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Goals are overrated

New Zealand Development 0, Capital Football 0
Northern Football 0, Auckland Football 1
North Harbour Stadium, Auckland, November 9 2014

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There are people out there, let’s not name names, for the purposes of this exercise we’ll refer to them simply as HEATHENS, there are HEATHENS out there who think that football is a boring game. What do they know, eh? We know better. We know that a 0-0 draw can be thrilling. It can be. I know this because I was at a thrilling one just the other day.

The true beauty of a football goal is its rareness. The rarer something is the more soughtafter it is, the more people will fight for it, and the more celebrated it becomes. Think diamonds, true love, the Ferrari California… It’s because of the rareness of the event that when a goal is scored in football the passion evoked is many times greater than a rugby try or a basketball hoop could ever hope to be, and that’s one of the many things that makes our game the greatest in the world by far.

But wait, there’s more! If there happened to be any HEATHENS at North Harbour Stadium on Sunday, they would have learned an important further lesson about the beautiful game – football goals are so amazing, so emotionally powerful, that you don’t need any goals at all for a game to be a classic. Allow me to explain why.

In my day job I work for a trade union. One of the things I can tell you about my job is that unions don’t need to go on strike to win better pay and conditions for workers. What they need to be effective is the ability to strike. It’s the threat of a strike that’s where most of the power lies, not in the strike itself. As it is in football. Sometimes the threat of a goal is enough.

This point could not have been more starkly illustrated by the two games at North Harbour Stadium on Sunday. One had a goal and one didn’t. One was exciting and one wasn’t. To put it in more crude terms, one was a game of football, while the other more closely resembled synchronised snoozing.

Which one do you think was the one that got pulses racing? The answer is if you’d checked my pulse during the Auckland/Northern game I would have been in serious danger of being declared clinically dead. Yet the scoreless draw between New Zealand Development and Capital was well and truly a thrill a minute classic that had me on the edge of my seat (even though technically I wasn’t sitting on one) from start to finish. So much so that I had to stop tweeting every shot that ricocheted off crossbars and posts alike for fear of my constant breathless reporting resulting in the loss of some of my less football hardy followers.

How that game ended 0-0 is anyone’s guess. A last second goal by one of the two sides was the only thing it lacked but it didn’t need it really. A draw was the right result for two sides that traded punch after punch one after the other right throughout the match. Well done to both sides for putting on one of the best displays of football I have seen all year.

In other results, WaiBOP went down to Mainland in Christchurch 3-0 (ah shuddup), and Central managed to edge past South 3-2 in the battle for the wooden spoon.

Next week! Next week we have another double header in Auckland with Northern taking on Mainland at 1pm followed by NZ Development vs WaiBOP at 4. Both those games are at Seddon Fields. Central is playing Auckland in Palmerston North at 3 and South entertains Capital at 1pm.

If you’re looking for some ASB Premiership coverage from me in the next few weeks – sorrynotsorry but I’ll get to it when the Women’s League is finished! I’m having too much fun with this competition and it’s a good book I won’t be putting down until The End.

Categories: NZ Women's National League

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Enzo Giordani

A grassroots football enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent club on earth - A.S. Roma. More info (including e-mail address) can be found here: https://in-the-back-of-the.net/about/

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