The Lazy Philippine Media and The Uneducated Filipino Football Fans
A day after Kuwait handily beat the Azkals 3-nil I saw Pinky Webb report the game on Magandang Umaga Bayan. I was baffled why she was smiling ear to ear while reading from the teleprompter. It didn’t seem right, not the way to report a loss; especially a defeat that required 3 goals and a shut out at the Rizal Memorial Stadium on Thursday just to force extra time.
Were they trying to sugar coat it; making the situation seem more hopeful? Yes. As Simon Greatwich said “If we get one early goal at home, everything can start from there. Who knows?” All is not lost and considering how much our booters feed off of our fans’ energy, realistically, we can still beat Kuwait.
But what the director, Pinky Webb, and at the macro level, the Philippine Media, are trying to do is to keep the Azkals’ hype and marketability at an optimum. That is why everyone from the media is smiling. What’s not to smile about? The Azkals are a Cash Cow or a Cash Dog if you may. German, Irish, English etc. mixed with Filipino blood produce handsome young men brimming with machismo. Plus, they just happened to be skillful with the football. That’s an explosive combination that makes companies selling vinegar to insurance, want to take advantage of when it comes to endorsements. Quite simply, the Azkals are very effective in capturing the market across all classifications.
But I’m afraid that’s all there is to that and we have the Philippine media to blame. Have you read an article or seen a television segment that featured the players’ skills as opposed to their good looks and the girls they’re with? Maybe, but I’m sure there haven’t been much; and that’s my rant about the Philippine media. I think they are lazy in a sense that they project the Azkals more as marketing icons than football players. The game is not about looking good but it’s all about winning. The team has already done its job of making the sport relevant and now it’s time for the media to make Filipino football fans more knowledgeable about the game. It’s their job to make our lads’ football skills more appreciated. It is the right of every Filipino football fan to understand what “off side” or a through ball is; that Phil Younghusband is not only the boyfriend of Angel Locsin but is also a good attacker/striker, that as good as he is on offense Chieffy does not get back on defense, that more than spunk, Schrock creates opportunities for the team.
I can go on and on with my ranting. The bottom line is the Philippine media is not helping the Azkals to make real football fans out of Filipinos. I sincerely hope that everything won’t be as shallow with the Azkals as it is today.