Ugly Fans of The Beautiful Game

man u t shirt

First of all, let me start by a simple acknowledgment – football is a great and beautiful game. Only a fool or someone who hasn’t seen that Maradona goal against England in the 1986 world Cup will disagree with this statement. Secondly, I enjoy watching football. I even played football, both in school as well as in college. Not as well as I’d have liked (or my captains would’ve liked either), I admit – but I had passion enough for the game to bunk classes and be caned by the school principal for such truancy on more than one occasion. Our gang spent numerous sleepless nights cheering for the exploits of Romario and Bebeto in medical college hostel. And I took a leave from my hospital to watch both the 1998 and the 2002 world cup finals.

The point of this rather pointless introduction is – I like football. I’m not mad or crazy about it – if you give me a choice between getting laid with Katrina Kaif or watching the FIFA world cup final live, the boys from Brazil would simply have to win it without my encouraging presence in the stands. But I like the game – playing and watching.

Now among the youth of India on Facebook and Twitter, there are a sizable number of people who say that they’re crazy about football. They claim that they go to sleep in a Messi jersey, and the girls claim that during their orgasms, instead of the ubiquitous “Oh God, Oh my fucking God!”, they scream “Oh my Ronaldo!” or “Oh my Nani!” Even while discharging their excretory functions, they practice balancing a football on their head. Such is their devotion to the beautiful game – or so they claim. I however believe that the overwhelming majority of these devotees are what we know as ‘Fake football fans’.

A large number of these people happen to be Manchester United fans. Whenever they watch Man U play, they make sure that the world knows through tweets and Facebook updates. The tweets are not what you’d call particularly witty. Sample a few:

GOAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!

FUCK YOU REF! THAT WAS A PENALTY YOU CHUT!

PASS YOU IDIOT!!! PASS

FUCK YOUR MOM LINESMAN! THAT WAS CLEARLY AN OFFSIDE!

As you can see, the tweets are in all caps. You can also find these young men and women in bars in all the major metros of the country, keeping up an uproarious ruckus in front of a TV in a place where most normal men come for a few quiet moments of romance with alcohol.

Some of them are a little smarter than the rest, in that they actually know how to Google. So instead of being foolish enough to spoil their night, they Google the result of the game the next morning and put up the result as a status update on Facebook. Something like: ‘Yayyy!! The reds won 3 goals to nil!! Up yours Chelsea fans!’ They seem to believe that unless they proclaim this fact, the rest of humanity will be deprived of this stupendously important piece of information.

I humbly request these MU, or Man U, or Man Utd (or whatever the fuck do they consider it cool to call their club) fans to go to any of the maps easily available on a search engine called Google. They’re very easy to access – so easy, that even Rahul Gandhi has been known to access them. There they’ll find – to their immense chagrin I believe – that Manchester United FC is based in Old Trafford, which is an area of Stretford, in the Trafford Borough of Greater Manchester, England. That’s right. It is not a part of India. In fact, it never was. Not once. IT’S IN ENGLAND!!

Now pause for a moment and exert your grey cells, my dear fanatic fans. Is there really a point in being so devoted to a football club that is based in England? Can there be any earthly reason for being so emotionally attached to a foreign club? Yes, yes, I understand that the lads have played well on many occasions. In fact, they’ve been a great team. And they often have had some world class players. So go ahead, and admire their game. But such emotional upheavals that you pretend to experience with the rise and fall of the team’s fortune are, I’m sorry to say, completely artificial and contrived. Freud might have been able to give an explanation for your illogical behavior – maybe something like being stuck at the anal stage of psychosexual development, or some such highbrow stuff. I won’t even attempt.

The point is, if you love football, then love football. Enjoy the good football that Manchester United play. Or Chelsea play. Or Barcelona, or Real Madrid, or any of the numerous European clubs that play delightful, exciting football, play. Love the Tiki-taka of Spain AND the beautiful game of Brazil. By all means, admire the players and the clubs. Wear Manchester United T-shirts if you must. Idolize Robin van Persie if you feel like. It’s a free country. But please don’t pretend that Manchester United (or Chelsea for that matter) is your soul. Don’t think that pretending to be fanatic about football elevates you above the average, philistine Indian cricket fan. Don’t abuse the supporters of other teams and players. And for those of you who think that pretending to be a football fan will get you laid, don’t be deluded – only a moron gets laid with a pretentious idiot.

