Europe ended this week (European soccer, anyway). Europe is filled with technically brilliant soccer week in and week out, but looking at the league winners – Chelsea, Real Madrid, Juventus, Bayern, etc. – it is easy to see that the flair of the continent overshadows its dark secret: it isn’t any fun. Why watch an endless display of competent soccer by the same old teams when you can watch gems like our penalty of the week?
Penalty of the week: Cyle Larin
Cyle [sic] Larin has, himself, been garnering some European interest as of late. He has a magic touch in front of goal and arguably has been more important to his Orlando City [sic] squad than Kaka has been. Watch this powerful penalty fake out:
Goalkeeper Sean Johnson is not even close, diving the wrong way and missing the ball by a good 40 feet. Larin, for his part, should be commended for offering a souvenir after this terrific penalty take to the folks in the second balcony who do not usually get their hands on such a gift from the players. Take a bow, Cyle!
Fan of the week: Florida Man
Orlando was shellacked on Sunday, but don’t fault the fans for not stepping up and trying to support their boys. To provide a healthy distraction as New York superstar David Villa stepped up to the spot, a shirtless-by-default Floridian male suggestively showcased his genitals to the penalty taker:
Let’s break down his form here. First, the gentleman came ready to fan. Chinstrap beard? Check. Bro shades? Check. Shirtless? Obviously. Next, examine his positioning. He is standing either on a bleacher seat or on the ledge in front of the seats, putting himself in a position to not only be very visible to Villa but also to ruin the view of anyone in the few rows behind him. Classic. The cold sneer of command written on the man’s face says “who are you, David Villa? I have a Bachelor’s degree in Communications and now I have a mid-level management job at a local construction firm. Who in the fuck are you?” Finally, the firm-yet-yielding grip on his own penis tells the entire world “I believe that everyone else on this Earth is as insecure in their masculinity as I am, and thus even the suggestion that there are other people who have a penis in their vicinity will cause them to freeze mentally, asking questions such as ‘am I gay because I’ve looked at that man’s genitals? Are his genitals bigger than mine? Am I not a well-paid professional athlete who has competed at the highest possible level but can be easily distracted by the presence of a penis other than mine?’, just like it would for me, a man who believes I can clear a traffic jam by waving my tiny, angry red member at the cars.” Fan of the week is on lock down.
Fan of the week runner up: Stoke Snorkeling Enthusiast
When one thinks of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, England, one immediately turns to the snorkeling scene. Adventure seekers the world over descend upon Stoke at this time each year to dive into the nearly frozen water and gaze upon the occasional trout through the green hue of polluted water. This young man, his constantly snorkeling body rendered lithe and lean from hours spent swimming each day, pried himself away from the Rio Trent long enough to take in a Stoke City match. And his sacrifice was noted and rewarded by Peter Crouch with a game-worn jersey:
Almost certainly St. Oke Mad’s Id Ders sold the kit on Granthamslist or whatever is the English version of Craigslist so that he could restock his oxygen supply. But the fan will still be able to enjoy the real gift of the day as long as he lives: the taste of the inside of Peter Crouch’s mouth every time he goes snorkeling.
Tackle of the week: Roger Espinoza
Former Heisman Trophy winner Roger Espinoza demonstrated exactly why Sporting Kansas City’s defense has been nigh impenetrable this year:
This tackle has all the mechanics you look for from a great linebacker. Espinoza gets low, drives with his shoulder as he uses his feet to push through the tackle, and wraps up the ball carrier’s knees. Better yet, the erstwhile Wigan defender mimes a grimace of exasperated pain after the event in some kind of hope that the referee will see it and say “oh, maybe it wasn’t that bad; Roger seemed to have the worst of it.” Espinoza’s tackle was rewarded with a yellow card and an invitation to try out for the Kansas City Chiefs.
League most likely to be among the world’s elite by 2020: MLS
Sane tattoo of the week: Leroy Sane
As time passes, gravity pulls closer to the Earth the outlines of our once vital forms, age and inevitability trump adventure and spontaneity, and grim death slowly eclipses the horizon behind us where once memory stood. Leroy Sane understands this truth. Thus, in all humility and with an eye on a future in which a better past evades him, he has committed ink to flesh in immortal commemoration of youth:
Who among us can blame him? Who among us does not walk through the empty streets where once we were boys and girls, remembering the friends with whom we played on the slide that now stands rusted and staggering, recalling our first kiss behind the trees in the weed-strewn yards of our youth? And who among us does not, in some small corner of ourselves, wish fiercely to revisit those memories for even just an instance, when the people we might become had not yet slumped into the people we became?
Reaction shot of the week: Steve Bannon
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