Sunday, 6 April 2008


Going to football matches is much much more than just seeing the game. It is the atmosphere, the people, the tension and release of tension. In a big match like the one i went to at Arsenal (Wed 26th March)with thousands and thousands of people you go through various emotions: fear (large crowds), trepidation (as though matching through a thick forest), anticipation (whether you support one team or the other); fun ( the music, the singing, the colours); space and volume. Here you can scream your guts out just like everyone else. Idiosyncracy is allowed like nowhere else. Maybe huge concerts are the same. But in music concerts you have to shut up, sometimes and listen to the music. In football there is nothing to listen. You are watching and shouting. Others are doing the same.
Mass ooooOOOOH and aaaaaAAAH!!!

Brasil against Sweden had it's sentimental magic. Of course everywhere else were friendlies. Friendlies before it gets hostile in September when the heats for the 2010 World Cup (in South Africa) begin, world wide. Officially, the match was a revisit; i.e. 50 years since these two very opposite nations met in the 1958 finals, with Pele (then only 17) scoring two of the 5-2 win. In homage the Brasilian team wore the same blue shirts that were won by the Pele-Garrincha team half a century ago. This seemed strange perhaps for those too young to know historic details.
Like it or not football (or "soccer" to Americans) is the most popular sport on earth, because... it is just popular.

Boys kicking the ball; everywhere you go on earth : streets, parties, gutters, beaches, you name it. Nowadays of course you have girls kicking balls, too. Check out this blog's archive around October 2007!!!
I love the atmosphere.
There is the clever and less clever.
Alot of idiocy which you don't feel while watching matches on television. Like Frederick Lundberg (Sweden) touching the ball and a section of the crowd going nuts.
"He is the one with the red shoes!"
Brasil's Robinho starts running with the ball and is mowed down. In my mind he hasn't done anything, technically he just ran with the ball!....
He did not score, didn't even manage to set up a goal, didn't even pass the ball.
But the crowd around me is going into a frenzy. That is how illogical it can get. IT IS FUN. Here are kids, old people, women, pretty and more than pretty, large and small families, euphoric youths carrying flags, painted in flags, wearing flags...flagging...

Press and Players part of the glitter and glory.

You walk as if you are in sleep, in deep waters, a tunnell, religious hall...
Then the mind slurs and slithers back to 1988.
Maracana stadium watching Brasil and Argentina. Me and a German guy called Herbert are just mesmerised by Diego Maradona. But we dare not say it way.
We will get killed, for sure. He is the best player on the pitch, the artist, the dribbler ( recently only Zinedine Zidane has reached that zenith in my opinion); yet we dare not scream. That is how illogical it gets.
Mantra of this piece.
And what about the "Mexican Wave"?
This is the dance that joins us all here tonight.
ITS COMING....ITS hear the kids saying. One ten year old girl is hardly interested in the match at all. She loves the wave, the Wave, here it is...foot stamping, foot stomping, shake your feet, shake them, HERE IT IS...up you get, WOOOW...and gone.

The chaps on horses are another interesting sight here; policing forests of flesh. I had to pose with them.

Yes, there is more than the One Nil Win which Brasil clinched that magical night at Arsenal. And it wasn't even in the mainstream papers the next day. Now you know why blogs are significant don't you? It is about such wonderful experiences.

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