Football by Eduardo Galeano

Pele performing a bicycle kick.

Pele performing a Bicyclekick. Pic Courtesy- Sportskeeda

In the season of FIFA world cup , a small sketch by Eduardo Galeano on football is published here for the readers. The sketch is a part of the book written by Eduardo Galeano called “Football in Sun and Shadow”


The history of soccer is a sad voyage from beauty to duty. When the sport became an industry, the beauty that blossoms from the joy of play got torn out by its very roots. In this fin de siècle world, professional soccer condemns all that is useless, and useless means not profitable. Nobody earns a thing from the crazy feeling that for a moment turns a man into a child playing with a balloon, a cat toying with a ball of yarn, a ballet dancer flying through the air with a ball as light as a balloon or a ball of yarn, playing without even knowing he’s playing, with no purpose or clock or referee.

Play has become spectacle, with few protagonists and many spectators, soccer for watching. And that spectacle has become one of the most profitable businesses in the world, organized not to facilitate play but to impede it. The technocracy of professional sport has managed to impose a soccer of lightning speed and brute strength, a soccer that negates joy, kills fantasy, and outlaws daring.

Luckily, on the field you can still see, even if only once in a long while, some insolent rascal who sets aside the script and commits the blunder of dribbling past the entire opposing side, the referee, and the crowd in the stands, all for the carnal delight of embracing the forbidden adventure of freedom.


We want to hear from you