Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The epic Gold medal football/soccer game; Zach Roloff's team The Statesemen vs UK team at World Dwarf Games in Belfast

It's been over a month and still, people from all over the world are inquiring about the now famous Gold Medal match in football/soccer at the World Dwarf Games in Belfast, Ireland. It was between the UK team and The Statesmen -- the team with Zach Roloff and who is coached by Amy Roloff.

That particular game has been called by spectators and those associated with the World Dwarf Games -- arguably the best game every played by people with dwarfism.

This blog always aims to serve where there's a lapse in information and we feel promoting a dwarf athletic competition is always a good thing -- it will still be several months before this ever makes it to TLC and an episode of Little People, Big World, which of course we recommend watching. However, for those, who may have even participated, or family and friends of the participants who want to see some of their effort and discussion about it, we have a taste of it for you.

As mentioned previously, it's being called the greatest dwarf soccer game ever played and for good reason. We have a break down in photos that captures the excitement and intensity. This does a pretty good job of capturing the thrilling action. And it gives me a chance to do play by play! :-)

If you don't want to know how events unfold when you eventually watch it, perhaps as far away as 8 months from now when it airs on TLC's Little People, Big World, don't read this item any further and you probably shouldn't read this blog at all and it might be wise to stay off the internet altogether regarding Roloffs or LPBW :-)

Here we go...

After a thrilling game, the gold medal game between The Statesmen and the UK team are tied 1-1 after regulation and extra time. It goes to penalty kicks. 3 shooters each.

The Statesmen will shoot first. First shot by the youngest Statesmen player, Troy...


1-0 Statesmen

First UK shooter....


Tied 1-1.

Second shooter for The Statesmen = Zach Roloff


Still tied 1-1.

Second UK shooter....


UK leads 2-1 after two shooters each

The Statesmen final shooter, their star player, Adam Romano. He must score to keep the game alive. If it is saved, UK wins Gold....


Statsemen = 2 UK = 2

The third and final UK shooter. If he scores on Statsemen goalkeeper Martin Klebba, UK wins Gold. If he's stopped, they continue on for more penalty kicks...

You can feel the excitement in the crowd watching, you can cut the electricity with a knife....some UK players can't bare to watch...

And he shoots....

UK win!

Elation and joy for the UK team....

Disappointment for the Statesmen...

Whew, that was exciting, even watching in still pictures.

Congratulations to all involved for being part of such an epic match!


Em said...

Poor Zach. He must have felt bad.

Mitch said...

Zach! Ug! Pick a corner bud! He shot it right in the middle...

Jason said...

I don't think Zach is the scapegoat...the difference was the goaltending. Sorry Marty!

Look at the UK goalie dive and sacrifice his body!

The Statesmen should have got the goalie for the Hogkillers in 2008.

Marty may have been a great dwarf athlete, but there comes a time when every great athlete needs to realize when there time has past.

Will Marty be holding a retirement ceremony or knowing Zach, will Marty be cut from the team? :)

Expressed said...

Why was Zach kicking with his left foot? He's not a lefty, that's Jeremy. He should have got some advice from Jeremy for his shot. Jeremy always made his penalty kicks.

That's what I don't like about Zach. He's gotten a lot better, but he used to sit back and criticize Jeremy on the field, but what does he do? Miss when it counts most. Zach would have been lambasting Jer if that was him. At least a couple of years ago he would have.

DAANI supporter said...

It's a credit to the strides Dwarf athletics and awareness have made when dwarf athletes can be celebrated for their on field accomplishments at their sport as any other person would be. It is a great day. All the dwarf athletes who competed are winners.

Jocelynn said...

Jason, take it easy on Marty. I believe Marty is 40 years old. He does a good job of keeping up with the younger players.

Jason said...

Jocelynn, it's sports, tough decisions need to be made for the good of any team. They need a younger, more athletic goalie.

Basketball is supposedly Marty's game anyway. Let Marty sit out soccer or hide him in the midfield, not the most important position on the field.

JustASoccerRealist said...

"Jeremy always made his penalty kicks."

And he made it to ODP, and was scouted by professional teams because he plays so well.

Except that none of that is true, and he's certainly missed penalty kicks.

JJR fan said...

