not a game, Éléonore.”

“I’m well aware of that.” She spat. “You’ve brought all this on yourself, trying to be too bloody clever for your own good. Why did you have to steal those fucking paintings? You’ll probably never get them sold and then what? Where does that leave us?”

“I will get them sold. We’ll be fine, but I need to know what they wanted.”

“They’re looking for you. They came to me to ask when I had last seen you and when you had last been in contact with me.” She paused for a moment as the cogs in her mind whirred. “It might have been when you last tried to get in contact with me. I didn’t tell them anything – I just said it was ages ago – and told them to go. I think I did pretty well, considering.” Éléonore explained.

“Did they leave anything in here?” Tomica asked, still panicked.

“Just a card.” Éléonore said, walking into the lounge and picking it up off the arm of the sofa. “Here.” She handed it to Tomica. He looked at it before throwing it back down onto the sofa.

“Alright then.” He said, throwing himself down onto the sofa and sinking into it. He rubbed his eyes. He was tired, not particularly physically, but mentally. He was so tired of all of this. “I think we’re going to have to try and leave. As soon as possible.”

“Now?” Éléonore asked. “Where would we even go?”

“I don’t know yet. I’ll have to speak to Vedran.” Tomica said. “But I’m not sure I have many options. They must have a vague idea I’m around here to come and speak to you. Are you sure they didn’t leave anything in here?”

“Yeah, one hundred percent.” Éléonore replied. “The man tried to go into the bedroom but I stopped him and said he needed to have a warrant if he was going to search the place.”

“Why did you do that?!” Tomica exclaimed, despair in his voice. If that didn’t make things look suspicious then nothing would.

“What else could I say?” Éléonore answered. “If he came in here and found your stuff they’d probably have waited until you came back. I couldn’t say it was someone else’s in case they decided to wait, I told them I didn’t have any drugs and I wasn’t a prostitute anymore and just tried to get them out as quick as I could. So I stopped them from going in there by saying that.”

“Right well, we’re going to have to move location at the very least, it wouldn’t surprise me if they’re watching the flat even now.” Tomica stopped. “You don’t have to come with me you know, if you don’t want to. You don’t have to do this.”

“I’ve already lied about knowing where you are.”

“I know, but you can say I threatened you or something. That old fella saw me outside shouting.”

“He wouldn’t speak to the cops would he? Did you hear him? I’d have to move from here anyway if people thought I was a grass.”

“Okay. Well it’s up to you. Are you sure? It’s not too late to back out.”

“No. What else would I do anyway? Where else do I have to go?” Éléonore asked, a degree of finality entering her voice. She had made her decision.

“She was definitely acting odd though, guv’, like I don’t know exactly what it was but she didn’t want us to be there for long. She definitely wasn’t expecting it to be us when she opened the door anyway.” Eva said.

“It could have been anyone, though.” Mirko replied. He looked unconvinced. “What was she saying when you asked her about being in contact with him?”

“She was very vague guv’.” Tomas said as he sat down, he looked over at Eva. “I tried to look in the bedroom and she near went off. She didn’t want me looking in there whatsoever. Started going on about a warrant straight away.”

“Really?” Mirko raised an eyebrow, looking from Tomas to Eva and back again. “That is odd. Something to hide maybe.”

“It seemed a bit like that. She was really defensive and wanted us in and out, almost pushed us out the door. Wouldn’t be surprised if someone was coming back there as soon as we left to be honest with you.” Tomas didn’t explain why she was defensive of course, Eva knew that his line of questioning was hardly conducive to getting information out of Éléonore. He had gone after her a little, straight into things that were in her past that she probably wanted to leave deep in the past. It wasn’t something to lodge a complaint about, but it hadn’t helped them get information – something which was usually like drawing blood from a stone in the Votavova anyway.

“Yeah, she just said that the last time she’d seen Vjeranovic was a long time ago and that she hadn’t been in touch with him since. She did seem to have a relatively good opinion of him though.” Eva added.

“How so?”

“Well, we were discussing her previous drug use and he used to sell stuff to her and then she said that once he realised the damage he was causing to people he stopped selling gear entirely.” Tomas said. “She was generally defensive, but she was actually defensive of him when that came up.”

“That’s interesting, actually.” Mirko replied, rubbing his chin, he was thinking. “We’ve not got much else to go on at the moment. Was she worried about her past record?”

“She said she didn’t want us there because she hadn’t done anything, said she wasn’t doing anything like that now.” Eva explained. It did feel like it wasn’t just that though, Éléonore seemed to be in a serious hurry once they had told her they were Policija. “But honestly, it seemed more like she was worried that we would be there when whoever it was that she was waiting on got back. Like Tomas said, she almost pushed us out the door on the way out.”

“Could be that she just didn’t want people seeing us lot in her flat in the Votavova, to be fair, you know what people are like there.” Mirko said. “But we’re going to set-up some observation anyway. On the off-chance that it is Vjeranovic she was waiting on I want to know.”

“Alright guv’, who do you want running the observation?” Tomas asked.

“You two of course,” Mirko answered. He smiled. “It’ll be good for you to get this bit of experience. You haven’t run one before, have you? Either of you?”

“No guv’.” Tomas replied.

“Nah, me neither.” Eva added.

“Good. Elvir will come with you then. We’ll have to set it up overnight so nobody gets suspicious.”

“That’s not exactly easy in the Votavova, guv’.” Tomas said sceptically.

“No, it’s not. But we’ve done these things lots of times before. We’ll manage. We’ll have to identify a suitable property to use, preferably an empty flat in the estate across from the one Éléonore Bobec’s flat is in. There’s a lot of them around that area. We can use the walkway, they’ve all got them. You’ll have to be careful using binoculars and that sort of thing but if I’m thinking of the right area the distance between the two isn’t far enough that you’d need them at all times. You should be able to see them with the naked eye, shouldn’t you?” Mirko asked.

“Yeah, that’s right. They aren’t too far apart.” Eva said.

“What if people ask us why we’re there?” Tomas asked.

“You’ll have to pretend you’re moving in there or something, nobody will put too much thought into it as long as only one of you is outside on that walkway at any one time. Just pretend you’re watching the world go by.” Mirko said.

“What about equipment and all that? If we have radios going off the neighbours will be onto us in two minutes.”

“You’ll have to keep any equipment inside unless you’re absolutely certain nobody is around, particularly cameras. If you need to get photos then be bloody careful about it. As for getting in touch with us we’ll be using mobile phones. Much easier in this scenario.” Mirko chuckled.

“Will we tail them if they go out?” Eva asked.

“Elvir will be with you and we’ll trust your judgement, you’ve seen what this guy looks like so if you think he’s there then get in touch with us. If Éléonore Bobec goes out then Elvir will go out to follow her, you two can’t now she’s seen you, just in case. But he’ll be in touch with both you and us here if that occurs.” Mirko said. “If Tomica Vjeranovic is there we’ll be sending down half the Policija we have available. If he so moves a muscle we’ll be onto him. I want those paintings back.”

Goalkeepers: 1. Pedja Kasun (Ararat Severyan), 12. Lazar Obradovic (Liria Prizren), 23. Zafer Muminovic (Tekstil Ibon)
Defenders: 2. Srdan Vukovic (1896 Ebor), 3. Mojmir Anac (Olympic Thessia), 15. Grigorij Savicevic (Atletik Thessia), 5. Petr Isaev (Crvena Zvezda); 25. Patrik Odonelec (Atletik Thessia), 4. Kamil Jernejec (Olympic Thessia), 14. Niksa Obadko (Liria Prizren), 16. Branko Nikolov (Liria Prizren)
Midfielders: 6. Alen Hrdaljko (CDSA), 7. Tahir Fejzuli (Mâ Âlâmëómë [FFD]), 8. Dalibor Vlahovic (Ararat Severyan), 10. Jasno Odonelec (Atletik Thessia), 11. Boris Kalinic (Workers Union [EUR]); 17. Branko Brkljacic (Atletik Thessia), 18. Vilim Kupresak (Olympic Thessia), 32. Mateja Stojkovic (Ararat Severyan), 19. Brajko Gavrilovic (1896 Ebor), 35. Ermin Drzic (Carsby [EUR]), 36. Kemal Gajic (Arka Snezhnaya)
Forwards: 9. Jezdimir Ocokoljic (Atletik Thessia); 21. Zlatan Andrijasevic (Atletik Thessia); 39. Anton-Dusan Straka (Liria Prizren)
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Postby Commonwealth of Baker Park » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:36 pm

Down to the wire for NT in WC
Scott McCrae
The Daily Mail National Soccer Writer

The Commonwealth National Team regained some momentum and control over their own destiny in the fight for a possible runner-up place in Group 4, as well moving back to just a game behind leaders Vdara at the top of the table.

