Monday, June 18, 2007

Back in the Office

I took the weekend off from the blog, something I like doing from time to time. A good couple of days for Sligo's sporting fortunes with Sligo Rovers knocking their biggest and most bitter rivals Shamrock Rovers out of the FAI Cup 3-2, a result that suggests that this might be a lucky year for the Bit o'Red. The Sligo Gaelic football team also won, advancing to the Connacht final with a two-point win over Roscommon, just as they did this time ten years ago. A first Connacht title since 1975 (which would make it the first in my lifetime) is not entirely beyond them, even though the value of a provincial title these days is not really what it was in the past.

The French parliamentary elections passed, and they were less of a disaster for the Left than was widely feared. Indeed they did well enough, winning half the Parisian constituencies and some of Sarkozy's more high-profile candidates failed in their attempts to get elected, such as Arno Klarsfeld, Sylvie Noachovitch and convicted crook and recently-appointed Environment minister Alain Juppé. The Left managed to resist the expected UMP landslide and will hold around 210 seats in the Assemblée Nationale; much less than the UMP's 325 but still enough to put up a redoubtable presence and to build for the next elections. Ségolène Royale has had a Lady MacBeth moment, taking her destiny into her own hands by separating, after thirty years of common law partnership, with Socialist Party chairman François Hollande. We haven't heard the last of Ségo.

Real Madrid won the Spanish League for the first time since 2002, pipping Barça; the rules are the same for everyone but surely goal difference is a better way of separating two sides level on points after a full season than the head-to-head record? Had the rules been the same as in most other European championships, Barça would have be champions for the third year in a row. Former Real cruncher Thomas Gravesen has, meanwhile, pledged to battle on with Celtic for another year. He probably doesn't mind battling for his place now.