Tuesday, 7 January 2014

For the love of the game


Though they might be just about the fussiest eaters ever and continuously shoot down their food blogger aunt's attempts to introduce all sorts of exotic ingredients into their diet (Onions! Carrots! Chocolate!), my Niece and Nephew are pretty darn adorable. And to my delight they have both taken up football  - my other great love. My own hand-eye-coordination is barely enough for holding that pint while simultaneously insulting the referee (who's so clearly both blind and a wan...derer on the wrong side of the rule book)... 




The glorious game has since swept the entire family off their feet: My Brother-in-Law coaches and my Sister has teamed up with the other Soccer Moms and started playing too. Though some work is still needed: she didn't even know Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had been appointed the new manager at Cardiff City!!!



  


They players might seem so awfully, heartbreakingly tiny, but the same scale of larger than life emotions is present at the junior level games, too. It's that same courage and enthusiasm they run to the pitch, ready to take on what ever the following minutes have in store.






There's suspense...




Waiting around...




Tough decisions to be made; literally thinking on your feet...




And injuries can't be totally avoided either.





You get to witness some expert moves and nerves that won't break even when the going gets tough...




Along with frustration...




And, inevitably, great disappointments.




Sometimes it really takes just that little. A sudden move you didn't see coming. Split seconds. A couple of centimetres.




It is heart-warming to see then how, at their age, it's still all about fair play, true sportsmanship and tangible team spirit. There's no slagging off the ref. No getting hands (or anything else for that matter, Luis Suarez!) on fellow players. Even the chants are about cheering your own team and not viciously insulting the origins of the players in the other team. There's respect. Love of the game. Joy. Oh if I could make that age just go on and on...







______________________


ANYONE FOR SECONDS?



          



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