Johan CruyffGetty

Coronavirus - A football touch to passing your time

The Coronavirus pandemic that is sweeping across the globe has posed some serious challenges to us in every walk of like. While the doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals toil hard and put themselves at risk in order to mitigate the disaster, the best help we can give them is by isolating ourselves and staying at home.

However, sitting at home is no easy task, especially when you are missing your favourite sport. We try to make the lockdown less unbearable by listing activities with a football touch that you could do while protecting yourself and your loved ones.

Movies

Cristiano Ronaldo movie premiereGetty Images

Beginning with an Indian touch, Saaheb (1985) features Anil Kumar, a football enthusiast who is unable to make a career out of the sport. If you prefer the original version, the Bengali movie Saheb (1981) makes for a good watch too.

Mohun Bagan er Meye (1976) and East Bengal er Chele (1995) are two other Bengali movies on two of the biggest clubs in Indian history. Egaro (2011) is another movie celebrating the glory of Bengal giants Mohun Bagan.

Goal (2007), Sudanu from Nigeria (2018) and Captain (2018) are some Malayalam movies centred around football.

If you prefer English movies, Pele – Birth of a Legend (2016) is a must-watch on one of the best footballers of all time.

If movies on the life of footballers are your forte, Ronaldo (2015), Zidane A 21st Century Portrait (2006), Messi (2014), Zanetti Story (2015), Stoichkov (2012), Maradona by Kusturica (2008), Diego Maradona (2019), Bobby (2016) and are some movies on the legends of the game.

Goal! The Dream Begins (2005), Goal II: Living the Dream (2007), The Damned United (2009), Bend it Like Beckham (2002), Green Street Hooligans (2013), Offside (2006) and The Game of our Lives (2005) are other football movies you can consider.

Documentaries

Manchester City All or Nothing Amazon Prime

Netflix and Amazon Prime Video will spoil you for choices, should you search for documentaries or web series on football clubs, national teams, players, the World Cup and so on.

Barca Dreams, Becoming Champions, The English Game, Antoine Griezmann: The making of a legend, First Team Juventus, Sunderland ‘Til I Die, Lek Benzema, The Perfect Day, Boca Juniors Confidential, River El Mas Grande Siempre, Forever Chape, Forever Pure and Concrete Football are just part of the long list of football-related content on Netflix.

Prime Video boasts of an impressive collection too. The All or Nothing original series has captured Manchester City’s Centurions season and the journey of the current Brazil team in separate shows. Make us Dream, Six Dreams and This is Football are other originals on Prime, with the latter featuring an entertaining episode on Lionel Messi.

El Corazon de Sergio Ramos, Resiliencia, Campo de Estrellas and Kroos are available on Prime for the La Liga fan in you. ‘Inside Borussia Dortmund’ helps you go behind-the-scenes with one of the biggest clubs in Germany.

Games

FIFA 20 Team of the Season So FarEA Sports

If you prefer real-time game-play over recorded material and have access to a gaming console or computer, EA Sports FIFA 20 and PES 20 are among the best in the market.

You can test yourself in the big leagues in the FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT) or play manager mode off-line, or interest yourself with some VOLTA or street football, a latest addition in the list of updates that EA delivered with FIFA 20.

PES too allows you the luxury of testing yourself in the shoes of some of the greatest managers in the world with Master League – a parallel to FIFA 20’s career mode. The game-play in this game is a huge plus.

If you prefer playing games on your six-inch screen, there is Football Manager, FIFA mobile, PES Mobile, Flick Kick and a plethora of games available on the app store.

Books

Cruyff biographyGetty

Strained your eyes out after binging through the movies, documentaries and spending hours on the console until your thumbs froze? Grab a book.

Novy Kapadia’s ‘Barefoot to Boots’ and Stephen Constantine ‘From Delhi to the Den’ are two books on Indian football that must make a good read. Others are History of Indian Football by Nirmal Nath, Stories from Indian Football by Jaydeep Basu, A Social History of Indian Football: Striving to Score by Boria Majumder and Kausik Bandyopadhyay and Rise Above the Clouds by Chiranjit Ojha.

If you want to go back to the basics and analyse the development of tactics and formations over the years, ‘Inverting the Pyramid’ by Jonathan Wilson is a must-read. ‘The Mixer’ and ‘Zonal Marking’ by Michael Cox, ‘Soccer modern tactics’ by Alessandro Zauli, and ‘Team Building’ by the legendary Rinus Michaels are some books for you if you are interested in the tactical aspects of the game.

If you want to peer into the life of some of the legends of the game with great emphasis on a personal touch, these autobiographies should prove to be a great use of your time - ‘My Turn’ by Johan Cruyff, ‘I Think Therefore I play’ by Andrea Pirlo, ‘I am Zlatan Ibrahimovic’, ‘Stillness and Speed’ by Dennis Bergkamp, and ‘My Autobiography’ by Sir Alex Ferguson.

Miscellaneous

The FIFATV YouTube channel has re-runs of classic World Cup encounters over the past editions. You can relive some of the best moments that the team you support has gifted you with or watch some of the legends of the game perform at the biggest stage in football.

The UEFA and FIFA websites are also providing reruns of classic games from the Champions League and the World Cup.

If none of this matters and you still crave for the touch of the orb of joy, grab a football, start juggling, break your personal record. But remember to do this at home and stay away from the television set if you have a poor first touch.

Advertisement