Entertainment

The United States And Chile Will Miss The 2018 World Cup, Here Are The Memes (And Goals)

Whew. Where do we begin. The final match day of 2018 World Cup qualifying in CONCACAF (North America, Central America & Caribbean) and CONMEBOL (South America) was intense. With the fate of several teams, including Argentina, Chile, Peru and the United States, all being decided in one day, this match day was not for the faint of heart.

Before the matches began, all eyes were on perennial World Cup favorite Argentina. Despite boasting the top player in the world, Lionel Messi, Argentina was in danger of elimination with a loss. Would Messi lead his team to victory and a trip to Russia?

Next was Peru. With a victory, “La Blanquirroja” had a chance to book a ticket to the World Cup for the first time since 1982.

The United States, despite its earlier struggles during qualification, looked to be in a good position to qualify. All the U.S. needed to advance was a win or draw against Trinidad & Tobago, a team that was already eliminated from World Cup qualification.

As the day progressed, there were lots of goals and several unexpected plot twists. Here’s how it all went down.

Less than a minute after Argentina vs. Ecuador kicked off, Ecuador scored a goal. If the result held, Argentina would have been eliminated.

But sure enough, Lionel Messi put the team on his back, scoring a hat trick to seal a victory and a trip to the World Cup.

Messi’s clutch performance made it look like this was Argentina’s starting lineup:

memedeportes.com

Messi quieted those who said he could only perform at a high level for his club team, Barcelona.

Once again, Messi became more than a hero.

Colombia vs. Peru was a nail-biter, with Colombia striking first and Peru leveling the score in the second half. The game ended in a 1-1 draw…

… which meant Chile was out of the World Cup after its 0-3 loss to Brazil.

The CONMEBOL teams that qualified for the World Cup were Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and Colombia. Peru kept its World Cup hopes alive and will have a two-match playoff versus New Zealand.

Chile, the reigning Copa America champs, will experience the World Cup like many of us:

Like Argentina, the United States gave up an early goal. Unfortunately for the Stars & Stripes, they gave up a second goal to Trinidad & Tobago.

Despite being down 0-2, the U.S. was still on track to make the World Cup. Why? By halftime, Panama and Honduras, the two teams that could leapfrog the U.S. in the standings, were also losing.

Christian Pulisic gave the USMNT a lifeline with an early second half goal.

All the U.S. needed was another goal to tie the match.

But as the clock ticked, Honduras tied things up with Mexico AND Panama tied things up with Costa Rica.

Both Mexico and Costa Rica had already booked their tickets to Russia.

Then Honduras took a 3-2 lead over Mexico…

… Panama took a 2-1 lead over Costa Rica…

And the United States, which failed to score another goal, was eliminated.

The CONCACAF teams that qualified for the World Cup were Mexico, Costa Rica and Panama. Honduras will face off Australia in a two-game playoff.

Naturally, USMNT fans were devastated.

U.S. soccer journalist Grant Wahl summed up it this way:

Of course, rival fans were ready with the memes.

Even U.S. fans were roasting their team…

… and themselves.

It seemed like Pulisic was the only player to escape criticism.

Just how unlikely was the result? Here are some numbers for you:

With the U.S., Chile and Netherlands all eliminated from the World Cup, some Mexico fans rejoiced.

The U.S. eliminated Mexico from the World Cup in 2002, Argentina eliminated Mexico in back-to-back World Cups (2006 and 2010), and Netherlands eliminated Mexico in 2014 (the infamous “No Era Penal” match).

But the biggest party will happen today in Panama…

… where President Juan Carlos Varela declared a public holiday so the country can celebrate its first appearance in a World Cup.

¡Felicidades, Panama!

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America Ferrera Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Working On ‘Gotta Kick It Up’ With Sweet IG Post

Entertainment

America Ferrera Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Working On ‘Gotta Kick It Up’ With Sweet IG Post

It has been 20 years since America Ferrera’s dream of becoming an actor back true. She took to Instagram to reflect on the moment that her dream started to come true and it is a sweet reminder that anyone can chase their dreams.

America Ferrera shared a sweet post reflecting on the 20th anniversary of working on “Gotta Kick It Up!”

“Gotta Kick It Up!” was one of the earliest examples of Latino representation so many of us remember. The movie follows a school dance team trying to be the very best they could possibly be. The team was down on their luck but a new teacher introduces them to a different kind of music to get them going again.

After being introduced to Latin beats, the dance team is renewed. It taps into a cultural moment for the Latinas on the team and the authenticity of the music makes their performances some of the best.

While the movie meant so much to Latino children seeing their culture represented for the first time, the work was a major moment for Ferrera. In the Instagram post, she gushes over the celebrities she saw on the lot she was working on. Of course, anyone would be excited to see Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt hanging out. Yet, what stands out the most is Ferrera’s own excitement to realize that she can make money doing what she loves most.

“I wish I could go back and tell this little baby America that the next 20 years of her life will be filled with unbelievable opportunity to express her talent and plenty of challenges that will allow her to grow into a person, actress, producer, director, activist that she is very proud and grateful to be. We did it baby girl. I’m proud of us,” Ferrera reflects.

Watch the trailer for “Gotta Kick It Up!” here.

