Under 14s show love of footy
BIG Blues bands (BB King Live at Montreaux 1993 playing The Thrill Is Gone), Bluegrass bands (Earl Scruggs & Friends, playing Foggy Mountain Breakdown) even classical orchestras if you like (Chicago symphony, playing Beethoven 9); they are imbued with qualities worth emulating as one goes about one’s playing of one’s football.
Every player practiced, every player brave enough to stand up and take their turn as it rises, modest enough to provide critical support their band members or team mates require and every player, playing the same song, together, played as hard and well as possible, riding a fine line between discipline and expression, no thought for victory or defeat, only for playing as well as one can.
Facing a danger game against the Wangaratta Kangaroos, the Eagles’ under 14 side had clearly gone to Wangaratta with the intention of playing the same song.
The collective feeling good, concentration steely.
And as I looked around the group, it was hard not to feel that in a very big family/brotherhood/sisterhood sort of way.
Love (for football) was in the air in every sight and every sound, and I don’t know if I was being foolish or being wise, but it was something that I must believe in.
It was there when I looked in their eyes, yes, love (for football) was in the air, love (for football) was in the air.
Then the game started and, in a committed, selfless, attacking style of football, they began to play.
All players keenly accepting whatever role was asked of them, forward, middle or back, new or old; it didn’t matter.
All players providing frantic defensive pressure on the opposition ball carriers.
All players turned and were running in numbers, flat out, creating havoc for the opposition.
The Kangas were good, and they had some good players, played with great spirit and fought it out to the very end, even winning the final quarter but the result and Eagles victory was a fair indication of the day.
Carlos Santana teaches us that when you play music, you are bringing light into the darkness; and that’s true.
Also true is that through will and effort, when you run down an opponent whose tearing toward their goals, force the ball free, your team mate collects it delivers with frantic pace to another team mate, collectively you swarm forward driving the ball, perfectly or imperfectly through your own goal, the whole world suddenly feels a lot brighter too.
I don’t care who does it; go Eagles.