A World Cup country


As the debut against Ivory Coast gets closer and closer and PEKERMAN looks almost sure to start with SAVIOLA and CRESPO up front, I would like to invite you to play a little game with me. Are you ready? OK, here we go:

Imagine Carlos TEVEZ asking the crowd for support, then running at high speed with nobody around him and the whole stadium preparing to celebrate as he jumps before the defining moment. Picture Juan Pablo SORIN ready to dive (er…hmmm…yeah…you know…we are from Argentina!) as every single spectator hold his breath waiting for the judge verdict. Now close your eyes and think of Roberto AYALA in his very own elegant style, waltzing through the Ivory Coast front line after coolly dispossessing them. And finally, here´s Lionel MESSI, swinging up and down like if he had wheels instead of studs under his boots.

I won´t ask you for much more things to imagine. Just try and figure what could happen if all the things you’ve pictured in your brain throughout the first paragraph DON’T take place in a football pitch but in several different sporting stages? What could happen if these four excellent players where not football icons but something else?

I know, I know, unless you´re out of your mind, you don´t understand a single word I´m saying. Need help? Check out this link and see what I mean:

Those words in the end of this TV commercial clearly say: “Lo de ellos es el fútbol. Vamos Argentina” (Their stuff is football. Come on Argentina).

This is just one little example of what you can see if you watch TV in Argentina these days.

Screens all over our country are invaded by football and temperature is rising as the World Cup Fever approaches its climax.

24-hour coverage is a must for the biggest sports channels in Argentina and you can see some journalist broadcasting live at 11 PM (Buenos Aires) while they are in Germany, awake at from Germany at 4 AM and with only a few hours before another training session starts for Argentina in the tiny German town called (here I go…) Herzogenaurach (Thank you spell check!).

Even the gossip shows are all about the World Cup these days. You see people totally not interested in football, all of a sudden wearing Argentina´s colours and talking about MESSI, TEVEZ and RIQUELME.

I’m glad it is like that. I would hate to live in a country where the World Cup is ignored completely. I would also hate to see what happened in 2002 here in Argentina, when if you didn´t have satellital TV with those giant dishes only money can buy, you were out of the action.

This time around, all of the World Cup matches will be broadcasted (granted it’ll be through cable TV, but it’s very easy to have access to it in Argentina) and whenever Argentina plays, everybody will be able to watch it live in all of our 5 public TV stations (plus one cable channel). That means if you don´t want to watch Argentina in this World Cup and you are in our country in June-July, you better turn the TV off and go for a walk in the park…I can guarantee you…nobody will bother you!

Just try and don´t bother us, the real football people, OK?