STADIUM STAMPEDE: 17 killed in crush at Angolan football stadium

Uíge, ANGOLA
VIJAY SHAH via BBC News

The BBC reported yesterday that 17 people have been killed after a stampede at a football stadium in the town of Uíge in Angola, according to local officials.

Hundreds of injuries, of which five people were seriously injured, from the crush have also been reported, after fans rushed the stadium entrance after they were prevented from entering. Many of the deaths resulted from people falling to the ground or being trapped, then suffocated, according to a medic on the scene.

 

© Raimond Spekking / CC BY-SA 4.0 (via Wikimedia Commons)

 

The stadium, in the north of Angola was hosting a match between Santa Rita de Cassia, the home team and visiting side Recreativo do Libolo. The match was so sought after that the venue quickly filled to its 8,000 seat capacity, when more fans began to show up at the gates demanding entry. They were prevented from entering the stadium as it was full. As people began to storm the gates, fatalities started mounting.

Ernesto Luis, the general director of Uíge’s main hospital, told the Reuters news agency that “Some people had to walk on top of other people. There were 76 casualties, of whom 17 died,”

Recreativo do Libolo released a statement regarding the incident on their website, stating that it was “a tragedy without precedent in the history of Angolan football”.

One eyewitness, named by the BBC as Domingos Vika, reported that the stadium’s entrance was already overcrowded, when more fans began ‘pouring in’ sparking the crush.

“When they gave the opportunity for everyone to come in, we were all packed at the gate,” said Mr Vika, who left the venue with a broken hand.

Angola’s President Jose Eduardo dos Santos has ordered an investigation into the incident, local media have reported.

SOURCES:
Vijay Shah { विजय }, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/VShah1984
Bitcoin Sportsbook, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/SportsbookBTC
“Angola stadium stampede in Uige kills 17” – BBC News – World – Africa (10 February 2017) http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-38939723
IMAGE CREDIT:
“File:Fans of the Angolan national football team in Cologne.jpg” – Raimond Spekking, Wikimedia Commons (11 June 2006) https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Fans_of_the_Angolan_national_football_team_in_Cologne.jpg © Raimond Spekking / CC BY-SA 4.0 (via Wikimedia Commons)
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LEE VALLEY: School’s out, have fun

The Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, which manages tourist attractions and sports centres along a 26-mile stretch of the River Lee (usually spelt ‘Lea’) in Essex and Hertfordshire, is offering special activities to families in the east London area. Children starting their summer holidays can now take part in a variety of fun and exciting activities such as BMX bike riding, tennis and hockey at special summer holiday prices.

(c) LVRPA via V. Shah/Half-Eaten Mind/Flickr

The LVRPA are offering a huge choice of affordable sports programmes to keep children occupied during the long six-week break. You can choose from hour-long taster sessions in four types of cycling, one-day sports activity camps and training sessions for cycling, hockey and tennis, as part of the Olympic legacy events being hosted at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, Newham, east London – to encourage children and adults to make sports an important part of their lives. The Authority also has other events running in Hertfordshire, Essex and Leyton – all within easy driving distance. Visitors to the Home Counties sites, near the leafy park that straddles the River Lee, can also experience water rafting, kayaking, rambling, boating, pony treks, farms and ice-skating rinks in a friendly and natural setting, perfect during these long summer days. Interested parents are encouraged to book places early as spots are limited.

At the Lee Valley VeloPark at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, would-be Bradley Wiggins, Laura Trotts and bike-mad kids generally can try out different styles of cycling at the specially designed park and courses. You can choose from holiday clubs specialising in BMX, mountain biking, road or track cycling. Children will learn to build their confidence on two wheels and also learn how to safely handle their bikes with adult supervision. They will be pumping their pedals and tackling berms on the BMX track, developing the control of a road bike on the flat and how to execute safe climbs and descents on mountain bikes. They can even discover the secrets of velodrome racing, just like the UK cycling team. Prices start from £4.00.

If you are looking to keep your kids occupied the whole day, both the VeloPark and the nearby Lee Valley Hockey & Tennis Centre are organising sports activities day camps at £30 per child per day. Inspire your child to be the next Olympian by enrolling them on the camp where they will get to enjoy a fun-filled day trying their hands at three Olympic sports – BMX, tennis and hockey – in the former home of London 2012. With the help of experienced coaches, kids can learn the basics of these sports and help them pick up the skills that could make them into future Olympic champions. The Day Camps are open to children of all ages.

