Hello and a very warm welcome to my newly relaunched blog. I'm Paul a 40 year old family man from the UK. In this complex, information overload 21st century world, too often we lose sight of what's really important. Here I want to celebrate life, share inspirational stories, throw the spotlight on charities and causes close to my heart. Looking forward to sharing this journey with you all.

Monday, 7 June 2010

The Football World cup - making the most of a truly global gathering

As I'm sure many of you are well aware, the 2010 Football world cup starts this Friday in South Africa.

In these often troubled modern times, as all of our daily lives are in some way affected by the global economic turmoil, climate uncertainty and ongoing conflicts, for me the chance that only presents itself every 4 years to unite with football and sporting fans from across the planet is not to be missed.

Whatever your interest in the sport, so many people from totally different cultures and countries sharing a common interest - that is always special

Since as long as I can remember, it's been a part of my upbringing - from Argentina 1978 every 4 years to the present day, its provided some of the most memorable sporting moments I've witnessed. Each country has their own unique story to tell, and for England ever since that one iconic triumph at Wembley back in 1966, its largely been a tale of promise and hope along with plenty of heartbreak.

In line with the continuing theme of this blog, this year I want to look outside the pure sporting drama that will unfold and take a look ways in which we can make the most of this global coming together, and harness the true spirit of humanity and community at it's very best

Last night, I was priviledged to watch "Soccer Aid"

The brain child of UK pop superstar Robbie Williams, it features a charity match on behalf of UNICEF staged between England and the Rest of the World, with each team comprising of a number of celebrities, presenters, actors as well as a sprinkling of true footballing legends.

This year's match marked  the 3rd running of the event, (previous versions in 2006 and 2008) and featured international greats like Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo and Ryan Giggs as well as homegrown English legends such as Shearer, Sheringham and David Seaman.

The oh so predictable eventual result that England lost on penalties was let's face it utterly irrelevant - the value of the funds raised, to buy the likes of simple Malaria Nets - it's simply priceless

Please take a look at the website at
https://socceraid.unicef.org.uk/ and make a donation if you can.

No doubt during the tournament the British tabloid press in particular will be looking to ride the wave of popular support and then find any angle they can to rip into the England team the moment things start to go wrong. Over paid and priviledged players that underperform - it's a very easy line of attack.

I wonder how many people out there are aware of the http://www.teamenglandfootballerscharity.com/ - I strongly suggest you take a look.

Bobby Moore the captain of that victorious 1966 team embodies the very essence of bravery and skill, and having tragically lost his life to cancer, it's truly inspiring to read about the foundation that lives on in his memory.

One final site I'd encourage you to take a look at is http://www.homelessworldcup.org/. This extraordinary annual gathering has been running since 2003, and the next one will be in Rio De Janeiro in September 2010 where 64 nations will be taking part.

As described on the website it "is an annual, international football tournament, uniting teams of people who are homeless and excluded to take a once in a lifetime opportunity to represent their country and change their lives forever. It has triggered and supports grass roots football projects in over 70 nations working with over 30,000 homeless and excluded people throughout the year.

The impact is consistently significant year on year with 73% of players changing their lives for the better by coming off drugs and alcohol, moving into jobs, education, homes, training, reuniting with families and even going on to become players and coaches for pro or semi-pro football teams.

You can also link up with the Homeless World Cup with social networking sites on Facebook, Myspace, Bebo, and Youtube, so please take a look and show your support.

Whichever nation finally gets to lift that golden globe on July 11th, we can all be winners if we get involved and give what we can.

Thanks for reading!


  1. I sincerely believe that if everyone started finding something noble attached with almost every event and happenings around the globe like you do, this world would be a different place to live in!

    Really like the "Football Box" concept of Homeless Worldcup... And great to know about Soccer aid...

    Nevertheless, looking forward to seeing some mindblowing soccer in the following weeks!


  2. Sport is a great unifying force. Here in Malaysia, we look to sport to bring the different races together as Malaysians. I believe if we work harder, we are able to look beyond colour and race. Enjoy World Cup!

  3. Enjoyed reading this. I too watched the Soccer Aid match and thought it was a great way to raise money.

  4. Thanks Maulik - really appreciate it, when people come together and focus on these big events it is so important we make the most of that collective good will

  5. And thank you Sunshine girl -I agree sport breaks down all those artificial barriers in the best possible way

  6. cheers Letterprof - certainly hope they keep running the soccer aid events - they are a timely reminder of the causes that are really important

  7. Great post! Sport really does bring us all together in the midst of rivalry. Argentina '78 is the first World Cup I really remember watching - I can still remember Ally's Tartan Army's song!

  8. Ah yes Cambridge lady, same here argentina and all that ticker tape was my first world cup taste - that amazing theme tune, and archie gemill's heroic but too little too late goal against the dutch - the memories!

  9. Why is it that we Americans basically ignore the world cup? So much good comes of it. Like the olympics. It really promotes diversity. And so much more!

  10. This is really good - I learned something to ! I should have read this when I got up ( I try to learn one thing a day) then I could've coasted the rest of it.
    Mr Monkey

  11. The World cup or olympic games makes me take a look at the map again. It's interesting, I've been watching this time, surprisingly, the known world champions are going home, I wonder how it'll end. Let's watch and see.


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