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Football is one game that was naturally created by man. It is a game that is far beyond the physical, it goes deep to the beginning. It is in a ball game that you will see all races coming together to fight for one thing, the trophy.
A world cup just like football is more than just a game, it is a perfect platform for tears and smiles, side-by-side.
Growing up as a child, you hear loads of stories about this piece of magic. Everybody has a story to tell about the world cup. As an African kid growing up in the streets of Africa, I keep on asking myself ” when will we see the world cup in Africa”, at some point the question seemed Farfetch, I thought it’s not possible to have the world in Africa. I thought Football wasn’t meant for Africans, but I was wrong! Dreams surely come through.
The FIFA world cup 2010 was a dream come through for Africa. Initially, it looked impossible but all thanks to Sep Blatter and the rotation process, it was “time for Africa, for all Africans”. South Africa won the bid to host the world cup, some say it was for Nelson Mandela, was it? Whoever it was for, Africa won!
The main event is here, our dream is alive, the moment we have been praying for was sure to illuminate our eyes, our screens, and our life, to make us feel alive. In the opening match of the most beautiful tournament in the world, South Africa played Mexico in a historic fixture. “When you dream it, work it” the famous proverbs sings. Tshabalala was there to work the walk.
He scored the first goal, a beautiful goal, a screamer It led to the sensational brilliant commentary line from Peter Drury: “Goal Bafana Bafana, goal for South Africa, goal for all Africa.” It was not just a strike, it was a strike that reminded the world that Africa is ready to the world by storm. A goal scored by an African on African soil. Absolutely beautiful. Did I say it was just a time for Africa? No, absolutely not. It was Spain’s time also. Did you know that a nation as prestigious as Spain did not win the world cup before now? Maybe you did, maybe you didn’t not. It was a beautiful world cup for the Tiki-Taka-conscious footballing side.
The goal that won them the trophy was scored by someone blessed by God, Andreas Iniesta- one of the greatest footballing players of his time, an absolute legend. We will never forget that 116th-minute strike. The made things fall in place for Spain to win their first world cup. However, things fall apart for Africa, no thanks to the “hand of god”( Luis Suarez). Will Africa ever forget Luis Suarez? We were all smiling, believing, and hoping in trust that Ghana will give us what we deserve, at least qualify for the final( half bread is better than a peanut), until Suarez gave Africa their biggest unrest; used his hand to stop a Dominic Adiyiah’s supposed goal.
Of course, a penalty was awarded according to the rules, he was sent off also. At this moment we all looked up to the god of soccer, the gods of Africa, where were you guys? Gyan missed the penalty, yes he did, he did, that’s enough? He did miss a penalty that would have sent Africa to the Semifinal, her first in history, but, unfortunately, it did not happen. Maybe we all have to dream again? Spain went on to win the final against Netherland with an impressive 3,500 passes, amazing.
To add to its magical touch, we had stars who thought they had magic coming in to flop. The likes of Wayne Mark Rooney, Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi all came in with dreams and fanfare to light us up. They all struggled to match up the magic in Africa. It was not just a world cup for stars it was a world cup for magicians, more reasons Spain with a spice of “Tiki-Taka” won the final against a side who were trying to play “dirty” to win.
Talking about magic, the Vuvuzelas shaped our dreams. we had Vuvuzelas with better dreams. The noise had given Africa a niche, it was a symbolical representation of who and what we are. Some players like Lionel Messi did not like it; the Paris Saint Germain superstar cited poor communication as one of the reasons. Like it or not, it was absolutely beautiful. It was not just a world cup for me, it was not a world cup for South Africa,it was a world cup for Africans. A magic play coming to its reality.


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Emediong Ekpe

Emediong Ekpe is a graduate of English. A professional Sports journalist/analyst, and a spoken word artist. He is passionate about decimating information and putting smiles on people's faces via news writing.

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