Why does the world hate me for not liking football?
What was Wenger thinking sending Walcott on that early
For as long as I can remember, I’ve felt like an outsider. Shunned in social situations, I have a shameful quality which has stopped me reaping all the benefits of my cis privilege.
I don’t like football.
It’s taken a long time to come to terms with the fact I would never truly belong in the world of LadBible and Gillette Soccer Saturday, but I feel I need to speak out for the silent minority of people like me.
We live in a world where we are bombarded by inside jokes and people idolising men who, without their feet, would only be qualified to litter pick on the side of the M1.
It’s tough – one of my closest mates at uni has told me he can’t ever completely trust me because I don’t like the sport. Countless others have told me they think people who don’t like football are odd.
I feel abandoned when those around me who ought to know better feign an interest in the Proletariat’s ugly equivalent of fox hunting.
Guys I once considered my friends have left me behind, waxing lyrical about Yaya Toure’s assists and talking in impenetrable riddles about aggregate goals and offside rules, throwing out enigmatic phrases like “dare to Zlatan”.
As a result of my unconscious choice not to care about 22 overgrown yobs with 2 GCSEs between them, I’m left out of conversations in the pub, ignored when trying to make friends with other blokes and struggle in networking environments.
The sad Dapper Laughs dominated pop culture of today rejects my attempts to bring up the standard of conversation from the hooligan addled, overpriced circlejerk of “the beautiful game” and rewards me with humiliation at the hands of my peers.
Every time I utter a contrived, sufficiently vague comment like “he looks like he does football good”, a little piece of my soul dies.
I’m tired of being made to feel inadequate just because I’d rather talk about literally anything else, than work out who Sol Campbell is and why he’s a Judas.
In my opinion, liking football beyond the age of about 11 is the equivalent of watching CBeebies at uni – juvenile, mundane and a waste of a perfectly good brain.
Why anyone fetishises a game laciking the strategic depth of American Football, the raw physicality of rugby or the aesthetic of beach volleyball is truly beyond me.
But bizarrely I’m the one whose ostracised, cast out like a round of applause at an NUS conference, and I think it’s unfair.
I know there are others like me, and it’s time for us to step out of the shadows of budget lager and boorish hooliganism.
Let’s stop pretending to support a team when we’re forced to make a choice, let’s finally admit we don’t give a shit about Harry Kane’s season and let’s bring back normal conversation, free from banal chat, to the pubs of this great nation.