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from Photographers' Blog:

Faces of football

By Kacper Pempel

Three weeks of the Euro 2012 adventure are already behind us. Three weeks of hard work, meeting thousands of people, driving thousands of miles and shooting thousands of pictures.

As a photographer based in Poland, I was assigned to cover not only matches but also news stories in Polish cities like Wroclaw, Poznan and Gdansk. So I had a chance to meet people from many different parts of Europe who made the journey here for the soccer fiesta. They were genuine football lovers and real soccer fans.

Fans with their faces painted in nationla colours

The Irish fans made the most remarkable impression. The party they threw for all three of their games was incredible and they showed they know how to have fun even when their team is losing. They transformed the Old Market in Poznan into a “green island”, singing and cheering their national team before and after matches and through the night. After a couple of hours sleep they would be back again to kick off the next day’s festivities.

Every Poznan citizen I spoke to - taxi drivers, waiters - said they had been surprised how nice the Irish were and they wouldn’t forget the example they set of how you should behave as a soccer fan on the road.

from Photographers' Blog:

Russia’s hooligans

By Maxim Shemetov

Photographing a soccer match for the first time, I realized that shooting the fans can be more interesting than covering the game itself.

We all keep up with the destinies of football clubs and the careers of soccer players. There are many parts to soccer life, however, that rarely appear on TV and on the front pages of newspapers. It's the life of people absorbed by the game - those inspiring exciting games, TV translations, as well as the construction of new stadiums.

from Photographers' Blog:

Saving the Canon 400mm f2.8

By Murad Sezer

All photographers make plans to deal with possible clashes. They are ready to protect themselves and their equipment when covering a potential riot (or a May Day demonstration as I did a few days earlier). But you don’t expect to be doing that before a soccer match, or any other sports events.

While covering the May Day protests I don't carry a camera bag or a laptop. I head out with my two camera bodies, spare memory cards, a gas mask and a wireless lan transmitter attached to the camera body to file my pictures - that’s all.. It's more comfortable and easy to cover if any riots break out. But to cover a soccer match is a different story. If it's a cup final or a decisive match like last Saturday's Fenerbahce - Galatasaray Turkish Super League Super Final, we bring along much more equipment. I pack a hardcase with a laptop, 3 camera bodies, four lenses including a 400 mm f2.8 super telephoto, remote control devices to set up a camera behind the goal, network cables, a mini tripod etc. And usually we don't even think about the safety of ourselves or our equipment. Normally during half time or at the end of the game we set our cameras down and rush to file pictures from the field or in the photographers’ working room.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

No, wait! I wanted the FUN seats!

Blog Guy, I'm a faithful reader of your blog and I'm hoping you can use your influence to get me tickets to the Copa America soccer matches now underway in Argentina.

Is there any chance you can get me in Paraguay's section?

I guess I could pull a few strings. Let's see, looks like I can put you in Peru's section, in some really fine seats.

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Soccer Break Monday

SOCCER-FRIENDLY/Welcome back to another week of digesting the global game, and where better to start than with a look at the Lionel Messi effect on the sport.

The wizard-like Argentine is a joy to watch and by playing in countries such as the United States, where soccer is not the main sport, he can only have increased enthusiasm for the round ball game.

from The Great Debate (India):

India v Pakistan: Who will win?

Nothing gets bigger in this part of the globe than a cricket match featuring India and Pakistan. The rivalry would be renewed in Wednesday's World Cup semi-final in Mohali in Punjab.

Fans of India pose ahead of the cricket World Cup 2011 quarter-final match between India and Australia in Ahmedabad March 24, 2011. REUTERS/Amit Dave/FilesPrime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Yusuf Raza Gilani will watch the match in what is billed as "cricket diplomacy".

from Reuters Soccer Blog:

Marvellous Marseille fans keep singing through the pain

SOCCER-CHAMPIONS/I had been told the Stade Velodrome had a great atmosphere and after the constant noise the Marseille fans made in Wednesday's 0-0 Champions league draw with Manchester United, I have one question -- what would it be like if the stands had roofs?

Despite the dire match, the supporters at either side of the ground never stopped chanting and banging drums for a second. If the Velodrome wasn't open to the elements I can only imagine that the noise would be even louder and give the home side an even bigger advantage.

from Entrepreneurial:

What does 10 million Facebook fans mean?

Bryant Simon is a professor of American history and culture at Temple University and the author of "Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks." The views expressed here are his own.

Last week, the Harvard Business Review published a long interview with Howard Schultz. The Starbucks CEO talked about the coffee company’s many moves to win back customers and battle against the ill winds of the recession.

from Our Take on Your Take:

The difference between winning and losing

Netherlands fans react as they watch the 2010 World Cup final between the Netherlands and Spain on a large screen TV on the streets of the Netherlands July 11, 2010. Your View/Niels de Vries

Spanish supporters flood the streets of Toronto on July 11, 2010, shutting down traffic as they celebrate Spain's win over the Netherlands in the World Cup final. Your View/Susan Kordalewski

Last Sunday's World Cup final between the Netherlands and Spain galvanized fans on either side. Your View contributors Niels de Vries (top) and Susan Kordalewski captured their very different emotions at the outcome.

View this week's Your View showcase here.

from The Great Debate (India):

COLUMN – Karun Chandhok: Flat out off track

Karun ChandhokThe British Grand Prix weekend has always been one of my favourites. Ever since I raced here in the GP support race in Formula 3, it's always been a weekend I've looked forward to -- great crowd, great circuit, fantastic atmosphere and I get to stay in my own bed.

But being my adopted home race makes it a really busy weekend for me off track. The weekend really started on Wednesday itself this time. I promised the catering guys and also some of the guys in the team that I would bring them real home-cooked curry for lunch when they came to England and on Wednesday I did just that.

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