SPORTS: WORLD CUP FOOTBALL FEVER – Cup fashion & fan loyalty swell coffers

SPORTS: WORLD CUP FOOTBALL FEVER – Cup fashion & fan loyalty swell coffers – Ronaldo the favourite, maybe ?!! – Darjeeling’s Sunil Chhetri to wait another 4 years ?!!

A sadhu tries his hand at football in Allahabad on Wednesday, two days before the soccer World Cup kicks off in South Africa where excitement has reached fever pitch. (AFP picture)


Siliguri, June 9: A tuft of spiky hair in front, preferably streaked and closely cropped at the temples. This is for the loyal fans of Cristiano Ronaldo, said a hairstylist here, snipping away briskly at a salon here.

Business is bright. The football World Cup is two days away and the soccer mania has reached its peak in Siliguri, the moment the hairstylists had been waiting for. As one stylist put it: “You better know the soccer stars or rather their hair-dos well. Most youngsters walk in and say, they want a Ronaldo or a Beckham. You have to be aware (of the hair styles) to deliver.”

But for now, Cristiano Ronaldo has scored over David Beckham in Siliguri.

“Ronaldo is the craze now. In the past one week, we have had more than a dozen youngsters who had come to get the Ronaldo hair style done. Others want the World Cup logo or football etched on their head,” said B. John Ray, the in-charge of Neel David’s Salon of Hair and Beauty.

The Bengal model of the World Cup - nice try ?!!

But Ronaldo (who is from Portugal) apart, Bengali sentiment has always centred around Brazil and Argentina. This time too jerseys, flags and wristbands with names of Brazilian and Argentinean players and clubs are flying off the shelves of sports stores.

“From the sales of jerseys and flags it is evident that people are crazy about Brazil and Argentina. Items like wristbands, shin guards, caps and towels bearing names of the teams are selling like hot cakes. We have customers from Siliguri as well as from the hills and neighbouring counties of Nepal and Bhutan,” said Khokon Bhattacharjee, the owner of Silco Sports. The store has sold items worth about Rs 10,000 a day during the past one week.

And what is a World Cup without a big, bright screen? Television companies are making most of the opportunity. “There isn’t a better occasion than the World Cup to go for an LCD set. This time all my friends will get together at my home to watch the matches,” said Alok Deb, a resident of Deshbandhupara.

And the real thing - coveted by the world and worth fighting for, by all fair or unfair means ?!!

Sports enthusiasts from the hills too are streaming down to buy items in bulk for their clubs. “I have come to make some purchases like flags and jerseys for my club. The other members are divided between Brazil and Argentina but I am a die-hard Portugal fan. We will watch the matches together at the club,” said Sandip Subba, a member of the Kurseong Gorkha Sporting Club.

The Archies outlet here said more girls than boys had been visiting the store.

“Girls are fans of individual players. They come mostly for posters of Ronaldo, and at other times for Beckham. The boys come for car pillows with team names written on them, car flags, wallets and sling bags,” said Juhi Agarwal of Archies.

A local NGO has taken an initiative to send out a social message against child labour this World Cup season.

“The International Labour Organisation has come up with the message, Go For the Goal and Show Red Card to Child Labour. We are organising a football match on Saturday between two schools in areas vulnerable to child labour,” said Benjamin Khasouso, a representative of World Vision, the NGO.

World Cup 2010 Schedule

Football World Cup 2010 Logo

Source: FIFA (straight from the horse’s mouth)
By Daryl
May 10th, 2010

(Note: All kickoff times are local South Africa Time – 3:30 hrs behind approximately IST, i.e. if it is 12 noon IST then it ought to be 8.30 am in South Africa. – please check your local Sports TV channels like ESPN, etc for exact timings.)

Group Stage

#1 South Africa vs MexicoGroup A – June 11th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 4pm
#2 Uruguay vs France – Group A – June 11th, Cape Town, 8:30pm

#4 South Korea vs GreeceGroup B – June 12th, Port Elizabeth, 1:30pm
#3 Argentina vs Nigeria – Group B – June 12th, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 4pm
#5 England vs USAGroup C – June 12th, Rustenburg, 8:30pm

#6 Algeria vs Slovenia – Group C – June 13th, Polokwane, 1:30pm
#8 Serbia vs GhanaGroup D – June 13th, Pretoria, 4pm
#7 Germany vs Australia – Group D – June 13th, Durban, 8:30pm

#9 Netherlands vs DenmarkGroup E – June 14th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 1:30pm
#10 Japan vs Cameroon – Group E – June 14th, Bloemfontein, 4pm
#11 Italy vs ParaguayGroup F – June 14th, Cape Town, 8:30pm

#12 New Zealand vs Slovakia – Group F – June 15th, Rustenburg, 1:30pm
#13 Côte d’Ivoire vs PortugalGroup G – June 15th, Port Elizabeth, 4pm
#14 Brazil vs North Korea – Group G – June 15th, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 8:30pm

#15 Honduras vs ChileGroup H – June 16th, Nelspruit, 1:30pm
#16 Spain vs Switzerland – Group H – June 16th, Durban, 4pm
#17 South Africa vs Uruguay – Group A – June 16th, Pretoria, 8:30pm

