Will the Santa Sabina player score with the keeper down and the net gaping?

Will the Santa Sabina player (in white) score with the keeper down and the net gaping?

La palla è rotonda. “The ball is round.” It’s a common saying about soccer. It means that anything can happen. That wisdom is backed up by stats; Chris Anderson and David Sally, in The Numbers Game, cite several studies demonstrating that “soccer is the most uncertain of the team sports” (Ch. 1). The underdog prevails much more frequently in soccer than in basketball, baseball, or American football (10-15% more of the time). It was certainly true this week at Don Bosco in Perugia.

Wednesday was the first semifinal of the small four-team “G. Modestini” memorial tournament (2nd edition) for giovanissimi born in the year 2000; the teams had all played each other once to determine the order of the knock-out round. Don Bosco (rossi squad), Santa Sabina, and Nuova Alba all had 6 points, and Ventinella had 0, but due to goal difference, Nuova Alba was tops, and so they played no. 4 seed Ventinella, who did not score a single goal in regular time of any match. Somehow, after a 0-0 semifinal, Ventinella beat Nuova Alba 4-3 on penalties to reach the final.

And that would not even turn out to be the craziest game of the tournament so far.

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