Notyalcsdrawkcab’s Weblog

October 4, 2008

enterrrrrrr tttttttttaaaaaaiiiiiinnnnnnnn meeeeeeeeeeee!

Filed under: Football — notyalcsdrawkcab @ 1:38 am

the subject line is a very witty song by blur.  off the great escape album.  and whilst not about football, it describes a very modern line of thought that affects modern life, including football. 

roy keane`s famous complaint about prawn sanga eating fans … it is a complaint about the same thing.  callous non-fans who go to a game to be entertained.  and who will take their dollars elsewhere if a better entertainment comes along.  fans who take up a winning club.  well, because it is glamourous, and wins.  and plays football the same way they do when they fire up “fifa 09”.  fantasy football.

mike tuckerman made an interesting point in a recent blog piece about j-league fans being loyal rather than merely wanting to be entertained.  the j-league might not be completely happy with the number of supporters (if only we could get more blue samurai fans interested!), but the people who do follow the league are great fans.  

i saw a recent jesse fink piece: the numbers are down, bring the stars down under, get some more razzle dazzle happening down under.  give the people a show. 

my first thought was that IF something like he was proposing happened, we would be going down that “entertainment only” path.  we`d have a country full of fairweather fans who don`t really get what they are seeing.   and they`ll be gone as soon as a new circus rolls into town.  ummm, pele in america anyone?

some aussie examples.  recent AFL champions Sydney could never really get their city to fall in love with them.  now they are just another good side, and a big chunk of their fanbase has evaporated.  (for non-aussies – the AFL is generally popular in the south and the west of australia – rugby league in the east.  the sydney AFL team was moved to sydney to try to win over a rugby league city).   

i thought rugby union made the same folly.  they tried to strike out and become more popular, but their attempt to “be entertainment” has bombed, and gotten traditional fans offside. 

so what should we do instead?  look at what japan has done.  we need to grow the love.  grow the love and soccer can be an important part of australia`s sporting culture.  try to compete with the circus … and we`ll be basketball.  whatever size fanbase we eventually get, we want them to love their team.  even if their team is an absolute turd. 

its impolite to name names, but JEF united, i am talking about you (some nice work recently though).  and you too perth glory.  there is an untapped supporter base of grassroots participants who could become rabid fans.  a-league clubs need to go get them.  get them, and the love, and soccer`s future, is secure.

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