#20 Argentina vs South Korea – Group B – June 17th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 1:30pm
#19 Greece vs Nigeria – Group B – June 17th, Bloemfontein, 4pm
#18 France vs Mexico – Group A – June 17th, Polokwane, 8:30pm

#21 Germany vs Serbia – Group D – June 18th, Port Elizabeth, 1:30pm
#22 Slovenia vs USA – Group C – June 18th, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 4pm
#23 England vs Algeria – Group C – June 18th, Cape Town, 8:30pm

#25 Netherlands vs Japan – Group E – June 19th, Durban, 1:30pm
#24 Ghana vs Australia – Group D – June 19th, Rustenburg, 4pm
#26 Cameroon vs Denmark – Group E – June 19th, Pretoria, 8:30pm

#27 Slovakia vs Paraguay – Group F – June 20th, Bloemfontein, 1:30pm
#28 Italy vs New Zealand – Group F – June 20th, Nelspruit, 4pm
#29 Brazil vs Côte d’Ivoire – Group G – June 20th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 8:30pm

#30 Portugal vs North Korea – Group G – June 21st, Cape Town, 1:30pm
#31 Chile vs Switzerland – Group G – June 21st, Port Elizabeth, 4pm
#32 Spain vs Honduras – Group H – June 21st, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 8:30pm

#33 Mexico vs Uruguay – Group A – June 22nd, Rustenburg, 4pm
#34 France vs South Africa – Group A – June 22nd, Bloemfontein, 4pm
#35 Nigeria vs South Korea – Group B – June 22nd, Durban, 8:30pm
#36 Greece vs Argentina – Group B – June 22nd, Polokwane, 8:30pm

#37 Slovenia vs England – Group C – June 23rd, Port Elizabeth, 4pm
#38 USA vs Algeria – Group C – June 23rd, Pretoria, 4pm
#39 Ghana vs Germany – Group D – June 23rd, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 8:30pm
#40 Australia vs Serbia – Group D – June 23rd, Nelspruit, 8:30pm

#41 Slovakia vs Italy – Group F – June 24th, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 4pm
#42 Paraguay vs New Zealand – Group F – June 24th, Polokwane, 4pm
#43 Denmark vs Japan – Group E – June 24th, Rustenburg, 8:30pm
#44 Cameroon vs Netherlands – Group E – June 24th, Cape Town, 8:30pm

#45 Portugal vs Brazil – Group G – June 25th, Durban, 4pm
#46 North Korea vs Côte d’Ivoire – Group G – June 25th, Nelspruit, 4pm
#47 Chile vs Spain – Group H – June 25th, Pretoria, 8:30pm
#48 Switzerland vs Honduras – Group H – June 25th, Bloemfontein, 8:30pm

Second Round

(key: 1A = team that finished first in Group A, and so on)

#49 1A vs 2B – June 26th, Port Elizabeth, 4pm
#50 1C vs 2D – June 26th, Rustenburg, 8:30pm

#51 1D vs 2C – June 27th, Bloemfontein, 4pm
#52 1B vs 2A – June 27th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 8:30pm

#53 1E vs 2F – June 28th, Durban, 4pm
#54 1G vs 2H – June 28th, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 8:30pm

#55 1F vs 2E – June 29th, Pretoria, 4pm
#56 1H vs 2G – June 29th, Cape Town, 8:30pm


(key W53 = winner of match #53)

#57 W53 vs W54 – July 2nd, Port Elizabeth, 4pm
#58 W49 vs W50 – July 2nd, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 8:30pm

#59 W52 vs W51 – July 3rd, Cape Town, 4pm
#60 W55 vs W56 – July 3rd, Johannesburg (Ellis Park), 8:30pm


#61 W58 vs W57 – July 6th, Cape Town, 8:30pm

#62 W59 vs W60 – July 7th, Durban, 8:30pm

Third-Place Playoff

#63 L61 vs L62 – July 10th, Port Elizabeth, 8:30pm


#64 W61 vs W62 – July 11th, Johannesburg (Soccer City), 8:30pm


One Response to “SPORTS: WORLD CUP FOOTBALL FEVER – Cup fashion & fan loyalty swell coffers”

  1. Emily Says:

    As excitement grows for the upcoming FIFA World Cup beginning shortly in South Africa, there is a part of the World Cup that many sports fans will not see.

    The workers stitching soccer balls in Pakistan, India, China and Thailand continue to experience alarming labor rights violations even 13 years after the soccer ball industry signed the “Atlanta Agreement” committing to clean up the industry.

    The International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) released a new report titled “Missed the Goal for Workers: the Reality of Soccer Ball Stitchers in Pakistan, India, China and Thailand” today.

    The research found that the decade-long effort by governments, companies, and other stakeholders to eliminate child labor in this industry has seen only limited success. Child labor still exists in soccer ball production in India and Pakistan.

    We are asking members of the soccer community to petition FIFA and other soccer governing bodies to demand a change.

    To learn more, please visit the ILRF’s Foulball campaign page:

    (Thank you for your response, we are also in solidarity – Editor)

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