This article is going to be about football, which means I should preface this article with a little remark: Dear Americans, by football I mean the sport that everyone else in the world calls football; you know, the one where you actually kick the ball with your FUCKING FEET. On we go.
I love football. I love playing it. I played in a club for about six years and I had a lot of fun while it lasted. Throughout those years my position pretty much always remained the same. I was a forward and there was a very good reason for that, which was that even though my technical abilities left a lot to be desired, I was in nine out of ten cases nippy enough to outrun the other team’s defenders and could just nudge the ball past the goalie into the net. Scoring goals in matches that mattered was an incredibly satisfying thing about playing club football. There were, however, a great deal of other things I didn’t find so appealing.
The most annoying part about playing football is undoubtedly that, no matter what the median age of the players was, at least six players on each team seemed to think they were Cristiano Ronaldo’s spiritual successor. Selfish playing styles and lack of respect for previously agreed-upon tactics are inevitable in a team of six-year-olds, but when things are still exactly the same eight years onwards it’s annoying at best and pathetic at worst. If only half the team could have just played their bloody position, not constantly tried to out-alpha each other, stopped whining so goddamn much and just shut the fuck up once in a while, then maybe it wouldn’t have been such an easy decision for me to give up club football for good.
Of course, as we all know, the ego wrestling and whining never stops. In fact, it seems to get worse the older the players get. If you’ve ever seen a match of professional football, you’ll know what I mean. I would call professional footballers a bunch of pussies if it weren’t for the fact that women’s football is far superior to men’s in a variety of ways. The actual level of skill and athleticism of women may not be up to par with that of most male players, but at least they don’t spit on the pitch, they don’t dive all the time, and they don’t complain nearly as much. It’s a pleasure to watch. Really wish they’d make more of an effort with the post-match shirt exchange though. Well, you can’t have it all.
Unsurprisingly, the women also have laughably low salaries compared to their male peers. If you look at world-class teams of both genders you’ll find that, essentially, male football teams have a combined salary that could feed the entire planet, whereas female football teams have a combined salary that could feed an entire female football team. The pay gap is so vast I wouldn’t be surprised if you could see it from space. Of course, there’s reasons for this; commercial reasons. Men’s football has a much longer history and more people watch it. So that’s where all the money is. There is, however, a flicker of hope that this situation is slowly being addressed as more and more people start to become interested in watching women’s football.
Everything I’ve just described makes me wish for one perhaps peculiar change in the world of professional football. I wish the size of the player’s heads was proportionate to that of their egos. I, for one, think football would be far more watchable if all the players had heads the size of hot air balloons. „What’s Ronaldo doing there? Oh dear! It appears his ego has conflated so much that after throwing himself in the air for that header he simply remains floating and is unable to make it back down. Tragic turn of events here in the Bernabéu as Cristiano Ronaldo can no longer, for want of a better phrase, stay grounded and helplessly floats around the stadium, angrily shaking his legs in an embarrassing effort to reach the ground with his feet. Talk about taking football to a higher level!“
Instead of comparing male professional footballers with women’s genitals, I think a comparison with babies is much more apt. Just look at the parallels: they both get pretty much everything they want. People love them despite all their shortcomings and the trouble they cause. Not much is asked of them yet we treat them like royalty. They start crying over every perceived injustice, no matter how minor. Then they complain to the closest person of authority and demand that the situation be addressed and resolved in their favour. Most depressingly, there are numerous cases where the comparison doesn’t even really fall apart when we factor in intellectual capacity. To take it even further, sometimes the comparison still stands when we factor in physical appearance. Some may consider this a low blow, but those people clearly have never seen Wayne Rooney before. Google him and tell me he doesn’t look like an angry baby in every single photo. In fact, the famous English forward has such a funny demeanour that, when my girlfriend saw him for the first time—we were watching the 2016 Euros together—, she burst out laughing and kept chuckling for a solid ten minutes. I can’t blame her.
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