It’s time to watch (or explain) soccer again

Football fans, it’s Euro Cup 2012 time. If you live in the U.S., like me, prepare to justify your existence to people who prefer to watch other sports. If you live in other countries, I celebrate your freedom to share your joy with anyone within spitting distance. Lucky you.

But surely what unites all of us is the onslaught of football-related infographics, complete with awesome Photoshop cutouts of players, images of the coiffed Ronaldo, exploding piecharts and Pinterest boards too numerous to mention. Thus far, I haven’t found any graphics as funny as the Onion’s World Cup 2010 interactive, but it’s early, so I’m still hopeful–there’s a lot of Photoshop licenses out there.

The Onion's World Cup 2010 interactive

The Onion's World Cup 2010 interactive

If you’re a football fan, I’m sure you’ve already seen this interactive calendar by Marca.com as well as this fixture schedule, both featured on the CultFootball site.

interactive calendar cult football by Marca.com

UEFA's Euro Cup 2012 fixtures map

Aside from logistics, there’s the ongoing boycott petition in Germany, sponsored by a GLBT group (and Germany’s first openly gay football player) in protest of the Ukraine president’s refusal to denounce his country’s laws which criminalize homosexuality. The petition asks Angela Merkel to follow France and the UK’s example and boycott the Euro Cup (as foreign dignitaries). We’ll see, she says. This isn’t an infographic, per se, but it’s a visual statement nonetheless.

Euro 2012 anti homophobia

And then there is this, kindly brought to us by the gambling community (reminding us that betting is a huge part of football):

Euro-2012-Infographic

One of my favorite football-related infographics is always the slew of stadium infographics and maps, each one looking suspiciously like high-tech UFOs (why did I say that? Is there any other kind of UFO?). This year is no different. When the little green men/women/whosamawhatsit come to visit, they’ll feel right at home in one of these:

UFO stadiums Euro Cup 2012

And then there’s the Spanish team buzz on social media. Well, it is what it is. Go Spain!!!

Spain and the Euro Cup social media

 

The popes and football, visualized in Portugal

If I get hit by a bus, I’d like to come back reincarnated as a lab rat in the Universidad Porto’s Laboratorio de Infografía (Portugal). I’m pretty sure I know how the Catholic Church feels about reincarnation. But I wonder how they would feel about this interactive that covers 15 popes from 1900 to 2001. I suspect this is pretty old (it’s Flash) but it’s fun and not very complex. The interface is somewhat clunky–the transitions over the word clouds (of which I am not a fan, but for entertainment, they work) could be much smoother. Nonetheless, if you must use these lazy gems (and I have) this is an interesting use of word clouds and rollovers.

Universidad Porto Papas Flash Interactive

While you’re at it, check out this football transfers data visualization, also from Universidad Porto. It ranks the amounts spent on player transfers in European football clubs (as well as the biggest spenders and how Portuguese clubs fare). The first tab shows the European market (roll over the club names to find total spent (shown as millions of Euros) and where (inside the circle). Unfortunately the donut chart format that is meant to compliment the numeric totals is pretty useless. Totals run along the bottom. Second and third tabs show the four largest Portuguese clubs (incoming and outgoing transfers) and the most expensive players, respectively. Don’t forget to click on the second tab’s player origin/destination link (“ver origem e destine dos jug adores”).

Universidad Porto European transfers