Yesterday, I shared some stories of how Colts fans were made. Several more stories came in from other readers, and I want to share them here. If you have a story you want added to the chronicle, just add it to the comments and I'll make sure it gets in the body of the text. This article can be found permanently in the fixtures section to the right. Thanks to everyone who has chimed in with how they came to have Blue Blood.
This project hits home with me right now because I'm preparing to head back to Indianapolis on Wednesday. It's been two years since I've been home. My baby girl still hasn't met her grandfathers yet. I love my job and know it matters, but being away from Indy breaks my heart. The Colts have helped me feel not so very far away from my dad, my brother, and the rest of the people I love. Hearing your stories of how you joined the family that is Colts' Nation has been awesome. Keep them coming, please.
Bob Man tells us how he came to be a Colts fan in unlikely way.
My Colts fandom is aged and wizened and started when I was five--the Colts lost SB III. I have no real memory of this event, and my dad flew down to FL for the game, so I am not even sure there was a big party at home. But I have generally disliked home town teams, despised Jets (and Mets and Islanders) fans and, well, there was Johnny U with that hair and those shoes. What's not to love? And cocky, show-boaty, media created Broadway Joe.... ugh.
The Bert Jones years were good to me (who doesn't love Marchibroda?) and that worked well because in the mid-late 70's I played a lot of Strat-o-matic football with my Vikes fan brother and his Rams fan pal, and all three teams were good but not great at the time. A few years later, I hated watching the team play in half empty Memorial Stadium before the move--I felt that the city of Balt had quit on the team long before the team quit on the city. (and that's pretty evident in the attitude of many Ravens fans who hate all things Colt today.)
The move to Indiana...? Well, I had driven through it once and it was prettier from the freeway than Baltimore, but I was neutral. It was the organization, the players, the colors that I followed, not the stadium or the other fans or the city. If they played on the moon I'd probably still be a fan. The exact flip-side of Jags fans who say "Well, if they played in my backyard, I'd probably watch them, but if they played a whole block away... why bother?"
Ron H rooted for his home team before they were the home team!
I grew up in Indianapolis. Born in 1951. Sometime in the fall of 1960, I (9 years old at the time) was being cared for at some friends house. As I was playing in the front room (it must have been a Sunday afternoon) the TV came on for a game between the Baltimore Colts. All I remember is the announcer talking about the “2 time defending world champs Baltimore Colts led by Johnny Unitas.” I became a Baltimore Colt/Johnny U fan right then and there. And became a fanatical one almost from the get go. I had never seen a football game before (as my dad had no interest in sports. I charted my own fan path.) I was a fanatical fan until the Colts finally won Super Bowl V, by which time I had burned out on pro football. For the next 15-20 years I followed football with minimal interest. I still rooted for the Colts, but just didn’t pay much attention. I probably had a number of years in there where I watched maybe one Superbowl out of ten. (I was, during most of this time, a fanatical IU basketball fan. )
I was living in Seattle when the Colts moved from Baltimore to Indianapolis and thought how ironic that was for me. A year later I moved to Iowa (for an approximate 20 year stay) and every once in a while made a trip to Indy to visit family or old friends. The Colts were pretty bad and I just wasn’t into football that much. I remember one Sunday on the 5 hour drive back to Iowa hearing the Colts game on the local radio- they were playing the 49ers I think- early in Manning’s career. I started to get the juices flowing again, as I realized that this guy was pretty good. And I started to get more and more interested. By the time I moved to Ohio in 2004 I was again a Colts fanatic. Moved on to my current home in Albuquerque in 2005 and am proud to say I am about as fanatical for the Colts as I used to be for my Hoosiers.
Occasionally I will still refer to the Baltimore Colts when I mean Indianapolis Colts- just out of habit from the old days. I guess I was lucky enough to become a Colt fan for my hometown team 25 years before they became my hometown team.
AJ remembers the rough years after the team had just arrived.
There's a small but recognizable number of us Colts fans who remember the days of not seeing any preseason - or even many regular season - games until after nearly midnight because there was a blackout due to ticket sales. There are quite a few of us who remember when the QB position was a joke for Indy. There are many of us who recall the games where Indy simply looked flabbergasted, incompetent, outmatched... where Jeff George, a player every bit as heralded a pick Peyton Manning - managed to convince everyone that nothing could lift Indy out of its doldrums. Where it was amazing to make the post-season. Where winning was not expected. Suffering through the days of Bob and Tom not shaving until a game was won (and getting really hairy as a result), through Duke Tomatoe singing his lament, and being shamefaced when asked about Indy's football team really hammers in a perspective that these current accomplishments should be appreciated, not taken for granted.
