The Run of Play is a blog about
the wonder and terror of soccer.

We left the window open during a match in October 2007 and a strange wind blew into the room.

Now we walk the forgotten byways of football with a lonely tread, searching for the beautiful, the bewildering, the haunting, and the absurd.

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Brazil 2 – 0 Italy: Robinho in Bloom

It was a beautiful goal. And I always like watching Buffon play in cold weather. He gets himself all adorned with dangly, droopy, tufting protective gear and when he stoops he ends up looking like a hag, as if Baba Yaga had traded her chicken-leg house for a goal.

Other than that, I found it hard to get too excited about a game in which the players were exchanging shirts at halftime and the wheezing Adriano was allowed to lumber in isolation until Dunga finally put him down in the 80th minute. Probably just because it was a friendly, there was something oddly detached about it, as if Italy were playing (and losing) against themselves and Brazil were playing against—I don’t know what exactly—something like the concept of falling profits for the Coca-Cola Company. Did anyone else take anything special from this? Tell me something about Júlio César’s reflexes or the reasons for Pirlo’s infirmity.

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Brazil 2 – 0 Italy: Robinho in Bloom

by Brian Phillips · February 10, 2009

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