At the top today is defender Ria Percival, who holds the caps record (for men and women) in New Zealand.
Ramble of the Day
At some point during the afternoon I spent distracting myself from yesterday’s mood dampening match, I was thinking about Christmas songs (because I was listening to them). There’s a pretty solid group of traditional and famous ones — the ones on every Christmas playlist and the ones with a number of acceptable and popular covers. That group of songs, though, does not feature a ton of original entries from the last few decades that have made it into this widely accepted rotation of songs. I can really only think of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” from 1994. (I’m wondering if Kelly Clarkson’s 2013 song “Underneath the Tree” counts, but I think I’ve only really heard it in commercials.)
It’s not like people haven’t tried — there are a lot of Christmas albums full of original music. I went down a bit of a rabbit hole a little while ago, and let me tell, there are a lot of bad original Christmas songs from the last few decades. It wasn’t really an effort to find good original Christmas music, so I’m sure there are enough good ones out there that enjoy some level of popularity. Very few songs break it into that exclusive group of songs, though.
My theory right now is that it’s just really hard to just create a good Christmas song. I’m not entirely sure why — again, I haven’t done a lot of research on original Christmas songs. I wonder if it’s nostalgia holding the original entries back, or if there’s a special quality a classic Christmas song has, either tangible or intangible.
tl;dr: Your distraction, should you need it, is me wondering why it might be hard to come up a universally adored original Christmas song.
Stay informed, read this: basketball player Imani McGee-Stafford on surviving sexual abuse and how her experiences as a survivor changed when she told other people for The Players’ Tribune
Links of the Day
Two Newcastle players could miss several weeks with COVID-19.
The family of England World Cup winner Nobby Stiles said his brain was severely damaged by heading the ball.
A longer read: Adam White on the financial trouble Ligue 1 clubs are in after a television rights deal worth more than €1 billion fell through for The Guardian