It doesn't take much to topple a team and send it on a terrible decline (look at San Francisco for an example of this). And while it's simply human and sports-fan nature to live entirely in the moment, I think it's important to recognize where the franchise has come from and what it has gone through to get where it's at. It's weird, but being a long suffering fan builds in a sense of perspective about so many of these things that were distractions and big stories about the Colts; little of it truly matters in the long view because what does matter is how far the franchise has come. And how amazing it is that a former cellar dweller is now a league leader in terms of wins and accomplishments.
Dan has been a fan from a distance.
I'm a Colts fan from California. I've lived here all my life. I'am 51 and became a Baltimore Colts fan in the 7th grade, 1971. What really attracted me to the Colts was Johnny Unitas. Kurt Warner, though not half as accomplished, is a fairly good modern day example of Unitas. I especially identified with his persistence, stick-to-it-ness, adversity, loyalty, practically everything. He definitely didn't have Peyton Manning's pedigree, but I admire Manning for his commitment to excellence. Heck, I love the 58 & 59 Colts, even though I wasn't born until 59. Here they are, an upstart team going into N.Y., going against the establishment, Shea Stadium, amazing. Raymond Berry, how can you NOT admire him? One leg shorter than another, small hands, slow, I kind of acquate him to a Larry Bird. He busted his butt, never rested on his accomplishments, incredible.
Part II. Tony Dungy, he's taken so much heat for what (who) he stands for, such a humble, others-minded man. I know, this site only claims allegiance to the Indianapolish era, and I understand that, but I love the whole history of the Colts, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Garrison remembers a classic game being the turning point.
I'm told it happened to me in 1992. My dad and one uncle (and a 2 year old me) were helping another uncle move in to a new place during a week 7 Colts/Dolphins game (like that would happen nowadays!). Colts were improbably leading the then unbeaten Dolphins 24-20, but the Dolphins were driving in the 4th. It was then that Steve Emtman came up with an interception and took it 90 yards all the way for a game sealing touchdown. During all of this the adults were all shouting/screaming/yelling and jumping up and down and all of that. I'm told that I had a look of abject terror on my face because I didn't know what was going on. After it became apparent that they were in fact happy I'm told my 2-year old response was just "oh you guys..."
Now of course I don't really remember that, but by all accounts, my blood was blue from the earliest of ages. I remember one family gathering where we were watching a Colts game. I remember wondering aloud why everyone cared so much. My dad told me I had to... and that was that. Since then I've been blessed to have an uncle who has had season tickets (which I usually get to go when I'm home from school) and family who goes to the occasional game so I manage 4 or so games a year- and countless hours devoted to thinking about the team.
Flores tells the story about how a new kind of football fan was born.
What finally sealed the deal, oddly enough, occurred after I graduated college and moved to DC. One of my roommates was an Indian (the kind from India) who spent many years in Philadelphia and became a rabid Eagles fan, bonding with the guys who waited at the Laundromat waiting for their laundry. Just before the football season got underway, I had an extremely painful, acrimonious end to a relationship. My roommate and a few other guy friends took me with them to local sports bars to get me out of the house on Sundays. Prior to that, I typically only watched during the post season. That would be the year I began watching the regular season. Naturally, my team of choice was the Colts. It had been years since I lived in Indiana, but I had stuck with the Pacers - I’m obsessively loyal. Until Reggie Miller retired in that heartbreaking final season, I still watched only them. School was busy and I rarely could follow them during the regular season or sometimes even the postseason, but I never rooted for another team. The natural choice then for a football team was Indiana’s team, the Colts. It helped that my Packers fan loved Peyton and hated the Patsies. And so it happened, that someone who spent 10 years of her life in Boston, became a rabid Colts fan. And I will never forget that in those cold winter months post-breakup where at times I never knew when I would fall apart in tears, I always knew, Sunday - Sunday I would be ok. Sunday, my mind would be fully occupied by something else (and eventually Mondays, and towards the end of the season Thursdays and Saturdays!).