So my uncalled for advice to you is – don’t be so pretentiously fanatic. Someday we may hope that an Indian team will create a sensation in world football, and then your fanaticism will be justified. Then even I will be fanatic – but that will be because I will be supporting my country’s team. Till then, I will enjoy watching and supporting football – not any particular foreign club.

NB: I’d like to advise football fans that calling me a chut or a cunt or an asshole or similar cute names will not change the veracity of my beliefs (advise: Google veracity)

chelsea t shirt

 

I have always been a great believer. I've flitted from one belief to another, from religion to atheism and from one philosophy to another, until I finally settled on J. Krishnamurti whose philosophy is that there is no philosophy. So now I firmly believe that there is nothing to believe. Now such a belief would, I believe, have been considered dangerous to society if the authorities had believed me to be of any consequence. No man of consequence they believe would waste his time on the pursuit of blogging!

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Posted in Satire
41 comments on “Ugly Fans of The Beautiful Game
  1. Rachna says:

    And here we have our very own pseudo Freud. Or should I say Fraud?

    Just because you cannot support a team, does not mean anybody doing it is a ‘fake’. Just because Manchester United is not based in India, it is not any reason for an Indian to not support it. A team can be supported for a variety of reasons – good players, their spirit, their legacy et cetera.

    It is justified to support a team if it belongs to your country? Now that is your perspective. I wouldn’t blindly support a team just because of its nationality. There are a host of other factors. But I would also not be conceited enough to label you as a moron for doing just that.

    Meanwhile, instead of ranting, you can use your frustration productively to improve your grammar.

    • Lovin says:

      So you support a team for it has good players, their spirit etc. So will you support England in Eng vs India match if you think Eng has much better players than India?

      • Rachna says:

        No, like I said, better players is just one factor. But to answer your question whether I could support England in an England Vs India match, yeah, why not! After all, my being an Indian is totally an accident. I won’t let that accident define my choices in life.

  2. Aarifa Khan says:

    Dhan Dhana Dhan Gooooaaalll 😉

    Sent from my Windows Phone ________________________________

  3. Dr. M Zubair says:

    Good one @doctoratlarge! The best I have read on your blog.

  4. rajasimha says:

    Reblogged this on Amateur Student.

  5. Sriram says:

    As usual you kick some mighty fannies with your analysis.. The best that I’ve read in the past month or so. Ask any Man U fan of today about the number of silvers that Sir Alex got in the first 4 years and off they go to Google.

  6. atoolforall says:

    Reblogged this on atoolforall.

  7. Brajesh says:

    the only wrong point is that devotion comes from heart n it cannot be stopped to get devoted to a football club… n u get devoted to that club only in which u see attributes of urself…

  8. Everything was excellent until I read your Bio.

  9. Rachna: Thank you for your interest. And I’ll try to improve my grammar, provided you try not to be a grammar nazi

    Aarifa: That seems to be a compliment, so thanks

    Dr M Zubir: My personal favorites are others, but thanks for your praise

    Sriram: For MU fans, there’s only one God: SAF – and like all fanatics, they know nothing about their God

    Atoolforall: Cool

    Brajesh: But why do these fans abuse other fans so much then?

    BM: My bio says that I have no beliefs. Now even a lack of belief is offending people?

  10. tinpogo says:

    If one googles ‘advise’ before one googles ‘veracity’…..one would know that it should be ‘advice’ instead.

  11. Good post. Couldn’t have said it better myself. I don’t mind watching the game and enjoying it, and also learning more about what’s happening, but the extreme fanaticism shown by urban Indian football fans is completely unnecessary. I’ve had stories of my own, too. Because I was a fan of Arsenal, though not that serious, I ended up getting into bitter confrontations with the local Man United fans, which soured any chance of getting along then. I had to put that aside to reduce the hostility caused by their love for that red shirt.