READ: America Ferrera’s “Superstore” Is Going To Get A Spanish-Language Adaptation In A Win For Inclusion

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This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

Entertainment

This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

On a recent episode of ABC’s game show To Tell The Truth, three celebrity panelists were tasked to uncover the identity of a real mariachi singer.

Each contender embodied “non-traditional” attributes of mariachi culture either through physical appearance or language barriers, leaving the panelists stumped.

When it came time for the big reveal, with a humble smile 53-year-old Timoteo “El Charro Negro” stood up wowing everyone. Marveled by his talents, Timoteo was asked to perform unveiling his smooth baritone voice.

While not a household name in the U.S., his career spans over 25 years thriving on the catharsis of music.

Timoteo “El Charro Negro” performing “Chiquilla Linda” on Dante Night Show in 2017.

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Timoteo, born Timothy Pollard, moved to Long Beach, California with his family when he was eight years old. The move to California exposed Pollard to Latin culture, as the only Black family in a Mexican neighborhood.

As a child, he recalled watching Cantinflas because he reminded him of comedian Jerry Lewis, but musically he “got exposed to the legends by chance.”

“I was bombarded by all the 1960s, ’70s, and ’50s ranchera music,” Timoteo recalls to mitú.

The unequivocal passion mariachi artists like Javier Solis and Vicente Fernandez possessed heavily resonated with him.

“[The neighbors] always played nostalgic music, oldies but goodies, and that’s one thing I noticed about Mexicans,” Timoteo says. “They can be in their 20s but because they’ve grown up listening to the oldies it’s still very dear to them. That’s how they party.”

For as long as he can remember, Pollard “was born with the genetic disposition to love music,” knowing that his future would align with the arts.

After hearing Vicente Fernandez sing “Lástima Que Seas Ajena,” an awakening occurred in Pollard. While genres like hip-hop and rap were on the rise, Pollard’s passion for ranchera music grew. It was a moment when he realized that this genre best suited his big voice.

Enamored, Pollard began to pursue a career as a Spanish-language vocalist.

El Charro Negro
Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

At 28, Timoteo began learning Spanish by listening and singing along to those artists he adored in his youth.

“When I decided that I wanted to be a mariachi, I didn’t think it was fair to exploit the culture and not understand the language,” he says. “If I’m going to sing, I need to be able to communicate with my audience and engage with them. I need to understand what I’m saying because it was about honor and respect.”

Pollard began performing local gigs after picking up the language in a matter of months. He soon attracted the attention of “Big Boy” Radio that adorned him the name Timoteo “El Charro Negro.”

Embellishing his sound to highlight his Black heritage, Pollard included African instruments like congas and bongos in his orchestra. Faintly putting his own spin on a niche genre, Pollard avoided over-saturating the genre’s sound early in his career.

Embraced by his community as a beloved mariachi, “El Charro Negro” still encountered race-related obstacles as a Black man in the genre.

“There are those [in the industry] who are not in the least bit thrilled to this day. They won’t answer my phone calls, my emails, my text messages I’ve sent,” he says. “The public at large hasn’t a problem with it, but a lot of the time it’s those at the helm of decision making who want to keep [the genre] exclusively Mexican.”

“El Charro Negro” persisted, slowly attracting fans worldwide while promoting a message of harmony through his music.

In 2007, 12 years into his career, Pollard received a golden ticket opportunity.

El Charro Negro
Pollard (left) seen with legendary Mexican artist Vicente Fernandez (right) in 2007. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In a by-chance encounter with a stagehand working on Fernandez’s tour, Pollard was offered the chance to perform onstage. The singer was skeptical that the offer was legit. After all, what are the chances?

The next day Pollard went to his day job at the time and said, “a voice in my head, which I believe was God said, ‘wear your blue velvet traje tonight.'”

That evening Pollard went to a sold-out Stockton Area where he met his idol. As he walked on the stage, Pollard recalls Fernandez insisting that he use his personal mic and band to perform “De Que Manera Te Olvido.”

“[Fernandez] said he did not even want to join me,” he recollects about the show. “He just was kind and generous enough to let me sing that song on his stage with his audience.”

The crowd applauded thunderously, which for Pollard was a sign of good things to come.

El Charro Negro
Timoteo “El Charro Negro” with Don Francisco on Don Francisco Presenta in 2011. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In 2010, he released his debut album “Me Regalo Contigo.” In perfect Spanish, Pollard sings with great conviction replicating the soft tones of old-school boleros.

Unraveling the rollercoaster of relationships, heart-wrenchingly beautiful ballads like “Me Regalo Contigo” and “Celos” are his most streamed songs. One hidden gem that has caught the listener’s attention is “El Medio Morir.”

As soon as the track begins it is unlike the others. Timoteo delivers a ’90s R&B love ballad in Spanish, singing with gumption as his riffs and belts encapsulate his unique sound and story.

Having appeared on shows like Sabado Gigante, Don Francisco Presenta, and Caso Cerrado in 2011, Timoteo’s career prospered.

Timoteo hasn’t released an album since 2010 but he keeps his passion alive. The singer has continued to perform, even during the Covid pandemic. He has high hopes for future success and original releases, choosing to not slow down from his destined musical journey.

“If God is with me, who can be against me? It may not happen in a quick period of time, but God will make my enemies my footstool,” he said.

“I’ve continued to be successful and do some of the things I want to do; maybe not in a particular way or in particular events, but I live in a very happy and fulfilled existence.”

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