I'd love to tell you that the stereotype of British weather being awful is true but I've just come back from a week at the beach where it's been glorious sunshine for four uninterrupted days so when I saw the state of the game in the Rio Tinto against it came as a surprise to me that football is still played in such conditions.
These images are from the same match. pic.twitter.com/iCC7an4BXd— Brooks Peck (@BrooksDT) April 9, 2017
See, for me the weather didn't ruin anything about this game. It turned the game into something very different, something we don't often get to see in English football as two teams had to throw everything in the bin and play any way they could in the elements as the pitch got covered in snow and the air froze around them. You could see the grit and determination come out in Real Salt Lake as the adversarial conditions of the game make them play even harder and grind a win out in spite of everything thrown at them. A beloved coach losing his job, a terrible start to the season, a first half where chance after chance went missing and then even nature decided to try ruin things for them. They dug deep, they stuck together and they took on the whole world to bring the first 3 points of the season to Utah.
That might seem like an over exaggeration to some but that's football. These kind of stories that naturally unfold are what makes the game exciting. Watching your team overcome those kind of odds can give a fanbase something to hold on to and right now Salt Lake needed that.
There's a few comments over on Reddit about how the match should have been called off and it just makes me so frustrated at the state of European football that unless it's played under petri dish conditions of perfection, it's not of any value. How stories are made where there ought not be a story just for the sake of putting drama in there, such as Jose Mourinho being asked a stupid question about West Brom setting out defensively against a team that has the potential to Braun Strowman them or the constant fire stoking by the media of a campaign to remove a manager who's won major silverware twice in the last three seasons. You can provide every team in the world perfect conditions to play the game but you're always going to end up with Wigan vs Rotherham!
If anyone wonders why Rotherham and Wigan are both going down pic.twitter.com/Lk6qwM7jSU— Matt (@Matt_Walker96) April 9, 2017
We still have each year a demand for a winter break for the Premier League and yet we claim to be the best league in the world. This is from a nation who love adversarial conditions so much we voted to leave a party that was reasonably well organised so we could instead go throw our money in a big fire instead! I don't really care what Pogba will do with his hair but I absolutely want to see Peter Crouch do The Robot in the snow or Wayne Rooney come on as a sub while lightning cracks as if Frankenstein's Monster is entering the game.
Things like this make games more interesting. If there is a safety concern then of course call the game off, but when you are sending players out on fake grass to get injured, you can't take the high ground over an 8th of an inch of snow. So no, Eurosnobs, don't call games like this off, tune in to them. Watch as these amazing athletes battle against conditions nobody prepared for to still play for you and your team, and be proud that they don't quit on us even when some ask. After all, it's perfect weather to wear a sweater...