Euro 2012 ends (Or: A Dutchie’s perspective)

This post is from Marco who has been clamoring to write a blog post of late…

* * * * * * * *

So the European championship soccer–nay, voetbal, has come and gone.
Obviously the Dutch team didn’t make it. 3 Losses in as many games. A disgrace! πŸ™‚
In the weeks leading up to the tournament, Niki posted a lot of pictures of how we got ready, turning everything orange.
Well, as you can imagine things quickly turned back to their regular color after they got ousted.
But don’t worry, they were the talk of the country even after being eliminated.

Rumblings about why the team couldn’t work together, what the coach did wrong and what not.
Hours and hours of tv were dedicated to the situation.
Eventually, after some evaluation talks with the KNVB (Koninlijke Nederlandse Voetbal Bond – Royal Dutch Football Union) the coach resigned.

But that’s not why I asked Niki if I could write this blog.
I wanted to take the time to point out some fun differences in how we do things surrounding the game.

In the U.S. fantasy leagues are a big thing. You draft players from various teams and if they do well you score points.
What we usually do here, is make a “poule” (or pool) and you basically predict the results of all the games.
There’s some variations on it, like predict half-time results too, or goal scorers, etc.
But the theme is the same. Show how well you can predict things.

We had one of those things at work, and I joined in mostly so I could write this blog (I swear, that’s the reason)
I based most of my knowledge of the results on what matches I’ve seen in the past 2 years (very few) and the FIFA rankings.

As expected I was out of touch… I finished 30th out of 74 on the final standings. At least I had more people behind me than ahead of me?
But that might be because I didn’t have the Dutch make it past the quarter finals anyways. And I predicted Spain would win.
But it seems a lot of people thought the same thing πŸ™‚

Albert Heijn ran a prediction poule as well, pitting men vs women.
Based on which gender predicted the game best, an item would be on sale the day following a game.
So for instance, the women won: wine would be discounted. The guys won: beer for 1/2 price.

After the Dutchies got kicked out I joked to people that said they were throwing out their orange decoration to keep it for the Olympics.
Since we are bound to win medals there. In fact, the Dutch field hockey teams (both women and men) usually end up with some sort of medal.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_hockey_at_the_Summer_Olympics#Medal_table
The most of all countries! Yay!

But this is obviously not a sport for the masses here, so people don’t really care or notice. Well, unless it’s an excuse for a party πŸ™‚
Because there’s one thing the Dutchies know how to do and that is throw parties at the Olympics.
For a while now there’s always the Holland Heineken House in the town where the Olympics are.
Dutch winners get celebration parties. Losers get consolation parties. And when there’s no Dutch athletes involved, there’s still a party. πŸ™‚

I’m sure Niki will write more about the Olympics next month.
And about the Tour de France over the next few weeks. Yay sports πŸ™‚

-Marco

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