South Africa, I finally get it now. We’re probably the coolest country in the world. Period. Not in terms of any particular subject but rather, as a country, we’re straight lit. I highly doubt we can actually be compared at any other country. Whether you say bru, sbali, homie, my nigga, skhokho, skeem…you’re in South Africa, the one place you should be proud to be from…I’ll tell you why.
Last night, South Africa played host to one of the world’s best teams which has (debatably) one of the best soccer players in history. Before we get into the match, it needs to be said…I’m writing this because of the way I was just…entertained by Kiernan ‘AKA’ Forbes’s Instagram story which detailed him being escourted from wherever he was, to the stadium behind the prestigious Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department. Throughout the entire story…even afterwards when we went home, at no point was there any footage whatsoever of him meeting Messi at all. Shouldn’t be a thing, he saw him play right?
Well…I feel that question should rather go out to South Africa as a whole.
DID WE SEE MESSI?!
I mean, let’s look at the events that occurred in and around the game itself before we get to the 3-1 defeat. Barcelona arrived earlier in the day. Yep, you read that right…they rocked up and literally came to play fam, we played a jet-lagged Barcelona ntwana…(If this was a text, I’d imagine a simple LOL should be put there.). Apparently, big boss Patrice had to pay 3 Million Euros for the game to happen (which is about 43 Million madibas). He flew them down on a chartered plane. Sauce. When it was time, Messi wasn’t even seen warming up with the boys Flex. They actually brought down 3 academy players in the mix. It was one of Iniesta’s final games at Barcelona so we expected to see him play too. Motsepe then almost brought down the whole of parliament to meet them. Malema, Shivambu, Ndlozi and even Maimane made an appearance. It is said that the stadium was sold out (uh…nah, but we won’t snitch on Supersport). With Hlompho Kekana leading the boys…the country’s hearts in their throats…it was war!
The ambidextrous Osman Dembele only took 4 minutes to shoot from outside the box and plant the ball in the top corner. Suarez also got on the scoreboard. Our supposed saviour Percy Tau stole the spotlight by the amount of times he failed to save us. Sibusiso Vilakazi eventually found out how the pots are made and did the things. Then there was this kid called Sirino…infact Pitso needs to give us a written explanation for 10 Marks why we don’t know who this kid is. Too nice.
You could’ve sworn we had won the actual World cup. The feeling was…odd. It was like finally tasting the chicken that McDonalds is selling and realising they have bigger pieces than KFC. Messi only played 15 minutes and touched the ball a maximum of 4 times (I counted 3 but let’s give him the benefit of the doubt. It’s Messi).
Look, a large portion of South Africa watched that game in union, and it really was an epic achievement, at this point I doubt anyone cares what the score was. Wayne Arendse made sure he was the guy to grab that Messi jersey after the game. Barcelona players were barely sweating…Sundowns looked like they had walked out of a sauna. Yikes. Their jersey’s stuck to them and were even transparent on some.
My point is this…through it all, South Africa made it a point (thesaurus) to laugh at themselves. Honestly, whether you’re South African or not, it was a beautiful thing. Seeing the country trying so hard to maintain their loyalties with their country while still staying true to their Barca ties and their favourite players was nothing short of amusing really.
“Every time we almost scored and went crazy telling the players to shoot from either through the TV screens or even at the FNB stadium, you can’t claim that you knew anyone who seemed to be disappointed in the actual performance either way.”
We saw Messi. Sundowns played a good game against a world class team. We got beaten at home, yet the reaction wasn’t tears but rather everyone saying ‘It could’ve been worse’…
And it could’ve been worse hey…Messi could’ve played.