Friday, April 28, 2006

How To Play Football (for Cricketers) - 1

As the kick-off time for the football worldcup 2006 dawns closer (41 days according to the MSN nick of one of my soccer-crazy pals), certain changes start to occur to my normally-cricket friendly friends. During the weekend cricket games, a football will emerge next to the kits. After a long game of cricket, a few people will start to kick the ball around. Slowly, the number of people kicking the ball will grow, the number overs bowled start getting shorter, until finally everyone is playing soccer.

For a month.

Now I am not a normally soccer-playing person. I would rather go to the gym and do a targeted-muscle-cardio-vascular-tension exercise (I just feel good saying that). I will watch the World Cups and the Euro tournaments religiously - but that's as far as I go. Who really cares if Arsenal beats Barcelona in Paris for the Champions League. However, this summer will be the summer of football. Based on that, here's the first post in a series of pointers on how to play a game of football (for cricketers).

Position

When they coax you, a cricketer, to play football, a selling point will be 'you can choose what position you want to play'. And what does our normal, slightly lazy, cricketer do? He chooses the goalkeeper position. You would think, 'well, all I have to do is run around between these two posts for a few minutes for the whole game. How bad can it be?' - WRONG!

The goalie's position can be very stressful. No one remembers all the saves (close eyes and pray and fluke!) that you do. Besides, try imagining a 200 pound center-forward bearing down on you and ready to kick that huge ball at 100 mph towards your face.

No, the best position is the defender's position. Stay a few feet in front of the goalkeeper. Chat with the fellow defenders. Have a smoke if you will. You don't need to come forward or run at all - opponents will marvel at your discipline in sticking to your post.

In the unfortunate event that the other team is on the attack, all you need to do is run forward with a Howard Dean scream 'aaaaaaagh' and launch a flying tackle at the other dude's feet. If you can manage to kick the ball away, good. If not, well, you tried, right? In which other soccer position will people say well played when you kick the ball away, without any thought of direction or speed or strategy?

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4 comments:

Crimson Mouzi said...

who will you be supporting? Argentina?

Italy?

Brazil??

Tell us!

P.S. I am scared to open your previous post. It got TOO many comments and I am feeling a bit guilty if I was the one who is resposnsible for stirring up any argument.

I shall be more careful next time! :$

Anonymous said...

AAAAH yea...the worldcup...cant wait for it to begin... I will be supporting the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for the first round anyways... after it (if they qualify for further rounds, then they will have my vote, otherwise either of 'England', 'Iran', 'Argentina' will have me rooting for them. Most people will root for the european teams and i want to start off by backing a muslim nation coz on international level they need support.

Who are u rooting for mez?

- Behbood

Anonymous said...

If you guys have been watching the English, spanish and champions league .. the teams to really praise and cheer for is Brazil and probably England. I hate England .. but they have some good players this time. Most of the English players have been busy playing the top leagues.. all year. Though, this will be Ronaldinho's world cup, he is undoubtedly the best football player ever, by far. Please dont say its Maradona or Pele. In those days, I saw defenders literally jogging to stop forwards. And since this world cup will be in Germany this time, dont waste your time supporting teams like Saudi, S. Korea, etc. Last world-cup it was partly the korean-japanese fans that took Korea all the way.

mezba said...

From the favourites, I have always been an England supporter in football. I like Brazil but will not support them this time (it's time for someone else to win). Other teams I like are Czech, Holland and Mexico.

I always support underdogs vs favorites (except England), so will support Ivory Coast, Saudi, Trinidad and so on.

I will NEVER support Italy (boring soccer style), Argentina (don't know why, perhaps being an English team supporter) and Germany (play dirty, and being an English team supporter).