The team will close out the home portion of the fixture list with matches against Norish Jeia Repa at Rogers Stadium in Endborough, and Hapilopper at the BBP Stadium, ahead of the final matchday meeting with Xanneria at the XanAir Stadium in Dominica City.

Both Vdara & BP have comparable closing runs, with the Vdarans having home dates against Bonbakh u Pieche and Quakmybush sandwiching a trip to Electrum; the leaders know that six points will definitely top the final standings and book an automatic place in Taeshan & Ethane, as they hold the tiebreaker advantages.

The top three group runners-up will receive automatic entry to the Finals, while the rest will face off in a two-legged playoff; currently there are 8 nations who have earned more than the 33 points BP have earned thus far, which not only makes being one of the lucky three difficult, but also opens up the possibility of the Bees not being one of the 8 higher seeds in playoff pairings.

Currently, the Bees are among the highest scoring squads through 15 rounds of competition, trailing only Vdara (54), Farfadillis (53) and sitting joint third with Starblaydia on 52, as Banija, Cassadaigua both on 49), & Chromatika (48) lurk close behind; yet there is a serious threat to the streak of seven consecutive qualifications to the Finals, raising the prospect that the side could be a participant in the Cup of Harmony they would be co-host of, should the bid with Tikariot be accepted by the WCC.

On a related front, former Women’s AM Kate DiMarini was approached to take charge of the Zwangzug National Team at the halfway break of WCQ; DiMarini is well known there as boss at Trebuchet Cham in the Zwangzug top flight, helping the club to qualification for IFCF competitions over the last few cycles. So far, the NT have responded, as they are unbeaten (4 wins and 2 draws) under her guidance, making it seem increasingly likely that she may be offered the post on a full time basis, particularly if she can steer them through a 4 team logjam for a spot in the playoff.
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Postby Farfadillis » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:36 pm

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National Team Section
A few key stats
submitted just now

It's no secret: these qualifiers have been a wild ride for most top seeds—just ask the Terraneans. A wild ride we appear to have avoided. To wit, just one win out of three games would suffice (short of shipping in more than five against Poafmersia). With that in mind, although this has hardly been our best qualifiers campaign ever, I'd like to point out a few stats that show why we are not struggling. I don't want to focus on stats you'd expect, though, like how many goals we've scored. Let's go for the kind of stats you'd have to be a big nerd to even think about!

Röémün Çídh has accumulated an xG of 20.75
"What is an xG?" I hear you cry. Good question. It stands for expected goals, and it's a measure of how many good chances a team/player is getting (for example, a 0.2 xG shot is a shot with a 20% chance to go in, and so on). In this specific instance, we're looking at Röémün Çídh's staggering xG tally. He's been (rightfully, it seems) criticized for his sloppy finishing throughout this campaign, but he's still scored 12 goals in 15 games. This stat hints at three facts. First off, Röémün's finishing has been subpar. Sure, that's bad, consider the other two things we can conclude from this stat: Röemün Çídh's great at finding chances to score and the team is great at supplying him with said chances. If he managed to polish his finishing and find his form (at Rülândéá Kôstä he overperformed his xG by 6.15 in 36 games) he'd be an absolute beast. He would've scored 23 or 24 goals in 15 games this season. That's a ton of goals. It's the numbers Täjó Çíânflöné, who was the Galáctico twice, used to put up when supplied by Xíxì Êns, who was the Galáctico "only" once but undeniably even better overall. I'm skeptical Röémün will ever be able to reach such heights, but I still believe this stat points at our team's attacking prowess reaching some of its best heights to date (we saw some of that last World Cup, almost breaking the record for most goals at a World Cup proper).

Faragó rue Cazade's average rating against the top 5 has been 8.59; his overall rating has been 8.10
It's no secret that rue Cazade's the team's best player. He's at his peak and, when firing on all cylinders, simply unstoppable. Rumour has it even the Græntfjallers love him. He's inconsistent with the NT, yes, but as time has gone on he appears to have just become... somewhat lazy and complacent? He barely even tries against the bad teams, then reminds everyone why he's one of the best in the Multiverse when he faces half-decent teams. If he can put up these performances against the high-caliber opponents we'll face at the World Cup (hopefully) then we're in a great position to make a deep run... at least so long as the defense doesn't ship in seven goals like last time...

Our pass completion rate against the top 5 is 79%
This would, most of the time, be a pretty damning stat. Most top teams manage much better numbers (86% is doable, for example), but it's actually a great stat for us when put into context: nobody can deny we have favored a very vertiginous style when facing good opponents. Risky passes were the bread and butter of players like t'Öéséné and Çí Xôrí and, although our pass completion suffered for it, it's no surprise that we've amassed the most xG-against-top-5-pots of any team in qualifiers (according to my metrics, mind). Put another way: we don't just tear apart good defenses, we also are capable of doing it in an instant. Our third goal against SRS was a perfect example of this: Çí Xôrí recovers the ball, finds Alxíkí with an excellent through pass and he finds Röemün Çídh with a low cross. Just ten seconds went by between Çí Xôrí's tackle and Röemün's goal. The downside? We have conceded far too many goals from counterattacks: just look at Alan Belmwr's goal against us at [unknown arena]. If we're weak to counterattacks, we don't want to lose the ball often. Hopefully, we won't be punished for our risky playstyle against top-tier teams like... Trolleborg, Vdara and Savigliane? Man, these qualifiers have been weird.

Emiliano Gallegas' has clocked in at 35.5 kilometers per hour (22.5 miles per hour) at his best
That might potentially be the record for a Farf player not named Friekder Dandalleion. The Faroleran winger has been in exquisite form for both club and country lately, but it's his insane pace that impresses above all else. Pace is such an important attribute in today's game, but the lad's also got great acceleration and is very nimble. It's no surprise Pam Scott has opted for a more direct passing style this cycle: Gallegas' pace makes him a nightmare for any team, and Alxíkí's actually not that far behind, too. What's more, his crossing has been on point, as well as his dribbling. Arguably our second-best player this cycle.

Edmün Çídh has accumulated 12.59 xA
xA, unsurprisingly, means expected assists. Assist are harder to come by than goals (for obvious reasons), so xA tallies are naturally lower. Bearing that in mind, Edmün's xA stat is gigantic (especially considering he's scored 10 goals from 9.88 xG, too). Pam's now employing him as a Xíxì Êns-type false nine/playmaking striker of sorts, and he's been looking really sharp. He appears to have swallowed his pride and allowed his younger brother to do most of the scoring. Yeah, sure, he isn't and will probably never be Xíxì Êns, but the fact that we have a player that can comfortably operate in the same role is massive. After all, we've only ever won the World Cup once, and it was precisely because of Xíxì's exploits. With a worse version of Xíxì but a better team surrounding him, who says we can't win the whole thing once again?

All in all, there are reasons to be excited going into World Cup 87: the team has been looking very sharp in a particularly difficult cycle for most top teams. We've got arguably the best attack in the Multiverse at the moment (also, we managed to put at least four goals past each top 5 team in our group at least once), and the team as a whole has looked deadly, especially in this second half of qualifiers; the first half was a bit more... inconsistent. However, do temper expectations: we all remember what World Cups 81 and 85 were like, and I doubt any of us want to see it happen again. I mean, I didn't get to watch World Cup 81 cause of the whole start-of-anarchy thing, but it sucked to hear we'd done so badly a few days later. So yeah, to sum up: the stats say we're great, but don't be surprised if it turns out we're not.
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Postby Ko-oren » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:36 pm

Ko-oren: In with a win

Just three more points and the Dragonflies are out of reach of our dearest rivals, the Quebecois. The team from the nation that makes up Northwestern Atlantian Oceania with us is in a battle with the Blouman Empire for second place and the right to test their luck in the playoffs, with the Grim Reapers currently holding a two point advantage. Legalese and the Sarian are technically still in the race, but will need several miracles to get the runner-up spot.

