With only two days remaining until the final, the World Cup Death Count stands at 63, almost as many people as have died worldwide of Avian Bird Flu.
Four people died in France during the celebrations that followed France's victories over Brazil and Portugal. An 18 year old Parisian reveler died after he fell off the top of a subway car he was riding. A 20 year old French woman from Lens died when her car crashed, as she leaned out the window in celebration. Another Frenchman was killed by police after he opened fire on a crowd of loud fans outside of Monaco who were celebrating France's win over Brazil. (This is the second case during this World Cup of someone firing bullets into a crowd of loud soccer fans - see Update One. And a man is feared drowned in Lyon after he jumped off a bridge into the River Saone with a group of friends. Meanwhile in Somalia, there has been a second case of Islamist fundamentalist gunmen firing into a cinema full of people watching the World Cup in contravention of Sharia law, killing two. See Update One for the first case. Chinadaily is reporting that eleven Chinese people have died of what is now being called "World Cup Syndrome," which consists of watching a match and keeling over and dying, usually of a heart attack. Since I had reported only nine Chinese deaths, this report will add two more to the count. China remains the nation with the most World Cup deaths, all the more strange since the Chinese team did not even qualify. But for all the deaths in China, at least one television set has survived the mayhem.
But the Chinese don't have a monopoly on World Cup Myocardial Infarctions by any stretch of the imagination. In Bangladesh, an Argentinian fan died of a heart attack after his team lost. Likewise, in Malaysia, a heart attack claimed the life of a man who was watching the Argentina-Mexico match.
Good old fashioned hooliganism has not completely disappeared from the World Cup scene, the efforts of German and British police notwithstanding. In Kenya, a fan of Brazil was savagely attacked and beaten to death by two supporters of France after the French victory over Brazil in the Quarter Finals. In Lagos, Nigeria, a man was shot to death by two bandits who had just raided a cyber cafe which was crowded with people watching the World Cup during a local power outage. And finally, the carnage ends, for now, with the first bona fide World Cup Death in the UK, where an eighteen year old man was stabbed following England's defeat.
At least no one has died from the fake soccer balls of death. Yet.
If you missed People Like Us' fantabulous football chant remix show, you can stream the archive in Realaudio here, or you can stream it as an MP3 archive here, or you can download the MP3 here. It's big though - over 65 megs.
In an effort to improve their player's performance and also to track their every movement, players of England's Manchester United Soccer Club may have microchips implanted under their skin.
The fascination with World Cup violence has spawned a new e-mail virus which uses such subject lines as "Soccer Fans Killed Five Teens" to trick people into clicking on the infected attachment.
Thanks to John from Oslo, Amanda and Tommy for news and links.