    I find this fanaticism hard to understand. Cricket, yes, because it is very popular across the country, and we have decent presence there. Tennis and badminton, also hockey, get no such enthusiastic fans- and in case of hockey, it is rather sad, that we don’t see such enthusiasm, when India has decent presence there, as we do for other countries’ football teams, so disconnected from India. That’s not even taking into account total ignorance of the domestic football scene, outside Bengal, Kerala and Goa.

  12. noz777 says:

    Stick to making cheap jokes on politics. Football is not your cup of tea. It is too big a sport for a narrow minded stereotypical idiot like you

  13. Ron says:

    Great mentality dude! Please tell me how we shouldn’t listen to western music just because they aren’t based in India and we’ve never seen their concert live?
    It’s a myth, and a big one, that United fans follow football just because it’s ‘cool’. Another myth: All football fans are idiots. Do your research before taking cheap shots at others. People like you is the reason why football will never develop in this country. If don’t like football, it’s fine. No need to talk negatively about others who love the sport.

    PS: Aren’t you the same person who didn’t even know the correct spelling of Maradona? Incredible that someone, who knows so little about football, keeps bashing others who are much more knowledgeable.

    • Tanmay L says:

      “Please tell me how we shouldn’t listen to Western music just because they aren’t based in India and we’ve never seen their concert live?”

      The doctor isn’t saying don’t watch football. He’s saying don’t claim to be a mad fan & abuse other clubs’ fans just to appear hip and asks us to enjoy the beautiful game.

  14. Rohan says:

    Nice to know you know each and every Man Utd (thats what the fuck it is, Man U is a derogatory term associated with Munich tragedy which am sure given your vast amount of knowledge repository about football since you played and scored so much, must be aware of.) fan in India. Would personally like to know when did you hacked into my PC to find out about my Google searches regarding Utd after game results and all the other stuff you so nicely professed about.

    You say its not cool to support foreign clubs. Why? Its not that only english players play who in Utd. They have asian players too. Soon some Indian too may be playing for them, an indian kid from Kolkata is having his trials at Utd this summer, which again surprisingly you failed to mention given your fantastic insight into the game, after all you knew Babeto and Romario.

    A friend showed me a few tweets of yours regarding Utd fans. Why so much hate? And also so much time to be obsesed aout something you supposedly hate. That really amazed me.

  15. Rohan says:

    Nice to know you know each and every Man Utd (thats what it is, Man U is a derogatory term associated with Munich tragedy which am sure given your vast amount of knowledge repository about football since you played and scored so much, must be aware of.) fan in India. Would personally like to know when did you hacked into my PC to find out about my Google searches regarding Utd after game results and all the other stuff you so nicely professed about.

    You say its not cool to support foreign clubs. Why? Its not that only english players play who in Utd. They have asian players too. Soon some Indian too may be playing for them, an indian kid from Kolkata is having his trials at Utd this summer, which again surprisingly you failed to mention given your fantastic insight into the game, after all you knew Babeto and Romario.

    A friend showed me a few tweets of yours regarding Utd fans. Why so much hate? And also so much time to be obsesed aout something you supposedly hate. That really amazed me.

  16. Diego says:

    I like Seattle Seahawks, does it still count as football.
    I also like Colin Kaepernick, Tom Brady and his hot wife.
    If you don’t consider this football then I admit I like three Teams Brazil, Germany, Netherlands, in that order.

  17. Rohan says:

    Let me start off by saying that this is my first visit to your blog and i respect your opinions as much as anyone’s. As someone who fell in love with the game itself rather than a club, i can understand where you are coming from. But you have a lot of misconceptions about people who support a club.

    Yes there are some football ‘fans’ who pretend to support a club only to fit in or gain attention. But these are a minority and don’t really harm anybody. The football supporters in india are different from the ones in england. Most of them are first generation fans who never have seen their club’s stadium or even visited the city. They didn’t grow up with their parents taking them to every home game or passing down their prized jerseys.

