Friday, June 13, 2014

WM 2014--Day One Recap

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Day 1: Recap

Spread: 0-1
Straight up: 1-0-0

Hot Girl Standings

Games Played

Good morning Syndicate Members,

It is a POSITVELY GORGEOUS morning here in the Fatherland; dazzling, radiant and glorious. The sun shines unimpeded. A gentle breeze wafts. Birds sing and church bells ring. Chruch bells? On a Friday? Indeed. The bells toll to announce the conclusion of the Holy Week of Pentecost. Sometimes referred to as the “Feast of Weeks”, these six days commemorate the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles as described in the Book of Acts. “Acts” (and its prequel by the same author, “The Gospel of Luke”) are widely regarded as the best-written books in the New Testament. It was their thoughtful prose that ultimately allowed an early divided church to settle on the “Trinity Compromise” and adopt a universal creed to unite the apostolic faith.

Germans know how to honor a good writer ; ) Most Krauts get two days off during the festival. Others get the entire week off of work. Er…you ultra religious Americans don’t mark the “Feast of Pentecost” do you? Even your most devout snake-handling Pentecostal Zealot doesn’t know what it is. Ooops. Well….I’m off to the bakery from a fresh-baked Laugenbrötchen and Lachs. You just sit tight in your depressing little cubicle until I get back. : ) ; )


Okay I’m back. Took my time. Stopped by the café for a couple of espressos and the newspapers. Ah. Life is just too damn hard. ; ( How I wish I could be checking “out-dates” on Kethcup bottles right about now ; ) ; )

Of course, Syndicate members know the real reason those church bells are ringing. It a’int for Jesus. They’re ringing for us! We’re off to a fantastic start after last night’s full throttle encounter in Sao Paulo. We witnessed a nation of 200 million collectively press the panic button after Marcelo’s 11th minute own goal, then exhale with Neymar’s scintillating 29th Minute Strike. Neymar might have been gifted a soft penalty, but he gave it is all and could have easily scored a Hat Trick had David Luiz not got in the way.

The opening ceremony was every bit as fucking ridiculous as we could have hoped for. The A Capella singing of the Brazilian national anthem was so touching that this bookie got all misty-eyed. Even the Doves didn’t get devoured by ravenous crows after their release! Upon returning home from last night’s festivities, your friendly bookie found himself the recipient of his very own “Schwag Pack”. And not just any “Schwag Pack”, this was “the MOTHER OF ALL SCHWAG PACKS”.

I have to take a moment to recognize Syndicate Member 13-M. He sent your bookie (among other things) some outright sumptuous Honduran Coffee, some delightful Cajun-Boiled Sunflower seeds, and some out-of-this world smoked beef jerky. Hell yes! That’s the way to start the day. Your friendly bookie also now has his very own “U.S. Soccer Trikot” and a brand new stainless-steel flask. Perfect timing, brother. Such gifts will be put to immediate use as I head out on “Night Two” of our month long football extravaganza.

Syndicate Member 13-M is one of a handful of top class guys who have been with us since the beginning, twelve years ago. Like many others, he dove all the way over the course of dark days in which the Syndicate served as a much-needed distraction. Also like many others, he’s now finally enjoying some of the professional success he so richly deserves. We’d also like to congratulate 7-M, 32-M, 77-M, and 103-M on exciting news careers. We continue to send our very best to 121-M and 128-M as they struggle through great personal adversity. Get through all this stuff guys. ; ( ; ( All of your friends will be here waiting for you.

In other Syndicate News, 72-M has wagered a carton of “Marlboro Red 72 Cigarettes” (your bookie’s favorite) on the Americans beating Ghana. Clever Bastard! 33-M is rumored to be Brazil-bound. Lucky Bastard! 89-M managed to get his wife pregnant again. Poor Bastard!

Overall, all is well in Syndicate Land. Let’s have another cup of that savory speedball coffee and discuss last night’s match:   
Day One RecapVicey gets it……DEAD WRONG?

I honestly have no clue whether or not I’ll have the stamina to make this a recurring segment, but let’s find out how bad your friendly bookie’s predictive powers turned out to be.

