FanDuel - WFBC

July 28, 2006

Rafa's men won't go to Israel: Rafael Benitez has stated that Liverpool will not go to Haifa to play Israeli champion, Maccabi, in the first round of the Champions League. Resembles the same situation that Juventus faced in 1998 in going to Turkey to play Galatasaray after Italy refused to extradite Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan.

posted by pholcomb to soccer at 11:51 AM - 6 comments

While security is broadly the concern in each case, I think the Liverpool situation is somewhat different, as Israel is currently involved in a war in which the city proposed for the game is under attack. In the case of Juve, they were afraid of reprisals from the general public (as opposed to an outside fighting force) in Turkey because Italy at the time was weighing the extradition of Ocalan. I think Liverpool have a much better case for staying away than Juve did.

posted by holden at 12:51 PM on July 28

This seems to be a total no-brainer.

posted by sic at 12:55 PM on July 28

There is no chance whatsoever that Liverpool will have to play in Israel. The game will be moved out of the danger zone. Benitez protesting about it is merely part of the etiquette of these events. First they complain, then UEFA shift the game to a neutral venue outside of the area. I would stake my house on it.

posted by squealy at 01:00 PM on July 28

"Rafael Benitez has stated that Liverpool will not go to Haifa to play Israeli champion, Maccabi, in the first round of the Champions League". Erm, no he hasnt? "Should not go", I would have given you.

posted by walrus at 08:56 PM on July 28

I'm with squealy and sic. European footballers (and their owners and managers) love to use the media in a similar way to the Congress in the States. It's a lot of posturing and posing and in this case, co-opting the patently obvious to appear strong.

posted by lawn_wrangler at 08:38 AM on July 29

Night follows day.

posted by squealy at 06:21 PM on August 07

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