Priests v. Palestinians

Logo of the Palestine Football Association

And this time it has nothing to do with bickering or unpleasant conflict. This time it’s football.

The priests may have been hoping for a miracle when they took on the Palestinian national football team in Bethlehem but they lost 9-1 in a rout of biblical proportions. After an heroic first half battling valiantly to fend off their hosts, the international lineup of Catholic priests in their yellow and blue strip managed to hold the home side to 0-0 at half-time in a charity match in the southern West Bank late on Tuesday. Decked out with Palestinian and Italian flags, alongside the white and gold of the Vatican, Bethlehem’s Al-Khader stadium was packed with spectators — among them hundreds of excited children and a respectable showing of Franciscan monks in their trademark brown robes. Time after time through the tense first half, their God-fearing goalkeeper fended off the Palestinian attack, aided by providence — and the goal posts. But it was the second half that proved to be their undoing, as the red-shirted youngsters ran rings around them, putting goal after goal into the back of the net.

Poor Catholics- they can’t catch a break these days. Even a football victory escapes them. Bless their hearts.