Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Just In Case Group Play Gets A Little Stabby

Illustration for article titled Just In Case Group Play Gets A Little Stabby

South Africa is going to do everything in its power to make the World Cup safe for visitors. But it never pays to take chances, and now you can buy stab-proof body armor emblazoned with your country's flag.


Enter the Protektor Vest. For the low, low price of $70, you can slap the Stars and Stripes on this vest made to prevent "stabs, cuts, slashes and blows from sharp-edged or spiked weapons." In other words, your typical soccer match.

It's made and sold by an English company, which is only fitting from the country that popularized, if not invented, hooliganism. Rather than force you to lug it on your flight, it will be delivered direct to your hotel in Johannesburg or Pretoria.

The site selling them has all kinds of scary statistics about knife crime in South Africa, but some levelheaded individuals are condeming the vests as obvious fearmongering and an ill-advised publicity stunt.

Spokesman Malcolm Clarke said it worked closely with the authorities and the Football Association to give fans security advice.

"Part of that advice will not include buying a stab vest," he said. ''This will just panic people and introduce a degree of tension. They are not exactly going to endear fans to the host nation and we would advise them not to buy these things."

Right now the best selling badges are the USA, England, Japan, Brazil and "Free Hugs." This leads one to believe that the hooligans have developed a sense of humor, or that no one has actually bought one, and the website is surviving based solely on people sending the link to their friends.