Goff’s Warriors and Blues heart break
Auckland mayor Phil Goff describes his relationship with the Blues and Warriors like marriage - together in sickness and in health.
Like many Aucklanders, Goff constantly battles the love he has for his city’s team with the pain of their absent success.
‘‘They break my heart from time to time,’’ he said.
And even in his own marriage, there’s sporting conflict.
‘‘There’s warfare in my family when the Chiefs are playing the Blues,’’ he said.
‘‘My wife is a Waikato girl from Mangakino and a strong Chiefs supporter while I’m out there defending the Blues.’’
Goff often shows his face at Mt Smart Stadium and Eden Park in support.
However, even he admits that crowd numbers at games in Auckland can be a major problem and a hinderance to atmosphere.
‘‘When your team’s doing better, obviously you get more people coming along and helping fill the stadium,’’ Goff said.
‘‘The problem with Eden Park is having a park that’s designed for the Rugby World Cup but always feels relatively empty when you’ve got 15,000 or 20,000 people there.
‘‘And that’s the big dilemma we face in what we might do for the future. You get a lot more atmosphere if you have a lot of people in the stands.’’
Despite this, Goff would love to see the Rugby World Cup back in Auckland,
‘‘Having the Rugby World Cup here again would be terrific,’’ he said.
‘‘With anything that is international, you’re seeing your side out there playing their hearts out and that gives it atmosphere and excitement around the game.’’
Goff has been an advocate for a new waterfront stadium in Auckland, however is weary of the burden on taxpayers and thinks alternative funding is the solution. And while he has an affinity for the Blues and Warriors, he also takes pride in some of the local and more minor clubs.
‘‘I used to go along quite often to the school netball games in my old electorate,’’ Goff said.
‘‘We’ve also got these modest little clubs, like Auckland City Football Club, with hardly any land, with scaffolding around the seats, but still producing brilliant results.’’
Goff believes sport is a massive part of not just Auckland life, but Kiwi culture as well.
Auckland mayor Phil Goff says his relationship with the Blues and Warriors is one of both pain and joy.