Article By Adam. H
The end of another football season is fast approaching here in the UK. Wait. Isn’t it already over now the Scottish Cup has been fought over? Well, no. This year 4 British teams are competing for the 2 European cups that are on offer. Then it’s official… summer.
This momentous occasion is bringing me round to the age old question many sports fans are asked by non sports fans…
“Sports!! Why do you watch that?”
And for probably the first time in my life I wont come across as some sort of sarcastic, dry witted smart arse and answer “Why not”. I mean, that wont make a good article, will it?
You see it’s all about ownership and community.
Sports fans are no different to geeks, film buffs, comic book collectors, model railway makers, trainspotters, gamers, YouTubers, film makers, comedians, campers, hikers, readers or anyone who belongs to an activity or community. People follow sports, pour their time, money and energy into supporting and watching a team. Be it live in one of the many cathedral like stadiums, or even small snug grounds or arenas to watch their team with their gang. A gang of like minded people who are there for the same reason, the love of the game.
Fans tribally wear their teams colours to mark their territory, to tell the world that they belong. They belong to this community, to their people by supporting their team. Of course the love of the game is there, fans don’t turn in week in and week out, they wouldn’t spend their hard earned money if they didn’t love the competition, the athleticism (depending on the sport), the theatre, entertainment and skill. But, the people, the coaches, the players, the fans, like anything make it what it is.
And many people who don’t get it will point to toxic masculine aggression and state that is a negative reason for spectating sports. But, I disagree. I think that sports can be a stress ball for people, they can go to the football, rugby, boxing, cage fighting, darts, you name it and chant and scream and get involved, let out their frustrations of their week in a environment that lets them, where they can’t do elsewhere.
But that’s not to say that this aggression doesn’t manifest itself into violence, because it can. I don’t condone any of that, that is too far. But in my experience those incidents are few and far between.
And I get it, if you’re not into sports and you see these acts of aggression and violence on the television you would walk the other way. But I also want to point out that the “jock” sports fans are also the biggest nerds. Numbers, can you name how many assists Wayne Rooney made in the 10/11 season? No neither can I. How many times Lennox Lewis won the heavyweight championship of the world, and how many times knocked out his opponents? What shot percentage Auston Matthews has had over the course of the season or how many World Cup finals Germany have made it to?
Sports fans are like everyone else, geeks who belong to a community.
(Thumbnail Photo – FIFA.Com/Getty Images)