As you can deduce, it took years for me to fully appreciate the NFL. And I became a Colts fan late in the Manning Era. When I mentioned to my old boyfriend, the Broncos fan, he was shocked I finally came to see the light. And when he heard about my adoration of Manning, he immediately mentioned Unitas. My response was a, huh? And his response was a dead silence. That’s when I realized, despite the fact that I understood the basic rules, the history of the game was still lost on me. So I began to read what I could - the Wikipedia articles about the old football legends, every article I could get my hands on about the Colts. My old workplace in DC probably would not want to know how much time I spent browsing ESPN, SI, and Colts blogs (what a joy it was to find those!). Eventually, I became determined to understand football strategy - what announcers were talking about when they mentioned things like “man coverage”, “blitz”, “screen plays”, “play-action”, “shotgun formation”. Reading your blog helped so much, as did your repeated endorsement of Football Outsiders. Once when I was mentioning a few articles they wrote about corner play, my Packers friend was silent for a while and said, “I think you know more about football than me now. What a long way you’ve come!” I laughed. I told him I spent so much time reading about football I easily knew more than most guy friends I have. I even briefly dated a guy who referred to me as his person ESPN. I looked affronted and told him he was getting better analysis from me than ESPN.
Matt S tells his story
I became a fan of the Indy Colts (and football in general) at the age of nine. The game was one of beauty, tension, and heartache.
I remember watching this game like it was yesterday. My older brother was a swimmer, and a darn good one. He was at a major swimming invitational at a high school on the outskirts of Indianapolis, and it happened to be the same day as the 1995 AFC Championship Game.
I remember watching the game because we were watching in the school cafeteria, with hundreds of people standing around the television sets. I did not know a single player, but I knew everyone around me was cheering for the Colts in white. I soon joined in, as if I was born to cheer for this game.
We all know the end of the game was classic. What let me know it was something meaningful. This swimming invitational took a break from their meet to allow all swimmers, parents, and fans to go to the cafeteria to watch the last 2 minutes.
We watched the hail mary, cheered as we thought we won, then silence spread as we realized it was incomplete.
My greatest memory as a Colts fan was that first day, standing with hundreds in defeat--being a fan means more in a loss.
If you've got a share a story about how your blood turned blue, please share it.
Normally, I'd put this in the links section, but since I wrote a whole post about it yesterday, I figured it would go well on page one. I heard back from Brett from Midway Illustrated. One of the Bears writers ran down Dan Fouts to talk about the Bears offense, the Colts offense, and the difference between Air Coryell and the Run and Shoot.
My children have no choice.
They are Colts fans. They were born that way.
Most of us over the age of 25 weren't born Colts fans. The team arrived in 1984, and the first generation of Colts fans all have that one moment or moments when they truly became fans. I grew up wearing a Chicago Bears jacket before I even knew what football was. Lots of kids in Indy did. For me there were a couple of defining moments, which I talk about in my book, Blue Blood (you really didn't expect to get through this post without a plug did you?). Going to my first game was a thrill, but the moment that really sold me was walking into the library at elementary school IPS #84 (Go Bingham Bears!) and seeing Sports Illustrated with Eric Dickerson on the cover. For me that flipped a switch. The Colts were my team. I was there when they clinched the playoff spot at the end of the '87 season. I cried after they lost in the playoffs. Over the next eight seasons I became a die hard. We started going to every game once my aunt moved out of Indy and let us buy her tickets. By the time Harbaugh started his comebacks, I was in college and in the tank for the Horse.
Some of us loved the Colts before they ever came to Indianapolis. I really admire those who didn't quit on the team after the move. Ben G writes this story:
My dad was in the Navy and stationed in Hawaii when I was born. Nothing great, only there from 0 to 4 yrs, and only remember sand in my diaper. My older brother, who was born in Texas, constantly gave me grief growing up because his state had two NFL teams – and mine had zero – and probably always would. In 1972 the Baltimore Colts won Super Bowl V with a last second kick by Jim O’Brian over the Dallas Cowboys. My brother cried and my love affair with the Colts began. Now, God did punish me with several down years for the Colts after that – but I remained faithful through all the ups and downs. So these past years have been AWESOME!!
