I went to see my doctor earlier today, he took notes of symptoms, took my bloods and then came back to me with some chilling news. “Son, I’m afraid you have a full-blown case of World Cup Fever.” Something I could never have imagined as Ireland’s World Cup dreams evaporated before me with the crushing 5-1 playoff defeat to Denmark in Dublin last November. That night was probably the saddest I’ve ever been in my entire life, I felt like I had been in a car crash. I wanted to leave the ground at 4-1, but my legs simply refused to move beneath me. I was unable to form proper sentences for nearly 24 hours, and anyone who’s met me before will know not speaking is very rare for me. I saw Ireland captain Seamus Coleman on the flight home, and couldn’t even offer him a reassuring smile
But just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in. My excitement levels are through the roof, I just want it to start now, from the 15th-29th of June, there is at least 3 matches a day. This Saturday is where it is all at however, with 4 matches on. Four matches and I’m off work, this is the most excited I have ever been about anything in my life. I’ll wake up around 10:30am, and enjoy breakfast while watching France vs Australia, time for a shower and some lunch afterwards before enjoying Argentina take on Iceland at 2pm. I may speak to some family members in the break between full time of this game, and the commencement of Peru’s clash with my Danish nemesi (Is this the plural of nemesis? Who cares.) Before enjoying the best kits in the tournament, Croatia v Nigeria at 8pm. I get that this may not seem like everyones idea of fun. But those who know… know, and those who don’t know don’t matter.
For those with no interest in football but want some solid small talk for awkward situations in the next month, here is my TL;DR guide to the tournament. Spain are the team to beat for me, in the words of LL Cool J, “Don’t call it a comeback, they’ve been here for years.” Argentina will struggle unless Lionel Messi does an absolute madness, which granted is very likely. Germany will probably do very well and surprise us all despite the fact they’re the holders and reached the semi finals of every major tournament since 2006. France are a good shout too, because they’re the coolest team at the tournament. Brazil could be amazing, or Neymar could ruin it for everyone which I would genuinely kill or be killed to see. England are going in with low expectations, so people think they’ll do well, to the point where expectations are ironically starting to rise. Croatia will be the dark horses, play really well and lose in terribly unfortunate circumstances in the Quarter Finals. The hosts Russia, are absolutely crap, I hope big Vladdy P has got them some top class drugs or they will get embarrassed and all end up in the gulags.
For everyone else, I implore you to binge on these to get you in the mood. First is the incredible Argentine song from the last World Cup which mocks every aspect of Brazil as a nation, while in Brazil. Incredible chutzpah. Second is this Italian commentator losing his shit when Fabio Grosso scored a last minute winner in the 2006 Semi Final against Germany. Finally, my personal favourite World Cup moment, Robbie Keane’s injury time equaliser against Germany to send me and the rest of Miss Hamill’s Primary 2 class absolutely boogaloo.
I hope everyone else is as excited for this tournament as me, because otherwise you’re going to be really bored by me talking solely about it for everyday until the final on the 15th of July.