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The soccer fan in me

June 11, 2010

Somehow the game of football baffles me with its club nature. As I have watched cricket as a nation’s sport its difficult identify football and I love that game only in 4 years time. And now the time beckons.

Turn back the clock by 12 years. 1998.  I am a harmless kid watching only cricket most of the time discussing about that only. Suddenly one fine day all the news channels screaming France won the world cup football in their home soil defeating Brazil 3 – 0. And Zidane scored 2 goals through header is the headlines of most of the newspaper. But that didn’t excited me and I continued to be the normal cricket fanatic.

Now move forward to 4 years. 2002. Now I came to know about few names in football and most prominent among them is Maradona and his goal of the century. But alas!!! He is retired. I have read about Zidane also. And also read few of the pre-tournament articles in the Tamil newspaper Dinamani. As I liked Maradona and Zidane my favorites were Argentina and France. More than France, I am more connected with Argentina when it comes to football. I betted on both of them and they are among the pre-tournament favorites. As I studied 12th then I was not allowed to watch any match… sob. But both the teams were out of tournament in the first round itself… Sob sob… But I have cut down all the pictures related to that world cup and wanted to make an album. But I never made it and all those pictures went to dust bin… sob sob sob… And in the finals I wanted Germany to win but Brazil won it… Sob sob sob sob… If somebody from Brazil scores a goal I wished it has to be Rivaldo… but both the goals were scored by Ronaldo… sob sob sob sob sob… I wanted Oliver Kahn to pose with the world cup but was down with tears at his own goal post… sob sob sob sob sob sob. Now the 2002 world cup was absolute misery for me and my teams.

But one thing I have to admit was my admiration for the beautiful football played by Brazil. They are just unstoppable. I have watched the finals and there was a distinct difference between the two teams. German players attack were from the flanks and their crosses were not perfect. But the Brazilian forwards were intimidating and they ran towards German goal like the school children running after leaving the school. Ronaldo was absolute killer.

Now again move forward by 4 years. 2006. This time I was not updated with any kind of knowledge about football. But the Hindu paper we bought in our home then started to dish out lot of pre-tournament articles about the individual players and I become addicted to it and I decided to watch 2006 WC. The best part is, I was in my annual vacation made the things real easy. I watched almost all the matches then. My college reopened on July 10th and the final was July 9th. What timing!!!! Again my favorite teams are Argentina and France. This time too Argentina was critics favorite but France wasn’t.I supported France for Zidane.

I wanted to see Lionel Messi in action. But in the first match he didn’t played. Argentina opened in a perfect fashion winning the match against Ivory coast 2 – 1. Second match against Serbia was full of action with my team pulling off a whopping 6 – 0 win. Among the six goals this one stands out as best. 25 touches before sending the ball into goal. Marvelous display of beautiful game.

They rounded off their campaign in group stages with a 0 – 0 draw against Netherlands to top the group. France’s group stage was not smooth. After 2 tame draws they managed to win the last group game to qualify for second round.

The team which really impressed me was Australia. They played a good physical game with less number of fouls. How they were able to shine in every sports??? something for us to think.

Argentina met Mexico in their second round and their goal scoring skills started to diminish as they played the ball only in midfield and not able to put it forward. I didn’t watched this match as I was in traveling, I managed to watch this wonder goal from Maxi Rodriguez which turned to be the best goal of the tournament.

France met much fancied Spain in their second round but Zidane and big match pressure proved too good for Spain. From this match onwards it is Zidane who orchestrated the France entry into finals.

Argentina met host nation Germany in the QF and I firmly believed that my team had the edge. But due to the heavy defensive tactics not many opportunities were created and match moved into Penalty shootout only to give a heartbreak to me. I felt there are lot of decisions went in favor of Germany. I cried that night. Period.

With Argentina gone, my hopes are rested on France. France continued their march with a 1 – 0 win over defending champions Brazil and one man stood out from the 22 players played on field. Its ZIDANE. He was all over Brazil produced a magical display of football which left the Samba boys gasping.

The semifinal against Portugal was not that great with Zidane scoring of a penalty stroke to clinch the match. I remember that match for the exchange of T-shirts between 2 greats of the game Zidane and Figo as a gesture of goodwill.

So all set for the final with Italy whose stout defending put them in finals. Not a team which was fascinating to watch but their football is an effective one. But with Zidane on form I believed France will pull it off. The opening goal scored by Zidane again through a penalty stroke. But Italy equalized it through Materazzi… I will forgive him for that but I can’t forgive for bad mouthing about Zidane’s family which led to the infamous headbutt incident. And with that France team lost their hopes of winning the match. His glittering career ended with red card.

