Retailers celebrate profits despite World Cup defeat
26 June 2006, AMSTERDAM — Portugal ended Holland's World Cup dreams in a hard-fought match on Sunday.
26 June 2006
AMSTERDAM — Portugal ended Holland's World Cup dreams in a hard-fought match on Sunday.
An estimated 8 million people watched the match on television as Portugal hung on to its one goal lead despite playing with 10 men for much of the match. The Dutch had several chances to equalise but it wasn't their night.
Most commentators agreed, however, that the Dutch did not deserve to win. Newspaper 'De Volkskrant' called it "a bitter defeat in a mismatched duel"
The Russian referee Valentin Ivanov made enemies on all sides by issuing 16 yellow cards and four red cards during the physical encounter.
Sepp Blatter, President of soccer's world governing body FiFA, said Ivanov was clearly not up to the task. "I think there could have been a yellow card for the referee," Blatter told Portuguese television.
Dutch newspaper 'De Telegraaf' carried the headline 'Tranen na veldslag' (tears after pitched battle). Rotterdam-based daily 'AD' carried an image of yellow and red cards in a row to emphasise the point. The Portuguese press agreed the referee was incompetent.
The defeat sounded the death knell for World Cup enthusiasm among the Dutch. Many of the fans who have stood out in Germany for their good-mannered enthusiasm and bright orange attire began to filter home on Monday.
Shopkeepers back in the Netherlands moved quickly on Monday to place their World Cup-related items in bargain buckets. But not all retailers were despondent.
Joop Holla of research bureau GfK said that supermarkets still expect to make EUR 40 million more than normal for this time of year thanks to the World Cup. Initially the sector had hopes of earning EUR 50 million extra.
"Now all these 'Orange products' must get out of the supermarket as quickly as possible. This can be achieved very quickly," Holla said.
Food products bearing World Cup-related wrappings will be sold off at a discount, while "non-food football products will be mothballed until the European Championships in two years time".
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news