Against sanitised football – part 1

“It is awful, jarring, a scraping fish bone stuck in a football fan’s gullet. It is a cringe-worthy television advert produced by Qatar Airways, starring the players of F.C. Barcelona. If the advert did not exist, it would have to be invented. There is no other existing piece of media that better encapsulates the worldview of football in the market age. It is forty seconds of distilled ideology, crystallised at its purest. The advert begins by zooming in on a mystical never-never land ‘F.C. Barcelona Island’- an island taking the form and colours of the Blaugrana crest. On this island, Lionel Messi and co. arrive at the airport. It is one of those ultra-modern airports, a sparkling structure of flowing glass so universal in its blandness that it could belong to any country. An IKEA airport. The sort of airport that countries build to try to prove to the world that they’ve made it.” backpagefootball, backpagefootball – Against sanitised football – part 2


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