VVSB amateur against professional football, women’s football update


This 1 March 2016 Dutch video is about the small town Noordwijkerhout wishing its football club VVSB success in the Dutch cup semifinals.

Tonight, the amateur football players of VVSB in small town Noordwijkerhout play against premier league professionals FC Utrecht, in the Utrecht stadium.

At half time now, still no goals by anyone.

Two thousand VVSB supporters went by bus to Utrecht. Oner of the VVSB players had forgotten his football shoes. So, a policeman on a motorbike brought them to the stadium.

Also tonight, the Dutch women’s football team won 4 against 3 goals against the Swiss team. In a match which is part of qualifying for the Olympic football competition in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil.

Dutch amateur VVSB footballers in cup semifinal tonight


This 1 March 2016 music video is from the Dutch small town Noordwijkerhout. The song was written especially by local pub owner Pieter van der Geest, for local amateur football club VVSB; which will play tonight in Utrecht city against premier league professionals FC Utrecht, in the semifinals of the Dutch football cup.

The song is called Ga met de Bavo mee; Go with Bavo. The full name of VVSB is Football Club Saint Bavo, as the club was originally founded by workers of local Saint Bavo psychiatric hospital in 1931.

VVSB got so far in the Dutch cup competition, very rare for amateur footballers, by beating another professional club, FC Den Bosch.

Dutch NOS TV reports today that journalists from foreign countries have gone to Noordwijkerhout to watch VVSB train. Including from the USA, Spain and the Italian La Gazetta Dello Sport.

This video shows how on 6 February 2016 the Noordwijkerhout carnival society celebrated the victory of VVSB against FC Den Bosch.

The local confectioner’s sells cakes in yellow and purple, the VVSB colours.

VVSB gloves

There are also 200 purple and yellow gloves for fans to wear at the match in the stadium tonight.

Bahrain torture and football news


This 2014 video is called ‘People were tortured in front of my eyes’: Bahrain top human rights activist Nabeel Rajab released.

From the New York Times in the USA:

Shadow of Human Rights Abuse Follows Contender in FIFA Vote

By REBECCA R. RUIZ

FEB. 24, 2016

ZURICH — Nothing has rocked international soccer quite like the waves of arrests made across several continents last year as the United States announced bribery and corruption charges against the men running the sport, the world’s biggest and richest. But as the organization that governs global soccer gathers this week to choose a new president, a leading contender risks stirring up another source of controversy for the sport: human rights.

With the election set to be held here on Friday, Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim al-Khalifa, a member of the ruling family of Bahrain and the president of the governing body for soccer in Asia, might already have the support of a commanding number of voting countries, making him one of the favorites, with Gianni Infantino, to replace Sepp Blatter as president of FIFA.

Critics have seized on one aspect of Sheikh Salman’s background that remains unclear: They want FIFA to investigate whether he had any connection to the jailing and torture of Bahraini athletes who peacefully protested his family’s rule in 2011 during the Arab Spring.

Sheikh Salman ‘knew about player beatings’, says ex-Bahrain international: here.

FIFA presidential hopeful Prince Ali bin al-Hussein has been reprimanded for raising questions about his Bahraini rival’s human rights record. Despite presenting himself as untainted by Fifa’s dodgy dealings due to only arriving at the top table recently, Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim al-Khalifa has been accused of dobbing in athletes who were involved in pro-democracy protests in Bahrain in 2011: here.

Shaikh Salman’s own goal cost him the top job at FIFA: here.

Bahrain Finds Opposition Leader Guilty of Opposition: here.

Repression continues in Bahrain in an increasingly tense regional environment: here.

Turkish president persecutes famous footballer Hakan Sükür


This football video from Turkey is called Hakan Şükür – The King – 100 Goals.

Unfortunately, it looks like President Erdogan of Turkey, after emulating first Tony Blair, later Adolf Hitler, is now emulating the royal family of Bahrain, who persecute and torture football players and other sports people.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Turkish football legend Hakan Şükür indicted

Today, 16:56

The Turkish football legend Hakan Şükür has been indicted for insulting President Erdogan and his son on Twitter. What those insults are is not known. According to correspondent Lucas Waagmeester that will not be apparent soon. “Turkish media probably won’t report on this because of fear that they themselves may be indicted for insulting the president.”

Sukur (44) and Erdogan have been at odds with another for several years. Şükür was from 2011 to 2013 a member of parliament for Erdogan’s AK Party. But in 2013 he left the party after Erdogan accused the influential cleric Fethullah Gulen residing in the United States of conspiring against Turkey. …

Şükür denies that the insulting words on Twitter were addressed to Erdogan and his son. When the trial against him will begin is not known. He may get a prison sentence of four years.

Fastest goal

Hakan Şükür was one of the most successful footballers from Turkey. He played from 1987 to 2007, including at Galatasaray. The ‘Bull of the Bosphorus’, as is his nickname, is a national hero in Turkey. He was there in 2002, with Turkey third in the World Cup in South Korea. He scored the fastest ever goal in a World Cup, after eleven seconds against South Korea, trained by Guus Hiddink, in the battle for third place.

Bahrain, football, torture and Britain


This video says about itself:

E:60 – Taken / Athletes of Bahrain

8 November 2011

Produced by Yaron Deskalo of ESPN. Filmed and Edited by Evolve Digital Cinema.

What if a country’s biggest athlete, a legend, a hero, a player who brought the nation some of its biggest sporting moments, was at practice one day and was suddenly taken into custody by masked men? What if he was held for months, tortured, his career ended, banned from his team and for playing for his country, all because he expressed his political views? It’s not a storyline from a Hollywood script — that is what allegedly happened in Bahrain.

