World Cup Fever

Football, it’s a funny old game.

Oh, those Brazilians, you know? Circa 1970? Broke the mould. Theory out the window. Free expression of football. Uncategorisable. Is that a word? It is now! You know? Far cry from small boys in the park, jumpers for goalposts. Rush goalie. Two at the back, three in the middle, four up front, one’s gone home for his tea. Beans on toast? Possibly, don’t quote me on that. Marvellous.??
The Fast Show (1994)

I love watching World Cup Football. For those that know me this may come as a surprise, since football and I have never really had any sort of relationship, we’re barely even acquaintances. I certainly don’t follow any SPL teams, won’t watch any games if their on, and really have no interest. There’s a certain stage in growing up that I think sets some of your likes and dislikes that’ll carry on throughout your life. At this stage, I wan’t a fan of football.

At school I was always the keeper. Not that this was a bad thing, I was a decent keeper, had good reach, and didn’t mind taking a spill. But also, I had no ball control and tackled with extreme enthusiasm. Barely getting a chance to get involved in a game, and then having a 50/50 chance of being yelled at by my own team (who should have stopped the ball getting to me in the first place) for not saving a goal left the whole thing a little dull.

At home my dad was a Hibernian fan. Not that they are a bad team, certainly not any worse than many others. However, being an Edinburgh team my dad didn’t get much chance to go to match days and I wasn’t much inclined to with him. 90 minutes is a long time when you’re not that interested. I am glad to see that over the last couple of seasons he’s been going to matches quite regularly.

When the World Cup is on though, I try to catch every game I can. It’s great seeing all the thrills and disappointments.

Perhaps it’s the unpredictability of football at that level. Every team should be playing to their best, with the free pick of best players from their country. Yet still surprising come along; who would have seen Italy, the previous winners, drop out in the group stages ? Who could have even guessed that part-timers New Zealand would have done so well ?

Perhaps it’s the option of changing your alliance on a per game basis, supporting a team for just those 90 minutes even if you couldn’t name a single player from the squad. With no commitment to either side regularly the chosen team is the underdog, and who doesn’t like to see the underdog snatching victory? Try picking a random team in an SPL game and you can be sure there’s someone (probably several someone’s from either teams supporters) who’ll shout you down for supporting the opposition, or for not being a “true” supporter.

So lets all enjoy what’s left of an exciting tournament - It’s just a shame Scotland’s never in it :)


m0ok says:
Try picking a random team in an SPL game = I smell a project. Not the SPL, but what about choosing a random team from the first division once a month and going to one of their games and supporting them? 12 months, 12 teams, an adventure in glory and failure? :)