At the start of the campaign we expected the Tiemnational to play a huge role and while they did take two points off us earlier, they haven't lived up to the expectation. In their place, Bloumany has stepped up, and led by Miller et al., taken their unorthodox 4-1-4-1 to new heights. We were spot on when it came to our closest neighbours. The Quebecois were here to 1) spoil our party and 2) seize the group for themselves. They started out tremendously but stalled out over time, yet are still in prime contention for the playoffs. Qualification Group 15 started out with several recent World Cup participants competing for just two spots, so some of us wouldn't make it to back-to-back events. The Dragonflies, always ready to face adversity, took the challenging group that includes Sylestone on top of all of those mentioned, and wreaked havoc. Ko-oren is among just three national teams that haven't lose a game so far, with Cassadaigua, Brenecia, and Vilita. The latter have stayed unbeaten through ten wins and five draws: unconventional, but I assume the cove dwellers will take it. The Dagans and Brenecians have taken a more direct route going 13-2-0, and we've stayed close behind at 12-3-0. Altogether, Ko-oren are sitting in fifth place on the all-190 table, the second straight campaign where Juliasterinthen has taken this team to an insanely solid qualifying record. At thirty goals scored in 15 games, we're not doing bad in the offensive department, at four goals conceded, we tie Brenecia for fewest goals allowed. It's a little unclear exactly how the Dragonflies have managed to become this qualification behemoth, but perhaps the secret lies in the selection methods: nobody's safe, and you have to play consistently well at the club to make the national team and we've been running the same system for decades, so in turn the team is filled with 1) players that are on form and 2) players that know Juliasterinthen's 5-3-2 through and through. It's plug and play at this point: a player goes down, and you've got 2-3 understudies ready to go. What the team lacks in star power, it makes up for in doing-your-jobness: the clean sheet is holy and a 1-0 win is the way to go.

We're three games removed from the end, and only five (well, seven, including the hosts) teams can sit back and relax. Valanora (of course), Cassadaigua, Farfadillis, Trolleborg, and Turori. The latter haven't exactly had the luxury of scoring more goals than needed and have conceded quite a bit, but they've stayed in each game, won almost everything, and done what's needed - and not a single thing more.

It's almost like the Dragonflies are through already. We aren't, though with three opportunities to go it's hard to imagine us falling to second or even third. Our schedule gives us the Crystalline Caverns first, who are 8th at 3-6-6, which should give us the three points. If not, we have the tough game against the Sarian lined up. Should we lose both, we have one last shot, versus Quebec themselves. If we lose the next two, that game will decide the group... Looking back at the results that got us here, we're on a 6-game winning streak extending past the recent wins over Legalese (0-1), North Alezia (3-0), Sylestone (0-1), Simulland (2-0), PSTCT (0-1), and the Blouman Empire (3-0). Away we've been fine but not great. At home, though, we've scored more goals than needed - a luxury that's quite rare for us. Before that streak, we saw two draws against Quebec and the Sarian. Some bad lucky, some bad decisions, worse form and chemistry, all came together against the (at the time) strongest opponents in the group to give away four points. Imagine if we hadn't done that: 14-1-0, best in the Multiverse. We can dream.

Quebec will play Legalese, the Crystalline Caverns, and us. Hopefully they'll stumble at the first hurdle to make us a bit more comfortable. Bloumany have North Alezia, Legalese, and the Crystalline Caverns left, which should give them between 6 and 9 points. Luckily for us, only the Blouman Empire getting 9 points and us getting zero and quite a bit of goal difference going wrong for us can see us drop to third.

It's not a given that we, ranked 14th, had an easy route in qualification. A lot of teams in the top three pots have had a lot of trouble. Sargossa, the only other team with us to hold a very dubious Round of 16 record, are in sixth, as are Flavovespia in their group. Port Ember is seventh. Nephara and Eura - is anyone even alive right now that remembers a World Cup without even one of these? - are fourth and third, respectively. The Cormorants fell behind South Covello, Graentfjall, and Indusse, and are trailed closely by Kandorith. Not the worst group of teams to get upset by. Lee Sharp's squad are behind Savigliane and Siovanija and Teusland (huh? I thought you said they were third, not fourth).

I'm not sure if we feel sorry for either of these teams. We don't have a lot of bad memories regarding Nephara, so I would rather see them at the World Cup, come to think of it. As far as Eura's concerned... we wouldn't with their underperformance to our worst enemies, but our head-to-head record makes us a little more accepting of their unlucky streak. At the same time, don't cheer to hard at others' misfortunes... because the Dragonflies could just have the same thing happen next cycle. If you think that losing every single Round of 16 game is bad luck, imagine not making it there at all. Five more nations from Pot 1 are second or third in their group, actually, and plenty of top 30 teams are having trouble.
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Astograth » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:46 pm

Chistorra Sarlange presents…

The no. 1 cult footballing podcast in Astograth, with your hosts Ibon and Mantzia
Originally dedicated to the Audioslavian National League, then it spiralled out of control

Transcribed and translated by Transkribia, sign up at Transkribia.asg/DSG for the full script and a 30-day free trial

Mantzia: … and that’s the worst thing about being a Caza fan, you know.

Ibon: That is the worst thing.

Mantzia: Yes.

Ibon: Not the fact that you don’t win shit.

Mantzia: I-

Ibon: It’s sharing the same colours as Sporting Iturributa that does it for you. That’s the single worst thing.

Mantzia: Correct.

Ibon: OK, I’ll be honest. That’s ridiculous. And I cannot imagine caring that much about colours.

Mantzia: Fair enough. Say, what team in the National League is it you hate the most?

Ibon: [scoffs] Why? Cathair.

Mantzia: Which one?

Ibon: The only one that matters, Mantzia.

Mantzia: What are their colours again?

Ibon: Dark blue and white.

Mantzia: What’s the team you hate the most in Astograth?

Ibon: Royal Rumiatzi.

Mantzia: What are their colours?

Ibon: OK, look. I see what you’re do-

Mantzia: What are their colours?

Ibon: White and dark blue. But that has nothing to do wi-

Mantzia: It’s your subconscious, Ibon. You do care about colours, you just don’t know it.

Ibon: [sighs] Fine. But why Sporting? You’re a Wanderers fan, they’re not your rivals. We’re your rivals.

Mantzia: Oh, wow. Wow. My man, if I go down the big list of Wanderers rivalries and don’t count the teams in the top flight, there’s still like three teams ahead of Astograth University on that.

Ibon: Deny it all you want, it just makes us stronger.

Mantzia: If that helps you sleep at night. Now, to more urgent matters:

Ibon: [coughing] You jinxed it.

Mantzia: I will… not get into that right now. No. What I was saying, my fellow Dainer starting goalkeepers, is that two nights ago your charming hosts attended the premiere of the new documentary series about Ituraitz FC, Red Blooded!

Ibon: That’s right, in sunny Ituraitz itself! And I hear what you’re saying, ‘oh, another football documentary’, and you’d be correct: by now these are all copies of a copy of a copy of A Tale of Two Cathairs. We don’t have enough clout yet to get invites to The Idiot Project though, so you’ll make do.

Mantzia: Before we talk about the series, though: gossip. There was a lot of cool people there, a lot. Who we didn’t talk to, and they put us way up at the top and back of the theatre, but it was so cool.

Ibon: It really was a who’s who of Ituraitz history. Erburu, Bordato, Alberro, Kiriano, Aer, Ansotegi, Ormache himself, all the current stars like Corvey, Kristine, a glimpse of Puristina Shinra. Guests of honour: Domeka Iriarte and Ichaso Chapitel who, I have to say, have seen better days.

Mantzia: So has the whole club, going by the documentary.

Ibon: You can say that again, but hey. Not my team, I’m not complaining. And you know who else was there we haven’t mentioned? Soter Sarlange in the flesh, by far the most capped player in Olibondeka’s history, still its top scorer, and not coincidentally he who lends his name to today’s sponsor: Chistorra Sarlange! When you kick back to watch Red Blooded on the streaming service that is not today’s sponsor, there’s nothing better to serve yourself than some nice charcuterie, of which Chistorra Sarlange has the finest selection in the country: red, white and black chistorra, fine bacon and pâté, country-style sausages, cured ham in many formats and grades and a full line of olives and cheeses to pair these with. Simply the best!

Mantzia: We lied, we did talk to some people and one of them was the man, the myth, the Sarlange. We got a picture!

Ibon: And he won’t have a clue who we are, and that is fine.

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Postby Kandorith » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:54 pm


Shinonome Kyoai - International

Solid performance not enough.
Even though the Kandorese drew against Nephara, things are not looking good.
By Natsumi Miyasaki
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TENKYO, KANYORI — The qualification campaign of the Empire has been a disappointment, which is an understatement, but resilience is one of the voices which are the loudest. Hope is still somewhat alive as the team has found a way to stand tall in the toughest matches of the second round and will be performing as such. The leaving of Hayabusa as manager has been a true hit on the football scene, but Watanabe seems to be finding his place in the Kandorese fan scene. Currently sitting in fifth, all roads are still open because of the group scoring. The pitfall for Kandorith; winning all games. The difference between Kandorith and the number one, South Covello, is eight points; in a group which is divided by minimal points. Will a miracle occur, or will the Kandorese team indeed fall victim to indeed one of the most disappointing qualification campaigns they have ever had?

