***I DON’T HAVE FIFA’S PRIOR WRITTEN CONSENT TO USE, TALK, THINK OR EVEN YELL AT RANDOS FROM MY BALCONY ABOUT ANY NAMES, COUNTRIES OR EVENTS MENTIONED IN MY FIFA WORLD CUP QATAR 2022 COVERAGE, SO FOR COPYRIGHT REASONS FROM HERE ON IN, THE EVENT WILL BE REFERRED TO AS QLAMQTAR 2022.***
The Qlamqtar 2022 World Cup is under a single moon away (depending on your own set of lunar circumstances) and the first ever World Cup held in the Arab world promises to be a real doozy. World Cup history is a tale resplendent with stories of triumph against the odds, childhood dreams coming true and unsung heroes becoming legends. As well as dumb idiot losers, wanker fuck ups and teams that are just total bullshit.
But how shall ye learn about these legends, losers and teams that are just total bullshit? Well look no further my wayward friend as I profile all 211 FIFA nations eligible for World Cup qualification. Today, I take a look at Colombia, which has qualified for the World Cup on six occasions.
Lethal in defence
Nickname: Los Cafeteros
FIFA Ranking: 17 (October 2022)
FIFA World Cup 2022 Qualification result: Failed to qualify, finishing sixth in South America zone (CONMEBOL)
The Colombian national team is killer in defence. In fact, its so lethal that it has a 100% kill rate of defenders who’ve scored own goals at the World Cup.
At the 1994 World Cup, Colombia came into the tournament as one of the favourites. A 5-0 defeat of Argentina in Buenos Aires in qualifying had its players, fans and pundits believing the trophy could be actually be coming back to Bogota. But a stunning loss to Romania in its opener rocked the team, bringing them crashing back to earth, with everything left to do to advance out of the group. Colombia’s second match, against the USA at the Rose Bowl, appeared to be the perfect opportunity to get back on track, but with the score locked at 0-0 in the 34th minute, Andres Escobar, went to intercept a US cross, and instead blocking the ball and preventing the cross, diverted the ball past his helpless goalkeeper and into the back of his own net. Bang.
Despite the eventual 2-1 loss, the game will always be remembered for how lethal Colombians can be about defending. Los Cafeteros would be eliminated from the tournament after its final group game against Switzerland, and then, after returning home to Colombia, just six days later, Escobar was gunned down in a Medellin car park.
While in 1994 the team was lethal in defence, the same can’t be said for its other trips to the World Cup. Reaching the competition six times, Colombia’s best effort came in 2014, when it got to the quarter finals, after defeating the previous edition’s third-place winners Uruguay in the round of 16 (below). However, despite often being one of the strongest teams in qualifying and winners of Copa America champions in 2001, Colombia’s lack of killer instinct on the field has lead to perennial underachievement on world football’s biggest stage.
One to watch: This song by Morat, the closest thing to Colombia being at the 2022 World Cup
Okay, so Colombia won’t be there at this World Cup in Qatar, but at least you can still watch and listen to this doozy of a football tune by Colombia’s own Morat:
Or this other football anthem:
Or this other (bit shitter) football anthem, from the 2018 World Cup (in which Colombia actually took part):
Or this beauty, which technically isn’t a football anthem, but still good:
Or, why not watch another Colombian during this World Cup, responsible for the ultimate football anthem and best World Cup song ever (well, definitely top two):
The Highpoint: Quarter finals, 2014 World Cup / Rene “El Loco” Higuita
But although a quarter final at the World Cup’s nothing to scoff at, it doesn’t get much higher than Rene Higuita. What was he on about? Here he is, doing all this crazy shit:
The creator of the scorpion kick, Higuita was a right nutter, regularly putting the ball at his feet and going on mazy goalie runs out of defence, like the one he did in a crucial World Cup qualifier against Israel in 1990 with the score locked at 0-0 in the second leg (attempting to get Colombia back to its first World Cup in 28 years) or the one against Cameroon at the 1990 World Cup which not only cost his side a goal but also lead to the team’s elimination. But then he also scored a shitton of goals (41 in his career) and also did this at Wembley:
Learn the lingo & speak like a local!
19 Nov 2022
COLOMBIA 🇨🇴 x 🇵🇾 PARAGUAY