Sunday, October 10, 2010

The beautiful game

Another World Cup is over, and it introduced a new champion, not unexpectedly. However, the inspiration for this post was ESPN's 30 for 30 on "The Two Escobars" going back some 20 years - bringing back memories of the Colombian football team.

Back in 1990, there were two Colombian footballers who created a clear impression on me. The inimitable Valderrama, with his frizzy hairdo, and ofcourse the crazy Rene Higuita (he of the scorpion kick). Back in the good old days when my hair had to be within a few microns of my scalp, Valderrama's 'do was quite a thing - I think it still is! Higuita ofcourse was known for his forays to midfield, and good old Roger Milla caught him napping on one of those forays, and celebrated in his usual "jiggly" dance on the sidelines!

It's the first football World Cup I can remember watching. Memories of waking up with Achan at what were then unearthly hours to watch some great players. Baggio weaving through defenses, Schillaci working his magic, Klinsmann heading in a blinder against the Yugoslavians, Sergio Goychochea pulling off some stunning saves, and so much more. It was about Maradona beginning his decline. The Germans playing some boring football (in general) and winning the Cup!

But more than that it was about falling in love with the beautiful game, and about a father teaching his son the joys of sport!

NOTE: This was started sometime in July 2010, and completed only in March 2011! Have watched more of ESPN's 30 for 30, and they've done a fab job of the series.