Sunday, 27 June 2010

Nigeria & Australia breeze into last eight + England WC autopsy

What the Uruguayan linesman actually saw...

England's performance - what the lads thought
Following England's shapeless, listless WC2010 performance against the Germans, the COGH team decided to do a bit of unofficial market research - and asked those we had been watching the match with to write down their thoughts. For the record, our straw poll included members of the national press and other articulate souls, though we had consumed rather a lot of Hurlimann and Asahi to help drown our sorrows. 'F*ck the millionaires' and 'they're all a bunch of c*nts' were two of the early heartfelt sentiments, though the first actual suggestion was 'try a team consisting of Championship players - at least they might have some heart.'

One sage commented: 'There's ineptitude and inspiration - and there's a gulf between the two we cannot seem to cross.' Comments began to descend toward the less profound at this point - 'c*nt rags' and 'bag of shite'. Passing judgment on England's wide play, one pundit said he 'could have shat a better cross', and *** (comment about Stephen Gerrard removed for legal reasons).

If our impromptu research is anything to go by, the average England fan is seething... And it would seem it is the way the game is run and financed in this country that is at the heart of the problem. With any luck Capello will resign- but let's not hope he is the scapegoat in this deeply flawed situation. What's to be done? A maximum wage? An NFL-style draft? A limit on foreign imports? Remove agents' power and influence? Your thoughts would be welcome, and we'd suggest sending them to the FA and Premier League too...

Peter samples the Uruguayan entry... again

Match 53:
Nigeria 3
Monty-Video (O.G) 32, Ohdear 45+1, Oddbinnsa 60
Uruguay 0

Another storming victory for Nigerian Guinness and a final exit for Harvey's Blue Label, the beer chosen as a tribute to Brighton boss Gus Poyet. Like the Crossbow Cannibal the latter could put up no feasible defence against the African onslaught. Not a whooping on the scale of the group matches but more comprehensive nonetheless more comprehensive than Grange Hill. By this point Dan and Deaks are sporting rather natty sunglasses and their notes have disappeared to nowt, and Stu is growing increasingly fixated on the caps.

Cap of Good Hop

The New York Post takes a mature approach to USA exit

Bird's eye view of the COGH tasting table

Match 54:
Australia 2
Floater 12, 50
USA 1
Measley 74

Coopers Sparkling Ale retains its popularity while Sierra Nevada Glissade finally runs out of fans. 'The Aussies certainly know how to make great beer - when you can tear them away from the barbie and bush fires,' says Peter. Coopers is smooth and gives us no problem, whereas the States are bundled out, like in WC2010, after providing much entertainment but could not live with the Group D Winners.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Iberian Derby plus Japan take on the Italians

Firstly, sympathies go out to our American readers after their elimination from WC2010 yesterday. I was drinking a couple of bottles of La Choulette, the French entry to COGH during the game. I hope this didn't in any influence the course of the game... It was going to be Guinness Foreign Export.

'I never touched him ref, honest'

Match 51:

Japan 1
Miyagi 61
Italy 0
The Forza Azzurri bandwagon grinds to a halt, but we've had better taste-offs to be honest. 'There's no way the Italian beer deserves to go any further - it isn't much cop,' says James. 'Agreed,' says Dan, 'and Sapporo would walk any World's Driest Beer competition - if anyone could be bothered to hold one.' Now there's a thought... not really - but nonetheless Japan go marching on to the last eight.

Fabio Capello posting his team sheets earlier today -
apparently John Terry is 8/1 to be first England player to cry if they lose

Dave Henson
One of the cultural highlights of the World Cup for me has been the songs of Dave Henson - he of Vuvuzela Song fame. Have a listen to I'll Be Watching You and At Least We're Better Than France - both made me laugh quite a lot.

England 2006 - 2007 in two words

Match 52:
Portugal 1
Castrol 58
Spain 3
Torrid 35, 40, Biscuits 70 (pen)

A whole different encounter. By this time we're all thoroughly relaxed, but still have sufficient faculty to enjoy the sophisticated flavours in Alhambra Mezquita in all it's 7.2% glory. Slightly sweet and deeper than resentment about Gibraltar. In comparison Sagres is 'respectable holiday beer' and 'alright once in a while but nothing special'. No contest.

The Knock-Out Phase - No Second Chances

What next for Cup of Good Hop?
As the World Cup rolls towards the beginning of its end, our thoughts here at COGH turn to what should become of the site. We've had suggestions that we should run a Champions League version next season, and we are currently sizing this up. We could also run occasional Premier / Football League Beer face-offs. What do you think? Write and tell us what we should do, even if its to take a long run off a short pier.

