July 2010

Leave Our Beautiful Game Alone

Nothing renders the barroom bore more relevant than a real grievance or slight to the group he represents but if we are to move forward as a nation, species or race then sometimes you have to suck things up if they are for the greater good.

Similarly if events happen that you don’t much care for or agree with then it doesn’t necessarily mean the end of civilization. If gays want to get married, what’s it to you? You’re not been forced into a homosexual tryst with Brock Lesnar are you? If you have to pay an extra couple of dollars to an insurance company that is already gouging you so the family down the street can take their kids to the doctors, that’s not the end of civilization is it? And Luis Suarez’s goal-line handball is not a Western conspiracy against Africa.

It is depressing to read writers I like and respect, like Henry Winter and Jim White in the Telegraph spout such sanctimonious nonsense about his reflex action. He was sent off – punished according to the rules – and was acting in his teams best interests – giving then a chance to survive the penalty which they duly did due to Asamoah Gyan’s incompetence. They then had to win a regulation penalty shootout, which as we all know, is the easiest thing in football. If a player on my team stands on the line and watches the ball sail past him in the last second of a world cup quarter final then I’m going to castigate him for not doing his job. That’s all Suarez did. He didn’t enslave Gyan and his family, ship them back to Uruguay and make them work in a field – he gave his country one last chance which Ghana fluffed, Uruguay took, and that’s why they are in the semis.

If I read one more bleating piece about how Ghana or Africa have been robbed or how Suarez or Uruguay should be booted out then I’m going to go round the writers house and smack them round the head with a copy of the laws of the game. Mainly as punishment but partly because its obvious that they haven’t read them, clearly don’t understand them and think there is some invisible moral imperative attached.

There isn’t, Ghana lost in a fair and square shoot-out, missed their game winning chance fairly and that’s it. Goodnight, good luck, and take your vuvuzelas with you.

Guy Bailey is a senior writer for The Yanks Are Coming. He can be reached at guy@yanksarecoming.com.