In order to further alienate the already small pool of readers*** that manage to find their way to this blog, I'm devoting this post to an even narrower passion: Canadians following Dutch soccer.
I've been running a contest of sorts since the beginning of the Eredivisie season. The premise is simple: pick 2 Dutch teams and 2 scorers, and hope they do well for you.
This post is just a check-in to see how we're all (all 4 of us, that is) doing.
In short, it's all pretty close:
Once you dive into the details a bit, you'll see that those of us who chose Luis Suarez of Ajax should have a big lead, but two of us were hamstrung by having picked AZ as one of our teams:
|AZ||12||Mounir el Hamdouai (AZ)||5|
|Ajax||19||Luis Suarez (Ajax)||10|
|TOTAL (PTS + GOALS x 2)||61|
|AZ||12||Luis Suarez (Ajax)||10|
|PSV||20||Balazs Dzsudzsak (PSV)||4|
|TOTAL (PTS + GOALS x 2)||60|
|PSV||20||Luis Suarez (Ajax)||10|
|Ajax||19||Jon Dahl Tomasson (Feyenoord)||5|
|TOTAL (PTS + GOALS x 2)||69|
|Ajax||19||Keisuke Honda (VVV)||5|
|FC Utrecht||16||Mounir el Hamdouai (AZ)||5|
|TOTAL (PTS + GOALS x 2)||55|
Pompey Canuck seems to have his eyes closest to the prize (not sure yet -- if I can dig up this KNVB referee's book that I swiped from a training seminar that took place at the conference centre where I was working years ago, that would be it), but it's still early.
The AZ pick stings me particularly, since they are not only dragging me down in the contest, but also harming me emotionally.
I could accept the slow start to the season (12 points from 8 games), though with some reservations, since the team's usual pattern is to start strong and fade late. But to compound their league struggles, the team essentially pissed away its Champions League chances by losing a 1-0 lead in injury time against Belgian side Standard Liege.
When I was planning this post yesterday, I was all ready to start crowing about a Dutch team beating a Belgian one, just like in 1831, but that all changed with some uninspired 2nd half play, and sloppy high ball defending in extra time. Dropping points in Champions League sucks, but for a Dutch team to drop them to Belgian side in a stadium that was once called Fortress Alkmaar for how well it was defended in European play, well, that was brutal.
Throwing a bone to the Canada diehards: Anybody pumped for Canada-Cameroon at les Jeux de la francophonie today?
*** This blog's readership consists of equal parts Google Image searchers, diehard Voyageurs, casual soccer fans on those days (like today) when the Footy Blog takes pity and links us, and bored housewives.