From WM 2010—Group A Preview:

Kovac retains plenty of tools at his disposal, arguably many more than Billic had in 2012. Mandzukic, Modric, and Rakitic have all improved greatly over the course of the past two years. Still, Everyone’s left guessing as to whether or he’ll be able to make good use of weapons. Projecting a lineup was difficult enough before we learned that Strinic, Kranjcar, and Olic would have to withdraw because of injury. Some trades predict a 4-3-3 with Persic and Kovacic on the flanks. Others foresee a 4-4-1-1 with Kovacic in the anchoring role. Still others prognosticate a 4-2-3-1 with Rakitic and Modric hanging back. All we truly know for certain is that the Superstriker Mario Mandzukic will be deployed alone up front. Kovac must devise some way of supplying his lynchpin with ample support.

Editors Retroactive Notes:
We got what looked like a 4-5-1 (though one could also label it a 4-2-3-1). Rakitic and Modric played defensive midfield, just as your bookie predicted. Got another right with Perisic on the right flank. I happened to be DEAD WRONG with respect to the left flank. Kovac did not deploy 20-year-old Inter Star Mateo Kovacic. Instead, he entrusted 34-year old VfL-Wolfsburg Winger Ivica Ollic with that spot. With Mandzukic out, he moved Jelavic up front and let Kovacic serve as anchor.

In general the Blazers played a hell of a lot better than I anticipated. Olic moved well. It was his inviting cross that led to the early own-goal. Olic was also harshly penalized for a light touch on Oscar that led to the disallowed goal. Rotten officiating throughout. ; (

Nice creativity from Rakitic and Modric in the center of the park. I also liked what I saw from Kovacic. Yes, I met a Croatian girl in my roamings yesterday evening. She remained quite satisfied. I assured her that her country would win their next match. Poor lass was too shy to let me take her picture for the blog : (

From WM 2010—“Round One”:

After spitting on the transmitted picture of Blatter just for good measure, it’s time to kick back, relax, and watch Neymar do his thing. During last year’s dress rehearsal it took him all of three minutes to feed off the energy in the crowd and produce a magical moment. We’ll allow the lad a few more minutes this time, what with butterflies and all. I still say he scores within the first quarter of an hour. It’ll be epic.

Editors Retroactive Notes:
Oh we came sooo close. Neymar could have scored inside of ten minutes. In the final analysis we missed getting this one spot on by fourteen minutes. Not to shabby!

“Riffs of the Day”—Day One


Reader: Vicey, what are J-Lo and Pitbull doing on my television screen? Seriously. WHAT ARE THEY DOING?

Vicey: ……Dude. Didn’t I warn you NOT to get high before the Opening Ceremony??! Dammit. No one listens.

Reader: In honor of Brazil, I ordered the Vatapa…bad choice.

Vicey: ……Dude. Didn’t I warn you NOT to get high before the Opening Ceremony??! Dammit. No one listens.

Reader: Marcelo just signed his own death warrant.

Vicey: Whoa, whoa, whoa. Easy now. We don’t need another Escobar Incident on our hands.

Reader: Neymar appears to a have a slinky for a spine.

Vicey: …..why don’t you come work for me?

Reader: You’re already in debt!

Vicey ….why don’t I come work for you?


Great day on tap! Now we really get rolling! Three matches. All for pleasure ; )

Mexico vs. Cameroon


Mexico and Cameroon will get us started in the early match. Both teams find themselves best by problems, but are holding it together for now. Volker Finke has done as well of a job as one can expect with the latest (seemingly traditional) row over his player’s bonuses. (you’ll recall the same thing happened four years ago). The Mexicans emerge from their nightmarish qualifying campaign to hopefully get back on track against frazzled opposition. This tactically intriguing match kicks off in the early evening for the European audience and just before lunch for those stuck stateside

THE LINE: Mexico +1 Goal (holding)

Spain vs. Netherlands


The Prime Time Blockbuster has everybody talking. It’s definitely going to be a great night for your friendly bookie. Wonderful Spanish community here in Karlsruhe! Hopefully we’ll get some great shots, but no time for senioritas as we’ve another match to play….

THE LINE: Pick em’ (holding)

Chile vs. Australia


Tonight’s midnight special should be a high-scoring affair. I think that Aussie back four is going to leak worse than a day-old diaper. Head to bed dreaming of goals!

THE LINE: Chile +2 Goals (holding)