Odense Stadion OB will win the gold - next season...
I understand why some people are sick of football and those who write about soccer. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Football is not just a game but a myth of biblical proportions; full of emotion, devotion and (local) patriotism. Sure, there is hatred there, but also unity, compassion and mercy. It is the world of massive egos as well as incurable altruists; it is a story about us – about society. Politics, revolution, the struggle of ideas and of culture, in the original sense of the word, and art – it is all there, even on a field in Bolbro on a rainy day.
The game of football is imbued with inherent values, captivating the attention of billions of viewers: from perfect, playful, almost teasing chassés of Prosinecki, to the aesthetics of ugliness exemplified in a badly timed tackle or a victory for the lesser team. In no other sport does it make sense to talk about deserved or undeserved victories – in football, it might.
Even the world that surrounds the game of football is special. There is a reason why football fans around the globe don’t just watch matches between Real Madrid and Barcelona, even though they’d find the most beautiful play here. Football is a mirror to society – its story is that of a working class pastime that those in power adopted as their own, and today football is played in the explosive field between romance and commercial interest, in a war between fans and market forces. Think of Camilla Martin on TV, sponsors gaining ever more influence, and TV-stations wanting to influence clubs. Football is the only sport that can make people sing in unison on this scale without paying or forcing them to do it. Football is the only sport that has brought down governments, started wars and freedom movements, as described by Franklin Foer in his work on globalization; How Football Explains the World.
Take Prosinecki: a Yugoslavian (some might say Croatian) otherworldly dribbler, who played alongside a certain Zvonomir Boban on the Croatian National team in the 1990s. On May 13 1990, Boban played for Dinamo Zagreb against Red Star Beograd in a match that has since come to be known as the point of no return for the Croation War of Independence. Only a few weeks prior to the match, Croatia had held its first multiple-party election in almost 50 years, in which the parties favouring Croatian independence, led by the nationalist Tudman, had won the majority of votes.
Present at the match were around 3,000 Red Star fans, who had travelled to Zagreb, including a later Serbian war criminal, Arkan. After stones were thrown at the stadium, the tension escalated into a fight between supporters of the opposing teams and when a policeman hit a Dinamo Zagreb supporter, Boban interfered with a now-infamous flying kick that propelled him to instant national hero-status in Croatia. That the policeman was a Bosnian Muslim, who was just doing his job, wasn’t a concern at the time.
Take a look at the gruesome footage and don’t tell me football isn’t important.
Come by the stadium and enter into the spirit of the game. Take part of life on the grand stands. We all know that more people at concerts result in more concerts. Equally, more people at the stadium will make the team better. And we need that these days.
Ticket prices starting at 50 kr.
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