Sunday, May 25, 2014

Monrovia troubles

The Champions League final is one of the most important matches of the year for every self-respecting football fan (and even for the ones who do not respect themselves, like myself). So it was with eagerness I speculated where to watch the match within my Monrovia-bubble.
Now, you have to know that I am an idiot; I never take decisions, but linger forever in the analysis.
After I put down an offer, I went to a bar called "Jamal's" to watch the match. I have watched a match there before. A large screen, but it is catering to fans for specific matches; otherwise they do not like football.
Twenty minutes into the match the screen went black. After three minutes (that is about as long I am willing to wait) I ran (yes, I ran, have you ever run in hot and humid Monrovia?) three blocks to a bar called Sajj. This is where many expatriates go to hang out and drink beer, and indeed, they had put up two screens. I got into the place just as Diego Godin had brought Atletico Madrid ahead 0-1.
Without the possibility of focusing on the match, I was nevertheless happy that Atletico were ahead. Would they really be able to do it...? I would have thought it impossible.
And of course it was impossible. There is only one great team in Madrid.
I found a good spot in Sajj, but halfway into the second half it started raining, and that meant we lost the signal. 50 quiet people in a bar to watch football...
The signal came back in the 92nd minute of the match, just in time to see Sergio Ramos equalising. After this, it was only a question of time before seeing the writing on the wall; years of experience and nerves from the midgets, but Real Madrid won 4-1, humiliating Atletico Madrid much more than they deserved. The saddest thing seemed to be that Diego Simeone went crazy and Raphael Varane did not understand what it is to win. So in the end, a match that all of Madrid should win, became a bit less of a victory for the city.
A bitter-sweet 10th for Real Madrid.
But this is not the saddest part of the match: I managed to watch extra time, drink a couple of beers, but never managed to watch the entire match. It reminded me of the Liverpool-AC Milan final of 2005, when light went out during the penalty kicks, when I also went crazy.

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