Oh dear... well, we'll see tomorrow won't we?

Match 49:

France 4
Marceau 13, 57 Merci-Beaucoup 70, Cissy (pen) 85
Argentina 1
Galtieri 49
Sweet, hoppy with a touch of spice. We're not talking about a Skippy the Bush Kangeroo porn flick - this is La Choulette, and its thorough beating of Quilmes. 'This is going to be one tough mother to beat,' says Deaks approvingly. The Argentines may be having a stunning WC2010, but their beer oddessy came to an end, as one of the last 'Bog-Standard Lagerland' entrants bites the dust. Peter's parting shot was that Quilmes tastes like 'something your dad would drink in the 70s with a bit of lime cordial in it.' Ouch.

Barbie drink's from Cindy's furry Cup of Good Hop -
Obviously too much Jelen Pivo

Match 50:
Slovenia 2

Rektal 36, 48
Germany 2
Mullered 12, Geradehaus 50
(Germany won on penalties)

Weissbeer (Erdinger) vs quality ale (the Slovenian hops of Broadside) - not exactly comparing like with like but we had to go there, and there was barely the thickness of a beermat to separate them at the finish. 'They're so different,' says James, 'one's a summer beer and the other is one for around Christmas.' Stu comes up with a suggestion - 'well as its summer then we should give it to the Germans, and thus one of the toughest decisions yet in COGH is reluctantly made.

Monday, 21 June 2010

Rounding up the Group Stage - Shocks Galore...

Hope these Italian fans kept hold of this coffin - only have to change one colour and wording and its perfect

Match 45:
Portugal 2
Contralto 30, Mandi 72

Brazil 1
Kooka 45+1

An encounter that will fail to live in the memory save for the fact it puts out the Boys from Brazil. 'Sagres is better than average Eurolager,' says James, 'but not much more.' Brahma elicits little praise from our panel - 'there's no Samba party going on with this - pretty dire,' says Stu. At least the Brazilians trouble the scorers at last - but all massively in vain. This will make embarrassing reading for such a great World Cup nation.

A Japanese fan outside the Danish Embassy in Toyko last night

Theballisround
Many interesting insights on the modern game can be found at COGH Executive Beer Taster Stuart Fuller's theballisround blog. Click on the link to find Stu's reminiscences of WC2006.

Match 46:
North Korea 1
Sum-Yung-Boy 25

Ivory Coast 0

The North Koreans chalk up their second victory in poor group. 'Mann's Brown Ale is a bit of a crime against beers,' says Peter - 'that doesn't say much for Tusker does it?' replies Deaks. 'The last of the group games means we can say goodbye to a lot of shit beers,' says Stu, and four tipsy heads nod in agreement. Apart from Nigeria, this completes a sorry showing for African beers overall.

Final Group G Table



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Portugal
3
3
005
1
4
9
2North Korea
3
2
0
1
2
11
6
3Brazil3
01
2
1
3
-2
1
4Ivory Coast
3
01
2
03
-3
1
COGH Analysis: In a group with no much to recommend it at all, Portugal sweep maximum points as if by default. The North Koreans - with the weakest beer in the competition - can count themselves incredibly lucky to make the next stage. And as for Brazil and the Kenyan / Ivory Coast entries - don't call us...

Free kicks: Had you forgotten how good they are?

Match 47:
Chile 0

Spain 3

Meddle (O.G) 36, Biscuits 51, Torrid 80

Another case of a superior team taking on absolute gack. The lads are still no fans of Chili Beer 'Poo - it stinks,' says Deaks - 'it's probably a ring stinger as well,' adds Peter. Alhambra Mezquita is strong, smooth and lovely, and brushes the South Americans aside as if lazily swatting a fly during a siesta. A taxi is hired for the Chileans without a goal troubling any of their opponents.

Thought for the day
Yesterday here at COGH we hoped there wouldn't be any red cards in today's matches - and Blimey O' Reilly - there weren't any. The performances of Howard Webb and linesman Darren Cann were the best by any Englishmen in WC2010 thus far...