Specifically, it’s what Alaa Hubail says happened to him. Hubail is the most famous soccer player in Bahrain and says similar treatment was forced on his brother, Mohammad, also a member of Bahrain’s national soccer team; and to Anwar Al-Makki, Bahrain’s internationally ranked table-tennis champion. In a story largely ignored by the Western world, these athletes describe in detail the horrific torture they endured at the hands of their government — a government that is allied with the United States despite allegations of human rights abuses against pro-democracy protestors. E:60 goes to the Middle East for the first time to investigate how athletes were caught up in the clash of democracy, freedom, repression and politics. Jeremy Schaap reports.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Dyke Slams Bahrain’s Blood-soaked Prince

Tuesday 16th February 2016

Khalifa’s involvement in crackdown on protests makes FA chief uneasy

by Our Sports Desk

FOOTBALL Association chief Greg Dyke called on Fifa presidential candidate Sheikh Salman bin Ibrahim al-Khalifa yesterday to confess to his role in Bahrain’s crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations in the Gulf kingdom.

“No-one denies that there were violations of human rights involving sportsmen and footballers that went on four years ago — no-one denies that. The denial is over whether or not he was involved,” Dyke said.

“The question is, does it matter whether or not he was involved, or is it the fact, can you have someone from Bahrain running world football, in charge of world football, given what happened there four years ago? I personally have my doubts.”

Khalifa, currently head of the Asian Football Confederation, is a member of the despotism’s ruling family and has been accused of dobbing in athletes who took part in the demonstrations which began five years ago this month.

At the time Khalifa was the president of the Bahraini FA.

The popular protests were brutally suppressed by troops from Bahrain and also Saudi Arabia, both armed with British-made vehicles and equipment. Dozens were killed and many more arrested and tortured.

Britain has a long history with the Gulf state, with it being a British client state from the early 1800s. Since it declared independence in 1971 Britain has continued to prop up its blood-soaked rulers, including by flogging them vast quantities of arms.

Tory MP Damian Collins backed up Dyke’s comments, accusing Khalifa of “not being straight with what he knew” about jailing and abuse of activists.

“He clearly did nothing to stand up for and protect the sportspeople and he doesn’t want to discuss it.”

Collins was one of the organisers of a “New Fifa Now” debate in Brussels last month, which Khalifa ducked out of — insisting he has no “skeletons in the closet.”

The debate descended into farce when only one candidate, Jerome Champagne, showed up.

While Collins has openly criticised Khalifa for his alleged human rights abuse, Tory PM David Cameron has been pushing deals with Bahrain.

As well as arms sales, Britain signed a major defence pact in 2012, continues to train Bahraini troops, invited another prince involved in putting down the demonstrations to the London Olympics, and Bahrain’s King Hamad attended Queen Elizabeth Windsor’s diamond jubilee dinner.

Britain is set to open a naval base in Bahrain later this year.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International said that matters were getting worse in the country.

“Five years since the uprising, torture, arbitrary detention and a widespread crackdown against peaceful activists and government critics have continued,” said Amnesty’s James Lynch.

“Today in Bahrain, anyone who dares to criticise the authorities — whether a human rights defender or political activist — risks punishment.

“Institutions set up to protect human rights have not only failed to independently investigate or hold perpetrators to account, but now increasingly appear to be used to whitewash continuing abuses.”

Fifa presidency: Greg Dyke casts doubt on Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al-Khalifa replacing Sepp Blatter: here.

FA chairman Greg Dyke has doubts about Sheikh Salman’s Fifa candidacy: here.

Sheik Salman’s man in dirty-tricks gaffe after he wrongly accuses Prince Ali of hiring former Israeli footballer: here.

BANNED Uefa ex-president Michel Platini painted himself as a martyr yesterday, insisting he was appealing against his eight-year sanction in order to fight “against injustice.” Platini got the boot from football in December for a “disloyal payment” of £1.3 million to him from disgraced Fifa ex-president Sepp Blatter in 2011: here.

Bahrain, absolute monarchy and football update


This video says about itself:

No End to Torture in Bahrain

22 November 2015

Bahraini security forces are torturing detainees during interrogation. Institutions set up after 2011 to receive and investigate complaints lack independence and transparency.

Human Rights Watch has concluded that security forces have continued the same abuses the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry (BICI) documented in its November 2011 report. The commission was established after the fierce repression of pro-democracy demonstrators in February and March of that year. Bahraini authorities have failed to implement effectively the commission’s recommendations relating to torture, Human Rights Watch found.

Bahrain rights group files complaint over Sheikh Salman FIFA bid. Group says head of Bahrain’s football association violated human rights in his capacity and should not be eligible to lead FIFA: here.

Bahrain group bids to block Sheikh Salman landing FIFA presidency. Sheikh Salman’s candidacy for the FIFA presidency is the subject of a legal complaint by a pro-democracy group from Bahrain: here.

FIFA presidential candidate Prince Ali has questioned the role of election rival Sheikh Salman in not protecting Bahrain players who alleged abuses after pro-democracy protests in 2011. In the strongest statement yet on human rights ahead of the Feb. 26 election to succeed Sepp Blatter, the Jordanian prince dismissed the sheikh’s consistent defense that national security issues are beyond the control of sports leaders: here. See also here.

Sheikh Salman’s desire to bypass the democratic process does not bode well for his potential FIFA presidency: here.

Five Years After Failed Uprisings for Democratic Reform, New Blueprint Recommends United States Change Course in Bahrain: here.

Bahrain: hopes for justice and reform fading five years since 2011 uprising: here.

7 stories of shocking injustice: Bahrain after the ‘Arab Spring’: here.

Bahrain’s Prisons are Overcrowded with Prisoners of Conscience: here.

IPI urges Bahrain to lift travel ban on Nabeel Rajab. Prominent human rights activist faces continued judicial harassment: here.