Australia is currently Wally Ball mad. (Wally Ball being Soccer, or for those in the UK and Europe, football.) Apparently there is some World Mug event going on in some far flung place.
I do not enjoy this sport. I cannot understand the point of it. I have sat through a few matches in my time and not even in a convivial environment such as the Saracen’s Head Pub in Bath, surrounded by crazed Man U fans (I was the sole Liverpool supporter, albeit a half-hearted one) and a pint of Guinness in my head, could any enthusiasm for this game be aroused in me.
The first match I ever watched ended in a 0-0 draw! The second resulted in a frustrating 1-0 loss for Chelsea. (It could have been Newcastle. Blue was the predominant colour, which is why I was barracking for them, blue being my favourite colour.)
Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying these Wally Ball players are not excellent athletes and that spectators are not treated to rather joyous moments of skilled ball play. It’s just that I cannot see the point of expending all that energy (both as a player or a spectator) for so few points.
The match I referred to above ended with a 2-1 score; that is ninety minutes of ball play for a 2-1 score. (Unfortunately, Liverpool were not the victors.) I used to watch news reports on football violence in complete disbelief and incomprehension. However, I can now understand how these crazed eruptions occur. After ninety minutes of spectator-frustration I was absolutely beside myself with anxiety and disappointment. And I did not give a toss who won! I can only imagine what was going on inside the hearts and minds of those who really did understand and care what was happening; whose “AWH!”s and “YEAH!”s had much more passion and devotion behind them than mine.
And I know this is a particularly girly thing to say, but as a girl, there is not much enjoyment to be had during boring moments from players wearing such loose-fitting shorts? At least in Australian Rules there are some tightly-clad butts to gaze at when things get a little boring.
Now I find myself in a position where as devoted aunt, I must show an interest in this insanity-arousing sport because my nephews ‘A’ & ‘T’ are both soccer mad. ‘A’ has just returned home from his soccer trials where he was battling against other 9 year olds for a place on the school holiday soccer training camp. Before he begins his career in archaeology, ‘T’ wants to play for Australia and be like some bloke called Tim Kewell or Harry Cahill.
And no doubt my other nephew ‘J’ will be soccer mad. It is inevitable what with him being a resident of the UK where football is the national obsession and with a mother who is a mad Liverpool supporter (hence my half-hearted affiliation). Add to this his Mum’s soccer-obsessed boyfriend and Kev’s 9 year-old son ‘B’, who will probably play for Newcastle United one day, the chances of ‘J’ not being a soccer nut are rather remote.
So I suppose, as a devoted aunt, I had better start getting to grips with this crazy game to show support for the young soccer/football nuts in my life. The things we aunts must do! I thought having to watch Hannah Montana Miley Cyrus with my niece was bad!