Darren Cann - National Hero

Match 48:
Switzerland 5

Toblerone 1, 4, 70, Tell 40, Youngboy-Byrne 29

Honduras 3
Ponce 16, 55

Every match the Swiss have been involved in has been touched with class - and this was no exception. 'This gives you the most amazing euphoric feeling - it's not like drinking normal beer,' says Peter of the 14% barnstormer that has taken the competition by storm. The Hondurans are certainly no mugs and to get three goals against the mighty Swiss is a performance to be applauded. 'Banana Bread Beer can count themselves very unlucky to be going out at this stage. Would probably win best third place,' says James with an air of regret at seeing them go.

Final Group H Table


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Switzerland
3
3
0014
7
7
9
2Spain
3
2
01
10
7
3
6
3Honduras
3
1
02
7
8
-1
3
4Chile
3
003
09
-9
0
COGH Analysis: The Swiss go through as top scorers in the competition, as the Spanish claim a well-deserved second spot, and set up an all-Iberian encounter in the Round of 16. The Swiss should have no trouble against the North Koreans. As for Chile, the least said the better, and the Hondurans can go home very proud of the displays they have put together and the friends they've made.

Round of 16 Matches:
A1 France v Argentina B2
B1 Nigeria v Uruguay A2
C1 Slovenia v Germany D2
D1 Australia v USA C2
E1 Japan v Italy F2
F1 Paraguay v Holland E2
G1 Portugal v Spain H2
H1 Switzerland v North Korea G2
(Ties to be played same times as WC2010 equivalents)

E+F: The ins and outs of the final group matches...

Glen Johnson trying to avoid being hit square in the Jubulanis yesterday

Group E
Match 41:

Denmark 0

Japan 2
Snackazawa 43, Mizuno 48

A double whammy does for the Danes as their disappointing COGH campaign comes to an end. The lads don't hold back in what they feel about Carlsberg. 'Bath water. Not fit to grace this fine competition,' says Dan, whilst James thinks it 'smells of feet.' Peter follows up with a cutting 'It's awful, I'm getting more off these figs I'm eating.' Sapporo by contrast as dry, clean and hundred times more drinkable.

Tim Stewart's World Cup Diary
We'd heartily recommend Tim Stewart's on-the-spot reporting from England v Slovenia on our siblog European Football Weekends.

Match 42:

Cameroon 0

Holland 2
Bruin 32, Agagoo 75 (O.G)

Two very similar games to round off the groups, except the French / Cameroonian entrant Tradition is way out of Carlsberg's league, but not in a good way. 'Worst beer we've tried, and that's saying something,' says Deaks, eager to wash his mouth out with something more pleasant. The Dutch grab their first and only goals of the tournament but strangely they are enough to give them a decent shout of the second round.

Final Group E Table:


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Japan3
3
005
05
9
2Holland3
1
1
1
2
1
1
4
3Denmark
3
1
1
1
1
2
-1
4
4Cameroon3
003
05
-5
0
COGH Analysis: In an amazing last gasp bid Holland have overtaken the Danes on goal difference, but will face the formidable Paraguayans in the next round. Japan were not troubled in the group, and will fancy themselves against Italy. The Danes can consider themselves unlucky, especially as their first choice beer was smashed in an unfortunate accident. As for the French / Cameroonian entry, they are no loss to the contest.

Whoops!
Vladimir Mijaljevic commentating for Serbia's biggest TV station RTS said of the German goalkeeping situation: “Neuer is in goal, because Enke cannot play. He is injured.” Obviously no-one told Mijaljevic that Robert Enke tragically committed suicide last year.

Group F
Match 43:

Slovakia 0

Italy 1
Columbo 39

Two evenly matched sides going head-to-head in a battle for that vital runners-up spot in the group. The Italians edge out the Slovaks by being 'a little tastier' but overall an uninspiring encounter. 'You'd not refuse a few of these, but I've had better up Ben Nevis,' says Peter. Stu is equally non-plussed. 'I don't think either of these will be going very much further in the competition to be honest.' No-one disagrees.

Thought for the Day
A player has been sent off on each of the last eight day's play - a new World Cup record. It seems that there are so many fiddly things that 'deserve' a yellow card these days, wrecking many perfectly good matches. Here's to no red cards today... what would be the odds of that? 50/1?

Impenetrable: England's route to the WC2010 final

Match 44:
Paraguay 3

New Zealand 0

'This beer would put you in Accident and Emergency if you're not careful,' says Dan. Not everyone is a fan of Palo Santo, but all have to admire how they've managed to fit 12% ABV of beer into something that doesn't taste like surgical spirit. Mac's Gold, on the other hand, is pallid, plain and out of COGH without a point or even so much as a goal.

