Kick that footy Cristiano!

We’ve seen it before. A world famous Football team comes to town. And inevitably they are made to kick Sherrins.

It happened when Beckham came to Melbourne and now is happened with Ronaldo

This sort of thing irritates the bejesus of some Association Football fans.  Mainly because they feel that many in the AFL fraternity have been against Association Football in Australia, but when the glamorous teams come they fall over each other to get some attention. Somehow they feel that they are gate crushing on a party that should be exclusively be for those who like the code.  Not trying to get some reflected attention that they are not entitled to.

I used to get a bit pissed off too (despite being a card carrying Carlton member, and I like AFL) But now I really see it like Philip Micallef.

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But there is one photo that has raised my attention.

I love Melbourne – a lot, but I irk at the statement ‘The most liveable city in the world’ (even when it goes down the ranks) and of course ‘sport capital’. I hate it because it smack of insecurity.

Being the second city in Australia, the media and politicians in Melbourne seems to behave like our city is the second born in a family that is jealous of the big sibling. And this is even more reflected by the AFL wanting desperately to grab some attention from the big team.

I was going to tweet back to Daniel Andrews that we play Association Football in Melbourne as well. If he hasn’t forgotten we have a soccer team representing Melbourne which is the current premier AND Champion. But no, he is taking a selfie with Ronaldo with a Sherrin.

This tells me two things. The first is what I tell some Association Football supporters that say that ‘Soccer is going to be number 1’. I don’t believe that is going to be the case (at least for a few generations if ever) especially here in Melbourne. The game of Australian Rules Football is so ingrained in the culture of this city that I think it will remain the main code in our city. And we should be fine with that. As I said before Association Football doesn’t need to be number one if the code finds its niche and it is sustainable. The fact that the Premier of Victoria chose to use the AFL ball thus re-enforcing the cultural idea that this is ‘Victoria’s game’ is confirmation (he could have chosen to have a few Melbourne Victory/City players instead).

Second it confirmed to me the inherent insecurity of the AFL not being an international sport. I wrote about this back in 2012. . Again the same way Melbourne jumps up and down to be noticed seems to happen a bit when the AFL wants to rub shoulders with the big boys of world football.

Let’s the AFL have a bit of fun. It is harmless and the main focus will be on the game where the ball will be round and the goals will have nets. The main game for those who love Association Football in Australia are things like the viability of the A-League and Free to Air TV. Those are the important things.

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