For most people, it’s common fact that football is the most popular sport in the world. However, not everybody realizes the significant role football plays in many people’s everyday life. Eleven players grace the field for each team, playing with an unmatched combination of both speed and endurance. The game is all about skillful control of the feet, which is important not also but keeping balance but also controlling the game ball. In fact, the only football player allowed to use his hands is the goal, which is understandable in preventing an unfair advantage for the offensive team. Throughout the world, football fans are known for their passionate loyalty. The sport is far more than just a game for most fans. Many games, especially those between international teams, have political undertones. Even between teams from the same country, rivalry leads to behavior that often gets out of hand. Fans commonly chant profane insults at the competing team’s players and fans. Unfortunately, violence has found a place in the sport’s culture. Every year, there are reports of players and coaches mysteriously reported missing or dead after losing a key match. Football is typically a low-scoring affair. Even though football has the longest playing time of all popular sports, scores for either team very rarely exceed more than a couple points for each team. Teams usually exchange possession of the ball dozens of times before a play resulting in a scored point. It’s possible for the game to result in a tie, although players typically compete in a shootout if the score is tied after the regulation time and stoppage time. Children around the globe dream of playing professional football, and pick up the sport at a very young age. Young kids are playing football before they can walk, and play for several teams at a time during their early childhood and teenage years. The professional leagues have several levels of competition, similar to minor league system used by baseball in the United States. It’s not uncommon for teenage football players to find themselves signing lucrative professional contracts even before they can legally drive an automobile. Professional football players instantly earn gratification as a national icon once they put on their team’s jersey. Celebrities such as David Beckham, Pele and Ronaldinho are household names because of their success on the football field. The top professional football players are overwhelming harassed by the paparazzi, similar to that of a star musician or popular actress. On the other hand, professional football players are able to demand a significant amount of money by endorsing or promoting a business’ product. Unfortunately, like all professional athletes, not ever football player is an exceptional role model prepared for the global attention. Similar to other sports, many professional football players get caught using illegal substances, either for recreation or to enhance sports performance. In addition, battery and fighting are other unfortunate occurrences often associated with rowdy players. However, it’s important not to stereotype football players by the poor choices made by a few immature athletes. Even with the corruption involved in professional football, the sport provides great benefits for all of the players. Aside from the obvious physical fitness benefits and the potential financial benefits of playing a sport professionally, the game provides an inspiration for people of all ages to commit to something larger than themselves.
Football is the perfect recreational sport for what psychologists refer to as the “Alpha Male,” dominant male personalities who exhibit highly competitive tendencies. Football combines everything that these men want from a sport: ferocious physical specimens, intense battles for supremacy, and a definitive winner and loser. Every play in a game of football is an exercise in physicality. Bodies collide with other bodies, blows are traded back and forth, and on occasion, someone gets his world rocked when another player makes a great tackle. Every snap is another opportunity to hit someone, to put a stick on them, to ring their bell. For these reasons, massive, hulking football players enjoy a distinct advantage. A 250-pound linebacker is going to have a lot easier time tackling a fullback than a guy half that size. Football players spend hours in the weight room, a favorite destination of Alpha Males, pumping iron and growing bigger. A game of football is a modern-day “Clash of the Titans.” It’s no secret as to why many football coaches describe the game in militaristic terms: every game, every quarter, and every snap is a battle. Players fight to gain yards, they fight to throw blocks and make tackles and ultimately score more points than the other team. They measure success in terms of feet and inches, and throw themselves relentlessly at each other for no other reason than a gritty and determined will to win. When one football player gets an advantage, he exploits it ruthlessly, driving his opponent into the ground. These battles occur every single play as the battling behemoths duke it out, and whoever wins these battles will ultimately win the game. The most important aspect of football for the Alpha Male is the presence of a clear winner and loser. Unlike soccer, wherein a high percentage of the matches end in ties, football games will always feature one team defeating the other. It goes along with the themes that appeal to these macho men: vanquishing the conquered, triumphing over a weaker opponent, claiming victory for all to see. Football games that end in a tie go into a sudden-death overtime, in which the first team that scores wins the game. In situations like that, every player is keyed up for every snap, hoping to make the play that wins the game, desperate not to make the mistake that loses the game. Every player feels the burden of victory, and if one player fails, he will bring down his entire team, and go home in crushing defeat. Conversely, the player that wins the game for his team is elevated to hero status, the pinnacle of achievement for the Alpha Male. Football is the perfect recreational sport for the Alpha Male because it so totally encapsulates all of the things that the Alpha Male is and aspires to be. Alpha Males are big men, men who spend hours working on their physique, and they do not shirk physical confrontation, but embrace it. Further, they love the idea that there is a winner, and they strive to be that winner, every game, every quarter, every single down.