26 May 2010

Where's the buzz?

The World Cup is just a few weeks away. Normally, I'd be all excited about the prospect of a whole month's worth of football but for some reason, not this time.

Could it be the fact that the Cup is on, far away in South Africa this time around?

I don't think so. The 2002 edition was even further away in the Far East and that didn't ruin the atmosphere. Well, you could argue that the buzz most certainly would have been there in 2002 since Ireland were in it and thanks to Mr. Va Va Voom himself, are missing out on a trip to the Southern Hemisphere in 2010.
Well, to be fair, Ireland didn't actually make Germany 2006 either and that World Cup definitely had a good feel to it.

Maybe it's because I'm getting older and the fun element isn't there anymore? OK, I don't actually go out and get the latest Panini sticker book and swap player stickers but that's no real excuse.

It could be because of the teams that are there. There's just none of the traditional favourites worth rooting for.

Brazil are definitely no samba heroes while Dunga's at the helm (although they'll probably end up winning it anyway - just look at their back four!). Argentina is being led by a mad man while France suffers from guilt and will probably get knocked out in the first round.

With all due respect to Del Bosque, Spain look like they're going to revert to their pre-Aragones days and just disappoint everyone. Ditto with Holland unless the manager can somehow squeeze the combined creativity of Sneijder and Robben while somehow keeping it tight at the back.

Having lived in Ireland for the better part of a decade, I'd know better than to show any allegiance to England even if they do stand a good chance of winning it with Don Fabio in charge.

So, yes. Maybe, it's for that reason, this particular World Cup isn't getting me all excited. It's either that or the prospect of watching live football with those annoying migraine-inducing vuvuzela being blown in the background. And I thought all the whistling at the Ali Sami Yen was hell.

Anyway, I watched this Nike ad at the end of the Champions League final and thought it was brilliant. If this ad doesn't kickstart the old World Cup feel, I don't know what else will. Just love the Rooney-caravan-Ribery-on-billboard bit as well as the pouty Ronaldo statue...

Oh, and that Dunga is definitely a brave man for leaving Ronaldinho behind. I'd say the Nike execs are just a tad bit pissed off with him for not bringing along their Brazillian poster boy. Stick it to the man, Carlos. Good for you.

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