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Miss Anne Thrope Jan 5th 2013 7:36 pm

Gulf Cup
 
Well the biennial home nations football tournament of our region is underway in Bahrain. It's been a fairly low key build-up this time I think, at least here in the UAE where the typically compliant English-language media seem to have gone along with the requests of the local FA and avoided, for once, over-hyping the young national team. They've just finished dishing it out to Qatar in what the English pundits would undoubtedly describe as a "pulsating encounter", 3-1 to "our boys" though it was end-to-end and riddled with mistakes (as usual) and it could have been about 10-5.

The opener earlier between Oman and the host team was a disappointing bore draw, Oman (sans the Wigan-imprisoned Al Habsi) characteristically failing to live up to their potential (well any team that gets comfortably beaten by the current RoI wasters is probably prone to disappoint). The skill level overall is a bit less than a typical UFL game, the difference 2 or 3 Brazilians per team makes I suppose...

The opening ceremony was a charming mix of slightly bumbling local efforts around the periphery of a standard international "event choreography". I thought it might get interesting when the camera picked out a guy in the crowd wearing a "V for Vendetta" mask but I guess it did not have any political significance as he was still there later on. Any Bahrain-based BEers aware of any trouble?

Anyway, I'm rather fond of our little regional tournament, something genuinely local and also very accessible for ex-pats who are bothered so I'm glad it's come around again.

mentalist Jan 6th 2013 3:23 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Miss Anne Thrope (Post 10465902)
Well the biennial home nations football tournament of our region is underway in Bahrain. It's been a fairly low key build-up this time I think, at least here in the UAE where the typically compliant English-language media seem to have gone along with the requests of the local FA and avoided, for once, over-hyping the young national team. They've just finished dishing it out to Qatar in what the English pundits would undoubtedly describe as a "pulsating encounter", 3-1 to "our boys" though it was end-to-end and riddled with mistakes (as usual) and it could have been about 10-5.

The opener earlier between Oman and the host team was a disappointing bore draw, Oman (sans the Wigan-imprisoned Al Habsi) characteristically failing to live up to their potential (well any team that gets comfortably beaten by the current RoI wasters is probably prone to disappoint). The skill level overall is a bit less than a typical UFL game, the difference 2 or 3 Brazilians per team makes I suppose...

The opening ceremony was a charming mix of slightly bumbling local efforts around the periphery of a standard international "event choreography". I thought it might get interesting when the camera picked out a guy in the crowd wearing a "V for Vendetta" mask but I guess it did not have any political significance as he was still there later on. Any Bahrain-based BEers aware of any trouble?

Anyway, I'm rather fond of our little regional tournament, something genuinely local and also very accessible for ex-pats who are bothered so I'm glad it's come around again.

Are you for real?

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 6th 2013 3:35 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by mentalist (Post 10466357)
Are you for real?

No. I made it all up. Now, as I think Patsy said elsewhere, off is the direction in which I want you to f**k.

Scamp Jan 6th 2013 3:42 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Miss Anne Thrope (Post 10466362)
No. I made it all up. Now, as I think Patsy said elsewhere, off is the direction in which I want you to f**k.

Fingers crossed eh.

I'd love to see some of this stuff. Was meant to go to Muscat in November for a WC Quali match, ended up being too busy and too skint.

Aside from the Gulf Cup I'm keen to go and watch some local footie, without trawling the sites, can anyone suggest the team / stadium closest to Downtown?

Thanks

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 6th 2013 6:07 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Scamp (Post 10466373)
Fingers crossed eh.

I'd love to see some of this stuff. Was meant to go to Muscat in November for a WC Quali match, ended up being too busy and too skint.

Aside from the Gulf Cup I'm keen to go and watch some local footie, without trawling the sites, can anyone suggest the team / stadium closest to Downtown?

Thanks

Al Wasl, who play in Zabeel stadium is probably your best bet - though you have missed the Maradona circus now.
Also Al Nasr, play in Maktoum stadium not far away from Wasl, across the highway from Wafi.

Scamp Jan 6th 2013 6:12 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Miss Anne Thrope (Post 10466512)
Al Wasl, who play in Zabeel stadium is probably your best bet - though you have missed the Maradona circus now.
Also Al Nasr, play in Maktoum stadium not far away from Wasl, across the highway from Wafi.