The following matches of the Kandorese team will be against Indusse and Baggieland, on paper two matches they should win with relative ease. The latest results however, have a very different outcome. The team blundered against Indusse and was completely trashed against Baggieland, with a 4 - 1 defeat being one of the greatest defeats in the history of Kandorese football when it comes to playing against a lower placed force. Watanabe hopes to fix the results from the previous game against both these teams but morale among the fans seems to be low. The team's morale however seems to be at an all time high. With the appointment of Akira Watanabe the team has been going through a revival. Watanabe however, is more press shy than Hayabusa and has said few words to us. Today, Watanabe was inclined to a short interview though.

"I think the team we have right now is one of the best we have had in the history of our nation." He said pressingly. "Hayabusa has always had an amazing eye for young talent and new tactics for the team, but sadly it did not work out. I honestly think we can do better and we will do better from now on, we've had a few very unfortunate losses and draws I do not think I can fix that. Honestly, though, I think we can turn it around. It will be a tough game and it will be taxing on the players, winning is the priority we have now. We've been able to turn around our results against Nephara, against South Covello, so without any doubt we can turn it around against Indusse and the likes too.

"I believe in these players, absolutely. Hayabusa has picked the best players we have right now, in the entire nation. These players represent our state of footballing prowess; it would be devastating to our nation if they'd fail. To be appointed as manager was a surprise to me as even I think Hayabusa was a visionary we needed; sadly this entire campaign has been a route of devastation. I truly believe it is because of bad luck and not the skills Hayabusa and the players have. We will overcome this and we will show the fans once again why we are a great footballing nation. Where we have lacked skill it was not skill; but inexperience. Now. we do have experience."

Watanabe also ensured the next games would be vital and would see Kandorith winning the matches, albeit with only one goal. For him, this is one of the hardest managing tasks he has agreed to. This time however; an entire nation is hopeful of him bring good results to the people. The fans have been slightly optimistic after a very marginal win against South Covello and the draw against Nephara, yet total optimism is very far away. The once so proud Kandorese fans are slouching through the streets when even a win feels more like a defeat, as their team was only able to secure one more goal than the opponent. The next two games however, are crucial. If Kandorith loses one game, it's over. This would mark the worst qualification results in a very long time.

There is no doubt however, the Kandorese fans remain critical but slightly hopeful. Social media is abuzz and surely the Kandorese team will fight back in the coming matches, making a comeback unlike any other team in the World Cup. The game is on and the Kandorese are still able to qualify as nothing is really decided in this group; the first upcoming game will decide everything. At the end of the story, Kandorith has to win and has to win convincingly. Morale is high, the willpower is high, but will it be enough to escape the cursed fifth place and score nine points in all the upcoming matches? That is the ultimate question and hope.

Group 9                                 Pld    W   D   L    GF   GA   GD   Pts 
1 South Covello 15 11 2 2 33 13 +20 35
2 Græntfjall 15 9 4 2 29 18 +11 31
3 Indusse 15 8 5 2 36 23 +13 29
4 Nephara 15 8 5 2 29 18 +11 29
5 Kandorith 15 7 6 2 26 21 +5 27
6 Baggieland 15 4 3 8 31 33 −2 15
7 Pluvia and the Saxean Isles 15 3 3 9 25 38 −13 12
8 Garbelia 15 3 1 11 20 35 −15 10
9 Sett Forest 15 2 4 9 15 29 −14 10
10 Quemorr Isles 15 2 3 10 22 38 −16 9
Great Empire of Kandorith | 大宮来国 | Dai Kanyori Teikoku

| Overview | Constitution | Anthem | Imperial Anthem | Armed Forces | Foreign Affairs | Emperor

Shinonome Kyoai Headlines:
BREAKING NEWS: Hiyashi Corporation to unveil strategy for the coming year. ● Winter celebrations in full swing throughout the nation, celebrating the ending of the year and asking the gods for a prosperous 2021.

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Founded: May 02, 2020
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Huayramarca » Thu Jan 28, 2021 3:58 pm


Two final battles that the Condors must face.

Written by: Mauricio Manco.
04/04/1982 – 5:03 P.M.

Huayramarca managed to solve quite decently its latest Qualifier Window against Ibixa and Sargossa, despite being involved in a quite complicated scenario against the Corsairs in Guayaquil, where the Condors had to come back from a three goal deficit in the first half an hour of the match, to tie the match with a last-second shot from Benjamín Carhuanina that helped to rescue a point that was given, by many, as a lost one. The Condors are placed in second position with three matches pending in the World Cup Qualifier calendar, but the arrival of the next window is crucial for the players in order to turn that built experiences into practice, practice that may help them to get a direct World Cup Qualification or a Play-off spot, things that are in the spectrum of possibility but shall not be given for granted.

Omar Caicedo is aware of the situation that Huayramarca is facing, but he tries to remain calm and consider effective schemes against the upcoming rivals: Audioslavia and Northwestern Kalactin, the top placed team and third placed in the leaderboard respectively. Huayramarca has to visit the Bulls at the 66 Stadium in Cathair in what will be a battle for the top, where Huayramarca needs a win in order to place themselves at the top, Caicedo says “They [Audioslavia] have a lot in stake, they have a rich history and tradition in football, they usually qualify comfortably, but we are giving them some hard battles, I insist to the players that we have nothing to lose, we can win a lot; meanwhile they can lose a lot, so, pressure is on their side, not on ours”. The two-time World Cup champion side know that very well.

Caicedo considers that the Audioslaves are strong, but their “Kontrapuntzeka” game style has some problems that Huayramarca could take in their favor. “Playing with two defensive midfielders is a significant help for us, since we can block their midfielders and cut out their game circuits, if we don’t have the ball, we must remain as a block, attack as a group and defend as a group, so they won’t have a lot of freedom of movement in their passes or movements that they could do without the ball”. He refers to the possibility that Audioslavia could use swift attacks in case the team makes a mistake (as the one they did against Sargossa) or their attempt to incite teams to recover the ball and move in reduced spaces. “We didn’t play as a block against Sargossa, that was noticeable, but I prefer to commit those mistakes in that game rather in the ones coming, the team has learned the lesson and knows how to avoid committing those again.”

“We rarely have conceived a lot of goals, but we did conceive four in the last game, that’s unacceptable and the corrections have to be made in this couple of matches, which are crucial for the top three teams.” There was a common factor on the last match, gaps between defense and midfield that gave freedom to the Sargossan players, specially Mateo Manzanares, that were enough for him to make a hat-trick. “If a player scores you a hat-trick, that’s enough indication that there was a consistent pattern through the match that he managed to exploit” points out Caicedo, something that’s true because Felipe Fernández didn’t worked as a right link between the midfield and defense, nor Santiago Chumacero did. They failed to come back to their positions at the moment that the Condors lost possession, hence, Manzanares was able to dodge their marks and feel himself free in order to beat Juan Mamani.

That same pattern repeated during the first half, Sargossa was able to score three goals with that same pattern, but when the changes came, the Condors started to work as an unity in offense and defense, something that prompted out the reaction from the team and turned that 0-3 into a 2-3 in matter of six minutes, in time before the end of the first half. That same attitude was a catalyzer for the Condors in their attempt to come from behind, just after they received that fourth goal against. That 4-4 just proved out what Caicedo tries to apply at the team, team work rather than individual appearances, that lecture of the game has been extremely useful for the Condors throughout the process in order to gather those experiences and turn them out into tools that may be important in order to gather as much points as possible.

Caicedo also mentions: “We have to keep our minds frozen-chill, we are close to get an objective, but we have to work hard, play hard and also enjoy through the process, we haven’t any pressures, we just want to show our capabilities as a team. I don’t want to venture out about talking of outcomes or stuff like that, I just want to demonstrate my job as a manager with results, that’s why I’m paid for”. Consistency is the key, hence the idea of the manager of keeping the same starting XI as much as he can “It’s not a matter of who you trust more, it’s about consistency, I want to keep these players working fine, doing some substitutions help me out to rotate them when tired. My goal is to have a team that creates plays by memory, they should know where everybody is or would be, so they give a pass or create a chance in order to let a specific play sequence to happen and score a goal”.

Playing by memory is one of the greatest statements of chemistry in a football team, the mission isn’t easy to accomplish but isn’t an impossible feat to achieve, Caicedo knows it: “I’m glad that the Ministry of Sports is now creating football schools all across Huayramarca, making the sport accessible for everybody, that will help us a lot in order to stablish a game philosophy based on what we are doing, but that’s a matter of some years to produce its fruits, hence I say, move slowly but safely”.