And again I slept feeling very bad about the match.


NOW. This year I am just reading Football from every piece of paper and its the only thing I am reading now. And my support is for only Argentina this time. With Messi in team it has the potential to win the cup. But its all depends on the coach and ‘The football god’ Maradona who must control his heart so that his mind can work with the same efficiency as his days as player. Spain were favorites this time and I like their game but sadly favorites never win a world cup. Sob sob.

Anyway I am going to be super excited in the next 1 month and all please bear with my football related posts in this time period.

30 Comments leave one →
  1. June 11, 2010 8:23 am

    Soccer Soccer…. everywhere…. where will poor shilpa go 😦

    kanagu: South Africa 🙂 🙂

  2. June 11, 2010 9:45 am

    oh yea!
    I wasn’t such a huge fan till France won!
    This year, I’m going to have fun watching the matches!! 😀

    kanagu: Whom you are going to support this time???

  3. June 11, 2010 10:42 am

    I hv a fanatic @ home too .. who hs even sent me his google calender so that I dnt plan seeing some other pgm @ those times 😛 😛

    kanagu: ha ha ha 🙂 🙂 Well done Su 🙂

  4. June 11, 2010 11:46 am

    Same here! I am more of a world cup fanatic than the EPL. I like seeing countries battling it out than clubs but Still I have favorites in club :P. Anyways, I started soccer in 2002 when my Grand Pa forced me to watch. In that WC, I became a fan of Germany… Ballack and Klose were my favorites. I still havent decided my fav for this time. I have 5 teams at present :P.

    kanagu: Germany is a good team.. lets see who wins 🙂 🙂

  5. aryan's mom permalink
    June 11, 2010 1:43 pm

    ahh..I have not idea about football…but my other half enjoys to the core and I just know that it is 90 min games (True/false?)

    kanagu: Thats true 🙂 🙂 If you watch it you wil also like it 🙂 🙂

  6. June 11, 2010 2:14 pm

    Football here too? As if it werenot enough for me to see every car here, adorned by the team’s colours 🙂

    kanagu: But Poor England fans.. their team playing really badly 😦 😦

    Yeah, football craze is here. I am just thankful that husband has no interest in it, so I am not forced to watch/comment on it 😉

    kanagu: I could see your relief 😀 😀

  7. June 11, 2010 2:56 pm

    This is perhaps the only sport I can watch ! I dont sit for watching football, but if someone else is control of the remote and if this is going on in TV, I wouldnt mind watching 😀

    kanagu: I wish your wife starts watching it 🙂 🙂

  8. June 11, 2010 8:49 pm

    didn’t expect this post ….

    kanagu: Any reasons??? 🙂
    Oh yeah, I remember how shocked I was when I say the Zidane head butt … I watched the clip over and over again … also, so many cartoons suddenly came out based on that incident … sad it was .. but I admire him so damn much !

    kanagu: Me too.. 😦 I felt really sad when he was sent off…
    Rivaldo too .. it was wonderful watching them on the field .. but sadly, I no longer have the craze …

    kanagu: I think Ronaldo is better striker than him…
    In school, it was always basketball for us … our school had one of the best teams in the entire city .. we loved the teams …

    kanagu: hmmm.. its a real nice game to play… I enjoy playing it…

  9. June 12, 2010 7:25 am

    I am huge soccer fan…totally into FIFA from the time the buzz of the 2010 world cup started. As the fun started just a few hours back I am fully charged to get a hang of as many matches I can afford to see live (the only trouble being they are on air from 12 midnight at my end 😦 😦 )

    Get into the FIFA fever…it’s worth it 😛 😛

    kanagu: Yeah… in your timezone its really difficult… 😦 next year its in Brazil.. we will suffer here…
    Anyway enjoy the matches 🙂 🙂 Wishing best of luck to Socceroos 🙂 🙂

  10. June 12, 2010 3:26 pm

    Any day any time I always prefer football to cricket.I was one of the best Foot ball player in my school…..those where the days….This time neither India(hopefully they will qualify in near future) nor Belgium is qualified …So I support for England

    kanagu: Superb Machi… I played it few times but I am pathetic at it 😐 England were faring very poorly..

  11. June 13, 2010 11:47 am

    So you are football fan too?? My husband has given me and Namnam strict orders not to pester him till this wretched FIFA is over 😦

    We have no plans to adhere to him of course 😈

    kanagu: ROFL.. 😆 sorry for your husband 🙂 🙂 so is he enjoying the matches now deeps???