The Hockey & Tennis Centre are also offering tennis-only sessions to inspire kids in the spirit of that greatest tennis tournament of all, Wimbledon. The centre has both outdoor as well as indoor courts so you do not have to worry about the unpredictable British weather. The centre has four indoor courts, which can be hired from £15 per session. If you want to feel the wind in your hair, you can book one of the six outdoor courts from only £8 per session, whether it is for a gentle knockabout or competitive matches that would make Nadal or Sharapova sweat. The courts are available for use seven days a week. Kids can also join up on a special five-day ‘mini tennis camp’ for indoor tennis. With experienced coaches from the sport and a different focus in every session, the camps are an easy introduction to this masterful sport for young ones aged from five to eight years. The mini tennis camps run from Monday to Friday, 10.00 am to 12.00 noon and cost £55 per participating child.

After a healthy session at the tennis courts, you can visit local attractions in Stratford and the Olympic Park. Highlights include the ‘Tumbling Bay’ playground, picturesque open spaces perfect for picnics and leisurely walks, the London Aquatics Centre, the Arcelor-Mittal Orbit – which resembles a hookah pipe and is Britain’s tallest sculpture – and the Copper Box Arena. Shoppers can visit the nearby brand-new Westfield Stratford City E20 and Stratford Shopping Centre, while culture vultures can travel out a bit to visit the kid-friendly Discovery Centre and see performances at the Theatre Royal. Stratford DLR, Tube and bus stations are close by, enabling links to all parts of London and beyond.

If you love horse-riding, have a go at the leisurely pony treks at the Lee Valley Riding Centre in Leyton, a short bus ride away from Stratford. Enjoy the great outdoors and meet like-minded pony enthusiasts while trekking through the meadows alongside the River Lee. The event is open to all families with children, regardless of any riding experience. The friendly and relaxing sessions are also a chance to learn about horse-riding, including handling the reins, to learning how to halt, steer and walk alongside your noble steed. The sessions cost £25 per person.

If this summer is proving a bit on the hot side for you, why not cool down with some ice-skating at the Lee Valley Ice Centre, also in Leyton. There are daily public skating sessions or for the newcomer, the Ice Centre has special classes to learn the basics from skating experts. Ice-skating costs £8.90 per child, which includes the price for hiring a pair of skates.

English: Lee Valley Ice Centre An Ice Rink on ...
English: Lee Valley Ice Centre An Ice Rink on Lea Bridge Road. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For families able to travel beyond the M25, the neighbouring counties of Essex and Hertfordshire have some exciting events being staged by LVRPA over the summer. The Lee Valley Park Farms in Waltham Abbey are offering full days of fun where children can get up close and personal with farmyard animals such as ducklings, sheep and even exotic wildlife like tamarin monkeys and meerkats. After bonding with animals, children can also let off some pent-up excitement at the nearby Hilltop Adventure Zone, where they can have tonnes of fun “aiming for the sky on the giant jumping pillow, whizzing down the slope of the toboggan run in a squidgy donut” before riding a tractor to the site’s operational dairy farm where they can learn where our milk and cheese come from. Parents of Peppa Pig fans have a special treat on the 30th July 2014. Tickets to the farm cost £8 per child, but you can get a 10% discount if you book online.

Waltham Cross’s Lee Valley White Water Centre is recommended for those who want a soaking wet adrenaline rush. This venue played host to the canoe slalom events at the London Olympics of two years ago and is now the permanent home of the Team GB Canoe Slalom team. Children on the summer break can have a go at basic canoeing on the centre’s manmade lake for only a fiver, in one of their special ‘Go Canoeing’ courses. The braver children can take part in a hot dog session, rafting or hydrospeeding the onsite rapids, for that ultimate foamy thrill chase. If they don’t fancy getting wet, that’s no problem. The less aquatically-inclined are treated to seeing paddlers in action and daredevil rafters tearing up the waterways at the Olympic-grade course. The white water events cost from £30 per person and there are age restrictions for some of the more demanding water sports.

If you want to feel a splash without going at full speed, there are calmer water events at the Lee Valley Boat Centre in Broxbourne, a sleepy commuter town deep within Hertfordshire. Only ten minutes’ drive from the valley’s White Water Centre, it is the perfect place to enjoy some gentle boating and a relaxing day out for tired parents and children. There are a choice of rowing boats, motorised vessels and pedalos all available for hire. Both centres are situated in the 1,000 acre Lee Valley Park, where there are opportunities for chilled-out picnics, nature walks or just some peaceful ‘me time’.