The NZ team in celebratory mood... Obviously with beer from other countries

Final Group F Table



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Paraguay
3
3
009
2
7
9
2Italy
3
2
01
3
3
0
6
3Slovakia
3
1
02
2
4
-2
3
4New Zealand
3
003
05
-5
0

COGH Analysis: Paraguay coast over the finishing line as group winners and will not fear the Dutch. The Italians were arguably fielding an understrength entry and so did well under the circumstances. As for the Slovaks and the Kiwis, both were fancied before the start of the tournament and have largely disappointed, but stood little chance against a most distinctive South American entry.

Tomorrow: Will Brazil qualify? Are Switzerland COGH's new dark horses

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Dramatic Finale to Groups C + D - What's the Story Golden Glory?

Group C
Match 37:
Slovenia 2
Bojangles 70, Pistilic 81

England 1
Runny 9

England make a bright start - Peter: 'Its lovely. So long as you like peaches. Lends itself to duck pate or cheesecake.' James responds with 'that sounds like a recipe for gout,' and similar feeling amongst the lads means the writing is on the wall for the Three Lions. The Slovenian Hops in Adnams' Broadside are a more conventional hit 'would warm you cockles any old day,' (Dan) and patriotism is put aside in favour of scientific enquiry. It is found to be eminently drinkable - with a punch without the pungency. This could well have disastrous consequences for England's chances.

Other news
So, its do-or-die day for England in WC2010. Great story here from The Daily Mash about John Terry's frame of mind before the big game. Other news:- Apparently an Algerian witch doctor sent the pigeon behind the goal to cast a spell on England last Friday. Elsewhere Raymond Domenech is to write a book entitled How to Win Friends and Influence People.

Possible explanation found for poor Croatian show in qualifiers

Match 38:
USA 3
Measley30 (pen), Hold'em 40, Bubble 57

Algeria 0

The States' entry - Sierra Nevada Glissade - racks up an easy victory against the Algerians who leave COGH without so much as a goal, let alone a goal to their name. 'Fruity, lingers like a good'un,' says Dan about the US of A. Skol, the biggest, if shortest name in lager in parts of North Africa, has a torrid time. 'Light and refreshing my arse,' says Dan, whilst Stu describes it as 'flavoured water. In fact, I don't think they've bothered to flavour it.' The Executive Beer Tasters were going to ring the Skol Consumer Helpline on the side of the can, but ultimately we couldn't be bothered.

Final Group C Table



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Slovenia3
3
0010
3
7
9
2USA
3
111
7
5
2
4
3England
3
1
116
4
2
4
4Algeria3
003
011
-110


COGH Analysis:
England go home due to scoring one fewer goal than the USA - the cruellest form of elimination known to man. The Slovenians triumphed after a couple of narrow wins over their main rivals and annihilation of the Algerians, who never really stood a chance in the company of three strong opponents. England can take a lot away from this experience, but must be bitterly disappointed to be going home at this early stage.

Group D
Match 39:

Ghana 0


Germany 2

Bierhoff Jr 39, Geradehaus 90+2

Yet again there's a shutout for Star - and Erdinger does more than enough to ensure safe progress. 'It's a lovely contrast to have a bit of white beer,' says Peter, who by now has drunk enough generic piss to last a lifetime. 'Nice lid. has five stars on it, shame you can't say that about the beer,' says Stu about the African also-ran. It's plain to see by this point that beers such as Star are going to get little sympathy as we've sampled most of the big guns three times.

Match 40:
Australia 4
Chippyfeel 9, Kewl 41, Floater 49, Molehill 80

Serbia 2
Yearic 29, Alcoholic 64

Coopers Sparkling Ale very well received all round. James sums it up 'Interesting and tasty. Smallest bottle in the group but packs a big punch.' Jelen Pivo also has its fans, with Dan noting it was 'very nice, which was pleasing as it came in a bottle the size of a battleship.' However, the antipodean class shone through, and it was arguable there was possibly just too much Serbian Beer knocking around to be impressed by it. At the end of the day, Coopers is a speciality world-renowned ale as opposing to above-average mass market lager. No contest really.

Final Group D Table


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Australia3
2
1
010
5
5
7
2Germany3
2
1
08
5
3
7
3Serbia3
1
02
7
8
-1
3
4Ghana3
003
1
8
-7
0
COGH Analysis: Australia top the table on sheer fire power ahead of a German side who'd have won most COGH groups hands down. Serbia's Jelen Pivo can also count themselves unlucky due to the company they've kept, as they have found the net nearly as many times as those who have qualified. Ghana were outclassed on a regular basis, looking the epitome of average throughout.