  12. June 13, 2010 7:24 pm

    I like field hockey more as India also plays in it…. I frankly think India plays good hockey and could concentrate on that game more to achieve some laurels…. But since India is not playing football, I always support Germany. Not only it is my favourite football team, it is also my favourite country outside India. I love their defensive game with occasional but accurate striking. I also like Bayern Munich. I wish they had won the champions trophy… but for this Barcelona! I hope they can take the revenge by beating Spain in the final of this world cup 🙂

    Destination Infinity

    kanagu: Bayern Munich lost to Inter Milan DI.. 🙂 🙂 Germany is a good team with good strikers… but I don’t know whether their defence is good now…

    • June 22, 2010 8:32 am

      It was Inter Milan is it? Without a TV , newspaper and time its tough to keep track of current affairs, world cup included!! …. 🙂

      Destination Infinity

      kanagu: ha ha ha 🙂 :).. Just look into some internet news sites…

  13. June 13, 2010 8:49 pm

    I know nothing about soccer! I am familiar with some names like Maradona (I tell myself not to write Madonna!!), Ronaldo, Ricaldo and many other names start with R and ends with O!

    kanagu: You can start watching it if you have sometime.. it will be surely entertaining 🙂 🙂

  14. June 14, 2010 1:08 am

    To all,

    If you have time, please read from below link and sign the petition.

    kanagu: Welcome here Sri.. 🙂 🙂 I have signed the petition hope the justice gets done… thanks for letting me know..

  15. Sri permalink
    June 14, 2010 1:33 am

    To all,

    Above post has nothing to do with football and I am sorry.

    So I decided to put a link to a video showing Maradona tackling 7 players for about 60 Meters and scoring a goal. (1986 World Cup, ARG vs ENG, Quarter Finals)

    Many say this is the goal of the century and others say this as the golden goal. What ever it is, it is real treat to watch it:

    kanagu: Surely Sri.. its one wonder goal 🙂 🙂

  16. June 14, 2010 5:15 am

    This time i am with Maradona’s boys!
    If the God himself is present at the stadium,there’s no way anyone can defeat Argentina!

    kanagu: I am also with them 🙂 🙂

  17. June 14, 2010 11:59 am

    Oh God !!! Football fever everywhere, not a place to hide for me !!! How can I avoid this infection ????

    As with cricket matches, I sit along S to watch the FIFA matches, but with a book in my hand, to occupy myself. 😉

    kanagu: ha… trust me… Football is more interesting than cricket.. and also books 😀 😀

  18. June 14, 2010 2:27 pm

    🙂 so you love football too!!! I am too getting interested in this….

    kanagu: Wow.. which team you are supporting???

  19. June 14, 2010 8:05 pm

    have replied to ur comment on my prev post

    kanagu: me too 🙂

  20. June 15, 2010 11:00 pm

    OK now i need to learn more of this from you! 😀 can we watch matches together? that wud help!

    kanagu: Surely 🙂 🙂

    Mumbai weather is awesome… (as compared to heat in chennai). Come here!! 😀 😀

    kanagu: Hey chennai is also cool 😀 😀 I wish to visit you there in Mumbai but I can’t come now 😦 😦

  21. June 17, 2010 2:07 am

    Ohh the only reason I love this ball kicking game is that my brothers used to leave me alone while watching it 😛 Btw I used to go up the roof and shake the antenna so hard that the match would be all blurred 😈 👿

    kanagu: ROFL 😆 surely with you around they couldn’t watched it peacefully 😀 😀

  22. June 18, 2010 8:24 pm

    My favorite moment in World Cup 2002 was when Ronaldinho made a goal with one free kick 🙂 I am not sure who they were playing against – all I remembered was that amazing kick, I think this must be it, take a look and pleasae put the volume down, the commentator gets very excited (though it’s infectious 🙂 )

    kanagu: I have watched this goal IHM… a superb one.. 🙂 its against England… 🙂

  23. June 18, 2010 8:33 pm

    Have you seen the remixes of Zidane headbut?

    kanagu: I have seen this now IHM.. but didn’t liked it.. 😦 😦 actually I still couldn’t get over his send-off 😦 France would have won if he had played till the end…

  24. July 6, 2010 10:40 pm

    Sighh! now Argentina is out 😦 Who are you supporting now?

    kanagu: Spain 🙂 🙂

  25. Shruti permalink
    August 2, 2010 11:27 am

    India was not the part of the FIFA 2010 but there is a huge fan following of FIFA 2010 in India.
    Watch out an interesting video adidas Football The Quest Ends

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