English: River Lea, River Lee Country Park, pa...
English: River Lea, River Lee Country Park, part of the 10,000 acre Lee Valley Regional Park (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you wish to find out more, ask about courses or available places, or to make bookings/reservations, the following are addresses and the official Lee Valley tourism website. All information made available in this article was provided by publicity from the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority.

Lee Valley Hockey and Tennis Centre

Eton Manor, Leadmill Lane, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Stratford, London E20 3AD.

Tel: 08456 770 604

Lee Valley VeloPark

Abercrombie Road, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Stratford, London E20 3AB.

Tel: 08456 770 603

Lee Valley Riding Centre

Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, London E10 7QL.

Tel: +44 (0)20 8556 2629

Lee Valley Ice Centre

Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, London E10 7QL.

Tel: +44 (0)20 8533 3154

Lee Valley Park Farms

Stubbins Hall Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 2EF.

Tel: +44 (0)1992 892 781

Lee Valley White Water Centre

Station Road, Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire, EN9 1AB.

Tel: 08456 770 606

Lee Valley Boat Centre

Old Nazeing Road, Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, EN10 6LX.

Tel: +44 (0)1992 462 085

Website: visitleevalley.org.uk

 

SOURCE:
“School’s out, have fun in the Lee Valley” – Lee Valley, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority (leaflet)
IMAGE CREDITS:
“2014-07-12 16.57.39” – Vijay Shah, Half-Eaten Mind, Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/110818734@N02/
“File:Lee Valley Ice Centre.JPG” –  Danny Robinson, Wikimedia Commons [via geograph.org.uk] (15 April 2007) http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lee_Valley_Ice_Centre.JPG
“File:River lee Country Park.jpg” – LeeValleyRegionalPark, Wikimedia Commons (16 December 2009) http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:River_lee_Country_Park.jpg

 

HEI FRANGUEIRO, COMO VAI?: Brazil’s World Cup soccer slang

If you are fortunate enough to be one of those exceptionally lucky visitors to Brazil during the World Cup now in full swing there, you will have noticed two inescapable things about the country. One is the Portuguese language. Portuguese is the national tongue and is spoken over the majority of the country. A legacy of the Portuguese empire that once ruled over Brazil until the 19th century, the local flavour of the language has its own expressions, spellings and idioms. Coupled with the distinct sing-song accent, Brazil’s Portuguese is very different from the Portuguese used in its former colonial ruler. It is rather like the differences between American and United Kingdom English.

The other thing that will not have escaped your attention is their love affair with football. From the battered favelas of Rio to the beaches of Porto Alegre, its football that helps keep the bars ticking over, keeps children busy in their spare time and has helped keep a nation behind one of the best football teams in the world.

Not surprisingly these two modes of expression, the spoken and the kicked, have come together in a way that is very unique to Brazil and may well be very convenient for football fans learning Portuguese who want to get the inside story on what the locals think of their chances of making it to the quarter-finals.

Português do Brasil: Brasília - Mesmo trsites ...
Português do Brasil: Brasília – Mesmo trsites com a derrota do Brasil, o casal Juliano Peixoto e Silviana de Moraes consegue fazer piada. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The life and culture reporters at the Wall Street Journal have put together a glossary of Brazil’s football lingo to celebrate the World Cup.

Just as it is said that the Inuit (Eskimos) have dozens of words for different kinds and states of snow, the Brazilians have a cornucopia of nuanced football terms for every kind of player, set piece or ridiculous situation that could ever happen in a match. However, it is not just about figuring the literal meaning while quickly through a bilingual pocket dictionary, it is very much about the context too. The Half-Eaten Mind presents the WSJ guide to Brazilian footballing expressions.

You might well see yellow and green clad supporters shouting out loud for the popcorn guy “o pipoqueiro!!”, but no it is not because they are trying to get his attention for that urgent refill of Butterkist. It is a reference to any show-off or overhyped players who just seem unable to deliver the sweet goods on the pitch and end up popping up around the game aimlessly. Much like your popcorn bag splitting open and bouncing about in the microwave. Either way, it is not a good outcome.