Zabeel stadium. Interesting, will hunt down.

Now to hunt down ticket info etc.

Bahtatboy Jan 6th 2013 6:15 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Scamp (Post 10466514)
Zabeel stadium. Interesting, will hunt down.

Now to hunt down ticket info etc.

If its like Abu Dhabi its free.

Scamp Jan 6th 2013 6:22 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Bahtatboy (Post 10466519)
If its like Abu Dhabi its free.

Sweet. The terrible website offers minimal help.

Something to tick off the list of shit I think I should do whilst I'm here.

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 6th 2013 6:24 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Bahtatboy (Post 10466519)
If its like Abu Dhabi its free.

Depends on the match. Local rivalries here are just as fierce as anywhere and there is an inevitable political/tribal dimension and which Shaikh owns which team and whatnot. My favourite is the slagging of Al Ain (sort of the Liverpool of the UFL - previously dominant but struggling now to recapture past glories). Since their sponsorship by KFC, opposing fans turn up brandishing family buckets and chanting about Kentucky..

Anyway, in my limited experience, tickets are usually available for sale but then often not actually required to get into the ground. Also expat ticket prices (and seating) are often different to local so send a local friend to buy them if you can. Best idea is just to turn up on the night and see what happens (traffic and parking will be a bigger hassle than tickets anyway). Stadiums are rarely more than a fifth full. Local supporters can sometimes be great to watch - drumming, dancing, singing, all dressed in white but with some accent of the team colours - can be quite a spectacle.

Scamp Jan 6th 2013 6:32 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Miss Anne Thrope (Post 10466526)
Depends on the match. Local rivalries here are just as fierce as anywhere and there is an inevitable political/tribal dimension and which Shaikh owns which team and whatnot. My favourite is the slagging of Al Ain (sort of the Liverpool of the UFL - previously dominant but struggling now to recapture past glories). Since their sponsorship by KFC, opposing fans turn up brandishing family buckets and chanting about Kentucky..

Anyway, in my limited experience, tickets are usually available for sale but then often not actually required to get into the ground. Also expat ticket prices (and seating) are often different to local so send a local friend to buy them if you can. Best idea is just to turn up on the night and see what happens (traffic and parking will be a bigger hassle than tickets anyway). Stadiums are rarely more than a fifth full. Local supporters can sometimes be great to watch - drumming, dancing, singing, all dressed in white but with some accent of the team colours - can be quite a spectacle.

Thanks, useful information. No local friends so might just head down one night and see what the crack is.

Women - unwelcome?

britexpat76 Jan 6th 2013 6:33 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 
If you want to watch Arabic football just watch an average under 12's game as the standard is very similar.

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 6th 2013 12:49 pm

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by britexpat76 (Post 10466530)
If you want to watch Arabic football just watch an average under 12's game as the standard is very similar.

It's actually Arab football (only the food and the language are Arabic) but you're not that far wrong otherwise - similar level of temperament control also. But that Brazilian Grafite plays for Al Wasl and he's pretty handy.. Not to forget Asamoah Gyan at Al Ain.

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 6th 2013 12:51 pm

Re: Gulf Cup
 

Originally Posted by Scamp (Post 10466529)
Thanks, useful information. No local friends so might just head down one night and see what the crack is.

Women - unwelcome?

The usual - foreign women are fine (honorary men ;)); the occasional local women in attendance sit together from what I've seen, whether voluntarily or not is not entirely clear.

flares Jan 6th 2013 1:28 pm

Re: Gulf Cup
 
Me and my eldest sat in with our Saudi brehtren when Al Ittihad played in Abu Dhabi v Al Wahda in the Asian Champs League last year. Lots of Saudi girls in the away end (well the sitting bit). Ittihad won 3-0

Miss Anne Thrope Jan 16th 2013 7:12 am

Re: Gulf Cup
 
http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-n...l-over-the-uae

A really tense and absorbing squeaker capped by a last-minute piece of skill from the inevitable Ahmed Khalil. Into the final with 100% record and still nobody interested...ah well...


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