A country where numerous sports govern the likes of Australians, it’s heart-breaking to witness the majority of everyday Australians lacking enthusiasm in football. Even though this may be the case, it’s clear that the passion displayed by the minority, dominate the country having the same supporters attend matches week in, week out, living and breathing football.
Over the last two seasons, Brisbane Roar have displayed the finest quality of football that has ever been seen in the Australian-League, holding an unbeaten streak which is currently at 36 games, breaking the record for the most unbeaten games in Australian sporting history. While the team graciously thanked their fans in a banner quoting “YOU got us here”, sports stars and media across Australia criticised their record, comparing the number of draws to that of the record predecessor. Clearly incomparable being it an entirely different sport, the variation in point structure enables the likelihood of having a draw in football to be substantially higher. The glamour of breaking the record was then tainted by the naivety of supporters of other sports and negativity from what is already minimal media-coverage. The fact that Brisbane Roar have raised that standard of Australian football should be praise-worthy, let alone deservedly putting their name in the history books.
Not surprisingly, banter is nothing out of the norm in the a-league but it was impressive to see supporters from all the teams in the a-league defend Brisbane Roar, rivalry aside, expressing their passion for the beautiful game. Luckily bad publicity will hardly dampen football supporters’ spirits and their love for the game. As popularity slowly rises in Australia, football supporters can only hope that ‘any publicity is good publicity’ and Australia awakens to learn to appreciate the quality football being played. Until then, the supporters will continue singing, chanting and living for football to keep Australian football alive.