If you hear fans muttering under their breath about lettuce and chickens, it is not because they got lost on the way to a farmers’ convention and they are not complaining about what has wound up in their McDonald’s chicken sandwiches. Oh no, it is just their way of expressing contempt for players with slippery feet and fingers. A goalie who just about touches the ball with the tips of his gloves before it slams into the back of his net is dubbed “lettuce hands”  – “mão de alface” , as his goalkeeping skills soon seem to be as soggy and limp as an old leaf of the green stuff (an unfortunate goalkeeper in an English Premier League match may well be called ‘butter fingers’ among the printable nicknames heading his way along with the ball). Goalies who just cannot seem to stop a ball and let in goal after goal are said to be like clumsy farmers “chasing chickens”. Anyone for a half-time Caesar salad?

There are other terms that are hard to translate suitably into English and reflect the unique culture and psychology that Brazilians bring to the beautiful game. If a player does loads of fancy moves which do not seem to mean any goals being scored, he could be described as engaging in a bit of pointless “firula“, which roughly translates as ‘showing off’ or ‘razzle dazzle’.

If fans start calling out for a “sheriff” it’s not because they are looking for security guards to escort rubbish players off the pitch. This is a term of respect for a defender who seems to be running matters and is playing more strongly than his teammates.

Likewise, a “thief” is no allusion to someone in the stadium connected to the high crime rate in many of Brazil’s big cities. It is a player who seems to appear out of nowhere to tackle the ball from an opponent.

Some more “termos do futebol brasileiro” – Brazilian football terms :-

* “Futebol arte” – the art of football, what England supporters and pundits devoutly refer to as the ‘beautiful game’. In Portuguese, this would be “o jogo bonito“!

* “Chocolate” – the same word in English and Portuguese, but pronounced differently. This is not people handing out Quality Street to struggling players in need of a glucose boost, but an expression for when a team utterly slaughters the other side. The winners have handed the losers a ‘chocolate’. A rather bitter one.

* “Salto alto” also known as the ‘high-heel shoe’. It is rather problematic to play footie with kitten heels, but this Brazilian term is in fact a playful, but painfully accurate, moniker for a side that goes into a match thinking they will own the place, only to see their high expectations crushed under the heel of a well-aimed stiletto.  Rather like anyone unfortunate enough to get on the wrong side of a party of ladettes on a Friday night in Romford.

* “Fazer cera“, this means ‘to wax’. A term for players who just dribble the ball around the pitch to pass the time and use up the extra minutes. Not an allusion to the alleged vanity of certain big names in top flight clubs.

* “Frangueiro” – the infamous ‘chicken guy’. A goalkeeper who has a hard time keeping balls out of nets. Just like a farmer trying to round up her chickens, the errant goalie is said to “tomou um frango“…take a ‘chicken’.

(c) Big Frango via ITESNE

* “Tapete” – literally ‘carpet’. This does not refer to the red carpet treatment that Brazil’s megastar footballers never tire of receiving, but refers to pitch turf which is in mint condition.

* “Drible da vaca” – a cow’s dribble. When a player runs toward an opponent and kicks the ball to one side of his opponent while running around the opponent’s other side, regaining possession of the ball again behind the opponent’s back. A very artful move and one the Brazilian national team is fond of employing. It leaves the opposing side fuming like a bull in front of a red rag…or red card.

* “Peixinho” – a small fish, like a guppy or a minnow. Not because of a player’s size, but because of his slipperiness in diving, sliding and heading the ball effortlessly into the back of the net,  while the sharks in the little pond of the pitch are caught unawares.

* “Amarelou” – to turn ‘yellow’. While Brazil’s team kit is heavy on this hue, this is nothing to do with switching sides. This term is used to describe a team that lives in such awe and respected fear of their opponent that they just cannot help but lose.

* “Na gaveta” – in the drawer. Alternatively you can say “onde a coruja dorme” (where the owl sleeps). These very peculiar quips both describe a well-aimed shot on goal that the keeper has no chance in Hell of stopping. Among British fans, it is a bit more literal “[slotting it in] the back of the net”.

* “Na banheira” – in the bathtub. This is not Neymar getting locked in the shower room after a match, but is Brazilian slang for an offside position, which no-one ever really likes. Unlike Neymar. Who is very likeable.

* “Cavar uma falta” to dig a hole – this one is for those players who just love dramatics, faking fouls, rolling over in mock pain; to deceive the referee.

