France 1, Italy 1 (f.t., 25 minutes of extra-time elapsed)

…and with this 110th minute foul, we have an ignominious conclusion to the glittering international career of Zinedine Zidane.

Looks like we’re bound for oh-fuck-not-again penalties, with little but the following quote to console ourselves,

Makelele is probably the only person on the planet who can have sex anonymously, and still do it brilliantly: he has been immaculate tonight. Rob Smyth, The Guardian

That said, the Times’ Tom Dart, having hit bulls-eyes throughout the tournament, does a fine job of describing the pomp and pagentry of this event.

I don’t know whether it was because the fans felt that nothing can top Shakira, but the atmosphere really isn’t as good here as in most of the games I’ve been to. It’s lousy compared to last night’s third-place play-off, for instance, though of course since the goals it’s ratcheted up a decibel or two.

I suspect it’s less to do with a post-Colombian pop-temptress torpor and more about the fact that this is a cavernous stadium with a running track, so the fans are far from the pitch.

It’s a tremendous relief knowing that no matter how this match ends, the Cialis Western Open will stay be waiting for us. Or at least Cialis.

(Inter’s Fabio Grosso, looking forward to the parade where he and his teammates force Marcello Lippi to freestyle)

(UPDATE : Italy wins on penalties, 5-3, for their 4th World Cup title. The championship will be a nice addition to the resumes of many of the Italian players, given they’re likely to be looking for new jobs once their Serie A clubs are forcibly relegated. Another point to ponder : the oft-maligned United States team was the only side to earn a point against Italy in this tournament. Which probably means the U.S.’s FIFA ranking will improve from no. 5 to no. 2.

Brent Musberger would like to point out that none of Italian players have personally been accused of throwing matches. Hopefully, he can make the same claim when broadcasting the Little League World Series next month.)