Third round of matches - It's Le Crunch time...

Half-time for WC2010 and Cup of Good Hop

So we're halfway. Thirty-matches and 32 COGH taste-offs down, and we've seen a lot of drama and shocks in both competitions.
Argentina and Holland may be churning out victories on the pitch, but its a different story in the pitcher. Nigeria may have suffered at the hands of their group opponents in South Africa, but their beer has managed to capture hearts, minds and tastebuds. It's now time to blow the whistle for the second half - let's hope there's as many thrills, but no spills - as we try to find the world's best beer. Let's kick off now and see how the group stage concludes...
Kim Jong-Il yesterday - not pleased... Apparently ordered the shark tank to be restocked

Funniest WC banner so far...

Match 33:
Mexico 1
Jalapeno 16

Uruguay 1
Monty-Video 43 (pen)


'This is the Andy Dawson of international beers cos it was a late replacement,' says Deaks of Corona, probably wishing we were sampling Pacifico. 'Unlike Dawson there's no substance here.'
Dan has had enough of it too. 'One I’d only turn to after I’d reached my beer capacity for the night.' Stu says sniffily, 'It's training beer - like a training bra,' and James rounds off the critique with 'Not quite right - Smells wrong if left alone for five minutes.' However, we the wheels were also coming off the Uruguayan bandwagon. We generally liked the bottle and label better than the inoffensive yet slightly thin taste of Harvey's Blue Label. Essentially two beers we've kinda want to see the back of.


World Cup snippets
Great story here about the 1966 World Cup... And another from the same source - Newsarse...

RIP Frank Sidebottom
Chris Sievey, Aka Frank Sidebottom died yesterday after a short battle with cancer. The COGH team would like to extend their gratitude for all the football related laughs he brought us during his lifetime. His final song, Three Shirts On My Line is here. There's plenty more out there to investigate.

Match 34:
France 4
Merci-Beaucoup 31, 88, Cissy 36 (pen), Kronenbourg 71

South Africa 1
Botha 62

The revolving door of fate no longer turns for the hosts. They were simply outclassed by the French, and the result was never in doubt after persistent early pressure lead to a clear then increasing lead. 'I couldn't imagine doing a session on these,' says Deaks, looking like he never wants to drink Durban Pale Ale ever again. Every judge continued to take to the French. 'I shall say these only once, this is delicious,' says Peter in an 'Allo 'Allo accent. And so it was sedimentary that the host without the most beer would depart the stage early.


Final Group A Table



PWDLFAGDPTS
1France3
3
0011
4
+79
2Uruguay3
11
15
5
04
3Mexico3
11
14
5
-14
4South Africa20022
8
-60

COGH Analysis: Mexico missed out on a place in the group of sixteen by a single goal and can count themselves incredibly unlucky. Uruguay are through instead - and join the Mighty France, who may have had a dreadful WC2010 but have shone like a glint in that gorgeous barmaid's eye in COGH. They will be feared by whoever finishes second in Group B. It looks incredibly likely that Uruguay will face Nigeria in the next round. South Africa have surrendered with barely a whimper - an exceedingly poor show for the host nation. So it's goodbye to Durban Pale Ale and Corona - and on reflection we have to say good riddance.

Match 35:
Nigeria 4
Yobbo 31, Ohdear, 34, 85, Amataxi 50

South Korea 1
Pak Choi 38

'Full of flavour but could cause misbehaviour.' We should approach Guinness with this genius ad strapline coined by Deaks. In terms of flavour and depth there's very little in COGH to rival it. South Korea's OB is simply no match, and three visitations of it to our tastebuds is quite enough. 'Would be quite sickly after a few,' says Stu, pulling a dissatisfied face. 'The bubbles fade very quickly,' observes James, and Dan responds in song '...and like my dreams, they fade and die.' With that OB's chances of further progression in COGH.

Match 36:
Greece 1
Taramasalata (pen) 42

Argentina 1
Labia 4

Dan considers Quilmes to be 'clean, crisp but lacking in depth. Ideal in Buenos Aires but not so desirable in BN1,' and Deaks more or less echoes these thoughts - 'nice label colours, watery - not much punch. Fresh but dull.' James is no more complimentary: 'It's more Notts County than Ruddles County, an afternoon of these would not hurt, but wouldn't inspire either.' Drinking Mythos is like sampling Quilmes' identical twin... 'drinkable, harmless, forgettable.' And with that we wave goodbye - without much regret - to the Greek entry.

