Friday, July 25, 2008

Oh Cana-Huh?

In the spirit of covering our North American brethren, I had been working on a few articles on Canadian soccer including one on ace Julian De Guzman who is making quite a name for himself at Deportivo La Coruna. That was until I saw the incredible display of poor sportsmanship shown by Canadian fans before the MLS All Star Game last night. After that, I lost my urge to finish a number of pieces on Canadian soccer.

It was one thing when Canadian fans booed the US national anthem before a visiting of U-12 hockey team during the run up to the Iraq War (come on, they were only 12) but this one boggles the mind. The US professional league decides to not only expand into Canada but also holds a showcase event there, only to be received with loud, sustained booing during the US national anthem. The Canadian fans not only showed a lack of respect for their southern neighbors but also a lack of respect for themselves. Were they really so insecure to believe that they would not have a chance to sing Oh Canada (which they did while both teams were on the field)?

MLS shined a spotlight on Toronto this week and what we ended up seeing was just how petty their fans could be. I know plenty of great Canadian fans who love the beautiful game and would never do such a thing. Now, some poor sports in Toronto have "branded" their nation's fans in a way which must make real Canadian soccer fans feel nothing but shame.

5 comments:

Richard Whittall said...

It's not right to boo any anthems, but the Canadian fans weren't booing the American anthem because it was American, they were booing because it implied the MLS was represented only by one nation. No one had been told the Canadian anthem would be played, and it should NOT have been played separately from the others.

These items tend to be bandied about with any context to stoke the fires of disgust among many people itching for an excuse to rail at those 'selfish, unthinking Canadians.' The shoe does not fit...

MattyO6848 said...

How do you mean it shouldn't have been played separately? Is there any other way to do it? Playing them simultaneously wouldn't work too well. Perhaps they should've played O Canada first, then the U.S. anthem, but it's a pretty petty thing either way.

Richard Whittall said...

I wasn't asking for it to be played simultaneously; I was asking for it to played as an equal to both the American and English anthems...not really a tall order considering where the game was being played.

Despite the protests of many watching from home, Canada continues to be a sovereign nation..why not try thinking about what it would be like if the same events unfolded on American soil...

Phillip said...

It should've been played first.

Chris Courtney said...

Anyone who has observed more than one international sporting event (to include many baseball and basketball games) knows that the visiting nations' anthems are played first and the hosts' is played last. Ditto for state visits, etc. This is exactly the way it was done at the MLS All Star Game. Are Toronto fans not familiar with such international protocols?

Dishonoring a guest's national anthem is disgusting - the poor sportsmanship shoe fits because the Toronto fans laced them on in front on a TV audience. Richard's excuses for this expression of collective bitterness just don't wash.