Jer did make his penalty kicks. There are a lot of reasons why Jeremy was not selected for ODP and none of them have to do with penalty kicks. Mike Detjen even expressed his disgust at the process.

Zach missed, but there is no shame in that. A lot of great soccer players have missed big kicks in championship games. David Beckham anyone?

JustASoccerRealist said...

JJR - Jeremy is not a soccer god. He has not made every penalty kick he's ever gotten. You've only seen the penalty kicks on tv where he makes it. What we saw of his ODP tryout strongly suggests he was being outplayed and hadn't been working on his physical conditioning. As far as Mike Detjen was concerned, he certainly didn't make any official protest. Jeremy did not get any athletic scholarships. He has not been scouted. Those things have nothing to do with ODP (ODP is not the only path to soccer greatness). Jeremy is a good player, but he's not exceptional, and saying he always makes his penalty kicks is just pandering.

If he was that good, he would already be snapped up to play professionally. Instead he's on the sidelines. He's not *that* good.

Crystal said...

Nobody should be blamed. They all played hard. You win some, you lose some.

Jack said...

It was the best =)
Sweet victory =)
It's a sore point for Statesmen though =)

Rap541 said...

Heheh nice way to show the other perspective, Jack :)

Anonymous said...

Good try, Statesmen.

You win and lose as a team.

Pad said...

Zach scored in the games. Don't just too harshly on one shot. It was close.

statesmen fan said...

Congratulations to the UK team, but all this does is give the Statesmen MORE motivation and will make them MORE determined when there is a rematch.

They will get their revenge and it will be sweet. Go Statesmen!

(they won in Basketball so there!)

Kellen said...

Everybody has an off shot, but it was a bad placement by Zach.

Statistics show the majority of penalty kick goals that are successful are high to the corners. Like Adam's. Zach's went low middle.

Richard said...

Ha you all are pus****!

Sports is about winning and losing.

Statesmen choked when the pressure was on.

Americans should stick to practicing "touchdowns" and ridiculousness. HAHAHA!

Tom said...

Imagine what would have happened if the Brazilians competed? It probably made for a better game that they weren't in Ireland.

I guarantee it wouldn't have went to penalty kicks :)

Sorry to sound like a jerk, but the truth is the truth, a trend is a trend.

It's funny that the Roloffs boys always lose in soccer. They are obsessed with it, but they always lose when it counts.

Jer and Zach's Faith team? Sucked every year.

Jer's ODP trials - Embarrassing. Nuff said.

Jacob's team - sucked last year.

Zach - See penalty kicks on the biggest stage, Nuff said.

If they were nicer people I'd feel bad for them :)

Anonymous said...

Zach is a natural left footer. and i don't think jer's ever missed a penalty kick and zach's never taken a professional penalty kick before cause jer always has so he was obvisouly nervous and not use to the pressure.

Rob said...

Anon @ 9:12 -- That's a good point about penalty kicks I hadn't thought of. In game situations you're right, of course Jeremy was probably always chosen from Faith.

Shooting in practice or fun is not the same as a high pressure intense spot like that was.

Just like Olympic athletes that wish they could do things over with, eventually Zach and the Statesmen will get their chance again.

Tom said...

Anon and Rob,

That might very well be true about Zach's lack of experience with PK's, but what about all the other players? I doubt they've been in that position before.

If you want to talk about pressure, what about the blond haired guy for the UK team, the last shooter?

Jenna said...

Why are people always so mean to the Roloffs?

It was obviously a great played game and could have went either way.

So what if Zach was the one that didn't score? I'm sure he felt bad because I'm positive nobody wanted it more than Zach.

Also, I'm sure Anonymous at 9:12pm is right about Zach being used to kicking with his left foot. Does anyone really think he'd pick a time like that to try a trick or do something new?

Anybody making fun of them for losing are jerks. And if any of these people are with the UK team then you're really poor winners!

Jenna said...

One last thing,

Tom: What you said about the Roloffs losing? Soccer is a TEAM game. Jeremy was the best player Faith ever had. To blame him or any of the Roloffs because they lost a lot is just stupid and very unfair.

By the way the last time I heard, this year withOUT the Roloffs, the Faith soccer team was doing pretty bad.

Jenna said...