    They made a choice to support a club of their free will and most of them chose man u or liverpool (others go for arsenal or chelsea) because they are successful clubs. And unless you are born in Kolkata their really isn’t much local football scene.

    The English league has filled this void for a lot of people. And others league like Spain and Germany are also popular. The fact is you can enjoy football without supporting a club but you cannot be a part of something bigger than yourself without supporting a club.

    I wish the football scene in India was better and it may yet improve with likes of Bengaluru FC taking initiative, but it just isn’t enough right now. It seems extremely unlikely that india will reach the WC in our lifetime and that doesn’t mean i should not have a right to support any team that i want.

    And lastly why do you care what people tweet. If you find them so irritating just block them. They won’t mind.

  18. Absolutely wrong, it is all about developing an emotional connect with a team or a player. i am not a football fanatic but i like the sport, but i have a lot of friends who are ape shit crazy about the club they support. The part which proves your article wrong is that some of them even dont have a twitter account and i have never seen them talking about their club on the internet, i remember watching a friend literally crying after the crystal palace vs liverpool game, he didnt update it anywhere but i did see how upset he was.

  19. The Delhi Idiot: I’m sure you can be crazy about the game, but blindly supporting some foreign club seems artificial

    Rohan: I’ve taken your advice and started blocking the abusive fans

    Diego: Ok

    Ron: Dear Ron, I did say that I love football. It’s just the mentality of pretending attachment to a foreign club and abusing other fans is what I tried to make fun of. And do you really think spelling a player’s name correctly is all that important? I would say, paying studious attention to such details is what often marks a pretentious fan

    noz777: Please forgive me if I trust my intellect more than yours

    Arjun Mohan: Thanks for understanding and support

  20. We support a football club because we see a part of us in that club. We believe in what they believe in, on and off the football pitch.. It doesn’t mean we are fake.
    Yes I understand what kind of fans you are talking about, but generalizing the type isn’t fair.
    As Cantona famously said, “You can change your wife, your politics, your religion, but never, never can you change your favourite football team.”

  21. Diego says:

    Ok, that’s what I get, only ok!
    Come on I deserve better than that.

    I recently read a book on football hooliganism- ‘Among the thugs’.Great book on rivalry, crazy fans and hooligans.

    Check out this documentary on greatest club rivalry in the world, no its not between RM and Barcelona. Its between Celtic and Rangers, beautiful documentary.

    This is what a fan of football looks like, supporting your club no matter what, not because they have the best players in the world like RM, Barcelona, or the one mentioned by the author. But because its your club, there are no big transfer in these clubs its just loyalty and also religious and sectarianism. Even though I am a catholic i will never understand the hatred toward protestant. I can never be like that. I just love the game no matter who is playing it.

  22. zej96 says:

    I can totally agree with all of your beliefs and viewpoints stated above.
    Some of your lines did give me a hearty laugh, too.
    And there are “pseudo-digital fans” of contemporary Football clearly visible in every nook and corner of the World Wide Web.
    Thanks for this mighty post, you took many of my ideas (I mean, I also had these ideas in my mind). However, supporting a foreign club (of football or anything else) GENIUNELY is not and should not be forbidden! For instance, in my country, even my own kith and kin (some of them) admire your Indian Cricketers. They admire Virat, and I feel no ignominy for their preferences. And as a Psychology student into the bargain, I try my best to digest and respect people’s difference of opinion.

    • Admiring a player is different. You can even admire a club for it’s style of play etc. But how can you be emotionally and crazily attached to a club when you don’t share any of that club’s history or emotional bonds? It’s artificial I’d say. I’m sure your friends who admire Virat support the Pak cricket team, not the Indian one (I’m presuming you are from Pakistan) and that’s how it should be

      • zej96 says:

        It is, yes. You’re right, crazily or blindly following is different, it seems fake. But my friends ADMIRE some players of your country’s team, too. Despite the fact that they are main supporters of Pak Cricket Team. P.S. My female friends have something steamy for Virat.😀

  23. “As you can see, the tweets are in all caps. You can also find these young men and women in bars in all the major metros of the country, keeping up an uproarious ruckus in front of a TV in a place where most normal men come for a few quiet moments of romance with alcohol. anchester United FC is based in Old Trafford, which is an area of Stretford, in the Trafford Borough of Greater Manchester, England. That’s right. It is not a part of India. In fact, it never was. Not once. IT’S IN ENGLAND!!”

