Monday, 14 September 2009

It's The Passion

Football is a passionate game.

It's one of it's greatest charms.

I don't think anyone would dispute that analysis.

But where those feelings flare into aggression and violence, or the goading of players (including racist and homophobic chanting), that passion become problematic.

So whose responsibility is it to manage that tension?

The finger of accusation is clearly pointing at Adebayor after his antics this weekend.

One could ask to what extent any individual fans who reacted in an aggressive or violent manner were responsible for their own actions.

What would I have done in a similar situation?

Well I probably would not having been fighting to get on the pitch to have a go at my tormentor.

Not least because he would dwarf my 5ft 4in frame (1.64m for my European readers)!

But I just would not act in that way.

That's not to say that I would not be affected by those around me and the passion of the situation. I can imagine being drawn into the odd offensive gesture.

Which leads us back to the responsibility of individual players.

I earn considerably less than Premiership football players. But I am clear that there are certain expectations that I behave in a professional manner when at work. Whatever obstacles I may come across.

So I don't think it is unreasonable to require players to exhibit a similar level of restraint.

It seems there is still a way to go on this, however.

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