Just because I'm on a roll, lol,

Tom: About it being a team game and what you said about the Roloff guys, I think it is pretty jerkish for you to say Jacob's team was bad. What does that have to do with Jacob?

According to Amy AND Mike Detjen (a couple of years ago obviously, but it was still his prediction), they said they think Jacob will be the best Roloff player and I think you know about Jeremy.

SB said...

It's not a big deal that Zach missed. It doesn't mean anything and he shouldn't be made to feel shame for it. It's too bad but it happens you know.


You're wrong about one thing, not about the WDG, but about Jeremy and Jacob.

Jer might not be Lionel Messi, but he's better, was better and always will be better than Jacob. And anonymous was right, Jer always did make his PK's too.

I have seen both Jeremy and Jacob play IN PERSON. Jer is the better player. He has way more talent and a better sense for the game.

Don't read too much into Amy's or Mike's comments about Jacob. Of course they're going to SAY that. Wayne Gretzky once said his little brother was going to be a better hockey player than he was. The point is family always says things to try and make the youngest feel good about themselves.

Mike obviously cared about trying to make Jacob feel good. Do you remember the scene on the show with Jacob taking power shots and Mike with the radar speed gun? What happened? As Jake was getting more frustrated, SUDDENLY, Mike started telling Jacob his kicks were getting harder and harder until he told him he broke his record. Is there anybody who really believed Mike was telling the truth?

The point is they say things to make Jacob feel good. What do you except Amy to say? "Jer is better than you'll ever be..." They are just trying to make a little kid feel good. Don't take it literally.

Jeremy Roloff is a much better soccer player than Jacob Roloff. I've seen them both play so I can that.

JS13 said...

I wish this episode would be shown soon. It looks great!

Bad result though :(

Rap541 said...

In fairness, I would point out Jeremy is what, seven years older than Jake. Making any comparison in playing between the two is really rather specious. I mean Jeremy could also by dint of size alone, outplay the Statemen. The important thing to keep in mind is that like many kids who play sports, Jeremy isn't moving on to college or professional play. Thats how you can tell Mike was exaggerating about him being the best player in the state.

And I am not saying that to be me - but I think Mike wasn't exaggerating about just Jake's skills.

SB said...

I'm not comparing Jer at 19 to Jake and saying he's better.

If you know the game of soccer, you can watch players at different ages and be able to tell who is going to be the better player.

It's not a bash on Jacob Roloff. It's just telling it like it is. Jer was, is and will always be the better player.

Come back in 6 years when all of Jer's goal scoring records at Faith still will be standing.

Jacob did play a different position, but Jeremy is still the better player. More skill and better sense of the game.

Rap, Mike didn't say Jer was "the best" player in the state. He said he was better than some of the guys who were selected to ODP. ODP is ruined by politics.

Not to slam Zach when he's down or when its being talked about for all to see, but Jer was ALWAYS money at penalty kicks. That's a testament of a great player.

Christine said...

[["zach's never taken a professional penalty kick before cause jer always has so he was obviously nervous and not use to the pressure"]]

You're not being fair to Zach. I doubt it had anything to do with pressure. It was one kick and the goalie saved it.

David Beckham missed a huge shot for England in the World Cup. Does that mean he can't handle pressure? He wouldn't have been able to do all he's done in his career if he can't handle pressure. A missed shot is just that, ONE missed shot.

Cory said...

Christine, it's not an insult if Zach felt pressure. You can be good at something when playing for fun but the pressure can get to the best of people.

First, they're basically representing their country.

Second, you know how much pressure Zach would have put on himself, it was all about the soccer.

Third, It all comes down to the penalty kicks.

You have all your teammates and family and the whole crowd.

Then to make it worse for Zach, there is the pressure of it being on tv or will be on tv and the pressure of what jerks will say if he misses.

That's a lot of pressure!

Like other people have said practicing in their backyard does not prepare someone for that pressure.

I'm sure Zach would love the chance to do it again, but that's the thing with sports, you only get the chance once in a awhile, that's what makes it so pressure-filled and exciting.

Red, white and blue said...

The statesmen will deliver payback if there is next time.

Rich said...

It looks exciting. Penalities are intense.

Carly said...

Thanks for posting this. It looks like a great game. I feel badly for Zach.