But many do wonder “How well-prepared is the Huayramarcan National Team?” Caicedo says “We are 100% prepared for what it comes, if we need to take the bull by the horns, we are capable of doing it, it’s matter of believing that we can do and make it happen”. Refers by the fact of facing the Audioslavian “Bulls” in the next matchday. Also, considering that Northwestern Kalactin is in the sight, Huayramarca has to be fully concentrated on what they can do, believe in their abilities and be humble to face each challenge, also, to fight with courage and provide the very best for the 36 million Huayramarcans that are backing them on home, or some even at the Arena Kirola in Audioslavia. It’s our time to shine? Only God knows, but these players should try to shine, they have the capability to do so.

So, for the match against Northwestern Kalactin, go to Sechura and support the team at the jungle, let’s welcome the turtles in the Huayramarcan Jungle and prove that we can do it! Support the Condors with fierce passion, be proud of your colors, take the Huayramarcan flag and wave it proudly for the game, lets be one only heart, one concentrating 36 million hearts and voices, let Huayramarca’s passion be witnessed, let’s support our guys in this crucial match!

Population: 36 million, demonym: Huayramarcan, capital city: Huayramarca D.M. Languages: Spanish, Quechua, Aymara.

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Corporate Police State

WC87 MD14 & 15

Postby Squornshelous » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:01 pm

Coincidence, Part 8
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7


It used to be something he'd looked forward to. Leisure after a day of work was done, time to devote to friends, family, entertainment. At the safehouse it had taken on a new connotation. Boredom, drudgery, repetition. There was only so much waiting that Andreas could do, only so much idleness he could take. He hadn't reached those limits yet, but he was starting to get the feeling they were not so distant as he might have supposed.

With Zlad napping, snoring loudly, in their shared quarters, Andreas headed out to the common area. Kij was there, stirring a pot on a hot plate, humming quietly to herself. Fingers was also there, sitting cross-legged on the sofa. In her flesh and blood hand, she cradled a small tablet, while the fingers of her metal and plastic left hand flicked at it, scrolling rapidly through something. Andreas had hardly had any opportunity to speak with the cell's computer specialist. And information gathering is my mission after all.. He walked over to the sofa and paused.

"Mind if I sit?" Fingers shook her head. Glancing at the screen that held her gaze, Andreas saw that she was scrolling past a succession of faces, each accompanied by a name and a brief box of text. She was going past each one faster than he could read, though he supposed she might be able to process text faster than he could, if the hand wasn't the only augmentation she'd had installed. He recognized the site as disappeared.ix, a site that NewCon had created to publish these brief biographical profiles of people who had supposedly been kidnapped by the government. "Doomscrolling through the disappeared?" He regretted the phrasing the moment it left his mouth. Too flippant, to casual and familiar. Inwardly, he braced himself for a deeply offended response.

Her eyes darted briefly to him, before returning to the screen. "I guess I do kind of fixate on it." She continued past face after face, name after name. "I think it helps me remember why I'm here. Why I'm not out chasing creds somewhere instead. All these people, suffering and dying at the hands of their own government." Her hand dropped to her side and she turned her head to look at him more directly. "I guess it's why we're all here, it shouldn't be hard to remember. It just helps to remind myself sometimes." She looked away now, the fingertips of her prosthetic hand clacking as they fidgeted against the smooth plastic of its palm. "I guess I'm just glad it's out there for everyone to see."

"It seems like it's not going to reach very many people though, with the government blocking the sites."

"They blocked an entire country's domain actually. Just goes to reinforce our reason for being here. But I think you'll be surprised how many people are going to see this site."

"How? It's not like you can just download a VPN. They aren't exactly legal."

"Right, no one ever breaks the law and sets up a VPN, everyone enters their real birthday on age verification checks, and teenagers definitely pay for all the music they listen to. Andreas I'm not able to access this site because I'm a specialist using some kind of crazy software. Half the children in the country could do the same thing."

"Huh," Andreas felt stupid, inadequate. "It's not something I've ever really looked into."

"I'm surprised. Most people with NewCon are old pros at bypassing the Info Man's* limits and controls by the time they get here."

"Guess I'm the exception that proves the rule then."

A half smile appeared on Fingers's face at that. "You'll have to tell me how you did end up here sometime then, if it wasn't through dangerous dissident websites."

*The Department of Information Management or InfoMan. The abbreviation gives rise to a Squornshelan colloquialism referring to government press releases as coming from "The Info Man."
The Imperium of Squornshelous
Rightful Overlord of the Rogue Provinces of West Squornshelous
Trigram: SQU
KPB Ranking: 22.41 (32nd)
World Cup 31 Champions
Runners Up: WC15 & WC38
Third Place: WC20, WC25
Semifinalist: WC18, WC27
Quarterfinalist: WC5, WC11, WC12, CoH6, WC22, WC30, WC32, WC33, WC34, WC40, CoH77
Second Round: WC6, WC7, WC9, WC16, WC21, WC23, WC24, WC28, WC36, WC37, WC39
Group Stage: WC8, WC10, WC13, WC17, WC19, WC26, WC29, WC35, WC41, CoH76
Worst Day of My Life: WC14
Other days that were not the absolute worst, but when we also didn't qualify: WC84, WC85, WC86

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Busoga Islands
Posts: 192
Founded: May 31, 2018
Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Busoga Islands » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:04 pm

Part I

Part 2

A high end restaurant in Catherina, Delaclava

Wassa Faye was waiting at a high-end, high-rise restaurant in Catherina, the Delaclav capitl. The high rise was beautiful- 70 stories in the air, overlooking the Odysseus river. He was here early, of course, and took in the beauty of the scenery.

It had honestly been a terrible few days for the Busoga Islander Director of Scouting, Wassa Faye. First, the Busoga Islander national team was not in form. A stunning 2-1 away loss to an unranked Central Shaneville ensured that the Busoga Islands took an unnecessary hit in the table, even before playing the top ranked Cassadaigua side in Lakiska. He wouldn't miss that match for the world, of course, and was on the touchline for that one. Great atmosphere at Lakiska City Cricket Park, as a morning fan rally led into basically a full day of fan activities before the showdown at night. Madison McClain, however, showed why the Fillies were ahead in Group 3, and scored twice in the first half as they buried the Busoga Islands, and all but sealed that the Busoga Islands would return to the Cup of Harmony.

So not so well on the pitch. And then, well, his finances were in rough shape. There was a big-time stock market run in Græntfjall today, as Lime Capital lost billions of NSDs after buying up all sorts of shorts, as their local cleaning supplies company, GræntMop, saw a stunning rise in their own fortunes. Now, of course, what did that have to do with him? He had a significant amount of assets tied up in Lime Capital himself. Director of Scouting, yes, but also a wealthy businessman, he had invested heavily in North Rushmore over the years, making plenty of money. But if that hedge fund went belly up... He'd lose a huge amount of money.

So naturally, he was stressed. He'd done a good job separating his cash- he wasn't an owner or anything, but he had a pretty significant investment fund with Lime Capital. They wouldn't take his house or anything. But still- he'd essentially been memed out of millions by random internet users on the other side of the world. Enough to make anybody both miffed and angry. But he had a crucially important meeting today. Probably the most important meeting he'd ever had since he had taken the job.

Just as he was thinking about that and had ordered, two glasses of wine, one for himself and one for his counterpart, his counterpart walked into the room and took a seat. "Artem!" Wassa Faye exclaimed. Wassa rose to shake the striker's hand, and then he sat back down.

They made small talk while they ordered bottle service and then told the waiter to wait on the food for just a bit. Had to take care of business first, of course. "So Artem." Wassa Faye began. "Thanks for meeting me here today."

"Well, thanks for inviting me." Artem Kohut responded. "And to this restaurant, of all places too. You are really going all out."

"Well, you know- the Busoga Islands values talent. And we want to do whatever it takes to ensure the best national team possible." Wassa Faye said.

"Well, I have to say- I'm skeptical." Artem Kohut said. "Look- it was frustrating that Delaclava didn't even try to go to the World Cup. We definitely could have had a good thing going if the association had simply allowed us to get into some sort of rhythm, without taking an entire cycle off. We get rusty, we get bored. It's painful- sitting at home, watching World Cup Qualifying on television. But this is Delaclava. My home. All I've known since I was young. And Delaclava is coming back."

"Yes, but Busoga is your home too." Wassa Faye. "That's where your roots lie! But making a decision on who to play for with your country, even if it's a decision of the heart, it is also something that you have to look at rationally. Figure this, Artem. There is no bigger honor than to play for your country, right? And Delaclava has given you that, yes. But is more than an honor. You know it- it takes work, it takes vision, it takes unity. The local football association won't invest in your team, in your chances."

