“They say I’m fat? It’s best if they keep on saying that, then I’ll score goals in every game,”
If only we could all be as efficient at channelling other people’s negativity into thrilling gifs and Serie A points as Gonzalo Higuain. Admittedly the Serie A points would be useless in a general office environment, but whose day wouldn’t be boosted by the administrative equivalent of scoring the winner in the opening game of the season?
Regardless of affiliation, (except, perhaps Napoli fans, who can probably be excused from the wild celebrations at this point) it’s always nice to see the haterz take one in the eye, especially those in the British press who left tyre marks in the turf at West Ham’s new Olympic Stadium in their haste to point out Higuain was carrying timber on his Juve debut.
While some might say that there are others more deserving of support than Higuain, who collects approximately €5.5m in wages annually as a result of his new contract, there’s something mildly discomfiting about a national newspaper owned by a news corporation largely responsible for inflation of transfer fees, using terms like chubby and plump to force vital signs into what is essentially a non-story. Especially when there’s nothing in Higuain’s history or stats to back up their point.
I for one hope that Gonzalo smashes a record number of goals this season, despite wanting the league to remain competitive because I’m a casual Roma fan. You see what tabloid journalism does to people?
There’s a saying in England that if you’re good enough, you’re old enough. Obviously it’s been wildly corrupted to facilitate stupid decisions like taking a 9-year-old Theo Walcott to the 2006 World Cup and crushing any potential he had to lift England from the international quagmire we’ve sunk into, but not every country is as good at self-destruction as we are.
While Big Gonz was making the back of the net bulge in Turin, twenty minutes in Cristiano’s new Bugatti Veyron away, 17-year-old Gianluigi Donnarumma was at full stretch in the Milan net, saving a Torino equaliser in injury time. Hilariously, Donnarumma was given his debut by former Milan manager Sinisa Mihajlovic, who now manages Torino. In a post match interview, Mihajlovic told reporters resignedly:
“If I had known he was going to save the penalty, I wouldn’t have given him his debut.”
Before we enjoy that too much, let’s bear in mind that unlike outfield players, keepers generally hit their peak later in their career. In twenty years, Donnarumma will be thirty-seven, one year younger that Gigi Buffon is now.
Most of us will be in bath chairs. Now whose laughing?
While I’m always fully in favour of football fans demonstrating a bit of originality in their trolling of the opposition, I draw the line at chucking dead things on pitches. Apart from feeling like it’s hugely disrespectful to the sentient being who died, chucking anything at football matches threatens everyone’s ability to enjoy the game as it heightens security concerns.
Apart from the obvious threat to players, if Dresden fans were able to smuggle AN ENTIRE BULL’S HEAD into Red Bull Leipzig’s (yes, we see what you did there, guys) stadium, can you imagine what a more nefarious-in-intent group could smuggle in?
The mind boggles.
Finally, isn’t it lovely to see Gareth Bale capitalising on a superb performance at EURO 2016 with a couple of goals in Real Madrid’s opening La Liga game vs. Sociedad?
He’s a proper Galactico now, of course, but one doesn’t have to reach back too far into the football yearbooks to remember when he signed for Spurs and failed to register a win in twenty-four consecutive appearances. And that’s what I want you to take away from today’s column, people.
If you are failing abysmally to achieve something you’ve always wanted to do, keep plugging away, working hard and ignoring the idiots. If you want it enough, you’ll get there.
Oh, and don’t smuggle severed animal heads into Cup games. It’s not nice.