Tenho um amigo francês que mora em Lisboa e gosta muito de desporto e como tal gosta de ir ver jogos importantes do SL Benfica. Foi a vários jogos da UEFA Champions League, entre eles um com o FC Barcelona em que no meio do ambiente hostil criado pelo público ao adversário, ficou surpreendido e agradado com a forma como o público soube abstrair-se desse ambiente e aplaudir o Puyol quando este saiu lesionado, colocando o homem acima do jogo.
Comecei a levá-lo a jogos de outras modalidades. Um dos primeiros foi o jogo de hóquei em patins contra o Sporting CP na primeira jornada após nos termos sagrado campeões europeus no Dragão Caixa, foi um belíssimo jogo e ele ficou muito bem impressionado com o desporto que desconhecia e considerou muito técnico (muito mais que o hóquei em linha que chegou a jogar). Neste momento quer que o leve a todos os desportos do SL Benfica, gosta da experiência, e quer levar o afilhado a jogos das modalidades do SL Benfica.
Continua a não ser Benfiquista, é apenas do seu Stade Rennais e do Manchester United FC, apenas gosta de ir ver os jogos do SL Benfica.
Não é segredo para ninguém que acompanhe o desporto em Portugal (para não ir mais longe), que o desporto, especialmente quando ligado a clubismo/bairrismo, transforma as pessoas - faz sair o Mr Hyde que existe dentro da maioria das pessoas. Quando se trata de um dérbi o sentimento é maior, a transformação acompanha a emoção.
Num momento em que o desporto nacional fervilha (com ligação directa à subida ao poder de pessoas irresponsáveis num certo clube), deixo-vos um relato do Alex sobre o jogo a que fomos assistir da Final do Campeonato de Futsal de 2012/2013. Na altura tinha-lhe pedido que escrevesse para o blogue sobre as suas experiências com o SL Benfica, foi este o relato que me deixou, e que só agora publico.
"It was a very hot day in June 2013 and I remember being absolutely exhausted from the night before but all this tiredness was about to go away.
Indeed, I was on my way to have my first futsal experience and it wasn’t just any game, it was the final of the Portuguese league and local derby between Benfica and Sporting.
I wasn’t expecting much but I was very curious to see the level and style of play of indoor 5-a-side football. On our way the pavilhão, I realised that there was of few riot police vans which I thought was rather strange for such a small event but I was soon about to find out why.
As we walked in the atmosphere was quite cheerful and the arena (capacity of around 1,000) was about half empty. Then all of a sudden, we started to hear people chanting and it was getting louder and louder … that is when the away fans arrived.
My level of Portuguese is pretty low but it was not hard to see that they were not singing love songs to their Benfica counterparts. The craziest thing for me was when they started to light up flares inside the arena!!
As the game started, my eyes caught the eyes of a Sporting fan standing in the crowd about 20 – 30 yards away. The guy was on form to say the least and made a throat cutting gesture at me before showing me his longest finger… Nice J! Absolutely baffled I could not help myself and had to send him a lovely kiss! The guy was definitely not expected that and did not really want to do, it was quite funny.
Unlike 11-a-side, Sporting is a much stronger side and you could see it a little on the pitch. The style of play is very different to football as I know it and I could help but noticing that very single player controls the ball with the sole of their foot which I thought was rather strange but watching more of the game I realised that it is the best way to keep the ball close to you as the game is incredibly fast.
At half time, a Benfica fan went down to the bottom of the stand right next to all the Sporting fans desperately waiting for one of them to look at him so he could give him a bit of abuse but unfortunately for him, no one was interested.
Sporting went on winning … and therefore were the league champions. Paulo and I stay to look at the celebrations. The Sporting fans were cheering and the Benfica fan were pretty pissed off, I even saw the daughter of Alfredo’s owner giving the away fans the finger! I could not believe it, she seems so nice and calm when working in the restaurant.
I was taking pictures of the Sporting players and fans celebrating when (Paulo told me afterwards) Benfica fans started wondering who the hell I was. At one point a Benfica fan had decided to use the fire hose to splash the away fans with water. As I thought this was pretty funny, I started filming it but Benfica fans did not like this at all, they believed I was a Sporting fan and would use this video to disclose the guy’s identity to the police. They tried to snatch my phone, but quickly let go when they realised I was foreign and deleted the video. I have to say I do love Lisbon, because if this had happened in Paris for example I am almost certain I would have ended on the floor with my mobile stolen!!
On our way out things were getting pretty heated and a couple of fans definitely lost it, they were throwing barricades at the police who had to use tear gas in the end. I wanted to stay to see what was going to happen when the away fans would go out but Paulo, who was wearing a Benfica top, told me it was probably a better idea to go.
We went for a drink in Alto dos Moinhos when the whole crew of Benfica fans (including the one who tried to snatch my mobile) arrived and sat on the terrace to have few beers. I could not understand much of what was being said but they were apparently basically boasting about had just happened and wating for the fans to come out!
Overall, it was a brilliant experience and all the more surprising when you think that Lisbon is such a peaceful city. I guess some people become different person when they go to the stadium."
Acrescento que a caminho de casa no táxi, porque o ambiente não parecia muito seguro na zona do metro, ainda tive que tirei a camisola do SL Benfica porque alguns carros com sportinguistas passaram por nós e, apesar de os ignorar, estavam a provocar e a procurar resposta.