“ Football is the ballet of the masses,” remarked Dmitri Shostakovich, one of the greatest composers of the 20th century. The roll of the ball on freshly cut blades of grass can kick-start a reaction in a human dome more profound than one set off by prescription drugs. In the disappointments, the rousing stories of triumph against all odds, sworn loyalties and even the unappreciated hooliganism, football has made a mad, mad world for itself.
“Some people think football is a matter of life and death. I assure you, it's much more serious than that,” said Bill Shankly once and he couldn’t have been more accurate. More than just the beautiful game, Football and the emotions that have been soldered into its soul have the innate power to bring together people with nothing more than just the bare human body in common.
Here we look at five instances where Football proved that it has the power to change the world.
#5 The Little Pea of Peace
Mexico is a country that is often in the bind owing to the sheer petulance of the drug cartels that essentially run the country. Close to 15,000 people die every year as a result of gang/cartel violence. But as it turns out, football and particularly Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez has the clout to provide a new lease of life in Mexico every time he steps on to the pitch.
In 2012, the baby-faced lethal weapon possessed by none other than Sir Alex Ferguson of Manchester United had more pull in Mexico than political icons. ‘Chicharito’ (little pea), as he is lovingly called by the Mexicans was a ‘ Mr Fox In The Box’ for the Red Devils and his glittering performances made him a source of immense joy and pride for his motherland.
In the words of Mexico City top cop Jorge Carlos Martinez, ‘Crimes like car jacking, muggings and robberies go down. It seems even the criminals want to take time off to see our hero play.’
Martinez would also add that he hoped Fergie keeps Chicha off the bench as they need all the help they can get. Hernandez would go on to play for Spanish giants Real Madrid and is currently a valuable asset to Bayer Leverkusen where he was the top goal getter in his debut season.