Who the frick is Nuno Gohmz? How did he sneak onto the field against Germany in the place of Nuno Gomes? Seriously, when Nuno Gomes scored the lovely diving header yesterday off a gorgeously shaped cross from Figo, the commentators went on and on about the goal by "Gohmz", pronounced to rhyme with English "homes". (For some reason it made me keep thinking "who is this Gormless Gohmz--remember Gormless Gordon from that old game "Mermaid Madness"?). JP Dellacamera started the "Gohmz" business, and I figured John Harkes just had to correct him. No. John Harkes went on with the same pronunciation in his comments. And through the rest of the game they mentioned the goal, and the mispronounced name over and over, making me wince each time. It was almost as if they were doing it on purpose to goad their detractors. Well, I'm well bloody goaded.
Never mind that it takes only a little familiarity with Portuguese names (and nicknames: Gomes is not actually his surname) to understand some general patterns of their pronunciation, and that there were three teams in this World Cup offering plenty of examples that would suggest anything bu an elision of that second "e". I suppose it's too much to expect for JP and John to have watched the Champions League, where Nuno Gomes played for Benfica, and had his name pronounced reasonably well by superior commentators. Or simpler yet, did they not have a pronunciation sheet provided by the mighty ABC? Surely ABC Sports/ESPN has a research department. Oh, I know: they're otherwise occupied hunting down all those useless stats posted up in a black box to obscure the actual game we tuned in to watch.
OK, so mispronouncing a name is a minor sin, and to be fair, UK commentators mispronounce non-Brit names all the time (and I think they often do so out of perversity rather than ignorance), but something about the mangling of "Gomes" really underscored for me the slovenliness of the commentators we've had to endure. With 83 comments, and counting, on my first complaint about those imbeciles, I know I'm far from alone in my frustration.