Soccer - A global sport
Like power sport is a zone of prestige, emulation and resistance. But it has something extra which power doesn't even seem to provide - Unity. I mostly being a sport fanatic became interested in soccer once I came to the competitive city of Chennai. Initially the interest was in Formula 1 racing. But EPL changed my lifestyle completely. I became acclimatized to chennai born friends who can be reached only via soccer and cricket, the latter being a part of my life. I had seen soccer World cups, EPL, Spanish liga and Champions league in Chennai with various kinds of freinds, actually of two kinds - those who know soccer soccer and those who understand soccer. I was fortunate enough to have freinds who were of the latter genre. Those times were great. I thought it was going to be difficult to forget. But the recent World cup is changing my perspective.
Currently being in the States is making a goliathic difference to my point of view. Imagine a room having a capacity of 250 seats, a big screen, surround speakers of 5kW, and of course free food filled with people of atleast 18 countries for each game. Now thats what I call a global sport. I had been going for every game and it had been an aweinspiring feeling being with these guys.
Let me explaing the Ghana vs Italy game. It was at 3pm Eastern time. I was making excuses as usual to my guide and came running to the student centre at around 2 45 pm. To my suprise all the front rows were filled. Italy to the left and Ghana supporters to the right. Behind them were South Koreans mingled along with the east asians Chinese and Japanese. Then there were these guys from Sudan, Saudi and Kuwait talking in 'Al *&%@ al &*^%* al*^* al al al al'. Dint have a clue what they were arguing about. Iranians were sitting as secluded band of brothers to the right end. Then there were these 8 heads which looked oddly familiar. Guess who? yep u were right! The Jawans from the mighty country of India. One of those countrymen who came to watch the magnificent sport not to support their country but to support world peace.
As expected I went and joined them. Then Morgan came with a meagre 1 more freind of his from the side of USA. (they were dissappointed coz US lost in the opener to Czech three hours ago).
Then there were the anti Italians - mostly from Europe and finally the humungous crowd of the Yellow jerseys - the Brazilians. Mexicans covered a table at the back. Then God siad let there be light and the ads stopped and the live game was shown. Then God said let there be sound and the ref blowed the start whistle and finally God said let there be life and guess what happened? God made the supervisor of the student centre to serve us with free food... "FREE FOOD"....
Ghanians waved their flags in ecstacy. Italians raising their right arm as if punching the wind. Other supporters Booing and Ooing with the shots, Desi's commenting on the crosses and the strategy. It was fun. Italians scared before the first goal. Ghanians encouraging every poor shot of Italy and the great saves of Kingston (Ghanian goalie). The 90 minutes was the best in my soccer fanatic life so far.
The best part was yet to come. The Italian fans shook hands with the Ghanians, others congratulating the Italians and saying ur guys did great to the Ghanians and finally changing jerseys and huggin each other, Now thats what I call as Unity by a sport.
To my suprise all Desi's were finally applauded for their keen sense of strategy making and then came the suprise. U guys are great in predicting the game and the field. How come you guys not in the world cup? The rest is just naive. Explaining Cricket to them is like explaining what Einsteins theory of relativity to a 3 year old kid.
The days keep on moving and the games too. Till the 8th of July my lifes gonna be different. Children cry, eat dirt, go behind their mama be it US or be it Somalia. There is no political barriers in the field of global sport. Just pure Human passion. A passion to be as one, and only as a Human of love and feeling.
And finally some funny one liners from famous soccer players
'Sometimes in football you have to score goals.' - Thierry Henry
'I would not be bothered if we lost every game as long as we won the league.' - Mark Viduka
'Germany are a very difficult team to play...they had 11 internationals out there today.' - Steve Lomas
'I always used to put my right boot on first, and then obviously my right sock.' - Barry Venison
'Alex Ferguson is the best manager I've ever had at this level. Well, he's the only manager I've actually had at this level. But he's the best manager I've ever had.' - David Beckham
'We lost because we didn't win.' - Ronaldo
'I've had 14 bookings this season - 8 of which were my fault, but 7 of which were disputable.' - Paul Gascoigne
'It was like the ref had a brand new yellow card and wanted to see if it worked.' - Richard Rufus
'Winning doesn't really matter as long as you win.' - Vinny Jones
'We must have had 99% of the game. It was the other three per cent that cost us the match.' - Ruud Gullit
'In a year's time, he's a year older.' - Bobby Robson
'The first 90 minutes are the most important.' - Bobby Robson.
'Peru score their third, and It's 3-1 to Scotland.' David Coleman
'If that had gone in, it would have been a goal.' - David Coleman
'This will be their 19th consecutive game without a win unless they can get an equaliser.' - Alan Green
'It's now 1-1, an exact reversal of the scoreline on Saturday.'- Radio 5 live
'And with just 4 minutes gone, the score is already 0-0.' - Ian Darke
'It was the game that put the Everton ship back on the road.' - Alan Green
'Lukic saved with his foot, which is all part of the goalkeeper's arm.' - Barry Davies
'Strangely, in slow motion replay, the ball seemed to hang in the air for even longer.' - David Acfield