The Game Changed in Venezuela Last Night – and the International Media Is Asleep At the Switch

Caracas Chronicles

San Cristobal ayer San Cristobal on Tuesday night

Dear International Editor:

Listen and understand. The game changed in Venezuela last night. What had been a slow-motion unravelling that had stretched out over many years went kinetic all of a sudden.

What we have this morning is no longer the Venezuela story you thought you understood.

Throughout last night, panicked people told their stories of state-sponsored paramilitaries on motorcycles roaming middle class neighborhoods, shooting at people and  storming into apartment buildings, shooting at anyone who seemed like he might be protesting. People continue to be arrested merely for protesting, and a long established local Human Rights NGO makes an urgent plea for an investigation into widespread reports of torture of detainees. There are now dozens of serious human right abuses: National Guardsmen shooting tear gas canisters directly into residential buildings. We have videos of soldiers shooting civilians on the street. And that’s just…

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Proving People Wrong; The Art of Getting One Over Your Opponent

So, to my first post about football, more specifically Man City v Chelsea, 3rd of February 2014.

In the run up to this game, to most people, it seemed to be about not who would win but how many will Man City put past the Royal Blue Bus. Talk in the media was all about Jose’s comments after the West Ham game about them playing ’19th century football’ and how he would no doubt be contradicting himself by playing the same style of football, less than a week later at the Etihad Stadium. How wrong they were.

Yes, when it comes to the build up to games, managers and players a like do not reveal much about their plans and tactics, so not to give themselves away but in the build up to this game even though Jose and the players had not revealed what in general their tactics would be; the media believed that they had second guessed ‘The Happy One’ – he WAS going to park the bus.

Because of this, it created a certain sense of nothing to lose between us Chelsea fans. It seemed to help create an underdog atmosphere that we have very rarely had the pleasure of enjoying in the past few years, apart from the obvious heroics towards the latter end of the 2012 Champions League campaign.

Within the first 10-15 minutes of the game, a large minority of Man City fans were focusing their jeering towards Petr Cech for time-wasting whilst taking goal kicks, surely they must have been having a laugh? After all, despite the media hype before the game, we did not go there to park the bus, we went there to play football. This jeering and accusations of time wasting by a large minority of the Man City fans proved that they had been dragged into the media hype and were expecting nothing less than an up tempo, all out attack performance from City.

Reasonably early into the game the chants of ‘Jose Mourinho, your football is shite’ started to reverberate around the Etihad from the CIty fans, only to be followed up by our response of ‘Jose Mourinho, he’s won more than you’ which was more relevant and apt on the day than their initial attempt at a dig at ‘The Happy One’. The general atmosphere before the game was always going to make for a good atmosphere during the game, and in the away end we didn’t disappoint. The chaos that ensued after Ivanovics’ summed up the feelings of the majority of the Chelsea fans in that end, not only was it a celebration the goal on the night to put us 1-0 up, it was a big ‘fuck you’ to the media’s negativity, a big ‘fuck you’ the City fans with their time wasting jeers and a huge ‘fuckin’ get in there’ towards Jose’s tactics and attitude (or should I say, Billy the masseuses team talk?).

His knack for getting the best out of the players, the players personal motivation, a back-line that cost less than what City paid for Jolean Lescott, a top away following, two stand out players in Cahill and Hazard and an edge of the box strike from your right back is all you need in this case to ‘get one over your opponent’.

Football does funny things to people who go, your normal mild mannered person can turn into a hot headed individual but it can also unite every single person that is stood in that end with you, on this occasion it was a happy ending for us but not for the opposition; the team overcame what was dubbed an impossible challenge, they helped create and give you a story to tell.