"Yes, but-"

"Hey! Sorry, but please let me finish." Wassa Faye interrupted. "You need to have a football association that's behind you. That's behind the team! Delaclava's has all but said- we're not going to invest unless the results are there. And how can you get the results unless you invest? You'll score plenty of goals- you have the talent. But it is an international career with a ceiling, with a cap. You'll play in the group stages of the AOCAFs, you'll play in World Cup Qualifiers but never seriously threaten to qualify."

"Hmmmm. I'm listening." Artem Kohut said, pondering Faye's words. "But where do I fit in here?"

"Artem- you're at the center of the plan!" Wassa Faye said. "The Busoga Islands are united. But we are a small nation. A population of only 12 million people is not exactly a big population. But we find talent, and nurture it. We've got a couple of great talents. You've seen Mohammed Gassama, surely? And Kasekende Jr? But we don't have that oomph up front. That's where you fit in. Bethany Donnell thinks you could slot right into the #9 role. Plenty of playing time. And most of all, the chance of play in front of the greatest audience in sport- the World Cup Finals."

"But you've never qualified for a World Cup." Artem Kohut said. "How can you say that?"

"Well, nothing is promised in this world." Wassa Faye said. "But we are on the upswing. This team is young. Our key players are going to come of age together. Gassama is hitting his prime. You will hit yours soon, alongside Mustafa Taal, Kasekende Jr., etc... A generation that can come up, hit their prime together. You'll get to return home, play for the country of your Father, the country of your birth! And mostly- you'll have an association that will back you till the end. Say what you want- but the support has always been there from BISA. I mean, this squad went to the quarterfinals of the most recent AOCAFs. There is potential here. But you've got to seize it."

They went a little back and forth some more, with Wassa Faye working the brain of the half-Delaclav, half-Busogan striker, Artem Kohut. Wassa Faye got what he considered to be the first piece of good news in a week- Kohut committed to considering Busoga further! He'd travel to Lakiska and meet with Bethany Donnell in person the day after their Matchday 17 matchup against Muralos. Wassa Faye considered it a job well done- they could get a commitment in a few weeks time, on home soil. Now was the time to simply cut down the days until that meeting happened.

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Founded: May 29, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby Kohnhead » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:06 pm

Kohnhead are (unofficial) World Champions

Heading into the match with pot 2 and 22nd ranked Siovanija & Teusland there was more on the line than Kohnhead staying alive in their quest to qualify, Siovanija & Teusland were the Unofficial World Champion Belt holders and the original one at that considering Al Qurija's return to the World Cup. This would be our second chance to win the Belt however last time did not go so well suffering a 4-0 loss to 10th ranked Eura, we were hoping the same would not happen.

The last time we took on S&T we blew a 4-3 lead and lost 5-4 in a very close match at Chicken King Stadium, this time with our qualification hopes on the line we traveled to 70,000 seater Franz-Gorz-Stadion for the match. S&T were involved in a close race with Savigliane of all teams for first in the table and automatic qualification to the World Cup proper, and needed the win against us.

At least in the first half the scoring came early and often with Erin Maltos stealing the ball off of a poor decision by the defender and scoring in the 7th minute to give Kohnhead the lead. However just like the last game this proved to be a high scoring close match with S&T equalizing in the 19th minute on a free kick. Set pieces have been the kryptonite of our defense thus far and we need to work on our discipline especially on corners.

However the offense is good at scoring off of set pieces much like how the defense is awful at defending against them and Linus Rallyton the free kick specialist scored in the 33rd minute to give us the 2-1 lead, and Erin Maltos made it 3-1 in the 39th minute with the assist being given to Charles Laker who crossed in the ball and Maltos one timed it into the goal.

S&T would get another goal in the 61st minute and it was looking like they might score again to make us blow yet another lead against them but we held firm in the back with Bertha Sanders making two excellent saves and Claire Corton making a risky yet necessary tackle which probably prevented a goal. With the win Kohnhead kept their slim chances at the playoffs alive although a Savigliane win over Port Ember officially meant we could not win the Group.

Kohnhead have now offically put themselves into the history books of the footballing and sporting World forever becoming the 221st Unofficial World Champion (according to Audioslavian sources). Our first turn to defend the title saw us hosting pot 5 Natanians and Nosts who we drew at two the first time and who sat in 5th place of the table one spot below us.

It's clear that we weren't ready to just give up the title like that and we dominated them 5-1 once again getting a big win as we've done many times this tournament although this time it was not against a bottom pot team, as this is a pot 5 side. Atkinson, Torgan, and Laker all got on the scoresheet along with Erin Maltos who got a brace while the assists would go to Rallyton, Korkson, Stratford, and Barter. We dominated in the win and have now successfully defended the belt one time although I doubt we can last for two.

That's because we take on the same Eura team we lost to 4-0 in our first attempt at getting the belt, this 10th ranked Eura team has struggled throughout the World Cup qualifiers and sits in 3rd, five points back from a playoff birth with the Cup of Harmony potentially looming. They are coming off of a loss to Pemecutan and should be motivated especially with the belt on the line but there's definitely hope that we can keep the belt and maybe just maybe stay undefeated through the rest of the Qualifiers. Also many were floating that it's a possibility Al Qurija who play us in the last match win back the belt at the end of qualifying which I can say would be awesome even if it means we lose.

Group 19                                Pld    W   D   L    GF   GA   GD   Pts 
1 Savigliane 15 12 1 2 36 15 +21 37
2 Siovanija & Teusland 15 10 3 2 42 21 +21 33
3 Eura 15 8 4 3 31 19 +12 28
4 Kohnhead 15 7 3 5 43 28 +15 24
5 Pemecutan 15 5 5 5 27 29 −2 20
6 Natanians and Nosts 15 5 4 6 23 29 −6 19
7 Port Ember 15 5 3 7 25 24 +1 18
8 Mapletish 15 4 5 6 8 11 −3 17
9 Al Qurija 15 3 1 11 15 38 −23 10
10 United Pink States 15 1 1 13 17 53 −36 4

As you can see from the table, it's getting desperate in our quest to make the playoffs as we need to win out and we need S&T to lose out if we want to make the playoffs, again never tell me the odds. No matter what it's good to see that Coach Michael White has the team really pushing and clicking at the end of this and it will hopefully give us momentum for the future, are we finally putting it all together?

Kohnhead's remaining schedule
Matchday 16: @Eura
Matchday 17: Vs Pemecutan
Matchday 18: @Al Qurija

Siovanija & Teusland's remaining schedule
Matchday 16: Vs Savigliane
Matchday 17: @Port Ember
Matchday 18: Vs Mapletish

Eura's remaining schedule
Matchday 16: Vs Kohnhead
Matchday 17: @United Pink States
Matchday 18: Vs Savigliane
Trigramme: KHD
Pop: 25 million
Football 61st
Gridiron: 24th
Baseball: 26th
Hockey: 29th
Basketball: 27th
Lacrosse: 13th
Wonder Cup 2 - Champions
Di Bradini Cup 48 / U21WC 69 - 4th place

6 Steinigestrasse Open - Runner Up (Singles)
6 Ethanian Open - Winner (Doubles)
7 Cenian Open - Runner up (Singles)
7 Mendez Bay Open - Runner up (Singles)
7 Steinigestrasse Open - Winner (Doubles)
7 Electrum Slam - Runner up (Doubles)

NSCF 22 - Semifinals (Kohnhead City University)

Gold Coast Basketball Tournament - 2nd place

International Baseball Series 12 - 4th place

Volleyball World Expo 11 - 3rd place

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Founded: Mar 05, 2016
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Mercedini » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:24 pm

87th World Cup Qualification
The Final Countdown
@ Zoloroni Sports City Stadium - Zoloroni, Mercedini

Good evening Dini fans and Margaret haters, we hope you are enjoying you evening and welcome to further coverage of the World Cup Qualification cycle, which will end up in Taeshan and Ethane shortly. It has been a long long road from the start to this point and it has no means been plain sailing for Mercedini, it never really is for us. We will be closing out the cycle shortly with the final three games of the campaign, before we either go to the World Cup of the Cup of Harmony, probably the latter. We will give you a very brief lowdown of what is to play for, and all the main players involved in the final stretch towards the big time.