I love Ben's story, because it says so much about why teams mean something to us. There are times when it feels like they are playing just for us. They are settling our scores and defending our honor. It's silly and it's kid's folly for sure, but it also explains why we can be so loyal for so long. I love the long suffering fan. God knows I am one myself.
Still others are more recent members of the Colts stable. Let's face it, the Colts are easy to like. They've become something of a bandwagon team nationally. I love hearing stories like Jean from Ft. Wayne:
Before I became exclusively a Colts fan: For a long time I followed the Colts, with their hot and cold running stars (Eric Dickerson, Marshall Faulk), along with other teams that had players I liked: Joe Montana at Kansas City, for example, and Rod Woodson wherever he was. (I was teaching at Snider High School in Fort Wayne while Rod was a student there. I never had him in class, but I remember timing a home track meet and for the first time seeing him run hurdles. At that point I KNEW that he would be great!)
However, I became a big fan of Peyton Manning while he was a sophomore at U Tennessee, and I followed his career there (including never being able to beat Florida) until he entered the NFL draft. I've always said that I would have been a fan of whatever team Peyton ended up playing for, but the hapless (at that time) Colts had the #1 pick and drafted my favorite player. Lucky me, and lucky Indianapolis fans. Also--I've also always been grateful that the Colts didn't pick Ryan Leaf! In fact, I have awakened from a recurring nightmare in which the Colts draft Leaf instead of Peyton Manning. What a disaster!
It's awesome that so many people are new Colts fans. Peyton is single handedly responsible for a lot of that. There are pockets of Horse Nation in Tennessee and Louisiana now because of Peyton. That's part of why I wrote Blue Blood (link count: 2). Maybe it's naive, but I don't want those fans to evaporate once 18 retires. The book was my way of saying, "Welcome to the family. Here's what you missed!". Just because someone jumped on the band wagon doesn't mean they have to jump off!
Yes, most of us were made Colts fans. Whether it was before the move, just after, or when Peyton came along, we all have that moment. What really makes me happy is that these kids won't ever remember a time when they had another team.
They were born with blue blood.
(even I have enough shame not stick a link on that)
This email came into today from Brett at Midway Illustrated:
There was a Chicago Bears related question recently in the Sun Times and how the Bears' new offense is a variation of the Air Coryell offense, followed by a question about the Colts offense and what type of offense they have run under Tom Moore. I did a google search on it and came up with the K-Gun offense as the primary type of offense the Colts run.Just wanted to get some quick information from you guys on what type of offense the Colts run etc.
Now, the route option aspect is similar to the Run and Shoot. The quarterback control is classic K-gun; the vertical option is sort of similar to Coryell offenses; the Colts use their running backs in a West Coast kind of way, ect.
What makes the Colts' offense different is the hybridization of all of them, with ultimate control placed in the hands of the quarterback who has freedom to operate without a huddle. It's safe to say that the Manning/Moore offense is a unique entry in the catalog of NFL offenses. Whether it can ever be duplicated, I'm not sure. It has been so uniquely fit to the talents and preferences of Peyton Manning that I doubt it will ever become heavily duplicated.
So do the Colts run the K-Gun? Only if by K-Gun you mean no huddle.
They run the Manning/Moore offense. There's nothing else quite like it.
Getting beat by a goal in over time is always crushing. There's no two ways about it. It doesn't matter how it happened, how badly you played, or how much better your opponent was. The reality is that you made it that far, you fought hard, and you didn't give up. Props to the US for that. We didn't fold and kept fighting through the whole game. Ghana wasn't head and shoulders above us. They didn't out class us on the field. We had the better chances through out the majority of the game. A couple of different bounces and we're off to the quarter finals. Unfortunately, that's not what happened.
What happened was incredibly frustrating (in addition to being crushing). You can only comeback from behind so many times. The first time or two you do it is exciting; exhilarating even. But when it happens again and again and again, it stops being exciting and starts being really frustrating. This has been an all too common theme with the USMNT under Bob Bradley's tenure. Through out the qualification process, there were numerous times where we went down against a team that we shouldn't have conceded to and had to fight our way back. Often times we conceded very early in the first half. First against El Salvador. Then against Honduras. Then against El Salvador, again. The against Honduras, again. Then against Costa Rica. In the World Cup it was against England first, then against Slovenia, almost against Algeria, then against Ghana. Its great that we can show a lot of heart and fight back from behind. Why can't we show a little bit of character and not go behind in the first place? Ultimately, it shows that Bradley has a problem with getting the team prepared.