* “Do meio da rua” – in the middle of the road. A shot on goal from halfway down the pitch, which seems, and often turns out to be, a futile exercise.

* “Caneta” – pen. A move where a player on the ball slides said ball between the legs of an opponent and retrieves the ball to continue onwards. In UK terms, a ‘nutmeg’. At its best when a player uses the ‘pen’ to scribble in a good aim on goal.

* “Gol relâmpago” – flash score. One of those amazing quick-fire goals that happens in the first few minutes of play and takes everyone by surprise. Brazil’s weapon of choice.

A useful glossary of terms prepared by the Wall Street Journal to help you negotiate the seemingly impenetrable Brazilian football culture and avoid dropping words like chickens while your newfound Brazilian friends think you have a tongue made of lettuce.

SOURCES:
HEM News Agency, Half-Eaten Mind, Twitter https://twitter.com/halfeatenmind/lists/hem-news-agency
“‘Hey, Lettuce Hands!’ and Other Brazilian Lingo” – Hannah Karp, WSJ Europe/Wall Street Journal – Life & Culture/Dow Jones & Company, Inc. (16 June 2014) http://online.wsj.com/articles/hey-lettuce-hands-and-other-brazilian-lingo-1402959920
Google Translate, Google Inc. https://translate.google.com/?hl=en&tab=TT
IMAGE CREDITS:
“File:Reactions in Brasilia to Brazil’s loss to Holland in World Cup quarterfinals 2010-07-02 2.JPG” – Elza Fiúza, Agência Brasil via Wikimedia Commons (2 July 2010) http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Reactions_in_Brasilia_to_Brazil’s_loss_to_Holland_in_World_Cup_quarterfinals_2010-07-02_2.JPG
Centro de Educacao Profissional ITECNE, Itecne http://www.itecne.com.br/cascavel/tecnicos/convenios.php

FA COMMUNITY SHIELD: Manchester United face the Latics at Wembley

This Sunday, Manchester United will face Wigan Athletic in their match to secure glory and silverware in the Football Association’s Community Cup at the prestigious Wembley Stadium in north-west London.  The match, scheduled for kick-off at 2 pm UK time today, will be the first meeting of the two teams since the retirement of beloved Red Devils manager Alex Ferguson. This will be an important clash for the new occupier of the managerial office, David Moyes, as he tries to head off criticism of United’s recent poor form in two earlier matches against Japanese sides as well as injecting new confidence into his star eleven.

Wigan Athletic crest
Wigan Athletic crest (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Manchester United's crest
Manchester United’s crest (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The match will also be Latics manager Owen Coyle‘s first game heading up his team in what looks to be a memorable event. Wigan Athletic are buoyed up by their first ever FA Cup win which will give them much-needed confidence against one of the UK’s premier flight teams in this traditional curtain-raiser for the 2013 season.

Manchester United have won the Shield no less than fifteen times in 28 contests and lifted the maiden award back in 1908. Three years later, United trounced Swindon Town 8-4 at Stamford Bridge, with Harold Halse, an England international of the time, scoring a double hat-trick.

On the other hand, the Community Shield is virgin territory for the Latics. They were a non-league side until 1978, and today’s contest will be the first under the Shield in the club’s 81-year history. They are no strangers to Wembley however, having made appearances at the stadium for FA Trophy, Football League Trophy and Football League Play-Off Finals. For the Latics, it may well be an exciting time as they are still buzzing after picking up the FA Cup thanks to a blinding extra-time goal from Ben Watson against the Devils’ derby rivals, Manchester City.

The Wembley playoff will be refereed by Mark Clattenburg along with assistants Mike Mullarkey and Scott Ledger. The British broadcasting of the match handled live on ITV1 – part of the ITV network, and the corporate sponsor is McDonalds. This will also be the first English match to make use of goal-line technology, an FA drive to ensure greater accuracy and fairer decisions in the game.

FA-cup final at New Wembley: Chelsea vs Man. U...
FA-cup final at New Wembley: Chelsea vs Man. United 1-0 a.e.t. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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SOURCES:
Half-Eaten Mind on Twitter LINK
The FA on Twitter LINK
“Community Shield stat pack” – The FA News, The Football Association (10 August 2013) LINK
“Manchester United v Wigan Athletic” (official statistics pack for The Sun) – The FA LINK