Final Group B Table


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Nigeria3
3
0011
3
8
9
2Argentina3
11
1
3
5
-24
3South Korea3
11
1
4
8
-54
4Greece3
01
026-41


COGH Analysis: In a remarkable reversal of fortune, the South Koreans have been turned over at the death by Argentina who squeak into the next round with a humble point. They owe the Nigerians a great debt, who put a fatal dent in OB's (Korea's) goal difference. Argentina v France would be a mouth-watering tie on the pitch, but will the beer equivalent match up?

Thursday, 17 June 2010

Spain's passage to next round under threat - or is it?

Kader Keita Acting School - cheap rates - no talent required

Cup of Good Hop Polls
You've had the opportunity to vote for your favourite beers on COGH, and they have produced some surprising results so far. Things couldn't be tighter in Group A, whereas Quilmes is the clear front runner amongst Argentina's foursome, despite the presence of Guinness Foreign Export (jeez, their PR department should start bunging us some cash before long - but it really is a stunning beer). Another surprise is the walkaway victory for Macs Gold (New Zealand) in Group F - which seems to be contrary to the thoughts of the COGH Executive Beer Tasters. As the tournament unfolds we will give you more opportunity to state your preferences and generally get involved.

Are we experiencing the worst refereeing in World Cup history?
Probably not, but it sure feels like it... Chile v Switz latest of too many examples


Match 31:
Chile 0

Switzerland 4

Toblerone 10, 77, Tell 47, Franc 56

A predictable outcome for this bottom v top encounter. The Swiss continue to impress to the utmost, with complicated yet subtle flavours and a profound effect on the noggin. Chile are peppered with attacks 'tastes hot, smells funny,' says Deaks, and Peter wants no more - 'wrong combination of flavours. Not a keeper.' James finishes off the job with a dismissive 'I'm anti this beer big time.' There's no coming back from that kind of barracking when taking on the best.

Us against An-them
It occurred to me during the Portugal v North Korea match that both of their national anthems are tuneful, upbeat and cheery. Then it struck me that given Portugal's political history theirs is possibly about peasants getting mercilessly shot by the militia, and heaven knows what they've got to be cheery about in North Korea. What's been your favourite anthem - or indeed the one that makes your eardrums feel sick... Let us know here at COGH - leave a message or email pstymail@yahoo.com.
Facebook Focus
Alex Edgar The England team went to visit a South African orphanage. "It was good to put a smile on the faces of people who have no hope and are constantly struggling," said Joseph Umboto, aged six.

Match 32:
Spain 3
Del Fuego 45, Amarillo 67, Que-Pasa 77

Honduras 2
Escobar 14, Palacial 71

Though we are all big fans of Banana Bread beer, we have to give a narrow decision in favour of Alambra Mezquita. 'This is a serious beer - class in a glass,' says Stu. 'I could drink a lot of these,'
says Deaks with some zest. There's a lot going on with Alambra, and is more of a connoisseur's beer, but that takes nothing away from the plucky Hondurans. 'Lovely smell - you could drink these too excess in one sitting,' says Peter - who pledges to look out for Banana beer in future when in need of a tasty, novel boozing experience.



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Switzerland
2
2
009
4
5
6
2Honduras
2
1
01
4
3
1
3
3Spain
2
1
01
7
7
03
4Chile
2
002
06
-6
0

COGH Analysis: The Swiss have laid waste everyone in their path, but its a top of the table clash next. This could be a prime opportunity for Spain to leapfrog into the second round, as they face the Chileans, who've yet to make any positive impact on the competition yet.

Brazil yet to score shocker...


Twitter Titter #5

davidschneider
I'd say the disarray in the French team dates from the appointment of sports psychologist Paddy O'Shaunessy

and latest news:-

simonmayo Sky sources: England coach Fabio Capello agrees to tell players of team selection earlier. (via @SkyNewsBreak)

Here's a link to current scenarios in all groups. Especially interesting is the possibility of a coin toss if England score two more goals than the US in their final games.

Cup of Good Hop Match 29:
Brazil 0

Ivory Coast 0
Deaks' 'Barak Obrahma' quip is more entertaining than either brew, and Tusker yet again fails to impress. 'The only big game this will be involved with is the elephant on the label,' says Peter. By this time the lads are very bored of generic Lagerland lager, and this goalless encounter is testament to that. 'Brazil need to have a word with themselves beer-wise, this is a shoddy display,' says James.

