The real deal is here. Nothing compares to the FIFA World Cup. Even expired players beg to play! Forget all the noise about European club football.
I was at the celebrated Suya Spot on Akerele Street, Surulere, Lagos, the other day when I met a total stranger who claimed to know me as the editor of the pioneer e-zine named “supereagles.com“.
It was after the fellow left the Suya Spot that my mind went back to 1998 when the Super Eagles of Nigeria played in the France 1998 World Cup, and two of my very close friends, Scooby Adesugba and Jossey Ogbuanoh, decided to set up supereagles.com, the first ever football website in Nigeria. The redoubtable duo immediately appointed me the editor of supereagles.com.
Though I knew next-to-nothing about internet publishing, I kept on supplying exclusive content to the webmaster Jossey. We held our editorial meetings right there at the Suya Spot. Swigging beer while scoffing suya is as sweet as a Yekini shot kissing the net at Angle 90!
The motto of the Suya Spot is written in Suya English thusly: “Suya is good for man and woman. Man find it easy to meet woman with suya. Woman stand men better with suya.”
Against the man-woman solidarity of suya motto, the World Cup is not a woman-friendly matter.
In the World Cup Season, women are completely barred from touching the television remote control.
No man worth his weight in suya wants to miss any moment of the World Cup.
A man once threw his wife out of the window of a three-storey building for disturbing his attention during a World Cup cracker. The man’s defence was that a wife can be replaced but a replay of a World Cup goal is not as orgasmic as the original play!
There is this fan of the Super Eagles who’s almost always rushed to the hospital after every match. After diagnosing the fanatic the doctor said, “I don’t know which is worse: your acute palpitations when our boys win or your chronic depression when they lose!”
The World Cup is not recommended to any man with a weak heart. A legendary Liverpool FC manager once said: “Some people say football is a matter of life and death. I don’t like that kind of attitude. Football is much more than that!”
Little wonder the ill-fated soccer player Escobar was killed in his country Colombia after scoring an unfortunate own goal in a World Cup match!
Shakespeare wrote in Julius Caesar “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones” but it is in football the expression finds its bearing. Godwin Odiye who distinguished himself as the last man of the Nigerian defence is today only remembered because of the own goal he scored against his goalkeeper Emmanuel Okala in a World Cup qualifier against Tunisia in 1977 at the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos. Any back-pass to a goalkeeper has since been nicknamed “Odiye” because it may end up as an own goal!
Staying around football players is always fun. In the run-up to the 1994 World Cup Daniel “The Bull” Amokachi was always full of talk that he was an “attackante”, Italian for “attacker”, as opposed to his bosom friend Austin Jay-Jay Okocha who was “an ordinary midfielder”. Okocha who as ever never talked much shut Amokachi up with this reply: “Attackante, Attackante, Attackante, where goal nah? No be only Yekini dey score for us?”
World football teems with many ribald tales. There is this story that the legendary George Best took the ball in the match and undertook a dribbling run that would never end until the other players had to go to the match referee, saying: “Ref, please give us another ball because George Best has taken the one ball we have!”
In Nigeria, there was the case of our own legend, Thunder Balogun, being reminded by a fan to remember his dangerous left whereupon he unleashed a thunderous left-footer that instantly killed the keeper and tore the net at the same time!
Sadly, I did not remember to check the authenticity of the story with Thunder Balogun’s son, Kayode “Zege” Balogun, who was my teammate back then at Great Ife!
As I took my leave of Suya Spot, I remembered how running supereagles.com was fun all the way for some years until a delay in domain re-registration killed the lofty dream.
Now that yet another World Cup is all the rage and the Super Eagles are poised to go for the ultimate kill, I hereby toast to my two friends, Scooby & Jossey, who were such first-in-the-class originators of supereagles.com.