Italian strategy backfires & "the wheels on the bus go round & round"

Sometimes the world of soccer brings to us stories that, well…you just can’t make this stuff up.

So, for your Monday afternoon enjoyment, read on…

ROME (AP) ” In the latest fashion statement out of Italy, soccer players are dropping their shorts to score goals.
Catania, a team in the country’s top division, unveiled the new look while taking a free kick. The players lined up in a wall and dropped their shorts in an effort to block the goalkeeper’s vision.
The Sicilian team carried out the maneuver to perfection Sunday. Three players dropped their shorts practically to their knees so Torino goalie Matteo Sereni couldn’t see the kick by Giuseppe Mascara, who scored during Catania’s 3-2 victory.
Catania is coached by Walter Zenga, a former goalkeper on Italy’s national team.
“This is a strategy that Zenga tries continually in training,” Pietro Lo Monaco, the club’s chief executive, told RAI state radio Monday.
Former referees coordinator Paolo Casarin called the move “unsportsmanlike and in bad taste.”
“It’s a trick that should not be tolerated anymore by the referees,” he said.
Lo Monaco replied: “A trick? I wouldn’t say so. It’s up to the referee to decide if it should be penalized, otherwise I don’t see where the problem is. … Good taste is relative.”


BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) ” Sixty fans of Argentina’s River Plate soccer team were being held by police Monday after hijacking a bus and demanding the driver to go faster so they could get to the game on time. It was the second soccer-related bus hijacking in less than a week.
More than 100 fans, including 25 minors, were arrested Sunday afternoon after seizing a city bus in hopes of making the start of the game against Independiente in Avellaneda, a town on the Buenos Aires outskirts. Fifty-three fans were released from custody Sunday night, police said.
The fans also robbed two small shops in downtown Buenos Aires before getting on the bus, police said. The fans missed the game, which River Plate won 1-0.
Last week, fans of the Argentine second-division team Chacarita hijacked two buses and forced the drivers at knifepoint to speed to the game. Police also said they robbed several passengers.
Sixty-three men and three women were arrested and charged, with most released from custody, police said.
Chacarita beat Talleres 3-2 in San Martin, outside Buenos Aires.
Again, the hijackers missed the game.