Not everyone is complaining about the Vuvuzela

Match 30:
Portugal 1
Mandi 10

North Korea 0

An encounter nearly as flat as Mann's Brown Ale itself. Sagres gets the nod over a 2.8% beer that has recipes written on the side of the bottle. 'It's going to qualify for the last 16, but I can't see Portugal getting much further,' says Stu. Like Ronaldo, there's something a little effeminate about Sagres, whereas Mann's has completely lost the faith of the judges. 'It's giving me the shivers,' says Peter, who can't face drinking any more. 'You've got to wonder who still buys this rubbish.' I suppose we did, but for a very specific reason.

Group G Table



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Portugal
2
2
003
03
6
2North Korea
2
1
0
1
1
103
3Brazil2
01
1
01
-1
1
4Ivory Coast
2
01
1
02
-2
1

COGH Analysis: Portugal top a poor group and have yet to concede a goal. Brazil, on the other hand have yet to score one and run the very real risk of first round elimination at the hands of North Korea. The Ivorians could spoil their party but will have to perform significantly better than in their previous two matches.

Group F - shock leaders after two games

COGH around the world
So far people from more than 60 countries have visited Cup of Good Hop - from every continent and just about every major nation on earth. A quick rundown the alphabet of the global community of Hoppers includes Brunei, Iceland, Libya, Pakistan, Vietnam and Zimbawbe. Wow. I hope you're enjoying COGH out there as much as we enjoy producing it. Drop us a line anytime.
Thanks, Peter & James. Now back to the action...

Group E caps: Poor show from Italy and Slovakia

Match 27:

Slovakia 1
Rubik (pen) 47
Paraguay 3
Santana 13, Alcatraz 20, Stukka (o.g) 81

For a beer to be described as 'very bitter, gassy and unremarkable' is not a good start and is liable to result in slip-ups in Cup of Good Hop. Such is the fate of Ostravar, who let Paraguay in with an early brace and never recovered. Paraguay's distinctive style and 12% strength laid the Slovakians asunder - though not everyone's cup of tea, they are the best tipple in the group for many of the EBTs.

Our siblog European Football Weekends has been publishing Fat Boy Slim's World Cup diary. Here's the latest instalment...

Fatboy Slim - our blog soul brother

And here's the prime data from the first round of matches in a handy chart.

Click picture to enlarge

Match 28:
Italy 1
Rizotto 65

New Zealand 0

Not the most inspiring encounter. Peter concludes: 'At this stage it's hard to distinguish Forza Azzurri from Mythos and the rest of Lagerland, but to be fair it's better than Mythos.' James feels that Macs Gold, with it ridged bottle and ring-pull cap is style over substance. Stu is in accord, rubbishing its 4% status along the way toboot. You feel the Kiwis won't be extending their stay in COGH beyond stage one.

Group E:



PWDLFAGDPTS
1Paraguay
2
2
006
2
4
6
2Italy
2
1
01
2
3
-1
3
3Slovakia
2
1
01
2
3
-1
3
4New Zealand
2
002
02
-2
0

COGH Analysis: Paraguay have ensured qualification with two fine performances, and face the bottom feeding Kiwis. The drama-o-meter will be turned up to eleven at the Italy / Slovakia game, as only alphabetical order can separate them thus far.

Japan tighten grip on Group E

'You know where you are with beer and football - til you don't'

World Cup's best tipster
The COGH research bureau has unearthed the safest bet in the WC so far - a Brit who put £110,000 on France to reach the final. Graham Sharpe of William Hill confirmed: 'A southern based telephone client has staked a bet of £55,000 each-way on France to win the World Cup at odds of 20/1 - and will make a profit of £1,650,000 if they do so - the biggest ever World Cup winnings'. Don't hold your breath - whoever you are.

Cup of Good Hop Match 25:
Holland 0

Japan 1
Godzuki (pen) 62

Sapporo has made all the running in the group, and with good cause. 'Holds its own, pleasing, light and refreshing,' was James' opinion. Oranjeboom was judged to be less of a lager and more of an annoying tune from the past, Dan said 'I have nothing to say,' and this summed up the general consensus that it was generic and quite, quite dull. These guys aren't fans of Oranjeboom either.

