Sunday, 3 April 2011
Football v Tennis
As you can see, I had a little dabble in the football markets this weekend. I shouldn't have done this really. I only had one tennis match to play and although I profited, I threw away most of the green I had. As Mother's Day commitments meant missing the men's final, my thoughts turned to football.
I gambled / traded the football for about 3 years before I switched to tennis. Football was always my number one sport and I've been a keen Nottingham Forest fan all my life. After years of failure with soccer, I became jaded with the entire game. I had watched so many matches that it became a chore for me to trade. The early enthusiasm I had for learning about different leagues and clubs across the world, was disappearing fast. This was partly because I was losing a lot of money! But also, I just got fed up with all the constant cliches that managers and players would come out with, the never-ending stream of boring sound-bites and the same ridiculous arguments that cropped up every few months but never got sorted.
For example, the use of technology. How on earth is football still the only sport that refuses to use it?! Then there's the constant over-analysis of everything, particularly referee's decisions. The moaning and berating of officials is beyond a joke. These people who always blame the ref for everything should be made to take charge of a game, then they will see how tough it is to make split second decisions without the aid of TV replays. Worst of all though, is the way the players have become so far removed from how they used to be. They are living on another planet from us average guys now, in their own little bubbles. They have such an inflated opinion of their own importance these days, it sickens me.
But it's the on-field stuff that makes watching a football match unbearable for me. Seeing the cheating and gamesmanship that goes on; leaving the leg trailing so it looks like they've been fouled, back-spinning the ball forward 5 metres from where the free-kick should be taken, standing in front of the free-kick taker so he can't take it quickly, waving imaginary yellow cards, making a diving motion at a player who they've just kicked to the ground, holding onto the ball after a goal has just been scored to stop the team gaining a massive 10 extra seconds to score again, blatantly obstructing a player by 'shielding' the ball out for a goal-kick, the general negativity and cynicism around the game with the 'park the bus' mentality (summed up by the Dutch, of all nations, kicking the crap out of Spain in the World Cup Final)..................the list is endless. And then, when the referee does actually have the balls to penalize the offence, all the pros and managers lambast him by saying 'If you give a foul for that there will be 10 red cards every game!' NO THERE WOULDN'T, YOU IDIOT! If they started giving yellow cards out consistently then you and all your moronic staff at the club will have to start playing by the rules and eventually, there will be an end to all the shirt-pulling and sneaky, spineless attempts to get one over on the ref. Football has become just 90 mins of trying to con your way to victory. Rant over!
As you can see, it makes my blood boil to see what has happened with the beautiful game. I rarely even bother to watch it anymore, it has become so tedious and predictable. Nothing ever gets done to rectify what is so glaringly obviously wrong in the game. Wages are too high, there is too much money and it's not evenly spread around, the supporters are becoming more and more disenfranchised, there is less and less respect shown to the refs, players and managers think they are above the law and the whole mess is governed by self-serving imbeciles who generally know nothing about the game. So to re-discover a sport like tennis was a god-send. I had not paid much attention to it since I was a kid, just the odd match at Wimbledon every year. But I found myself watching more and more of it as TV coverage has increased in recent years and what a refreshing chnage it has been! I don't miss the football at all and in fact, I much prefer tennis as a sport to trade.
I always found soccer to be a bit too much like gambling. I always seemed to be sweating on a goal going in or worse still, a goal NOT going in. It shredded my nerves to peices a lot of the time because apart from red-cards, there is only one thing that changes the prices drastically in football and that one thing doesn't happen very often but can happen at any time. At least with tennis, you know points are coming and you know there will be lots of opportunities. You are never stuck biting your nails for long periods, so stress levels are much lower. Plus, you only have to rely on one player and Hawkeye keeps things fair. In football, there are 22 players that can mess up all your hard work in a split second of madness or a ref or linesman and with no TV to make it fair!
Anyway, I'm sure money can be made from it but it wasn't for me and I'm glad I'm out. There was a period where I would chase back my tennis losses on the football but I've stopped that this year. This weekend, I guess I felt over-confident after my success, so gave it a bash with the lack of tennis on offer. I really wish Betfair would offer a few Challenger Tour matches in-play during quieter periods. There are streams available from many of the Challenger tournaments and I reckon most traders would welcome the extra games. It just gives us more options, like they now have with football. It's incredible how internet coverage has boomed for soccer this season. Betfair have added leagues such as Mexico, Argentina, France and Indonesia to their live roster this season and it's now possible to watch a match at almost any time of day, every day of the week. I think they could do much more with the tennis.