    “I had passion enough for the game to bunk classes and be caned by the school principal for such truancy on more than one occasion. Our gang spent numerous sleepless nights cheering for the exploits of Romario and Bebeto in medical college hostel. And I took a leave from my hospital to watch both the 1998 and the 2002 world cup finals.”

    Last time I checked, doc, Brazil wasn’t in India either. The inaccuracies in your post are laughable, not to mention reeking of personal hatred and possess an astonishing paucity of facts.

    Don’t like it? Ignore it. Nobody’s screaming inside your home or asking you to do the same. Just because you don’t feel the same amount of passion doesn’t mean we all should be on the same boat. You might claim to be the doyen of the game, but this post pretty much highlights why you don’t understand it, or its fans, after all. Get on with your life and do something constructive while you’re at it, considering your narcissistic self seems to have an astonishing amount of free time at its hands.

    Oh. and doc? Practice what you preach🙂 https://twitter.com/doctoratlarge/status/481494438603022336

    But of course, it’s alright if you do it. Because you’re the flag bearer of the game in this country, after all. (Advise: Google hypocrisy, and buy a copy of Wren and Martin while you’re at it)

    • Ofscribblesandscrawls: I’m sure you’ll understand both my post and its grammar better if you take your being personally affronted by it out of the equation

      • Writes a post which reeks of being personally affronted, goes on to complain about people being personally affronted. I might even understand the post, but the grammar? Nope. The fact that you strongly feel your views, opinions and judgements (especially about things that do not fall under your expertise; stuff you clearly cannot comprehend) should be the word of law, is, as they would say in your respected field, a severe case of delusion. Your forty-something self is not the epitome of righteousness, doc. Then again, if your narcissistic soul hasn’t learnt that over four decades, little will change now🙂

  24. NotspamnotspamXXXXXX.

    Wow, I didn’t realise there were so many touchy Man United supporters in India! I’m sure they were all die-hard Reds in 1991, before MU started winning the Premier League every season. Is a “chut” the same thing as a “chutiah” or is there a difference?

  25. Pamela Mukherjee says:

    Good writing… but its a suggestion that you could use other words instead of slangs..

  26. Tanmay's says:

    These “ugly fans” also happen to be tiki-taka haters who do not miss a chance to proclaim that it’s dead not unilke their English counterparts.

  27. sim8ba says:

    You must be the change you wish to see in the world, Will not work in this case, Doctorlarge-ae.

  28. Ria says:

    At some places it does stand very true, fans (including me) get very aggressive during a match!
    But as you say love for the game is what matters, you don’t have to live in England for that! Aggression comes when the players you expect from disappoint you. As Indians, do we have any option than support an England team? And you see how this fan following is working positive? Today India is growing in football!
    There sure are many plastic fans, fake fans, but your statement of someone love tweeting a match is for attention or is fake offends me.
    Living in India, we hardlyy have any football clubs or cafés open at 1am in the night. Because a fan girl, I’m not allowed to go out for a Chelsea match at 3am or so! Twitter is the place where fans meet. Live tweeting is how so many of us ( atleast me) watch the match during busy schedules.
    If instead of just shouting alone in a room watching match looking stupid you tweet your happiness, how is that being fake?

  29. zairashikari says:

    Reblogged this on zairashikari and commented:
    No one could have ever penned down my feeling about these apparently die hard football fans with such an accuracy. Great job, the bad doctor!

  30. zairashikari says:

    No one could have ever penned down my feeling about these apparently die hard football fans with such an accuracy. Great job, the bad doctor!

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