The contestants reclining in their mass ice bath. Note - Serbia so big it needs its own cold pack

Match 26:
Cameroon 0

Denmark 1
Arsen 21

Deaks thoughts on Carlsberg are simple 'The rank outsider - with an emphasis on rank.' But even compared to Tradition the Danish entry is the epitome of ambrosia. James considers the Tradition to be 'strange', and in two matches has managed to win precisely no fans amongst our Executive Beer Tasters. They are not likely to trouble any COGH goalkeeper unless they've had at least a dozen the night before.

Group E Table:


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Japan2
2
003
03
6
2Denmark2
1
1
01
01
4
3Holland2
01
001
-1
1
4Cameroon2
002
03
-3
0
COGH Analysis: Japan dominate this low scoring group, who take on the Danes who have done better than expected up til now. The Dutch still have a fighting chance of progression, so long as they play to their strengths against the goalless and pointless Cameroonian side.

n.b. here's the tune to that Oranjeboom advert - warning, if you click on this it'll be in your head for the rest of the World Cup.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Group D - Triumph of the Big Two...

Africa's World Cup?
A cursory glance at the match stats so far suggest it's been anything but Africa's World Cup. Of eight matches involving teams from the host continent (up to Friday 18th) only Ghana have managed to win, and every other game has resulted in a loss apart from South Africa's draw on the opening day. South America are the most successful continent by a country mile, with five wins and a draw from six matches. European teams are drawing more often than they are chalking up wins, but who would ever have thought that Germany, Spain and France would have trouble in the group stage?

Germany miss from the spot for once

Match Breakdown (as of June 18th, in order of success)

South America
Matches 6
Won 5
Drawn 1
Lost 0

Europe
Matches 11
Won 4
Drawn 5
Lost 2

North America
Matches 4
Won 1
Drawn 2
Lost 1

Asia & Australisia
Matches 6
Won 1
Drawn 2
Lost 3

Africa
Matches 8
Won 1
Drawn 1
Lost 6

Jelen Pivo: Big, but not one of the Big Two

The Jelen Pivo World Cup lounge...

Cup of Good Hop Match 23:
Germany 3
Mullered 41, 51, Badstubby 77

Serbia 2

Crossstic 13, Zigzagic 43

Two words sum up Erdinger for Deaks - well engineered. The Serbian beer is both big and well received 'it's much nicer than Stella - gets you in the mood,' says Stu, but ultimately it doesn't have enough to match Die Nationalelf, as the Germans are sometimes known. Peter seems to be failing to keep up with the pace when he says 'I might need a little time to finish Germany off,' and the double entredre is well received. James considers Erdinger to be 'subtle but powerful', with the team in full agreement that they should shave a narrow win.


Stuart with the trophy they are all lusting after

Our Team

Just in case you've forgotten or didn't know what our EBTs (Executive Beer Tasters) look like - here they are again...
Peter Styles

James Byford

Dan Last

Lee Deacon

Stuart Fuller

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Twitter Titter #4
An occasional COGH series revealing the tweets that make us titter

@billybragg USA continue their winning streak with a brilliant 2-2 victory over Slovenia

What! Another Drinking World Cup!
We've had an email from Tom Drummond , an app that allows you to pledge allegiance to your telling us about the Drinking World Cup allowing you to pledge your allegiance for your nation - indeed any nation of choice - by saying that you are going to drink on their behalf. Seems eminently sensible to us. Cheers!

John Travolta putting a scientologist curse on the Australian team last week

Match 24:
Ghana 0

Australia 3
Kewl 27, Molehill 50, 52

Australia, like the Germans, consolidate after cancelling each other out in the first round of games. Ghana have no answer to the Aussie firepower, with very little by way of attack. Peter thought that Coopers 'beat Star pants down' and Deaks described it as 'special and refreshing. It's a top performer - good bowling Shane.' As far as Star was concerned, Dan picked up on their marketing message. 'They promise a million sparkling bubbles - and deliver considerably less.' James thought Star was 'lacklustre' and 'metallic', and it was clear to all that Star was going to be the whipping boy of Group D.


Group D Table


PWDLFAGDPTS
1Australia2
1
1
06
3
3
4
2Germany2
1
1
06
5
1
4
3Serbia2
1
01
5
4
1
3
4Ghana2
002
1
6
-5
0

COGH Analysis: Germany have almost guaranteed themselves a place in the last sixteen with as their final fixture is against the lowly Ghana, but the tie that's going to wet many whistles is the one between the Socceroos and Serbia, with the Eastern Europeans needing all three points to progress.