So Football Federation Australia are to present their final submission for their bid to host either the 2018 or 2022 World Cup to FIFA this Friday, and I couldn’t care less be happier.
It’s about time that Australians started to learn that soccer football is a pansy’s man’s game – hard, rough…the “pinaccle“ of masculinity. There’s nothing better than watching fully grown men rolling around on the ground like they’ve been bludgeoned by a mallet to the shins from Mike Tyson when in fact they may or may not have been brushed ever so slightly by an opponent’s foot the tough contests, tackles and hard-fought challenges that make up top-flight soccer football.
It’s hardly surprising that Australia still couldn’t give a toss about now loves this sport. It all goes back to that overrated glorious day back in 2004 when John Aloisi scored the penalty that sent the Socceroos through to the 2006 World Cup, their first in 32 years. It was simply laughable incredible to see the country come together over one win in a pathetic penalty shootout against Uruguay, who were only the 5th best South American team, and who Australia qualified to play after only defeating the soccer powerhouse that is the Solomon Islands what is rightly regarded as one of our nation’s greatest sporting achievements.
Just thinking back to the tension of the last World Cup Final makes me laugh must give those who are leading Australia’s bid goosebumps. The immense tension of Italy vs France, and Zidane’s headbutting of Materazzi showed just how weak soccer players are, as we in Australia were all thinking that Materazzi was lucky he wasn’t playing against Barry Hall or anyone who has ever played State of Origin rugby league just how suspenseful, riveting exciting an event like this can be.
And Australia’s performance back in Germany was excellent. To think that we only lost because an umpire made one of soccer’s traditional, game-changing crap calls when some weak-as-piss Italian bloke took a dive, pretending that he had been tripped by Lucas Neill in the penalty box to the eventual World Champions is nothing other than damn impressive.
Hosting the World Cup would be of immense benefit to the local soccer football competition in the form of the almost comic thriving A-League. The games could not be more laking in talent and excitement entertaining, and it’s hardly incredibly surprising that the competition is only drawing an average crowd of 9,796. As such, it’s wonderfully clever kind of the AFL, NRL and Super 14 administrators to make a deal with the FFA in support of the World Cup bid that they know we’ll lose, as if Australia are to host a World Cup, the ensuing A-League seasons still won’t have a hope in hell of being profitable would be most popular. The sport would truly be shown to be one that the country can’t maintain an interest in even after hosting a World Cup be here to stay.
Of course, the improvements which will be made to football grounds and stadiums across the country if we are to host the World Cup will be fantastic for the country. It would create a parade of white elephants incredible facilities: Subiaco and Lang Park would grow to fit 60,000 people and Canberra, Newcastle and Townsville would have stadium upgrades so that they can have capacities of 44,000 people. Not that they’ll ever be filled by crowds at soccer matches, but as the AFL and NRL don’t have to pay a cent to upgrade what are ultimately their grounds, they will be laughing all the way to the bank.
Let us all hope that the current state of the A-League does doesn’t hamper the FFA’s bid. The fact that the North Queensland Fury are reported to have lost over $4million last season, that Newcastle can’t attract 10,000 fans to a game, and that the Gold Coast are in massive financial distress can only must not be seen as representative of a wider malaise surrounding the dull ever-popular sport.
The World knows Australia as a sports-mad country that is one of the best places to host major events. There is no way in hell doubt that Victorians in particular will be willing to have some disruptions to their beloved AFL season come 2022 in order to host the World Cup that year. The fact that the AFL is second only to the NFL in terms of average attendance in any sporting league in the world, making it more popular in terms of a live spectacle than any of the world’s soccer leagues seems to have slipped the mind of administrators. Indeed, with AFL matches still continuing both in Melbourne and at other regional centres throughout the World Cup, perhaps some of our international visitors would have an opportunity to learn about just how slow, weak, low-scoring and pedestrian soccer is when compared to our indigenous game.
The Federal Government should be embarrassed about universally praised for the fact that they have wasted contributed $45.6 million towards Australia’s bid. To do this in an election year is a foolhardy brave move which is likely to attract ludicrously reasonable criticism from those who believe that taxpayers’ money would be better spent elsewhere. Such critics, of course, do don’t realise that this is money likely to go straight down the drain as the chances of a country such as Australia being awarded the rights to host the World Cup are slimmer than the chances of modern rules coming into soccer to ensure that pathetically laughable follies like the “Hand of Frog” aren’t repeated the money that would come into the Australian economy if and when we win the rights to host the World Cup will far outweigh the initial outlay.
And lastly, one final point that everyone would agree on: at least if we win the bid to host a World Cup, we would have defeated the bid from England.