If the sport world was waiting for another great curse, another good one may have come along.
Strange coincidence: On June 20, I read an article about how most of the great sports curses have been broken in the recent past. The “Curse of the Bambino,” which fated the Boston Red Sox never to win a World Series title was broken in 2004 after 86 years.
In 2016, the “Curse of the Billy Goat” was broken after 71 years, when the Chicago Cubs won the World Series.
Earlier this year, the 136-year-old “Curse of Apollo” was broken when Justify won the Kentucky Derby.
Back to last week. On June 21, Argentina lost — in spectacular fashion — their second game in this year’s World Cup. For non-soccer fans, Argentina had been feted as contenders for winning the cup. They were runners up in 2014 and boast one of the game’s greatest players in Lionel Messi. But in just two games, the team went from 8-1 to 30-1 odds.
They failed to win over first-time participants Iceland, managing only a draw. With the loss to Croatia, Argentina seriously jeopardized its chances of even progressing to the Round of 16. No one had this in their books.
Was it the Curse of Zion?
Argentina was slated to play its final match before the World Cup in Israel, a friendly against the Jewish state’s national team. After death threats and such like by Palestinians and their leadership, Argentina cancelled the match. The team then went 0-2. Just saying.
Argentina did manage to squeeze into the Round of 16, but will the Curse of Zion strike again? I’ll be closely watching their performance as the tournament progresses.
Shana Goldberg may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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