Sure, Clark's give away in on the first goal was pretty atrocious. He completely telegraphed his movement and paid the price. After that, his head was so far out of the game that Bradley had to sub him or look even more foolish. More foolish because he shouldn't have had Clark in there in the first place. Clark was at the center of the blame for Gerrard's goal in the game against England. His performances in the pre-Cup friendlies had been uninspiring and Bradley rightfully benched him against Slovenia and Algeria. Who replaced Clark and looked by far the better player? Well, there was a brief interlude where Torres rocked Turkey's world after he replaced Clark at the half, but he pulled up short against Slovenia and was replaced. Whenever he's stepped on the pitch, whether as a sub or a starter, Maurice Edu has looked to be a better midfield option than Clark, by far. Why start him at this point?
For the second game, Bradley made a half time substitution that paid big dividends. When Feilhaber came on, we effectively shifted to a three man centeral midfield. This negated Ghana's three-to-two man advantage in the middle that had helped them so much in the first half. There's two ways to look at half time subs. One is that the coach made a smart tactical move to change the face of the game and should be lauded. The other is that the coach should have had things figured out tactically before the game even started and made a mistake which needed to be corrected. Which view you take largely depends on how much of an unknown the other team's line up is. Ghana just played three games in the past two weeks. Its not much of a secret that Ghana plays with three central midfielders.
Bradley has been incredibly loyal to his players since he became head coach. With a decision like starting Clark today, I think that we can fairly say that he's been too loyal in some cases. It was obvious to everyone, including Bradley, that Clark didn't have what was needed. After Edu came on, it was obvious that he did.
The other place that we obviously suffered was because of our lack of depth. Jonathan Bornstein played a decent game. He didn't cost us any goals. He limited turnovers and he didn't have any of boneheaded clearances. He even made some good contributions to the attack. That said, he was only on the field because of our injury/depth problems in our back line. I think that it was legitimate to say that we started the same backline against Algeria because we needed the speed. Against Ghana, not quite so much. Onyewu was needed to be starting and would have been if not for the months off due to injury With both Ghana goals coming down to our centerbacks trying to shut down a streaking Ghanain, its easy to see the difference that an in form Gooch could have made. Robbie Findley is another example of our problems with depth. He provided a ton of pace, but how much could we have used Charlie Davies? We know that he has the same kind of speed and we also know that he's a much better finisher.
Losing this way sucks. Its not an issue of all the what ifs. Its an issue of what is. Yes, we can leave the World Cup with our heads held high. The stated goal was to get to the knock-out round. We did that and we made some pretty serious noise in the process. However, we had better to bring than what we brought today (and in the game against Slovenia for that matter). Our players certainly left everything on the field, but we couldn't put our best players out there. We didn't put the best ones out there for the game that we were playing. Injuries and coaching mistakes are inevitable, but when they get exposed so glaringly in a game with so much emotion riding on it the agony of defeat pretty quickly gives way to the burn of frustration.
It's been a crazy 48 hours here at 18to88. A server switchover has caused immense headaches, some lost articles, and a lot of wasted time.
Still, I'm reasonably certain that everything is back to normal. If you've commented on something in the past 48 hours, the comment record is probably gone. I can assure you that I've read anything you've said, and I apologize for the loss of some good conversations.
Today, I'm going to sit back and enjoy the World Cup games, but first let me update you on Blue Blood.
First, I have a book signing to announce:
On Friday, July 30 from noon-2 pm I'll be at Teapots N Treasures at 7 Market Street (almost right on the Circle). The owner, Donna, has books on sale now, so if you are downtown, stop in and say hi. The nice thing about this signing is it's extremely chick friendly, so impress your wife or girlfriend by saying you are taking her to a down town antique store for a book signing. By the time she figures it out, it'll be too late!
I'll be scheduling at least one other book signing while I'm in the States; I'll make sure it is in the evening to accommodate the gainfully employed. I'm coming home this week, so if you've been promised a signed copy of the book, I'll get them in the mail by Friday.
You can also purchase copies of Blue Blood at the Dunlevy family store, Metro Arborist Supplies at 7055 Coffman Road. That's just off 71st and Georgetown up in Pike Township. Luke (Demond) is there everyday, so stop in, buy a book and pick up a chainsaw while you are at it. I'm sure my brother would be happy to sign some climbing rope for you.
