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The Sounds of Soccer

What is the sound of soccer?

It's a great sound and there are reasons for it.

But first, let's talk about professional sports. When was the last time you attended a sporting event where the fans did not have to be prodded to MAKE SOME NOISE or GET LOUD? When was the last time you remember the fans starting a cheer all on their own without the help of cheerleaders or the public announcer? We went to an Angels game last week and no one in that stadium could be bothered to do much to support the team. When there was a runner in scoring position with one out, a banner rolled across the screen prompting us to 'MAKE SOME NOISE.' We bleated like sheep until the banner stopped, at which point, everyone in the stadium stopped as well. There was a silly race between odd looking toys between innings. A kid tried to run to third base from left field in less than a minute. At the end of the night there was a great fireworks show with a music mashup consisting of classical American folk songs and Latin Pop Beats (seriously). I thought we were going for the baseball game but it kind of got lost in the mix of the entertainment.

With football, soccer as we call it, this doesn't happen as much for a few reasons. First and foremost, there are no timeouts and no commercial breaks so there isn't time for such silliness (until halftime anyway). Granted they cram a lot of nonsense into the pregame, but once the action starts, the sound is organic. It comes from the fans.

Second, there is a real passion that isn't as prevalent with professional sports in the US. We go to be entertained as often as we go to support our team. With soccer, there is a feeling that it matters more so there is more passion, more energy, and better sounds.

So what does football sound like? It's sounds like ecstasy and tragedy.

Stunned silence at Stamford Bridge.

Arsenal fans singing "If you hate Tottenham stand up."

I love this sound. Liverpool fans singing "You'll Never Walk Alone."

At Real Madrid, they know the game and appreciate a great performance. This is a cool sound of soccer. The Bernabeu applauding their rival.

This sound is repeated all over the world. I don't know Greek but I can appreciate the strong voice of these fans. Olympiakos fans singing.

Those are just a few of the sounds of soccer. Obviously, there is something missing and I'm going to give my favorite sound its own post.
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  1. Great post. I love the Liverpool singing. Gives me chills.

    I fear that Real with once again be applauding Barcelona this year since Barca look as strong as ever and Real still has issues.

    Not sure what your favorite sound is, but I love the sound/tradition of whistling your team off the field when the fans are disappointed with their performance.

  2. Went to a Jazz game last week. Laughed at the sheep when the familiar "de-fense" song came over the PA. We don't make it to many NBA games, and my wife asked, "how do they know what to cheer when the song comes on"?

    Brainwashing, I replied.

  3. Brad, brainwashing is exactly right. What would fans do without the PA at this point? I will say that during the playoffs, the fans step it up some but still require a lot of handholding/preprogramming.

    Kent, you need to do a post on the white hanky tradition at Real. I like the whistling off the pitch as well and will have to find some video and add that.


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