Sunday, May 20, 2007

Hellenic Happenings

Travel arrangements for Greece have been organised by those fortunate enough to go. As for the rest of us, TV will have to suffice. Time was when the big question was, "Have you got a ticket to spare?"

This time around, it's taken for granted that at least three-quarters of those going will be ticketless. If they can't get tickets when they arrive in Greece, they'll be happy to watch the match on the huge TV screens that have been erected in the centre of Athens. Some friends of mine have managed to get tickets, & they'll also be using the trip as an excuse for a week's holiday some 200 miles from the Greek capital. Talk about killing two birds with one stone.

A lot has been written & said about the ticket allocation. Yes, it is unfair, insufficient & arbitrary (one of my friends got his ticket from a contact who works for one of UEFA's sponsors), but it has always been the case with major football finals. I know from personal experience when I was part of the great scramble for the treasured items during the 70s & 80s.

It's something of a cliche to mock judges as remote, aloof & out-of-touch figures, but they don't do themselves any favours with their occasional questions. One judge in the 1960s was quoted as asking in all ignorance, "Who are the Beatles?". Here's the latest in the long line of memorable questions: .

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