Friday, 10 July 2009

Hug a Hooligan - They're S.A.D.

I read a report about a month back that football fans may suffer 'end of season blues' after almost 22 months of uninterrupted matches. It seems from the recent activity in Birmingham and Whitechapel that, if no-one else, the hooligan element at least may have found an outlet to preserve their delicate psychological health. However, early diagnosis may prove difficult for those close to members of this particular group as warning symptoms of '(end of ) Season Affective Disorder' include an inability to focus, lack of direction, irritability, lethargy and an inability to converse.

So presumably on doctor's orders, hooligans 'only hating for our health' turned out in Birmingham city centre last Saturday to distract themselves from the lack of football - a sort of diversionary activity for delinquents. Unfortunately, without the other team to start a fight with the only 'entertainment' for puzzled onlookers was a medley of bad 1980s football chants from the terraces - reason enough in my opinion for the police to baton charge them and give them a good dousing of water cannon. Anyway they were dispersed and Saturday shopping allowed to resume. Meanwhile in Whitechapel, a simultaneous protest had been organised and this time the English Defence League were dutifully supported by the originally titled Welsh Defence League belting out "In-gur-learned, In-gur-learned, In-gur-learned", "Rule Britannia", "I'm English till I die, I'm English till I die, I know I am, I'm sure I am, I'm English till I die"...and other well-known Welsh patriotic sporting anthems.

So if moonlighting as Neo-Nazi political storm troopers between seasons could safeguard the fragile mental health of England's football firms, what about the ordinary decent football supporters? As a rugby man I'm slightly embarrassed to admit I have relatives who are fanatics...about football, but nevertheless I asked them how they were managing to cope with the current absence of meaning in their lives. Their solution?

They're following the cricket.

Well desperate times, desperate measures.


  1. Interesting post, however although some individuals come across as football fanatics, some do take an interest in other sports, such as cricket. And this is not just when the football season is over, as cricket is played all throughout the year.
    I wouldn't say cricket is a desperate measure to fill the 'absence' from football, as they are both very different forms of sport. If you're a true footbal fanatic, you tend to only follow football, and not any other sport, especially cricket.

  2. "If you're a true footbal fanatic, you tend to only follow football, and not any other sport, especially cricket."

    Good point, I had a suspicion they weren't 'true believers' :) Busted!