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Thu 27 Apr 2017
Football Crazy
Written by Gor   
Tuesday, 20 August 2002 00:00

Did you see me on television the other week? No, no, I am not that famous. Som eone said that they saw me in the stands at Rajamangala National Stadium.

Not long ago, one of the famous football teams in the English Premiere League, Leeds United, came to Thailand. They came here to play with a Thai team called Bangkok All Stars. I went there to watch them play with my friend (Phong) and my teacher (Richard). Phong is crazy about football and he rushed us to get to the stadium quickly so that we could get good seats near the tunnel. He wanted to cheer the players as they came out onto the pitch.

After we went inside and looked around, I saw that the stadium was less than half full. I think Leeds United isn’t so popular in Thailand because there were not many people there compared to the time when Manchester United came. I didn’t go to watch them play because I couldn’t get a ticket. So I had to watch them on television at home with my friends. All of the tickets for the Manchester United vs. Thailand match sold out after only a few hours. That shows you how popular Manchester United is in Thailand.

When the Liverpool team came, the tickets were also quite hard to find. All of the good seats were sold very quickly. I was quite lucky to get a seat, though it was at the far end behind the goal. It didn’t really matter because I was really happy that I was able to watch my favourite football team play. I still remember that day. The day I was sitting in the stands at the stadium watching Liverpool play for real and not on television as I usually do.

Most of my friends here in Thailand support Manchester United or "Man U" as we call them. I am the only one in my group who likes Liverpool more than Man U. My friends say that they are jealous of me because I have watched my favourite team play for real. They said that they all wanted to go to watch Man U play but they weren’t fast enough to get the tickets. They even rang the shop and asked them to keep the tickets for them before they sold out, but they were too late.

Some of my friends are really into football. They know nearly everything about all the clubs, stadiums and players in the world. They all like to play, watch and chat about football. I remember one time when we had an English visitor to my old school. He was very surprised when we said that we had heard of his city. He was even more surprised when one of my friends told him the names of the football players and the number of seats in the stadium!

Some of these football experts, like Phong, follow the football news for fun. However, some of them use their skills for gambling. They gamble on the football matches that they think they are sure about. Sometimes they win, sometimes they lose. One of my friends got a lot of money from gambling – enough to buy some gold necklaces and brand name clothes for himself. But, other friends also lost a lot of money.

The new football season has now arrived. Some of my friends have really been looking forward to it. Phong usually stays up all night to watch every match live on cable TV or listen on the radio. Even though I like football very much, I am not as crazy as Phong. I just follow my favourite team. For sure, I won’t stay up late waiting for the football to start. I’d rather sleep in my bed on my soft pillow than sit and wait to watch a live football match. I can always catch up with the latest news by reading Star Soccer or surfing the Internet.