La Liga Loyalities

The one thing I will say about writing here on CHI is that I am knowledgeable about The Beautiful Game, but I also love to talk about why the game and my teams are important to me sometimes instead of giving stats and analysis.  This is one of those times…

My birthday is August 29th, which as a kid always sucked because it always brought upon the end of the summer, and meant that school was just around the corner.  Or now that graduate school comes knocking, means that I will be sitting in Psycholinguistics class wondering why Noam Chomsky is such a dick.  But I digress…

It also means one thing for me though.  This summer, only 4 days early, I receive the best present that I can get.  The start of La Liga in Spain.   This means so many things for me.  The chance to watch quality Spanish football with crazy announcers that yell and scream everytime anything happens on the pitch.  The all-so-necessary yell of ‘Ooooooooooye’ every time a ball comes within 20 yards of being a goal.  The monstrosity that is the Sevilla-Betis derby.

But the most important for me, is my ability to bring out my completely fanatical view for my club, FC Sevilla.

Now, don’t you all worry.  When I do my La Liga premiere and write about La Liga this season, I won’t be biased towards the other clubs, or say how FC Sevilla will beat them all, but when writing about FC Sevilla, expect nothing less.

La Liga is a crazy league, and having lived in Spain on two seperate occasions and Sevilla for a few months, you really have to have pride in your team.  Or at least, be ‘from’ a team.

When I was in Spain my last time, a 6 year old in one of my English classes asked ¿De que equipo eres? (Literally What team are you from?)  I told him how I was for Sevilla, and everyone in my class started flipping out.  Now these are 6 year olds mind you.  They went on and on about how it was either Real Madrid or Barcelona who were the best.  I couldn’t believe it.  I’ve never seen these kids get fired up about anything, but soccer did it for them.  And it is the same for everyone else in Spain.  Even if you don’t love soccer, you are still from a certain team, and that loyalty you carry with you to the grave.

So why is FC Sevilla better than your team and how did I come to love them so?

In the fall of 2004, I was a Senior at the University at Buffalo, and had an opportunity to study abroad in Sevilla, Spain. I was a Spanish major at the time and was always drawn to Europe for lots of things, and love for football was one of them. So I packed up my bags, and moved to Sevilla.

Upon arriving in Sevilla, I already knew that they had two teams, and decided to be a Sevillista, because I really didn’t have an established side I supported in Spain, unlike my childhood love for Liverpool.

We unpacked and decided to take a walk. We went out of our apartment, turned right and walked about 100 yards and there it was. The Ramón Sanchez Pizjuan, FC Sevilla’s home stadium, right there in all it’s glory. They actually had a game that night, and sure as hell I scalped a few tickets and we went and I was hooked.

The stadium is right behind a HUGE shopping mall (for Spanish standards). It’s the equivalent of Madison Square Garden dwarfed by a 300 store shopping mega-superplex and throw in a 20 screen movie theater as well.

So ever since that day, I’ve been a Sevillista, and what a ride it’s been.

Why is FC Sevilla better than your team?

From a team that was considered by most to be a Second rate team a few years back, we have won two back-to-back UEFA cup championships, were ranked the number one team in Europe in the Summer of 2006, and are the defending Copa del Rey champions in Spain after being Getafe last season. AND had it not been for a pretty lackluster end to the season in La Liga, we could have been champions. Yeah yeah, I know coulda, woulda, shoulda, but we had it there for the taking and just couldn’t finish. But we will be back, don’t worry.

And our keeper, Andres Palop scored on a header to keep us in the UEFA Cup, when was the last time YOUR keeper scored on a header eh?

And simply put, Juande Ramos is a coaching legend, taking over our team after Caparrós upped and left us for dead. Now Ramos is being pursued by Chelsea and other high-profile foreign clubs because of his coaching ability. Unfortunately for the rest of the world, we don’t fire our manager just because another one becomes available (cough Madrid cough). He also was blasted in the head with a full one-liter bottle of liquid that was launched from the stands during one of the Sevilla-Betis derbies last season and was knocked out, but was back coaching the next day. He’s braver than a matador in high heels in a pink tutu.

Also, our centennial song by El Arrebato made it to Number one on the Spanish charts upon it’s release. So take that Madridistias.

I’ll leave you with the centenial song being played and a pretty nice video showing a bit of our history.  Hope you enjoy.

¡Que Viva Sevilla!

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2 Responses

  1. Yes, Noam Chomsky is a dick. But he’s a fascinating dick. (Love psycholinguistics, although it’s been awhile.)

    I haven’t seen Sevilla play much, (my cable package generally doesn’t cover La Liga) but in the past year I’ve become a huge Julien Escude fan due to his work on the France NT. I think he has a bright future there because he can back up both the central defense and at leftback, which means Domenech can call up one less defender and one more someplace else. I was heartbroken when Escude couldn’t play in the UEFA cup final.

    I’m enjoying this blog. Keep up the good work.

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