Are supporters of Premier League clubs losing touch with reality, making premature predictions and skewed statements as a result of being sucked into the hype surrounding the world’s biggest league? Elliott Charles certainly thinks so.
The 1967 International Cup between Racing of Argentina, the Copa Libertadores winner, and Celtic, the European Cup winners, was a truly memorable three legged series, most of which was marred by so much violence in every match that it has been called a battle.
When recalling the greatest Italian footballers of the 1960s, most would think of Gianni Rivera, Sandro Mazzola or Gigi Riva, possibly due to his relatively short professional playing career or perhaps because of the limited appearances he made for the Azzurri, but a life is full of intrigue, achievement and tragedy. You would be forgiven for forgetting poetry reading, art loving, Beatles fan: Gigi Meroni.
Johan Cruyff nearly retired in 1978 but after a series of bad investments, and without going too much into the details of how and why it all went wrong, he recalled: “I had lost millions in pig-farming and that was the reason I decided to become a footballer again.”
When it comes to Spanish football, many people nowadays are either Real Madrid or Barcelona fans, with that being due to either television exposure or readiness of their merchandise. That’s what I tend to find across the pond here in America, anyway.