Falling out of love with football

Florian Powell charts the decline of his love for the beautiful game.

There was a time when I breathed football; it was my life, the obsession of my every waking hour. I spent my teenage years on the BBC Sports site, blogs and forums, shouting the ‘truth’ from the internet’s rooftops. It was a time when I had the energy and the passion to do such things.

But in a few years something’s changed, with me. It would be ridiculous to say that in five or six years football has changed so radically that I can’t see why I fell in love with it in the first place. The rules are the same, broadly speaking the same teams are winning and football is no less entertaining for it. In fact I still enjoy any given 90+ minutes of action as much as I ever did.

It is the whole hullabaloo around it that I can hardly stand anymore. Reading almost anything that the media has to say about football has become a mind-numbingly repetitive task. Are we fools for not realising that each manager answers the same questions in broadly the same manner after every match? Or that every match report is formulated the same way? Or maybe we just condone it.

Maybe we realise that top managers, who spend hours and hours making sure that their club runs like clockwork, do not have the time to prepare for each separate press conference. They might not even want to – and so they repeat whatever phrase they like for any particular instance, to the point where the die-hard Arsenal fan could recite Wenger’s post-match interview before injury time is added on.

And as for the clever blokes who write match reports, there really isn’t much room for manoeuvre. One might score a goal, and then there are three possibilities: (a) they score some more; (b) it stays as it is; © they concede some. Throw in some description, add some hyperbole et voila.

The point is that most things that surround the 90 minutes of magic are banal. We don’t get any information from them and they make up a lot of our interaction with this beautiful game.

The rumour mill is my addiction – every quote from a ‘close source’ is a hit. And maybe the high just isn’t high enough anymore; I’ve had so much of it that my tolerance is at uncomfortable levels. I can say the same thing about most other football-oriented mainstream media that I encounter: it’s too much.

But it’s too much because I choose to read it, because it is relevant to all the football that I watch and all the teams and players that I am in contact with. Would a simpler solution to this repetitiveness not be to cut down the number of games that there are?

Or it could be just me who thinks that there is so much football that most matches have been stripped of any real significance, and maybe some of the magic.

A twenty-something whose love affair with football has ruined more relationships than he’s been in. Florian is now trying to put things right by ranting about it. And growing a moustache. He can also be found on Twitter.

Tags: BBC, Premier League

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