In the old days, it was simple: you didn’t trust anyone who wore a tweed hat or a beard. But Jimmy Hill muddied at least the more saline of those waters. And you just don’t see tweed hats anymore, except in Norfolk.
There’s nothing to rely upon anymore. Except that anyone who says Americans don’t get football is a rotter. Positively motherless if they combine it with etymologically incorrect observations about the word soccer.
We, on the other hand, are passionate about the game. Only, not this passionate, and anyway, who needs all this fancy stuff? Here are two properly passionate men, the voice of one, the lettered grief of the other, and a breath of a football culture utterly unlike our own:
The commentator sounds like Jabba the Hut. Imagine Mark Lawrenson summarizing for him.
Socrates, whose cigarette smoke you can smell from here now that our pubs have cleaned up, was a doctor of medicine at this point. He’s a doctor of philosophy now too. Tony Adams is an intellectual because he’s learning to play the piano.
1 Reply to “1982: A Young Heart Broken By Brazil”
There are some intellectual types in the game. I mentioned in my blog that Partick Thistle’s winger in 1971 was a Classics student at the nearby University (which I now attend), and there must be others. The problem is that intellectual achievement of any kind, and any trace of what might be termed ‘middle class culture’, is heavily discouraged. Just look at the stick Graeme LeSaux got. The intellectual footballer is a far more common type on the continent than it is here, and even in America where MLS players are almost all university educated. Perhaps we should expect our clubs to enrol players in university courses and stock the dressing room with copies of the New Statesman and Independent?
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