I'll hopefully be doing some radio interviews next week, so be on the listen for me on the Indianapolis airways.
Well, with the Jazz saving the Pacers from having to take Hayward (thanks Jazz!), the Pacers select Paul George a forward from Fresno State. Great. Another big. At least he hits his FTs.
Phew. That was the biggest emotional roller coaster of game that the U.S. National Team has ever put me through. The game against Slovenia had the emotional impact of a come-from-behind win. Last year's Confederation's Cup had the mustard seed of hope in the breakthrough game against Egypt, the rush of the surprise victory against Spain, and the outrageous dream and then crushing reality of facing Brazil. The Nats have regularly put me through the tension of coming from behind or blowing an early lead. But this game against Algeria, it was something completely different. Against Germany in 2002 comes closest, but it didn't have the payoff. First, the stakes don't get any higher than the World Cup. Second, there's something about a 0-0 scoreline that builds tension like a high scoring game can't. Each goal in a back-and-forth goalfest is a body-blow in a heavy weight boxing match. It's exciting, but you know the punches are coming and you know you'll be able to return them. But a back-and-forth game that hovers at 0-0 is a duel. You have to be on guard constantly because the first blow struck will likely be the last, piecing you or your opponent to the heart. Each fast break, each defensive stop, each shot on goal is like reaching the top of a hill on the roller coaster without any idea how far the drop is going to be. I was in and out of my seat, yelling at the TV, holding my head in my hands and on pins and needles the whole time. It was a game that promised everything you wanted and everything that you feared at the same time, teased you with it, let you taste it even, but withheld it until you thought that fulfillment was impossible. And then, when you had resigned yourself to being unfulfilled, in the dying moments it exploded with joy. Jabluani, indeed.
At about the 80th minute, I was preparing this post in my head, but it was going to be the disgruntled, self-reflective one. Sure, I was going to say, we can lament another bogus call and another perfectly good goal called off. But, I would continue, we don't have anyone to blame but ourselves. A ref can blow a call, but they don't really cost you the game. I played enough basketball in high school to learn that one good. Hitting the ball off the post instead of into the back of the net costs you the game. Skying the ball into the air instead of slamming it home costs you the game. Taking low percentage shots instead of passing the ball to the open man costs you the game. Clearing the ball into the path of your opponent (Jonathan Bornstein) costs you the game. All this I was going to say because all of these things were things that we did. Thank you Landon Donovan for keeping my mouth shut.
In the end, we pulled it out. On another gilt-edged chance the keeper stopped a shot that surely should have gone in and Donovan swept in like avenging angel out of an empty sky. You knew he was going to strike true. He had to. But just for a millisecond there was a tickle of doubt in your mind. So many missed chances. Dempsey's ball off the post. It just might not really be our day. His foot struck the ball. For one time it flew true. For one time it was dead on target. For one time no defender's leg shot out to block it. The net bulged and Algeria deflated. Fears that fate was set against us disintegrated. Suddenly, all was right with the world and all sins were forgiven.
On a less emotional note...
Bob Bradley made the right tactical decisions to start the game. (Do I still say this if we hadn't won?) We needed speed against Algeria and Bocanegra and Bornstein provided that where Onyewu and Bocanegra couldn't. He also made (what turned out to be) the right substitutions. Bringing on Feilhaber freed up Dempsey to roam for the whole second half, putting more pressure on their defense, but also more pressure on our defense. Bringing in Buddle for Edu added even more offensive potency, but essentially put all of our midfield defensive responsibilities solely on Michael Bradley. He was more than up to the task. Bringing in Beasley for Bornstein that late in the game was essentially a straight defense for offense swap that left us with a three man back line. We bent, but didn't break. At times we got lucky. Gutsy, but exactly what was needed. (Do I still say that if we hadn't won?)
So, now we're through to the knock out round. First in our group for the first time since 1930. After a crazy pair of matches to sort out Group D we found out that that we'll be playing Ghana on Saturday and if we win we'll face either Uruguay or South Korea. How awesome is that? England is going to have to fight their way to the semi-finals through Germany and then, most likely Argentina. Thanks, Slovenia, for giving us the motivation to score two goals against you.