As the football action is back, I want to talk a bit why football is more than just a game. Especially in Scotland where without a few dozen of decent Scottish football clubs, a similar amount of whiskey distilleries and harsh weather condition, we don’t have much left.
I may be exaggerating but the truth is, when we were growing up, football was all we had.
Football is more than just a game
Football is a fascinating game. Every match day is exciting. We want our teams to win. The game. The league. The cup. It’s what we live for. But for us, Scots, it’s more than just a game. It is more than just about goals.
It’s about tradition
You see, football is a lot like religion. The team you are loyal to has been passed on to you by your father, while he got it from his father and so on. Rarely do you support a team that is not local.
That’s why from our childhood football fills our lives, it fills our hearts. Because the cycle itself? You get used to it. You win, you lose, you go again. The cycle never ends. But what matters is the traditions you build around football.
When you’re a kid, footballers are your idols. You wait for every weekend to come. We didn’t have many super hero movies when I was growing up. Footballers like Graeme Souness, Jim Leighton, Alex McLeish were our supermans, batmans and daredevils.
But traditions change as we grew older. Now our tradition is to meet up in a local pub that has probably become one of the town’s best slot sites, snooker halls, discos and what not. As I mentioned, in a small town your local football club and a pub were often all you had. So, you meet, you play, chat and have a few pints before the kick off. football.
If football is really like religion, away games are like crusades. You get ready, gather your courage and travel to the hostile enemy territory because you support your gods and believe that any other is not true.
Believe it or not, football can influence your mindset very much. Because supporting a football club teaches you a lot about life, about composure and not giving up when the odds are stacked against you. It’s football. And that’s why we love it.