Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Things I'll miss about Bosnia: #2

A couple of tickets from Celik matches I have attended over
the last few weeks.


Yes, that's right. One of the things I will miss the most about Bosnia and Herzegovina is attending the football.

Okay, now lets think about it for a second.

This country is not exactly renowned for its quality of football; particularly its domestic competition. Not to mention that, for the majority of local matches, the crowd will not exceed more than a couple of thousand.

Oh, and throw in the fact that many of the people who do actually attend the Bosnian stadiums on game-day  complain of refereeing inconsistency or, better put, corruption.

So, wait a minute. Why would I miss anything about it? Really, it is simple.

Muddy pitches - I love it. (Source: Lupiga.com)
The passion. The atmosphere. The fans. The muddy pitches. The players giving their all for the shirt of their club that has been in existence for decades upon decades; clubs that have 'survived', for want of a better term, a number of wars.

To me, that is football. It is those little things which, really, football would be nothing if it were without them.

If you have been following my blog, no matter to what capacity, most likely you will know that I have some sort of affinity for my local football club Celik Zenica.

Although the club's performances on the pitch have been relatively average this season, and much-so for the past number of years, Celik remains the pride of this city.

Celik Zenica are a club with a long history of success and
passionate support; this is an old photo, though I
am unsure of the exact year.
(Source: Petroley.hubpages.com)
The committed and hardcore fans bleed for this club; though they may not expect titles with their current crop of players, they at least expect those players to put in 100-per-cent effort every time. As long as the players are giving their all, so will their fans - and the atmosphere created by them, at their best, is almost second-to-none.

Although I also have a club in Australia - I support Melbourne Victory - you can notice how sanitised the game can become sometimes; huge modern stadiums; overpaid and 'past-it' players only pulling the boots on for a quick pay-check; sides which are run more like a business rather than an actual football club.

While those factors may define the modern day version of football, myself, and others like me, believe that the game loses much of its soul when it falls into this position.

Upon summation of the aforementioned, I have gradually learned to respect and appreciate the finer things about the sport of football that I am experiencing in the stadiums of this fascinating country - certain things that I wish had not been completely on the game back home in Australia.

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