Saturday, January 21, 2006

A Bigger Big Weekend

I said last weekend was a big one for sport. Well... I was wrong. This weekend's is bigger.

Firstly, it is the Liverpool-Man U derby at Old Trafford. It is one of the largest rivalries in English football because Liverpool were the dominant team of the 80's and Man U of the 90's. It is a big game for bragging rights and should be a good fight. It is even more significant since they are currently 3rd and 2nd in the league table and the winner will gain a foothold on 2nd place and may continue to have a glimmer of hope of catching runaway leaders, Chelsea.

But in truth right now, context is king... Being in Pittsburgh it is hard not to catch the Black and Gold fever. We were in town yesterday and there were street vendors everywhere selling Steeler paraphernalia. Every other person were wearing Steeler colors. And today I saw many cars decorated with the now omnipresent cry "Here we go, Steelers."

Just a little background for my friends in non-American situations: this is playoff season for the American Football League. The Steelers meet the Denver Broncos tomorrow in Denver to decided the American Football Conference championship. It is the first time that a 6th seeded team (out of 6) has made it to the conference championships. The Steelers are the ones who are rated the underdogs for this game. The winner then proceeds to the Superbowl to meet the champions of the National Football Conference.

Anyways, being deep in Steeler country has made me discover how football (of the American variety) mad the people of this city and region are. There was a T-shirt that I saw on one of the vendor's tables that sums it up best. It said, "In Pittsburgh, Steeler football is a religion."

So I will be sacking out on the couch tomorrow, watching two massive games...

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