Football fans fed up with the ‘boxset’ experience of following their teams on the television and miss the ‘escapism’ of being in the stadium
- Football fans have expressed their feeling of loss on the eve of the new season
- They described following teams on the television as like watching a ‘boxset’
- But Adam Widdrington believes the time is not right for supporters to return
Football fans say it is like watching a ‘boxset’ following their team on the television and robs them of the sense of belonging that comes from being in the stadium.
Newcastle United season-ticket holder Adam Widdrington, 35, does not believe the time is right for supporters to return to matches, but he has spoken to Sportsmail about his feeling of loss on the eve of the new season.
‘I miss that escapism because, even when the football is rubbish, you can forget about all of the politics around the club and you still feel part of something,’ said the True Faith fanzine content creator.
Football supporters say it is like watching a ‘boxset’ following their team on the television
‘There is a detachment watching at home on TV, you miss that mass reaction. It is like you are just watching another boxset rather than being immersed in a sporting occasion.
‘I see my friends before, during and after the game. My parents sit near me. The women behind passes me sandwiches at half-time. I miss that cider-fuelled debate about the manager or formations. You’re not having those immediate interactions now – a text message isn’t the same.
‘It’s a new season and I’m excited, yes, but there is a limit to it. What are you really looking forward to? Another episode of that boxset basically.’
Fan Adam Widdrington does not believe the time is right for supporters to return to matches
Widdrington, though, does not want to see fans rushed back into stadiums at the expense of public health.
‘I would love to be back but at what cost? It does not make logical sense at this stage,’ he said. ‘While the pandemic isn’t improving and there are no competent means to vaccinate or track and trace, I fear a return to stadiums would exacerbate the situation.
‘You look back at Cheltenham and the Liverpool-Atletico match and it seems crazy. Mikel Arteta testing positive before another round of matches in March – and forcing their postponement – saved thousands of lives.
‘I feel the same about what looks like a second spike – it is better it came now before we return.’
He does not want to see supporters rushed back into stadiums at the expense of public health
Widdrington is nonetheless looking forward to that day.
‘We will appreciate it so much more,’ he said. ‘It will be emotional.
‘The one fallback now is that everyone is in the same boat. It would be harder if there was a decision to make, that moral dilemma of doing something I love versus the health of myself and my family.
‘That is why, for now, it is right that we delay the return. In the long run, I think it will get us back into stadiums sooner, and we have to think about that bigger picture.’
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