Daily Cal Intelligence Bureau dispatches from World Cup Russia

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June 29, 2018

Counterintelligence Operations

Undisclosed Location: Russian Federation



Agent ******* Embedded

Berkeley, California



The World Cup is an athletic tournament held every four years among the globe’s elite soccer teams.The event is being held in Russia but the United States did not receive an invitation — I have assets who suggest that it might be because of Operation ****** in Trinidad and shifting NATO forces along Russia’s western flanks. However I cannot provide confirmation to support this assertion at the moment — will provide updates at 1800 hours.

Our nascent predictive models suggested that the Germans and French were supremely positioned to make the greatest gains but the former has already been eliminated and the latter has performed well below expectations. British forces have been growing in strength, while the Belgians don’t trail too far behind. I have assets trailing robust Croatian and Brazilian camps as well.

Analysis and Observations:

1. DEVELOPING COUP: I have reliable intelligence to affirm that a fast-moving coup has developed among the Argentina squad. It is believed that the troops on the ground have lost faith in their commander, Jorge Sampaoli, and have rallied around the camp of a Barcelona expat known as “La Pulga,” whose legal name is Lionel Messi. He has been quite impressive on the pitch and is clearly the Argentine’s greatest asset. Lieutenants Javier Mascherano and Sergio Agüero have provided indispensable support to assist Messi but it is doubtful that the group as a whole will be able to survive much longer. It is unlikely that Messi has a viable supporting cast or logistical network to seriously challenge his rivals even if he now enjoys internal support. The Argentines will meet the French on the field of battle this coming Saturday. Civil war appears to be on the horizon regardless of outcome.

2. GERMAN ELIMINATION: After achieving ultimate victory in Brazil four years ago, the Germans set their sights on accomplishing similar ends in Russia this summer but found Eurasia much more arduous to conquer relative to South America. It appears that the Germans yet again mistook success in the west as applicable to the Eastern Front after making the same miscalculation in the Second World War.

The Germans’ strategy of possession-heavy attacks coupled with aggressive pressing exposed their back line and made them especially vulnerable to counter attacks such as this Mexican ambush. They dominated the ball and created plenty of chances but proved incapable of generating quality opportunities, partly due to the fact that they didn’t have a premium striker. It appears that excluding Manchester émigré Leroy Sané was a mistake on Kaiser Joachim Löw’s part.

I have also gathered credible evidence to support rumors of internal discord among the German troops. It appears that there was a rift between the Bavarians (Thomas Müller, Mats Hummels, Toni Kroos and Manuel Neuer) and the “Bling-bling gang” (Mesut Özil, Jérôme Boateng, Sami Khedira and Julian Draxler). It is unclear as to whether this term is a gag but the Germans are not known for their humor so I have taken it on face value.

Despite popular opinion to the contrary, it appears that the Germans were not immune to the defending World Cup champion virus.

3. KOREAN-MEXICAN COLLABORATION?: After Germany’s shocking defeat at the hands of South Korea, there appeared to be celebration among Korean and Mexican supporters. It clearly stems from the fact that the Koreans eliminated one of the tournament’s fiercest sides but it is also possible that it hinted at greater collaboration between the two.

The Koreans could be attempting to make a power play into North America by establishing a close relationship with Mexico. I cannot confirm my suspicions but I am requesting permission to *********. In the meantime I urge you to view these secret recordings smuggled out of Mexico City courtesy of high-level informers.

Code 34.27 declares happiness and harmony must be neutralized before it spreads to the rest of the world.

4. MARADONA DRUGGED: Diego Maradona, the Argentine soccer legend, was drugged while attending a match between Argentina and Nigeria. His behavior was consistent with the symptoms that accompany the dangerous toxin nomennotpoison. It is yet to be determined who was responsible for the incident but it nearly cost the former World Cup star his life. Luckily, he was treated by paramedics in time. We are currently investigating leads on both state and international terror organizations.

The official story is he was merely intoxicated after drinking too much white wine.

Will send another dispatch once I am in a secure location.

This is a satirical article written purely for entertainment purposes.

Rory O’Toole writes for Bear Bytes, the Daily Californian’s sports blog. Contact him at [email protected].