One of the things I like about football is that it's not all contact. No other large team sports are so open to small, weak, etc as football that I know of. Rugby, American Football, Ozzie rules* etc. In all of those, you need to be big, strong to succeed. Could you see Maradona playing American Football? He'd get slaughtered! Yet in Football, he's made so many headlines it's ridiculous (although most of them aren't much to do with football
) And I'm not saying that because I'm small or weak - I'm no giant but I'm big enough...
That said, there is contact. Watch Roy Keane play and you'll see contact a-plenty. It's a very simple, complicated game. To see it as a game where 22 people kick a ball works, you know what's happening, but the true beauty is lost on you. Only when you go outside after a match to try to recreate a Roberto Carlos circling free kick and break your shed window at the age of 10 do you appreciate football.
Also, it's not just about goals. It's a question of how much you understand it - and I don't just mean understand the rules. I sat glued to the TV and on the edge of my seat (which makes for uncomfortable view I can tell you (picture what I said
)) watching Liverpool's UEFA cup run where there was 2 goals in 6 hours of football**, and one of those was a penalty. Boring? Not a second. Not to me.
I can watch baseball or American Football and find it mindnumbingly boring. That's because I don't understand the game. I have no doubt that if I knew the game and liked it enough to play it in my back garden, I wouldn't find it at all boring. Foot-Football is a higher plain to me. A rotten match where I can't kick the ball to save my life is better than pretty much any other activity in a way that I can't quite descibe.
* I don't know a whole lot about Ozzie rules and I could be talking crap here. If so, sorry.
** This is a special example of how few goals there can be. It's not a typical 6 hours of football so don't use it as such. The typical match has a goal scored roughly every 32 minutes, use that figure instead.
War isn't about who's right, its about who's left.