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Debate: The strangeness of footballers

Updated Tuesday, 10th November 2009

Forum member Geoffrey Bastin took a hard look at the beautiful game

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You may assume that I'm not the most ardent football follower. That is not to say I dislike the game although there are several aspects of it for which I am left bemused.

Human nature is always strange and unpredictable although when I watch the game of soccer many things happen as expected.

Take the moment a goal is scored.

The excitment is so strong that the scorer invariably runs off at high speed chased by a team college who tries to rip his shirt off. The next one to get close grabs him by the neck and thereafter several more over-power him and attempt to crush him under a human pyramid.

I'm informed it's called celebration. How much nicer it would be if they all conserved their energy and walked slowly back to the center line and gave subdued applause.

Even worse is the spectacle of the scorer removing his shirt and running at full speed towards the crowd. If he chose to run into the arms of the opposing supporters that certainly would be more entertaining.

Still we must not lose sight of the whole purpose of the game which is simulated warfare. To allow people to compete, shout, cheer, or worse, and go home feeling a sense of satisfaction is probably the most important aspect of any similar contest. It is tribal and brings out the animal in us all.

I suppose it is not far removed from the political debating chamber and allows we two legged anthrapoids to challenge one another in a so called peaceful way.

Now if only we could change the offside rule...





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