Group 6                                 Pld    W   D   L    GF   GA   GD   Pts 
1 Turori 15 12 2 1 24 10 +14 38
2 San Ortelio 15 9 3 3 22 11 +11 30
3 Juvencus 15 7 6 2 21 11 +10 27
4 Mercedini 15 7 5 3 30 14 +16 26
5 Gouvanarch 15 6 5 4 23 21 +2 23
6 Qasden 15 6 3 6 14 14 0 21

7 Treekidistan 15 3 5 7 16 29 −13 14
8 Sannyamathland 15 3 1 11 11 31 −20 10
9 Freeport 15 2 3 10 14 20 −6 9
10 Cosumar 15 1 5 9 17 31 −14 8

Dini are in a spot where they have been all too much recently, and that's in with a chance but needing work to do. It seems to be the case that a good looking Mercedinian side are undone by a group of death and some unsuspecting minnows doing well. It was Starblaydia and Sargossa way back when, last edition is was Hampton Island becoming the lowest ranked to team to qualify for the 86th World Cup, and now it seems to be the turn of San Ortelio, who could do the unthinkable and qualify as an unranked side. Turori have unfortunately ran away with the auto qualifying spot in the group, so it's now down to San Ortelio, Juvencus, Mercedini, Gouvanarch and Qasden to fight for the scraps.

Dini have three games left to close their current four point gap on San Ortelio, and they must go some if they are to do that, and even then it may not be enough. Their route to get those points doesn't provide any real outlet for a last minute jump up the table, just the crucial six pointers which you probably don't need all in a row at the end of a mammoth campaign. It does give Dini the chance to knockout their main rivals if they can win, plus cause a bit of upset if they can beat Turori at home, but this late rally may come all two late if San Ortelio can win two of their three remaining games. If Dini win all of their last three, Juvencus and Gouvanarch would autmatically be out of the question, but as stated before, it's a long and arduous path where Dini cannot afford any slip-ups from here on out,

Overall, it has been a relatively decent second half for the Golden Eagles, after six games they have a 4-2-0 record, which they ideally could have done with at the start of the campaign. Two wins, including a big one against San Ortelio opening up the second half, before two draws against Freeport and Treekidistan seemed to put the nail in the coffin for the Qualification cycle. However, wins against Cosumar and Qasden gave Dini a fair crack at the whip in their final games. It's likely that everyone has their fingers crossed for a good result in the final three, but I doubt too many people would be expecting a lot with three tough matches and a big need to get results from all of them. We will be giving you coverage of all those matches as well as any coverage of the post-quals tournament, whatever that may be. We will in Juvencus tomorrow, but we will see you all in person for the big match of the group, Mercedini vs. Turori. Goodnight!
Novapax Founder • Host Portfolio • Trophy Cabinet
World CupBest: Group Stage ('77, '81, '82, '83)
Cup of HarmonyBest: Champion ('72)
U21 World CupBest: 3rd Place ('43)
U18 World CupBest: Champion ('4)
Independents CupBest: Champion ('5)
WC of HockeyBest: 2nd Place ('37)
WJHCBest: Champion ('13)
Best Placing: 1st (Lipa '72)Most Points: 108 pts (Lipa '72)

World Hit Festival
Best Placing: 1st ('34 & '36)Most Pts: 34 pts (Mousiki '31)
Junior World Hit Festival
Best Placing: 3rd ('3, '4 & '5)Most Pts: 26 pts (Tushlark '5)
Mercedini in WVSC & WHFs

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South Newlandia
Chargé d'Affaires
Posts: 360
Founded: Jan 18, 2020
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby South Newlandia » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:24 pm

We’re still going, somehow; can‘t slow down now

Somehow, the Elephants have managed to extend their win streak to eight games. Meanwhile, Pasarga somehow lost an important home game to our regional friends from Hampton Island. This puts the Elephants three points ahead of the Wanderers, and nine ahead of third place. A single additional point secures the playoffs.
Let that sink in.
Still playing!
South Newlandia, a nation of just 4 million, may actually have a shot at going to the playoff. They even played some solid football along the way.
At home against Bluecliff, a nation widely supported throughout the multiverse, the Elephants did what they do best – scoring one goal and holding on to it. They had done the same thing in Bluecliff as well. A single score after a penalty, delivered right into the net by Simon McCabe, won the match. It wasn’t exciting, it wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t fabulous like some other teams, but it was efficient. Three points is all that matters.
Next, the would be visiting Regmotto, a team that couldn’t quite find success so far, sitting on just two measly points. South Newlandia managed to defeat them, only by 2-0, but they did. Once again, nothing exciting to see; goals by Irving and Green were enough to take the three points again. Mikhail Trischuk is absolutely in the time of his life; he only conceded 12 goals in 15 games. At this rate, Rufus Rigby will not see the starting formation again any time soon.
However, like all great things, this may fall apart at any time. Nobody can predict it, but it happens all the time. The Elephants absolutely cannot rest on their successes. Every game still
requires their full attention. Exactly that fighting spirit, going after every single win, every goal, every metre, has brought them here in the first place. The Elephants won an astounding eight of their games by just a single goal. That leaves just three with a higher differential; these were won by two, two and three. Clearly, the Elephants are not a team that can blow out another team. Why not? Because they are barely better at all. On pure skill, the Elephants do not belong here. On fighting spirit, it’s a different story.
But let us take a small step back. What do we have, what’s coming up, and what can we get from that?
The remaining South Newlandian games are a home match against The Gothanita Isles, a solid team out of pot 6 that, on 26 points, is still in contention tied for third place. This is the exact team that the Elephants last lost to, and they may strike again. After that, we’ll be travelling to U-Koro, a struggling team that finds itself in 9th with just two wins to their name. Realistically, the Elephants should be able to pick up the point to get the playoff here, if everything else fails. And lastly, we have the newcomers from Tumbra, also tied for 3rd on 26 points. They’ll be coming to the Dome, where South Newlandia will play for all, or at least a lot of the marbles.
Pasarga’s last few games are easy enough that we can assume that a talented side like the Wandereres undoubtedly will pick up all the nine points. Because they also have the tiebreaker over the Elephants, leading them on goal difference, that would mean that the Elephants need seven points to win the group. While that is not impossible, it is very difficult. In no way should we expect to qualify here. But after all, the Elephants control their own destiny. We’ve seen miracles worked from South Newlandia before (do I need to remind anyone of the Lions). This may be the best chance some, or most of the players; - no. This may be the best chance South Newlandia may ever get to go to the World Cup. It is not a chance to throw away.

#EsportivaExceedingExpectations trending as Esportiva, well, exceeds the expectations

Along with the Elephants and the already qualified team from Ethane, some other teams from Esportiva are hot right now, with a good path to the world cup ahead of them. Of course, regional powerhouse Brenecia is right on track, but some of the smaller teams have been excelling. Riena is right behind Brenecia, with a good chance to reach the playoffs. Vdara are leading their group, so are South Covello; and Newmanistan is right in the fight in group 17. Gouvanarch is also playing a strong cycle. This region is right up there, and they are only just climbing. On top of that; try to point out an Esportivan team playing a poor cycle. That’s right, you cant. Because Esportiva is the best sporting region, or at least the worst at being bad.
Not a native speaker, but you probably noticed that already
NS Stats apply (except for population) | Trigramme: SNL | Nickname: Elephants | Proud member of Esportiva
WORLD CUP 87 PARTICIPANT (went 1-0-2, last in group)
Hosted: IBS12 (with Tikariot), CE28
2nd place: IBS13
Semifinals: IBS11 (4th place)
Quarterfinals: BoF72
Round of 16: WBC48, WBC49, WBC50, CE27, CE28, CoH78
Current rankings: KPB 31st | Baseball 11th

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Independent Athletes from Quebec
Posts: 100
Founded: Mar 20, 2020
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Independent Athletes from Quebec » Thu Jan 28, 2021 4:30 pm

I Run To You

PART 8 (48) - Hey Now

Dear readers.

I know many have asked me on what degrees of torture or pain do I need to impose upon poor Asher Lundrigan, in order for him to be finally absolved from his sins. It is a popular question that I, of course a merciful creature, have to answer at some point.

Unfortunately, it is a must-do part of his journey as a man under conversion plot, or the couple running up that hill, and so we may have to wait a bit more before any form of acceptance, closure and the happily ever more’s will happen. If anything, it’s better to wait for such endings to come than just having all end in utter tragedy.

Oh my....what I have done....

That was the first thought that came up for Asher as he, feeling the sunshine peek before him, looked at the very last mistake he committed last night. Of course, it also doubled up as the very first mistake he committed on this day, with likely implication that the list was going to be long and illustrious in twelve hours' time. As he turned to the left, Asher saw Eileen, still asleep and unmoving, and couldn’t help but to smile for a second, as he skimmed over a lock of brown hair that casually took a lost man's stroll over her petite form. Asher could definitely sense, from the way the previous night’s turned out, that Eileen probably did not want to be woken up early on a Sunday morning, and that he probably had to grab a cup of coffee first before heading to the airport.

