Although there is nothing quite like watching a football match in a pub packed full of loud beer-drinking die-hard English fans, the Bahraini version of this is also quite enjoyable. That is, sitting in a Bahraini coffee shop surrounded by loud shisha-smoking football fans. I am sometimes surprised (but not really) about how there are so many Arab die-hard fans of the English football team, who can't even speak English. I don't mean to suggest that there is something wrong with not knowing English... but it makes you think about how these guys can tell you the names of the entire English squad, without knowing the language. Come to think of it though, most football fans can name most of the Italian, French or Brazilian squads without knowing the languages also. Such is the international language of football.
While watching the Croatia-England game
today (which was great) I came to realize just how universal the language of football is. I was sitting next to a Saudi guy who couldn't speak English, while I can't speak much Arabic. Nonetheless, for 90 minutes we were able to exchange quite detailed opinions and analyses of the game using only the names of the players, physical gestures, and the words koora
(foul), and GOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLL!!!!!
(goal). If only other languages were as simple.