I have enjoyed watching the world cup. It was great that Australia participated and didn’t make fools of themselves (well, apart from Harry). Guus has cemented himself as an honorary life member of the gallery of Australian ‘heroes’. It’s been fun.
But then I woke up this morning to make the tea and turned on the box to catch the last ten minutes of France v Spain. Almost as soon as I turned it on a French player seemed to run into an invisible obstruction on the pitch, was awarded a free kick. The Spanish player, who did absolutely nothing, was awarded a yellow card. The kick was taken, a goal was scored. Spain were forced to push forward and eventually conceded another goal. And that is how soccer failed to find a place in the Australian psyche.
Australians, I believe as a rule, prefer a fair fight. It might not be this incident, or this particular game, or even this tournament, but one by one we realise we are not talking about the great goals, or the great saves, or the great runs down the wing. We are talking about the great injustices. Sooner or later, you want something with a bit more substance.
When the teams with the best actors are the ones that win, it’s time to find a new source of entertainment.