Monday, March 08, 2004

Sing when you're losing

I'm going to break one of the unwritten rules of this corner of blogland and post about football. Well, football supporters to be precise.

I was watching the Portsmouth v Arsenal FA Cup game on Saturday evening as I was cooking dinner and I was amazed by the behaviour of the Portsmouth fans. They were all singing their hearts out as though they were the ones leading by four goals instead of the other way round. They didn't even falter when Arsenal's fifth goal went in. They just went right on singing the theme from 'Great Escape' and chanting 'We're going to win six - five' at the tops of their voices.

I've been to a lot of football matches and seen several where the scoreline has read more like a one-sided rugby result and almost invariably the supporters of the team on the wrong end of the scoreline are as quiet as mice. Especially if they are at home. There's something galling about seeing another team come to your ground and play as if your team weren't even on the pitch. You don't really feel like being a vocal supporter at that point - about the best you can do is mutter quietly to yourself or hurl abuse at the other side's fans.

So, for the Portsmouth fans to be in full voice, supporting their team, players and managers in the face of the Arsenal onslaught is highly commendable. Highly commendable indeed.

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