Thursday, February 28, 2019

The beauty of ignorance

Today someone whom I have spoken with about football in an earlier life asked me: "Have you seen that Real Madrid is down 0-3?"
"Who are they playing?" I asked earnestly.
He laughed, thinking that I was joking, and after a moment of hesitation I said something brilliant: "Well, they ain't been playing well since Ronaldo left".
He smiled and replied that indeed, this was not the same Madrid as last season.
I don't think he ever realized that I could care less, and that I have in fact not looked at the standings of any league since last year.
But I was curious: I see that Barcelona defeated Real Madrid to make it to the Copa de Rey Final, and that the Catalans are also leading the League nine points ahead of Real Madrid on third place (one behind Atletico Madrid).
Now, did this curiosity awake any desire to again take up the old passion that meant so much to me? Nope. As I looked at the table I was reminded of all the insults, abuses, excuses, reprimands, blame-games, schadenfreude and outright hate springing out from these results.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Club de Cuervos

I have not watched a match for months nor followed any footballing news (well, some news that basically show the real face of football) but I have to mention that recently I started to watch the Mexican comedy series on Netflix, Club de Cuervos, which is about a provincial football team in the Mexican top league, Los Cuervos, after the owner dies and his children take over the club. The show is hilarious, taking the piss out of the many hypocrisies of football, as well having many funny lines. If anything, it is much more entertaining than real football, and surely not as choreographed or full as hate as the real thing. I recommend it.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

The Copa Libertadores final of hate

The Copa Libertadores Final in Buenos Aires between arch-rivals River Plate and Boca Juniors had to be postponed today because of River Plates' fans vicious attack against the Boca Juniors bus, which not only left Boca players with minor injuries, but worse, very scared.
Nobody deserves to be in such a situation.
The whole thing was a disgrace not only to Argentina, but also to the rest of South America.
The match has been lauded as one of the most awaited matches of the century as the rivalry is perhaps the most intense in world football. I am sorry to say this, but Boca-River is not a question of friendly competition (not a single fan of either team understands this concept), even for people who outside football would be friends, family or lovers.
Following the cancellation the club presidents were quick accusing 10-15 "impresentables" who were to blame for the whole incident. Besides the fact that you can see much more than 15 guys on the TV pictures, this is not really true!
I do not feel sorry for a single of the 65000 fans inside the stadium who were unable to see the match. They were as guilty as the millions of River and Boca fans who are in fact intellectual authors of the crime; the vast majority of fans may not throw the stones, but were surely applauding.
The problem is football itself which creates these divisions!
Argentina is not the only place this happens, but today's events are just an extreme example. And football managers have no interest in solving it! They are the ones benefiting from this! They will say that football is "peace and friendly competition" but will at the same time be pouring gasoline on the fire of fierce rivalry, because it benefits them, and also takes the view away from society's wider problems.
"Blame society. We have nothing to do with it".
Football is hate. Prove me wrong.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Selective truth

Football is just a mirror of the real world. And as in the real world it doesn't matter what the truth is, but who you support. I recently overheard a conversation between two football fans about Mr. Cristiano Ronaldo, and an apparent ongoing investigation about him and a lady. I don't know what it is about, and will and can not comment on this; the investigation should go its course and justice happen. But this was not the case for these football fans, who had already decided on Ronaldo's guilt because they clearly disliked him (I strongly gather they were Barcelona fans). I am sure that there are also plenty of Ronaldo fans who think otherwise: he must be innocent because he is the great Cristiano Ronaldo!
Cristiano Ronaldo is indeed a great footballer, and for the last years has been the greatest in the world. But that does not make him more or less guilty of anything outside the football pitch than any other person.
But of course, football fans do not think like that.
Truth is a choice.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Thanks Wayne Rooney

I just saw that Wayne Rooney has played his last match for the England national team. I am not a fan of England, and not a fan of basically any club Mr. Rooney ever played for. Nevertheless, I am a fan of Mr. Rooney, and I just realized how many years I have been following this great man's career: since his debut in the Champions League against Fenerbahce, when I said I hoped he would be a great player, to when he lost his temper (and I had malaria), to some of his most incredible performances (against AC Milan, Manchester City, West Ham, etc.). He is perhaps not the best there ever was, but he is a great player who played with passion and who loved the game, and that is always worthy of respect, no matter what team you play for.
I know that is old-fashioned and that people who hate the teams he played for will always hate him; because football is hate. But as to me, I admire a solid and talented professional, and want to thank him for the years I followed him.