During the Australia - Italy game early Tuesday morning, the city was packed 30,000 strong, with huge tv screens allowing people to watch and soak in the atmosphere of the World Cup. Melbourne's own "Little Italy", Lygon Street, was overflowing with Italy and Australia supporters alike and it seemed like the whole event will go on without incident.
But also, I wasn't completely surprised when I read in the papers that there were a few people arrested for public drunkeness, throwing flares, and over enthusiastic fans goading each other and creating a ruckus. Story can be read here.
This, unfortunately, is the ugly side of the "Joga Bonito", the "Beautiful Game." Considering that the crowd was huge, the arrest of 14 people was not so bad. I guess it's not as bad as the other football leagues around the globe where people end up getting very violent.
And who can forget that poor Columbian goalkeeper who was killed by his countrymen a few years ago because he wasn't able to save a goal? It's just amazing how some people just don't have a life.
I do agree that soccer, the TRUE FOOTBALL, is a beautiful game that should be appreciated, but I find it idiotic that people get all riled up by something that is meant to be a friendly sort of competition. In the end of the day, it's only a game.
On that note, congratulations to Brazil for winning against Ghana 3 -0. Also, kudos to Ronaldo for making it in the history books as the fellow who has scored the most goals in. He may have packed on a few pounds, but he still has that magic touch.
I will try my very best not to talk about soccer in my next post. Please bear with me. Melbourne is a sport mad city and it's very hard to ignore :)