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Useless Column: Hearts will roll; they are rolling

Mawuli Zogbenu1.jpeg Mawuli Zogbenu

Fri, 2 Jul 2021 Source: Mawuli Zogbenu

Hearts will roll; they are rolling

I used to go to the stadium a lot o until I found myself at the wrong side of the stadium! Kotoko was playing Liberty Professionals at Accra Sports Stadium and I decided to go to stadium to do ‘against’. I regretted. I was in the midst of some ‘Red’ supporters when Kotoko scored their first goal and all the guys around me screamed ‘goooaaalllllllllll’! I was the only one who didn’t celebrate this goal.

Apparently they were observing me through my body language and could sense I was a fan of the only club that starts a sentence with past tense…’arose…arose…arose’ – the Masters! Then in no time Liberty equalized and instinctively, I shouted ‘gooooaaaaalll’. Before I could even finish this, I heard a slap and a knock on my head ‘kpaaaaaa’. Beatings be what! I turned round and saw nobody. Kpaa Kpaa kpaa again! Hahaaaa!

I swallowed my excitement and kept quiet o. Eish! In less than 2 minutes, Liberty scored again and this time I suppressed my excitement. Quietly, I walked out of the place and covered my joy with coughing. Somebody still saw this coughing as another form of jubilation and, with a half-empty water bottle, my back ‘kpaaaaa’!

Next time, when you go to the stadium and you make your lifetime opponent’s opponent your friend, be careful where you sit. Even if you happen to find yourself at the wrong place, keep quiet and swallow your joy or sadness quietly and look for the washroom to urinate. While urinating, you can also cry such that as the tears are flowing, your urine is also flowing! Soccer? Hmmm!

Anyway, so far I am beginning to like what we are doing about Hearts and Kotoko. I like the way some media houses have started positioning themselves strategically for a take-over of these 2 clubs to save our local soccer in order to turn things around for the better.

We Ghanaians also have a responsibility to balance our preference for both local and international football. Gone are the days when we supported clubs bcos of the players. One waited impatiently for Sunday to come so you could go and watch Shamo Quaye scoring against Adjetey Lee’s Ho Voradep and Kotoko’s Joe Debrah scoring against Joe Famiyeh’s Afienya United. Local soccer was just sweet! Ask me about a player in Hearts and Kotoko today or in the past 12 years and I know you know I can’t give you one sef and you know I know you can’t give me one!

Our premier league, until last weekend, was like P.E on the academic calendar of basic schools. The national attention has turned to Man U, Woman U even for those who don’t know where K.I.A is! They know everything about Europe. The irony is that I doubt if any of those European clubs’ players know anything about Hearts and Kotoko!

Ask any 5-year old Ghana boy about Hearts and Kotoko and he would wonder in awe as if to ask whether you were referring to some Asafo companies! Who cause am? Me and you o! In the past ten years, you would no longer (emphasis mine) see the flags of the two former local giants flying on top of trotros travelling from Aflao to Elubo and from Gbogblo City (aka Agbogbloshie) to Bawku! Nobody is interested any longer! What happened?

There is no single play maker of these two clubs. For the other clubs, forgerit! Anyway, we are beginning to identify one one bi like that. Let’s see how it goes.

The passion with which we used to support these clubs, gone! We thought the Black Stars were a shoulder to rest our heads on and they too…puin!

Here lies the paradox especially when I see the snake which is complaining about waist pains also expressing surprise when it hears the crab also complaining about headache!

We spend time crying bcos Arsenal has been losing yet we are not particularly bothered any more when our own Hearts and Kotoko were sinking. Difficulty in paying players well! Local soccer is hardly getting any corporate support yet we are always here shouting, Chellsea, Man You, whine whine Roma, Liver something….and Bundesliga (my favorite club).

It appears justifiable to argue that the quality of our football is low hence the support for foreign soccer. Do we think the quality of European soccer will be of its superior quality if they were not getting sponsorship or if people refuse to financially support their clubs?

