The Inclusivity of Football

The final of Euro 2020 is on Sunday evening (BST) (I’m talking about football (soccer to my North American friends)) where Italy will play England at London’s Wembley stadium.

Delayed from last year, the England team‘s performance during the competition has brought a smile to the faces of the majority of the nation. Of course, not everyone likes football and there are always those who like to claim that it “doesn’t do it for me.” But there’s nothing wrong with getting behind the national team, especially after living through the last 18 months. It’s true that media coverage could be considered to have been over the top; England beating Germany 2-nil didn’t need to be the 10-minutes-long lead story on the BBC’s Six O’Clock News. πŸ™‚

Well, okay, maybe it did … πŸ™‚

But what I think this competition has done is push back the cloud of Covid and allowed the country to believe that ‘normal’ times will return and are actually beginning to do so, as long as we all remain sensible. The UK government designated matches as test events and allowed limited numbers of fans back into the stands, with capacity increasing as the competition progressed, and my goodness, England’s supporters have been at full throttle.

Football is tribal. Football is inclusive. Football gives strangers a common bond. Football allows The Boy to have conversations where he can speak knowledgeably and with passion. Football allows The Brainy One and me to hang out with The Boy. πŸ™‚

I’m not a huge football fan, rugby is The Brainy One’s preferred sport. The Boy, as long time readers will know, is a huge fan. He can’t play very well; it’s the statistics that do it for him. I follow England on Instagram, along with several players – Harry Kane and Jordan Henderson to name two – and read the football bits in the sports’ pages of the newspaper. All so I can have an informed and accurate discussion with The Boy about one of his favourite things.

We’ve watched all of England’s matches, we’ve yelled at the television in delight and we’ve discussed individual players with all the authority of armchair experts.

And after Sunday, that’ll be my international match watching done until next year’s World Cup … probably.

“It’s coming home, it’s coming home, it’s coming … football’s coming home!”

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9 thoughts on “The Inclusivity of Football

  1. Can you believe it? England in the final! As a Spurs household we were naturally very proud of our Harry scoring the winner πŸ˜‰ I think viewing figures are going to be off the scale for Sunday. I feel nervous already! My friend’s husband (a huge football fan) managed to get tickets for last night’s game and after over a year of being in a football stadium he couldn’t believe his luck. One way or another I think we can all guess what the newspaper headlines are going to be about on Monday.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes footie news makes it here on to our top sports news, even with the Stanley Cup playoffs with a Canadian team in the series! I watched a few minutes of the England & Ukraine match & even less for the hockey games. I will have a moment of fingers crossed for England to win & bring it home … it doesn’t look good for The Habs bringing the cup home! You’re a good, no strike that, you’re a great Mum for keeping up with the football to be able to discuss with TB!

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  3. I live in Washington State but we love “futbol”….soccer here…My girls have played since they were little and my youngest always refers to it as the REAL football…lol. I’m excited for the final. I chuckled because my mom is Italian and I was born in England (my dad was stationed in the. military). Should be a great game to watch.

    Liked by 1 person

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