August 2013, and England take on Scotland in a football friendly. As a fan of many sports, including both football and the NFL, in this article I’m looking at why the NFL would love to have a fixture like this…
England against Scotland is the oldest international fixture in football, so it’s steeped in history. It’s a game that used to take place every year as part of a tournament where the UK teams used to play each other.
That tournament came to end due to a combination of lack of interest in some of the games, the rising financial appeal of other events, and crowd problems, leaving the England/Scotland game either as chance tournament meetups or friendlies.
Actually I find it hard to believe that this 2013 match was the first meeting since 1999! Although deemed a ‘friendly’, which normally means a more relaxed attitude by the teams, and mass substitutions by managers, it was clear that this game was not going to fit into that category, and a main reason is the passion of the Scottish fans…
They descended on London in their kilts and football tops, with lots of fun, banter, and massive passion for their team. The atmosphere inside the stadium was electric, and an early goal by Scotland led to a game of goals and excitement.
Lots of talk in the media the next day about bringing the game back as an annual fixture, alternating between playing in England and Scotland. I for one would love to see that, and here’s why the NFL would just love to have a fixture like it…
They’d like one like it, because they just don’t have one like it!
Yes, the NFL has a history, yes it has passionate fans, yes it has grudge fixtures which mean more than other fixtures. What it doesn’t have though, is the international fixture.
Imagine an international team playing NFL for the USA. Then imagine that team playing other countries, and losing. Why not go the whole hog and imagine the USA losing to an England team, or a GB team maybe! That’s a grudge match which would last right there!
Of course imagining it is all we can do, and that’s the problem. I love the NFL, I love the way it has turned into a slick money making sport machine, and I love it as a sport, but boy it misses that international flavour.
So, although it’s perfectly fair enough to say that the NFL doesn’t *need* this kind of historic international flavour, because it’s set up as a neat enclosed domestic league, that fact the Superbowl winners are called World Champions always produces wails of derision, because it simply isn’t a world championship.
I’ll carry on watching the NFL, I’ll carry on watching the football internationals, and I’ll be looking forward to the next England/Scotland game in a way that the NFL would love to!
Ok, do let me know what you think – leave a comment, like, share tweet etc, thanks!
‘Til Next Time,
Health & Happiness,
P.S. Don’t forget to sign up for updates of new posts, via the box at the top right of any page