Spain takes World Cup, downs Netherlands 1-0

A beautiful goal in the second overtime period gives Spain its first World Cup championship.

If anybody here guessed that—and the score—correctly, the prize will be awarded tomorrow.

Paul is definitely in danger and needs an (eight) armed guard

And my student owes me twenty bucks.

UPDATE:  I’m sorry to say that nobody won the football contest.  Although several people predicted Spain would play the Netherlands in the final, and some thought Spain would win, nobody got the score right, even if you count the final score (1-0) as the score at the end of regular time. Sorry!


  1. Reginald Selkirk
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

    Iniesta, the Spanish player who scored the only goal, was apparently trying for an academy award instead, with all his bad acting.

    • Naturalistbiologist
      Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

      Thank FSM I’m not the only one thinking that. The goal left a bitter taste in my mouth after all that diving.

    • jose
      Posted July 11, 2010 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, you all can cry all you want now 🙂

  2. Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Too bad. This match could have easily gone either way. Oh well.

  3. Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Every quarterfinal was awesome. Every semifinal was awesome. Battle for 3rd place was awesome. Now this.

    The OT was pretty decent, but this was not a fun match.

    Anyway; Spain tried to play positive football, and that is more than can be said for certain other participants in the final.

    B.t.w. South Africa appeared to do an excellent job of hosting the biggest sporting-event in the history of mankind. Nice!

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted July 12, 2010 at 6:31 am | Permalink

      Except for the vuvuzelas.

  4. Naturalistbiologist
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Although I was rooting for the Dutch, congrats Spain.

    Still think Germany v. Uruguay was more interesting.

  5. NewEnglandBob
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    When does the tiddlywinks competition begin?

  6. tvs
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    Ha!! Xavi and Puyol just unfurled the catalonian flag.

    • Juha Savolainen
      Posted July 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      Visca Catalunya!

  7. Gunga Lagunga
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    I tuned in just in time to see that great goal. I played competitive soccer in my youth so I know how tough that “one-hopper” line drive was. The goalie was in pretty good position and the Spaniard just power-drove it past him.

    Both teams had their chances. The Hollywood acting stuff is almost as good as the NBA…

  8. Steve
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

    Diego Forlan wins the Golden ball award for best player of the tournament

    • Juha Savolainen
      Posted July 11, 2010 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      Great! The right choice!

  9. mike m
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Why not give both teams their own ball instead of having to fight over it like this.

  10. Juha Savolainen
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 5:04 pm | Permalink

    Not a great final, partly because of Webb who does not have guts to give a red early in the game – I should have wanted to see that faultless Uzhbek referee, Irmatov, taking charge…Hence the only-to-be expected Dutch hard tackles continued unabeted and the Spaniards joined the unfun with nasty tricks and cinematic performances of their own.

    The final could have won either way but, as Robben said in his prematch interview, Holland does not anymore want to represent “total football” – while Barca mostly does – Spain was a worthy winner.

    And yes, may the Catalans retain their autonomy, Visca Catalunya!

    P.S. It was eight out of eight for Paul: Paul is gong to be the most beloved cephalopod of all human history. Maybe UNESCO could recruit Paul to make PR for saving the seas?

  11. Hempenstein
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 5:20 pm | Permalink

    If you take total points scored and divide that by matches played, and then divide that by population of said country, in M, for Slovenia (=2.06M) the number is close to 0.666. I don’t think anyone else comes closer to 1.

    • Dreaded Walrus
      Posted July 11, 2010 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

      Just by way of clarification, by “points scored” are you referring to GOALS scored, or the amount of points won by the team (i.e. 0 for a loss, 1 for a draw, 3 for a win)?

      • whyevolutionistrue
        Posted July 11, 2010 at 7:11 pm | Permalink

        Sorry, goals. People were supposed to guess the final score.

      • Hempenstein
        Posted July 11, 2010 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

        Sorry, I meant points won. Using goals scored the number is smaller, but I think the concluding sentence holds up. Basically I just think it’s remarkable how well their team held up, drawing from such a small base.

  12. Juha Savolainen
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    As none of us got the final and the its result right, I think it would be fair to send your autographed copy of “Why Evolution Is True” (which many of us have, without that autograph, of course) to the real star of the prediction game:
    I think Paul should have an opportunity to learn how and why all football fans are related to each other, in a very natural way…:)

  13. Posted July 11, 2010 at 9:44 pm | Permalink

    And now: How al-Shabab poisons everything…

  14. puzzledponderer
    Posted July 11, 2010 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

    There Spain is known for always scoring 1:0 and nobody guessed it! Aren’t we all so smart?

  15. Ian
    Posted July 12, 2010 at 4:15 am | Permalink

    Even though I have friends who live in Holland I wanted Spain to win simply because they played the best football.

    Yes, there was a lot of questionable tactics by both sides, and some of them would have been medal contenders in the Olympic diving pool but the manner in which Holland played was a disgrace.

    To go into a tackle with the foot raised is a foul, with the studs exposed quite often warrants a yellow card, but de Jong’s ‘attack’ on Alonso by kicking him in the chest was a disgrace. Although the referee was quite close the replay showed he was unsighted which explains why de Jong stayed on the pitch. Schneider should also have been sent off, leaving Holland with 9 players by half-time.

    For those who are ‘suggesting’ that Spain played with 12 players because the referee sent one of the Dutch players from the field should remember that football is a ‘sport’ and not pseudo warfare. If the referee is to be criticized for anything it is because, in the name of sport and the fact that this was the World Cup final, he let far too much violent conduct go unpunished.

    There, I feel better now.

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted July 12, 2010 at 6:34 am | Permalink

      On the other hand, Puyol deserved a red card for submarining the goalkeeper – except that it was his own goalkeeper.

  16. Posted July 12, 2010 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    “I’m sorry to say that nobody won the football contest.”

    Perhaps if your speciesism had at least temporarily been set aside to allow cephalopods to enter, we would not have been deprived of a winner.

    Plus, we could have made a nice paella afterwards.

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