Saturday, November 20, 2010

Portugal Toast Spain, and Reclaim Iberia

photo by das farbamtvia PhotoRee

farlieonfootie is happy to introduce our newest football correspondent, Todd.  Fresh off a weekend in Ibiza with his supermodel girlfriends, Todd recently took the time to check in with a compelling description of Portugal's 4-nil rout of arch rival Spain:

Estadio Dr. Magalhaes Pessoa / Leira, Portugal / November 17

While it may have been Spain's worst defeat since 1963, the Portuguese have been reeling  ever since Pope Alexander IV’s Line of Demarcation (codified in the Treaty of Torsedillas) divided the world between Spain and Portugal more than 500 years ago. For you conspiracy theorists, Alexander IV was himself a Spaniard.  

Oh, and more recently, the Portuguese played the blandest of matches against Spain in South Africa, and were handed a well-deserved elimination for their efforts, complete with tickets to the Algarve to ponder yet another disappointing exit from the world stage. 

On this night, though, the Portuguese avenged those set-backs with, well, a vengeance.  Four goals from four elegant passing combinations, combined with a dash of super-human wizardry from Ronaldo (called back due to an unfortunate offside position by Nani), sent Spanish players back to their villas where their supermodel girlfriends canceled bottle-room reservations at nightclubs in Barcelona and instead ordered take-out tapas.  

Surprisingly, Portugal's goals came from four not-Ronaldos – Martins, Postiga (2), and Almedia.  These bursts of fast, creative football, and exclamation point finishes sent the Portuguese fans into euphoric chants of support.

According to Bloomberg, following the unexpected victory Portuguese sovereign debt spreads to German bunds compressed by 56 basis points (that’s 0.56% for those of you not versed in financial wizardry).  Turning to the math, Portugal has some 10.6mn inhabitants; if each man, woman, and child celebrated the Portuguese victory with an extra  plate of bacalhau washed down with  vinho verde (assuming a €20 tab), Portuguese GDP popped by approximately €212 million in one night, excluding so-called multiplier effects and the surge in demand for BabyGap clothes nine months hence.  

Once briefed, the finance ministers of Greece, Ireland, and Italy sent text messages to Spanish coach del Bosque requesting friendlies against Spain…and soon!  

Meanwhile, the Spaniards are hoping that the contagion risk of World-Cup-Champions-losing-to-lesser-teams is contained.

This is Todd reporting for farlieonfootie for November 21.

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