Unsolved Mysteries: World Cup Edition

CUE: Robert Stack, walking into frame, with a serious expression on his face. ROBERT STACK (eye brows slanted, sly smirk): Join me. Perhaps you may be able to help solve a mystery.

What mystery you ask?

Well, none other than the biggest mystery in sports right now: what was the penalty that cost the United States what would have been the deciding goal in the final few minutes of yesterday’s game against Slovenia?

And in case you didn’t watch the game, this image really is about all you need to see:

us-slovenia-penaltyImage Source: Imgur via @TicketRadio

[Note: The time in the upper left hand corner says 90:05, but this is a replay of the infamous bad call that occurred a few minutes earlier. That was confirmed for me here.]

Just looking at this image, what team would you assume is committing a penalty?

By my count Slovenia (in white) is holding five of the six American players in the frame. And poor Michael Bradley, down in the corner, actually appears to be on the verge of getting some what-what-in-the-butt from his Slovenian defender.

If you looked directly under where it says “90:05” you can see a Slovenian defender reaching his left hand to impede the progress of Maurice Edu. As anyone who watched knows, he was unsuccessful in this endeavor:

Edu scored a thrilling goal that should have won the match…

…were it not for this guy:

usa-slovenia-refImage credit: Digg

Somehow…inexplicably…Koman Coulibaly called some sort of violation on the U.S. And what makes it even worse is that no one has any idea what it was because Coulibaly would not explain himself on the pitch and FIFA won’t let him now.

So…U.S. and Slovenia tied 2-2, in what certainly was the most thrilling game of the 2010 World Cup thus far.

Fortunately for the U.S., the tie – plus England’s tie with Algeria – leaves the U.S. in control of its own destiny: if we can beat Algeria, we’ll move onto the knockout round. It’s that simple. If we tie, then the waters get murky.

About Jerod Morris

I love words. I write for Copyblogger and founded MSF, The Assembly Call, & Primility. I practice yoga, eat well, & strive for balance. I love life. Namaste. Say hi on Twitter, Facebook, & G+.


  1. This was disgusting to watch, so how did FIFA handle things?
    This guy is a one-and-done, meaning no more World Cup matches for him.

    But still, this stupid thing won't change the fact that USA had a draw, instead of (what they should've had) a W.

  2. Be honest Jerod, half the reason for this post was so you could link to the what what in the butt video

    • Actually talking about the match, I am a big believer that a team should never have to rely on a call from the referees to win/lose a game. Blaming the refs instead of taking responsibility is pathetic. The US did themselves no favors giving up two relatively easy goals in the first half. That game should have never come down to a blown call.

      The US need to come out and control a game from the start and not wait for some someone to play hero or, in this case, villain.

      • Good, overlooked point.

        Still, all that said, it's somewhat difficult to do in soccer where goals are so hard to come by. If a ref makes an inexplicable call on one of the few times you score a goal, it's a powerless feeling. I agree that the US needs to come out and play better, but they did everything they needed to do in the second half to win. And sadly, it didn't even appear to be borderline. It didn't look like there was anything close to a violation. In this case, I can see why they were so frustrated…but all of the outrage should have been balanced a little bit more with your perspective.

    • Guilty as charged. Saw it on Tosh.0 last week and had to get it in somewhere. I was going to post about the Cubs finally finding their new fight song, but decided not to alienate North Side readers more than I already have.

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  1. […] Speaking of the US/Slovenia match on Friday, here’s something of a break down of the ill fated call which cost the US a goal and then win. […]

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