March 26th, 2003


Marco van Basten – Het moet anders, Hard Gras 32 (03-010)

Marco van Basten – Het moet anders, Hard Gras 32 (03-010)

He retired and the whole world was in tears. One of the best strikers in history never fulfilled his potential thanks to some nagging injuries. Even worse, he wanted nothing to do with football whatsoever. He played golf and we only saw him on the pitch once more, together with Cruijff in an Ajax shirt, during some celebratory match. While his former team mates Gullit and Rijkaard became well known and respected coaches Van Basten did nothing.

Then one day he decided he wanted to return, he started a trainers course and shows his face in stadiums again. And then there was this book. Not completely his book, he didn’t even write it himself, more a long interview, but it was a sign of life. Basically his ideas on football nowadays. “Everything must change” is the title of the story in which he suggests new rules for the game that brought him glory, fame and a life in luxury, which is the same game he couldn’t play for over a decade without pain, that nearly crippled him and ruined his life.

Van Basten wants the game to be more attractive. In short:
* Technical aid/camera’s should be possible on the highest level (they do exist in NBA,
NFL and NHL)
* Change some rules. The clock should only measure real time. Yellow cards should mean
time bans, not suspensions, hands is hands, change or even abolish the offside rule.
* Universal calendar, which gives more time for big tournaments
* Limit the number of players under contract
He explains how he gets to these recommendations and states that they are to open a discussion, not because he claims to have all wisdom.

Next to that several other stories, including a funny account of Simon Kuper at the world cup in Japan and a historical story on English footy by David Winner. The link between masturbation and the first organised football games may seem far fetched, but through Winner’s story a very credible one. Read Winner if you’re interested.
  • Current Music
    The fast show on Canvas

Life can be beautiful

Yesterday I cycled to work again. I realised how nice it can be on the way home. Okay, it takes me an extra half an hour, so a whole hour on a day, but it certainly is worth it. Not only is it good to get some exercise, the road is nice as well.

I live in a small town, the place I work is a little city. In between there is 16 kilometres of rural area. So there I am, late afternoon, no coat, as it is a lovely spring day, hardly any cars, as they all tend to stick to the bigger roads. The smell of being outside is around me, sometimes a bit too much smell to my liking, some farmers spray shit on the fields, but healthy nevertheless. On my walkman a tape from 1991, the best of the top 100 alternative hits, so Pixies, Nirvana, This Mortal Coil and de Raggende manne in my ears. I sing along some songs. The sun is gradually changing colour in the distance, on its way to warm people on different continents. A man in a suit like Hannibal Lecter, including matching hat, is gardening on a dust track, which I assume must lead to his house, though it is not visible.

Though I´d pick culture over nature every time, I enjoy this 50 minutes of being outdoors. It is a good way to close the day.
  • Current Music
    Radiohead - Creep