Then, as Asher slowly emerged into guilty thoughts while observing her body, he wondered about how long he could hide the truth away. The first time, he had done so without a word, and even though that may have left him a destitute at Universite St. Croix, he never regretted the decision. But the servants of holy fate, who may have been bribed with a form of confectionaries by Wightling agents, had different ideas and Asher and Eileen were brought together in the manner that was blessed by the divinity for those unaware of the curse he bore in his blood.

A series of basic, yet the most complicated questions for every male of the eternal pairings, pressed Asher as he looked at Eileen with remorse: Would she have been luckier if they had not met at that cafe eight years ago? What if she had never allowed him back into her life after the atrocity he had committed before all eyes? What if she had broken all things with him on the assumption that she had heard of the disease, however slow or benign it may be on the surface, that plagued members of his family...and himself?

‘Grandmaman, so am I doomed from earthly pleasures or basic premises of happiness?’ Asher remembered asking this question, shortly after his rescue, to his grandmother, late baroness Cecily Nam, whose family’s genetic conditions had only come into effect five years into her marriage to the Baron of Bron-Yr-Aur. By this point, she was very much confined to her wheelchair and rarely travelled outside of the plot, but Asher could still recall how the Lady Nam-Lundrigan, outliving her husband, was vibrant even with her conditions.

‘Happiness isn’t what you think it is, if it can be stopped by an earthly condition.’ She responded with a smile long familiar to the Welsh-speaking islanders, but not Asher or Frank or some of his Cornwall-based cousins (the children of second uncle Brock).

That may have been why his fears were still ringing wide and above, for he remembered how it was not the sort of thing that was shared in collective memory, even though the Bron-Yr-Aur plot’s tales of happiness were the ones he had remembered somewhat firmly. Asher, unlike his father, wasn’t an islander and had a different understanding of how to get around such problems than that of Robert, who was bold enough in his acknowledgement of potential risks to the King of Vdara, his future father-in-law, even though Asher’s father did not inherit the disease (his aunt Rachel, another islander, did however).

She deserves someone better, even as I say this on the beds we share… Asher closed his eyes and prayed, as Eileen continued to sleep gently.

On yet another expected day filled with guilt, Asher was once again forced to make his way towards the Metro station. He had a long ride, to welcome the arrival of his brother Franklin, who was younger but certainly more traditionally Lundrigan in his values, and to be eventually seized with the horrific realisation that both of them, in whatever the manners expected of them, were living the nomadic lives that while fittingly so given the Lundrigans’ naval heritage, was increasingly becoming out of fashion.

If we were to say this to another author, like one of those many bastards who claim nobilic heritage, but write a fratire or chick flick as if they were making their public declaration that they do not worth our precious time or trained eyeballs, then that he or she would be better off doused with holy water. But, on the other hand, if such a promise, in which Asher has started to realise by weaving the fiery flicks after coming back from the living nightmare, were to be realised, then we may be witnessing slow steps for a future writer, the youngest Royal Society Prize winner in fifteen years’ time, and look into how his mind functioned at this critical point in his life.

Asher, with his own vision of a masterpiece or two in mind, chose himself to behave like a latter person. Thus did Asher, in spite of reliving his senior-year nightmares every therapy session and washing his hands every morning after committing his mortal sin, continued to live with the hopes of completing his historical trilogy, a hope that he had started to form while a keen-eyed history undergraduate at St. Croix, and had continued with him when he lived in Grearia and Concord Heights for a year. While it was still some distance away, Asher knew from the way butterflies flying across his teary eyes on the Line 2 of the Metro, that his dream was becoming more attainable each passing day.

'Welcome home, at last.' Asher patted his younger brother on shoulder, as they slowly walked down the alleyway in Quebec City's Catherine III International Airport, also known as 'Yongseong'. Asher, being the younger brother of an increasingly-known football star, held Frank's luggage carrier with little issue as they slowly made their way, waving at the crowd who would take pictures of the siblings. Both Lundrigan siblings, no less familiar to travelling across the Multiverse for their trade of choice, were accustomed to every shape and form of airports, and embraced their way as needed.

Yongseong Airport, being the older of two airports of the nation's capital, has always been on the minds of the Quebecois citizens. Those who had grown up in the early days of air travel would remember about a dozen classical films that came to represent the notion of the Quebecois Dream in the 1950s and the 1960s, the romantic age of air travel, while the younger generation would remember it more for the 2000s and 2010s romantic comedies that would always make use of it or Montreal Regimbault airport (those that used latter did have better box office success, now that I remember). Thus, it was in such cultural impact Yongseong and its rival Regimbault held that perhaps those two, being public individuals, that they embraced along potential risks and just carried along.

In clear awareness of how short Frank's weeklong visit was going to be, Frank travelled loose and brought little luggage to not disrupt the cleanliness of his girlfriend Tessa's apartment. Asher, being a man on the outer edges of the high society circles, wore full evening dress on an overcast day, while Frank sported much simpler clothes, wearing no more than TSV Marzig windbreaker and jeans.

Ah, the beautiful match of contrasts. The unassuming footballer and the flashy journalist, who behaves more like a socialite...Asher couldn't help but to notice the contrast between him and his brother, as they slowly got out of their way from the first floor. He knew this was almost always the case, the product of growing up and living out different lives from the moment they had noticed what their respective gifts were at.

Asher was the genius in his words and describing the shape of his emotions into the colour of the night, while Frank was a methodical, calculated thinker with his interests in equations and analytics. Former was a superstar catcher who's won 5 national titles on a squad filled with prospective QBO stars, latter was the sole light in the team that struggled to beat what was a strong Kingston South division for boys football.

The way their lives had turned also reflected such manner. Asher was lucky to have fallen in love with someone too good for him, and was punished for his lack of dilligence, while Frank stayed quiet and true to his comrades in the battle of teenage years. Asher had a highly-celebrated time at St. Croix, where his connections were more than enough to serve several lifetimes of own and likely that of his children and grandchildren, but many fragments of his soul were lost, too. Frank, on the other hand, read Mechanical Engineering at Saguenay Tech, where he developed gradually but consistently enough to find what was a more fruitful ticket for the humble man, and had kept his integrity (somewhat) alive.

'Are you heading straight to her place?' Asher asked, thinking about what his brother had in mind, as they found themselves at the long, 500-metre hallway between the metro station and the terminal 1 exit.

'Probably. Unless you wish to join us,' Frank responded without much context. 'She's clearly not happy about how the locker room's gone bit noisier than how it was back in April.' Asher nodded a couple o times, being aware of the latest situations that had unfolded on CSKA Quebec's locker rooms. While all the fuss and the questions about the unfortunate adventure of the Grim Reapers were sprinkled on the newspapers, the news of the CSKA Quebec's latest signings and their troubles - both over Sebastien Petit's life back in Villeneuve, Savigliane, and the pregnancy of Twicetagrien midfielder Garthapis Koulouris - had kept the Capitoliens' mind fresh, and Frank's eyes quite drowsy. One can only imagine the horrors felt by Frank, the most famous Quebecois man out in Marzig, and Tessa, the team captain who came back from her holiday back in Handon…

Asher and Frank were now starting to see the waves of humans come and go by, as they slowly walk past him towards the concourse of the metro station. The effect, on the verge of an urban idyll placed under total recall by the shamanic verses of the late Quebecois Romantic period (1865-1905), was profound. The brothers knew the steps of their lives that were coming down to them, and were able to hear the raindrops that weren't falling on the oversight day, or the purple stop sign right next to the traffic lights.

'This hallway always feels the same, yet different, don't you think?' Frank asked, thinking about how amazed the footballer could get, even after all these years of education in applied sciences or the endless journeys of flying Aeroquebec or AirRepublika can get. It was of no surprise to anybody who had known about Frank - he almost always had that childlike edge, which had kept the inexperienced associable and the popular sociable. Sure, being from the southwest, where the Kingstonian weather had meant that he'd only see white christmas every five years, may have helped. But the essence, regardless of its origin, was genuine, and every decent person would have appreciated him for that in the end, even if they may have thought of Frank a coward for not being frank enough with himself.

‘It’s like thinking about looking at the same lifelong love over and over again. After every morning, before every evening, the sight...’ Asher responded, as they neared the end of the route only to face the gigantic concourse. Of course, he knew what Frank had meant- his brother, unlike the legend himself, was not really the most….womanising of his footballer bred, and he stayed chaste and free from the concerns that would have infected most others with that dangerous gut parasite Asher remembered hearing about it earlier. No wonder Frank Lundrigan had fallen in love with a dull Schottian, Asher thought to himself, but it all works out because different groups of people have their different ideals and preferences. Like that one night in a Handon apartment two years ago...
Last edited by Independent Athletes from Quebec on Thu Jan 28, 2021 5:47 pm, edited 6 times in total.



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