Some of the best talents also are in a hurry to go abroad and be benched. Greetings o, Mr. Quophi Abangah and Gawuga. Where are they now? Let’s transform our soccer which gave us that climax at the end of a game: ‘killer baa gbo last show’! Hahaaa!

Let’s support and celebrate our own and stop this ‘Man V’ thing that is enriching Europe that does not need our support in any case. When last did you hear a local match being played and you heard ‘it’s a gooooaaaalllllll’? Soccer brings us together. I am sure you saw the videos on social media last Sunday and the day before and after.

In fact, the Phobia supporters won even before the match! The different different versions of the Arose…Arose…Arose cheer song were just nice. Even in the chapels! Choristers regardless of whether they were Hearts or Kotoko supporters sang the ‘Never say die…song! Kotoko fans danced to it quietly in their rooms.

The Spartans (KNUST) Alumni WhatsApp platform was on fire with exciting banters! Come and see all classes of professional from Professors to Lawyers to Engineers to Economists to Medical Doctors to Businessmen and women promoting and defending the superiority of their favourite club. It was such a delight!

But I don’t seem to be seeing the business aspect of the whole exercise o. I think the Managements of both clubs should sign an MoU with the telcos to do momo competition for these two clubs we love so much. It is simple:

‘Press Red if you are a Kotoko supporter. Press Rainbow if you are a Hearts supporter’. Follow the instructions and pay your momo to support your club.

Then we would see who loves his or her club more. Just make it a minimum of 50 pesewas to support their favourite club. Let’s assume 20million Ghanaians contribute 50 pesewas each towards the support of Hearts and Kotoko clubs, we would have raised 10 million Ghana cedis to support our local players.

They may no longer be craving to go and play abroad! Is 10 million cedis too much to raise and share among Kotoko and Hearts Clubs if each one of us contributes 50 pesewas? But one thing is almost certain; in such a momo competition, Kotoko will win.

This is because their supporters won’t contribute 50 pesewas per head. I know somebody at Abossey Okai alone who can pay 10,000 Ghana cedis at a go! But my own Hearts, anyway…our song is nice! Hahahahahaha! This sounds like a dare, not a bet.

Let’s try it and see who is more passionate about his or her club and ready to sacrifice to make their Clubs succeed. The whatsapp video competitions are not enough. Let us support our local football with 50 pesewas monthly, pay the players well, pay the Managements well and resource all the other small small clubs well and Ghana football would become strong again. We are very good at ‘Yuwefa’ champions analysis but our own di33333…let me go and drink my pito sef!

The CEO of SOW Properties, Asylum Down, Mr. Solomon Owusu, aka Sonny Rocky told me last Sunday morning that if football club cheer songs win matches, Hearts of Oak would have been the best club in the world and also opined that ‘everyone likes good songs and enjoys the rhythms but that would not translate into victory if the pocket is dry for the boys!’ True or false?

Ghanaians love football. I am convinced we will be ready to pay at least 50 pesewas per month towards the clubs of our choice.

Well, I also did that to Kotoko fans a few years ago! As the Chairman of the Against Supporters Union (ASU) in Weija, I only pretended to be sad when Kotoko lost 3-1 to that Zambian club in a crucial match but deep inside me...ajeeeei! I drank beer that day o! Hahaaa! I had good appetite for food but put on a morose haggard look as if I was sympathizing with them. Meboa! How come Hearts did not get there and you are there and want to win…you lie bad! Hahahaaaa! You see me human being and bad mind?

We knew the playmakers then. Ahmed Polo, Shamoooo Leather Joe Addo (I met him last 3 years at the Airport and he was still looking very young), Joe Hendricks (Oreba), Asante Mireku, Dada Don Bortey (one of the best footballers who never got the opportunity to play at the World Cup stage…hmmm), Charles Taylor…ao!

Those Chellsea and Man Q morbid craving for foreign soccer, while we have abandoned our own, is a no no for me. I was glad to see on the statuses and profile pictures of many people the flags of Hearts and Kotoko last weekend but that is not enough; let’s momo them!

Have a nice weekend but remember: ‘Until the bones are rotten, we never say die’! Phooooobia! Hahaaaaaaa!

Columnist: Mawuli Zogbenu