Some light among the gloom ⋆ An Old International

Some light among the gloom

For weeks, I’ve been thinking about packing it in: this blog has had its time, it’s never been a big thing, more on the side with a particular look on football of someone who has lived and played in three countries, wrote a book about it and often felt that football is a lot of hot air (maybe) but always takes itself too seriously.

Football has become an amoral business; it has sold its soul to the highest bidder. It has been like this from the very moment, professionalism was allowed. In recent years, however, it has become worse. Fans have accepted that players move along after a few years, the scouting of young players has become a critical issue as it most often concerns children. The games very often kick off at times given by media companies in order to increase their revenue which in return will be beneficial for the top game: more money to spend on players, managers, coaches, and facilities.

The World Cup, the pinnacle of the game, alongside the Champions League, has become a farce since it has been given to countries with at least dubious human rights records. And FIFA plays along with it, making the public susceptible to think there is something hidden in their trunk that must not be published, i.e. they are being blackmailed.

The state of football, the media, and the debates have led to a feeling of disgust, yet following live updates of the European leagues is still an automatism hard to ditch.

However, there are moments, that come as a real surprise. Like the appointment of Marie-Louise Eta as assistant coach of Berlin’s new hipster club, Union.

She will be the first woman in such an exposed position in the Bundesliga and maybe this is long overdue! Born in 1991 in Dresden she was part of the Turbine Potsdam team that dominated the league in the early 2000s winning three league titles in a row 2009 – 2011 and the Champions League in 2010.

This is THE ray of light needed to be a little bit more cheerful again than in the past weeks. As a Magdeburg supporter this Berlin club is of no great importance – yet the news that this particular club has appointed a woman as assistant coach – though on an interim basis – has really lightened up German football.

© image credits go to Carlos Bustamante Restrepo for his work titled “Ray of Light”, downloaded via flickr under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 Deed.

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