Wednesday 22 November 2017

World Cup Diary: Security price wars

Daniel McDonnell

Daniel McDonnell

The security situation around match venues is developing into the big story here, with Bafana Bafana dropping down the pecking order a bit since their elimination became almost inevitable.

With police now manning the stadiums -- the hired help have legged it after pay-related protests -- authorities here are now pursuing a line of enquiry that suggests that rival security companies are to blame.

Stallion Security were awarded the tender and police reckon that trouble is being stirred up by groups who were unhappy to miss out on the extremely profitable gig.

Security guards were unhappy to receive just 190 rand (approx €20) for a 12-hour shift, when it's believed that their counterparts who work at Super 14 rugby matches earn double the amount for a three-hour responsibility.

The government will now have to fork out 100m rand (approx €10m) to pay the police officers who are doing overtime -- although the question is being asked if FIFA should be footing the bill. A messy business, all things considered.

giving women a bad name

Women who genuinely like football find it hard to be taken seriously -- mainly because of women who pretend to like it at a given time, and manage to embarrass themselves and everyone in their company.

Unfortunately, the stereotype has been perpetuated here by 'The Citizen' newspaper's 'Girl Friday' column, which reflected on the host nation's unfortunate defeat to Uruguay.

"Something happened in Pretoria on Thursday night. Apparently there was some sort of game," she quips. The game, of course, took place on Wednesday.

She continues: "I paid attention for longer than thousands who walked out of the stadium after our goal person was sent off."

And, finally: "The one in the alice-band who kicked the ball into the back of the net twice could score with me anytime."

Wish you were here

Michael Essien

(Ghana)

Considering he should be at the peak of his powers, it's extremely unfortunate that Essien is absent, particularly as Ghana have the potential to make a big impact on their home continent. His experience and class would have given them something extra, particularly when they are now in such a strong position following Germany's slip-up against Serbia.

quote of the day

"The only way to get the World Cup to stay in South Africa now is to steal it. At least we are professionals at that."

A text message into a local newspaper amid the outpouring of grief at the Bafana Bafana's imminent demise.

bet of the day

Holland (-1) v Japan @ 13/10

Given the attacking options they possess on the bench, Holland should win this game by more than one goal.

Irish Independent

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