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        Wednesday, June 28, 2006
        I'm coming clean
        This is a coming-out-of-the-closet post. Just to prepare you for what’s about to come, I invite you to listen to this.

        I'm a Brazil fan. There! I've said it!

        Do I have to justify?
        When I fell in love with soccer there were no African teams participating in the World Cup, and there weren't there for a long time. So, I grew up rooting and crying – real tears – and suffering bad stomach aches from nervousness rooting for Brazil. I can't flip just like that and be a fan of somebody else now. Brazil and I go a long way, and it was a first love thing. You know how strong that is…? My own mother could be the captain of the other team and I'm still going to scream and curse on Brazil's behalf. It is that serious.

        One thing which divided my home growing up in Ethiopia was World Cup - one German brother, one Brazilian brother and me, an Italian father and brother, a sister who wished World Cup didn't exist and a mother who was always on the side of who cried the most and cursed the least. It was as if we ceased to be Ethiopians and transformed into the nationality of our favourite team. Cursing in our own language, Amharic, was strictly forbidden. So, Italian, English and Oromigna were quite liberally used and my parents were OK with that – for the duration of the game, that is.

        I vividly remember the feeling in my stomach watching Italy beat Brazil in 1982 and take the Cup. Paulo Rossi, Italy's forward was so damn annoying just hanging around Brazil's penalty area and sneaking a goal. My brother and I, in our desperation as our team was losing, frantically criticized Rossi for being a sneaky woos. I remember quietly hating my dad for jumping with joy and telling my brother and I "I don’t care if he's preparing food while waiting for the ball to land on his feet. The main thing is, he's scoring a goal for me…" Now Ronaldo is pulling a Rossi on me – quite embarrassing. My Brazil doesn’t do that.

        In retrospect, I'm glad my dad's team won back in ‘82 because it was the last World Cup for him (R.I.P.) But, I want my revenge this year.

        I'm still proud of Ghana though
        I was damn proud of Ghana regardless of my team winning. They truly dominated the game, but unfortunately could not reward themselves with a goal or two. I wanted them to score so bad – I really did. I eve confused my daughter who kept on asking me whom I rooting for. I think Ghana had about five chances for a spectacular goal. It's as if they get a mental block by the time they cut through the Brazilian defense and reach the goal. The Brazil vs Ghana game made the Italy vs Australia game on Monday look even worse. It was the clumsiest game I’ve watched so far.

        When Ghana was sailing through, I was getting very nervous about divided loyalty. When the moment of truth arrived, I realized that nothing can come between Brazil and me. So go Brazil! You owe me big time!
        posted by Fikirte @ 6:37 AM   Digg!
        • name<="c115150779071194816" id="c115150779071194816">

          At 11:16 AM, Blogger sokari said…

          Well at least you admit it - I too supported them before AFrica (BA) came on the scene - I mean they are Africans too eh:) like the French team! But no I must say the AFrican continent will always come first. I long stopped being in awe of them - they have been pretty ordinary so far and the supposedly great Ronaldinho has been no where - is he still on the team - as for Ronaldo - well see my comment!

          What fun though eh?

        • name<="c115150857908009216" id="c115150857908009216">

          At 11:29 AM, Blogger sokari said…

          Agreed - spot on - its not just in internationals that this goes on but in the PL also. Note the press on Paddy v the animal himself Mr do not wrong roy keane - its the same old story - still moaning about English ie white players not getting a chance to play - well if they aint good enough then they aint getting a chance. Likewise the moan about Arsenal fielding a side with no "English" players - who cares - talk about over rated prima donnas such as beckham et al. I mean why is he in the team of even captain for that matter as opposed to say Gerrard of Liverpool?

          God I was glad France beat Spain - I didnt watch the game as dont have a telly and one game is all i can go out to watch but boy - a team of Black players beating Spain was just so wonderful - I wore my old viera arsenal shirt all day today:) and it felt so good!

        • name<="c115151525894813772" id="c115151525894813772">

          At 1:20 PM, Blogger Leighton Cooke said…

          I've always been a Brazil fan since Pele's day.

        • name<="c115151694919626924" id="c115151694919626924">

          At 1:49 PM, Blogger Fikirte said…

          I even drink Pepsi because of Pele, and I can't stand Pepsi. Remember he used to advertise Pepsi?

        • name<="c115156984443453259" id="c115156984443453259">

          At 4:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

          italy did not bit brazil in the 82 finals .the final was between italy and west germany.

        • name<="c115158064136228183" id="c115158064136228183">

          At 7:30 AM, Blogger Fikirte said…

          Anonymous, thanks for your comment. I know that the final in '82 was between Italy and Germany. I was just insinuating that Italy beat Brazil and to make it worse they took the Cup.

          Sokari, thanks for relieving the guilt a little, girl - it's true Brazillians are essentially Africans :)

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