Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The sound of boring, mediocre, pointless football

While most people are happy with the fact that the Olympics have been giving us some sort of entertainment with the Football matches, I'm finding myself rather annoyed at another international tournament while friendly matches are the only club football we get to see for another 3 weeks(-ish). Fair enough we had an action-packed Euro 2012 tournament which was good entertainment and which I personally enjoyed, but the Olympics aren't really a welcome escape. The quality of play isn't that high (playing U-23s + 3 over 23 players is still a ridiculous rule) and there is one particular aspect of it, which we also hear during friendly matches, that is so frustrating it makes me mute my television screen whenever I do watch some of these's the sound of horns (or whatever it is that these fans are blowing!).

This sound seems to be present only at international tournaments or friendly matches that aren't competitive. Games that, regardless of their importance, seem to attract people who enjoy these noises. But this sound isn't just heard at any international tournament, but it's especially at the boring ones which lack an atmosphere (and there are many!). This sound is a clear indicator in my opinion that what we're watching is so dire that the fans in the stadium need to use this sound to "create an atmosphere".

At the African Nations Cup, we often hear this "noise" and it was also present during the World Cup 2010 via the most annoying instrument (if we can call it that) the world has ever known...the Vuvuzela. In Europe, America and Asia though, that God-forsaken instrument isn't present so daytripper fans resort to buying some other useless horns that are sold outside the stadium that make noises so loud and annoying, reminding us of that awful sound of a mosquito getting close to our ears in the middle of the night. Admit it, it has happened to every single one of you at least once in your lifetime.

Atmosphere at games are created through chanting. Fans standing, uniting and singing as one. It's created by the mockery (to a certain extent) of opposing fans, by the banter, by the banners, by the the flags, by the supporters' traditions, by the flares (in some places), the frustration at refereeing decisions, the true joy and elation of a goal...etc. It is definitely not created by the blowing of a horn like Gimli of Lord of the Rings and the Horn of the Helm Hammerland. That's not Football. Leave the horns, the Vuvuzelas and other instruments to concerts, orchestras and movies. We want chants. We want proper fans getting riled up about everything that happens on the pitch. We don't want "oohs" and "aahs" every time a player does a trick that seems remotely nice on the eyes. Football is not a musical. It doesn't deserve simple claps, it deserves singing, screaming and proper support. The more non-Football elements like instruments are seen at stadiums, the more you know you're witnessing a game that either holds no importance, is mediocre, is boring or simply just lacks an atmosphere; and the friendlies and Olympics are a great example of that.

Can't wait for the real stuff to begin again!


  1. The "rule" is FIFA's way of ensuring that the Olympic tournament doesn't usurp the World Cup or the Euros as the Premier showcases of world football.

    The standard of football is by no means close to that of, for example, the Premier League or La Liga but how can it be? These players are a mix match of experience, abilities and chemistry, but wat I will say is that there are cameos of things that might benefit England looking forward and we should probably be thankful for that.

    We're all waiting for the season to start but treat this tournament on it's merits.

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