[BEST OF THE WORLD CUP] Death threats downplayed, profane insults, gentle jibes, and plain silliness are included in our selection of memorable quotes from the 2010 World Cup. ...
Hoping that’s true
"In our language, 'I'll kill you' means 'I'm not happy with you.'”
-- Nigeria national team spokesman Idah Peterside down plays more than a thousand death threats e-mailed to midfielder Sani Kaita, who was red-carded in Nigeria’s loss to Greece.
Long live Octopus Paul!
"I am concerned for the octopus. I am thinking of sending him a protective team."
-- Spain Prime Minister Jose Luiz Rodriguez Zapatero, after Paul the Octopus received death threats from German fans – mainly in the form of Octopus recipes posted on line – after correctly picking Spain the semifinal winner.
That bad, was it?
"Never in the field of World Cup conflict has so little been offered by so few to so many (with apologies to Winston Churchill)."
-- Headline in British tabloid The Sun after England's scoreless tie with Algeria.
“We want to beat Argentina now so we can finally say we’ve beaten a big team.”
-- Germany captain Philipp Lahm gets in the last word after his team beat England in the hyped-up clash to set up a quarterfinal with the Argentines.
There was no stopping them
"It seems like the bad publicity has been good for us. We're completely sold out. Every time we manufacture more, the next morning by 9:00 we're sold out."
-- Vuvezela salesman Brandon Bernado.
And Coach got mad about that?
“Go f*** yourself, you dirty son of a whore."
-- What Nicolas Anelka said, according to L’Equipe, to France coach Raymond Domenech, who threw the striker off the team, which ignited a players’ revolt.
Pardon my French
“This situation is catastrophic – we’re in the s***.”
-- Gervais Martel, president of French club Lens and vice president of the French soccer federation, reacts to the turmoil in Les Blues’ camp.
Hi dear, and by the way …
"How did you manage to muck that up?"
-- Spanish reporter Sara Carbonero’s question to Spain goalkeeper Iker Casillas on live TV after losing to Switzerland. Carbonero is also Casillas' girlfriend.
And we thought it’s only a game
“Azzurri, the mirror of a country, a country without memory, without identity, without an idea of the future.”
-- Italian newspaper Il Fatto Quotidiano reads a lot into Italy’s performance – four years after Italy won the World Cup.
Looking on the bright side
“We wanted to avoid Holland in the last 16 – and we did.”
-- Luciano Moggi, the former Juventus general director, after the defending world champion Italy exited in the first round.
Is that so?
“When Diaby opens his legs, he's quite a handful.”
-- Craig Burley enlightens ITV's English audience on French midfielder Abou Diaby, as reported by The Independent’s Phil Shaw.
"Well done, South Africa! Did you realize how enthusiastic we can be? Did you realize how our security and safety improved this month? Road accidents, criminals, everything dropped. We even had those courts able to solve issues in record time. We can make it. Yes, we can!"
-- South Africa President Jacob Zuma.