World Cup, the street to Doha – Les Cahiers du soccer |

Diary of a father who is not going to watch the World Cup. Or just a bit bit.

Day 0.

As we speak we open.


With a distracted eye, I watch my tall fifteen-year-old son fidgeting because the opening of the World Cup approaches. He is aware of that his outdated factor of a father likes sport usually and soccer particularly, he lives in the midst of books, anthologies, outdated newspapers gathered for 25 years by the care of his father a bit lit.

He is aware of that stated mum or dad at all times has a display screen or two with rugby, basketball, volleyball operating within the background, he watches his dad spend hours studying unusual issues on the Cahiers du Foot, and he even has some obtained into these (his?) unhealthy habits as a result of like related highschool pupil, he stuffs himself with movies, podcasts, brief codecs. So it drives Mrs. Mom loopy to have the 2 males in the home obsessive about these swollen bouncing issues. Dad and son watch TV, dad and son go to the fitness center, dad and son gnagnagnagnan. Onerous, the lifetime of mother.

And there, my bag of hormones is on burning thistles: the competitors begins. Zébulon is aggravated with the Spanish choice, is delighted with Giroud, thinks that Qatar will end at -12 within the purpose common, annoys me with the identify of the long run prime scorer…

And I do not care.

It is horrible all the identical. For the primary time in my acutely aware existence, for the very first time since sporting occasions grew to become one in all my facilities of curiosity and curiosity, a soccer world cup started in my strictest indifference. It’s absurd.

After I’m already trampling for the Olympics, once I’m nearly counting the times for World Rugby 2023, I watch from afar some gags convulse for the Qatari competitors. 4 years again, I restrained the criticisms I heard about the truth that Putin was frequented there, that the circumstances of development of the Russian enclosures have been uncertain, and I answered Westernization, freedom, openness…

However the…

So let’s specify immediately, the tales of boycotts additionally detached to me on the final stage. Not that trendy slavery does not have an effect on me, that these audio system constructed on corpses do not make me sick, no. The evil is deeper, extra anterior. The stands would have come out of the bottom by means of essentially the most whole of virtues and with deep respect for man and the planet, that the state of affairs would have been the identical.

However what are we going to do there? Query I’d have requested if the trophy had discovered refuge in Laos, Mongolia, Bostwana or the Dominican Republic, with out offending these nations. The Soccer World Cup goes to a soccer nation, and rattling Zidane there isn’t a scarcity of touchdown spots! I do not need to have the controversy on the corruption inherent within the award, and in reality I do not need to know why FIFA goes to get misplaced, get misplaced among the many impetrolated emirs.

When you concentrate on it, nothing is correct. What’s Qatar and soccer? The place is the nice love story between these two? After we organized the competitors in the US or in South Africa, there was a foundation of frequent sense, starting from the event of a market to the reward of a whole continent, we needed to introduce our sport to many peoples , in decently stuffed stadiums. There was nothing synthetic about it. However because the lunches say, this Qatar 2022 stinks of pretend. No pleasure in entrance of a lot vacancy. No ready, and due to this fact no reminiscences to be anticipated.

It is unusual all the identical… After I return, the primary World Cup that I keep in mind in its entirety was 1986. Mexico, with its loopy schedules, already. Staying up late to observe Antenne 2, with Bernard Père and Roger Piantoni, the outdated TV within the nation home which spits out uneven sound and a grating picture, the assiduous studying of France-Soccer, VSD and Télépoche to search out out when the matches are, and the controversy of the week with faculty mates on Belgians, Soviets, Brazilians…

The nothing. I have not purchased L’Equipe for at the least two weeks. Bein Sport will do with out my month-to-month price. Not the slightest particular concern of some paper journal to teach myself somewhat. I caught myself gasping simply now when the radio provided me one more spurt of a particular. Am I sick?

No. I’m out of part.

The World Cup foreshadowed summer time, June and July have been effervescent, and even in 90 and 94 within the absence of blues, it was good. However clarify to me what a world cup involves fuck in November? The place are the terraces, the barbecues, the beers within the heat of a summer time night shared on a garden not removed from a large display screen? The place are the fellows in jersey shorts screaming their love of the nation? The place are the scarves of the French champion membership, which we’ve not had time to place away for the reason that final match of the coronation?

There it is freezing, it is floating, it is barely daylight, the exteriors of the cafes can solely be tolerated in anorak, the home windows are closed and you will not hear anybody yelling from the residences full of Portuguese, Algerians or different cousin international locations … What’s the World Cup if not a giant social gathering that places everybody out? Since when are we going to clump collectively as quickly as December seems?

After which they’re good, however we’ve our heads on the job, on the handlebars, the vacations are far-off… However the World Cup, nonetheless, these are the beginnings of the vacations, it has a style of carelessness, of disconnection , it smells like flip flops. Now we have nice reviews on Russia, Brazil, South Africa… We journey. What are we going to rave about? Buildings sprouting like mushrooms on a mattress of sand? And do you assume that makes us need to go and have enjoyable in these international locations the place, to sum up roughly, we do not drink, we do not smoke, we do not fuck… and we do not discuss both? Come on, with out me. Once more, we might go to Iran, an excellent and wealthy nation, with the unbelievable Persian tradition, the state of affairs could be very totally different. Since at FIFA we do not thoughts entrusting the competitors to dictatorships (Sure Vladimir, I am speaking about you, to not point out the Argentinian precedent of 1978…) we’d as effectively do it for international locations that may increase a minimal of curiosity with a background of tradition.

And hey, talking of tradition, let’s deviate from soccer tradition… Ecuador – Qatar, sorry, however how a lot does that weigh when it comes to awards? 1 Asian Cup of Nations vs… nothing. There is no such thing as a denying it, it sends the dream, it primes the poiscaille for fishing. I will probably be rightly retorted that this reproach from the pen of a man who will get carried away for an Estonia – San Marino, it is fairly daring. Actually. However a Nations League stage D match is unpretentious, we’re amongst people who find themselves conscious of what they’re and produce soccer that I’d describe as humble and constant. The World Cup, for an introduction, deserves higher than that.

So sorry, however I am not in on it. I come to marvel if I nonetheless like soccer. Just a few years in the past, I might give the names of the squads of L1 golf equipment, and know just about who performs the place within the nationwide choices. Nicely, it is getting sophisticated… I miss matches, even entire days with out this unusual nervousness that gripped me till not too long ago when there was a gap within the sports activities info racket. Has the flame due to this fact gone out, with the newest symptom being this deep I do not care a few date that was typically the middle of my life?

The long run will inform.

There, mini-me however big-ass took over the effervescence, I even suspect him of getting somewhat overplayed his tendinitis within the shoulder with the coach of his volleyball crew in order that he doesn’t choose him within the group that may play tomorrow… on the time of the opening match. I stated nothing. I had finished the identical in 2002. I have a look at the spectacle of the post-pubescent pimply with a sure tenderness as a result of someplace I see myself there once more. The footeux heritage is transmitted, definitely.

Am I going to observe a part of this world? Between work and different obligations, nothing is much less sure. My nice pal would be the radio, as I normally do for this L1 which detached to me at instances, whereas my little Lensois sparkle, my Marseilles are usually not dropped, and we dwell a interval Mbappé Messi Neymar that ‘we cannot see you once more anytime quickly.

In any case, the opening ceremony will do with out my presence, and France Japan at 2 p.m. could have consumed a part of my Sunday leisure time.

We’ll see on Monday with the three matches if the magic resumes.




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