It is that time once again, where foreign flags of friendship reign supreme… Side by side they stand in a perfectly choreographed choir singing internationally recognised hymns – chasing dreams of conquering round stuffed objects. Where countries that once fought as foes, in the United Nations of football now stand side by side and compete in healthy wars.
They now find themselves in league tables where there are no guarantees to permanent membership; the weak and absolute all in the same category. Or is it? I suppose the cynic in us would say it only takes bribing a pundit or two to match fix. I quite fancy the look of Group G- what do you make of it?
It is that time once again where new identities emerge and old trans-national identities are challenged. Will I support England – I suppose UKIP would want me to, or would I root for France, or perhaps Spain..? I know Nick Clegg would strongly support the latter. Hmm maybe I am not so sure anymore. I know David Cameron would welcome my reticence. Let’s go for a referendum he would say and we shall go for majority vote. Labour and Ed Miliband wouldn’t want me to discriminate. I can almost hear their cries of we are all equal and each team brings something different. Ed and Co would have me support the whole World. Well funny they should say that because I am a lover of all things underdog. Such was the case during the 2010 World Cup quarter finals between Ghana and Uruguay.
In retrospect (what a joy of a mental tool that is), there were two things that stuck out for me during that game. Of course I am not sure if Uruguay would qualify as an underdog because I am not aware of their football plight or the lack of it. But Ghana I was semi versed in their footballing plight, at least within the context of the African Cup of Nations and thus Ghana was an obvious choice to rally as part of my campaign to pledge support for all the teams that were unlikely to go past the first qualifying rounds.
Any who, the thing or things that stuck out for me during that long winded game where neither teams were ready to call it a day was that:
- Londoners were uncharacteristically friendly even engaging in football banter (I happened to be in London at the time of that game). As a Northerner I always had that lot as an aloof forever grumpy bunch. We Northerners will always strike a conversation with one another (99.999% of the time it will always be about the weather).
- I found my body ridding itself of any lady like attributes it may ever have had. I had what I could only characterise as an out of body experience. Imagine a five foot five (and three quarters) lass amongst a swamp of testosterone rage, shouting obscenities at a plasma screen urging Asamoah Gyan to better not miss that penalty!!!
Lo and behold when he did miss it, I was protesting profusely that I could have done a better job. Where did I see such display of tantrums before, eh? More importantly how did I come to learn such behaviour?
Ahh such is Football…and life in general I suppose… you win some you lose some.