Well, a lot has happened in the world cup since my last hopeful post. That most of the African teams crashed out at the group stage was not unexpected but Ghana’s run to the quarter finals was exciting to watch. Now there’s no question who is top when it comes to football but as a Nigerian, it stung a little to admit that. Every team had their chance and they shone so I cannot begrudge them their moment of glory. All the same, It was great to have a team to rally around. Suarez the hustler must be careful if ever planning a return visit to Africa. I doubt his handball will be forgotten in a hurry. Germany was another side that produced thrilling performances only to be taken apart by Spain in the semis. I hear that octopus is a recent addition to several German restaurant menus.
We also said goodbye to Argentina and Brazil. I really thought one of these two teams would feature in the semi finals but the South American contingent imploded leaving the European teams battling it out for the top prize. As disappointing as this may have been for them, the loss of Maradona was perhaps the best outcome for us; I’m not sure the world is ready for the sight of a naked Maradona.
So we’re down to Spain v Netherlands. In just a few hours, we’ll know which of these teams will be world champions for the next four years. For the last time in this tournament, I’ll settle in with others in front of a big screen, adequately supplied with drinks and snacks to cheer them on. I consider myself neutral on this one which is a relief since I’ll be able to just sit back and enjoy the football. Watching a match as a supporter is one of the most high blood pressure inducing activities known to man. I have run the gamut of emotions over the last month caused solely by watching football. I have felt heartache, anger, disappointment, pleasure, excitement and sympathy. This has been a special world cup for me as I have never appreciated more the freedom to spend days doing nothing but watching matches. I don’t know if I’ll ever have such an opportunity again so I have maximised my enjoyment of this one.