Do you understand neutrals?

Discussion in 'Football Forum' started by Oscie, Jan 14, 2018.

  1. Jan 14, 2018
    #1

    Oscie Full Member

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    Not people who watch games of teams they don't support, but people who don't support anyone in particular. I'll happily watch West Brom vs Stoke and not give a toss who wins or if my other half wants to watch Eastenders rather than the second half. I'm 'neutral' in that scenario. But to not follow a team is surely missing out on one of the most important things of being a fan - emotional involvement.

    I can't imagine what it must be like to be absolutely indifferent to the outcome of every single football match you've ever seen. Never, ever having cause to lose your shit in celebration that your team has nabbed 3 points at the death. Or even experiencing the crushing humiliation of a cup exit, relegation, sucker-puch defeat to your local rivals. Everything's just one long and relentless plateau where nothing that ever happens really matters much at all. I know a few people who confess to being 'neutral' in this sense and I really don't get what's in it for them.
  2. Jan 14, 2018
    #2

    Needham Full Member

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    Psychopaths are neutrals. Your friends are psychopaths.
  3. Jan 14, 2018
    #3

    walkinhop Full Member

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    Think of this way, i'm a neutral when watching the NBA, yet i can still enjoy the quality moments.
  4. Jan 14, 2018
    #4

    unplayable New Member

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    Can you ever watch a football match and be completely neutral? I'm always hoping for a certain outcome even if I'm not actually supporting either team.
  5. Jan 14, 2018
    #5

    AndyJ1985 Full Member Verified Moaner

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    I understand it. I'm a neutral when I watch tennis and snooker. I just enjoy casually watching it. Not everyone wants to get emotionally invested in a sport. Football is no different, it's just less common for that to be the case
  6. Jan 14, 2018
    #6

    Schneckerl Full Member

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    Pretty sure someone who watches a lot of football games and is 100% neutral is really rare - there is always a slight preference which is different from being a supporter yet not 100% neutral either.
  7. Jan 14, 2018
    #7

    KirkDuyt Full Member

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    I need to want 1 team to win. I cant watch a game where I don’t care. I have a favorite team in pretty much every competition.
  8. Jan 14, 2018
    #8

    Oscie Full Member

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    I'm the same. I can't get through a World Cup otherwise. Can't claim I've always been above 'I like the colour of the shirts', if hard pressed for another reason.
  9. Jan 14, 2018
    #9

    Chipper Full Member

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    I have watched games as a complete neutral when I used to watch a lot more football than I do now. Even then it was a bit rare as I too would do the "I like their shirts" thing, hoping the underdog would win, or I'd be watching because I had a bet on. Still, it would happen from time to time as I just liked football that much.

    I don't watch that much besides United now so usually need more of a good reason to tune in to other games. I'm not into betting at the moment so it's just about always because the result may impact or reflect upon United in some way. If it doesn't I find it hard to care so don't bother with it mostly.

    Those who entirely watch the sport from a neutral perspective is beyond me.
  10. Jan 14, 2018
    #10

    Mrs Smoker Full Member Scouse Lover

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    What makes a good man go neutral? Lust for gold? Power? Or were you just born with a heart full of neutrality?
  11. Jan 14, 2018
    #11

    ivaldo Mediocre Horse Whisperer, s'up wid chew?

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    I'm the same. Usually that equates to whoever is the underdog.
  12. Jan 14, 2018
    #12

    The Cat Full Member

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    I can usually find a reason to prefer one opponent to beat the other.
  13. Jan 14, 2018
    #13

    Sir A1ex Full Member

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    No, I'm totally with the OP. In fact, I'm particularly bad at watching sport to appreciate the quality etc. For me, if I've not got a dog in the race, I can hardly be arsed watching. Applies across all sports, I have to find a reason to support one team / competitor or I'm quickly bored, regardless of how good a match it is.
  14. Jan 14, 2018
    #14

    hasanejaz88 Full Member

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    You can be a neutral if you enjoy the sport. I'm usually a neutral when I'm watching Bundesliga matches, I just want to see a good game of football. I ofcourse want some players to do well, like German players, but overall I don't care too much about the result; its more about just there being quality moments on show.
  15. Jan 14, 2018
    #15

    AndyJ1985 Full Member Verified Moaner

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    So basically you don't understand the concept of entertainment?
  16. Jan 14, 2018
    #16

    DickDastardly New Member

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    Yeah, sure i can understand.

    I'm only emotionally involved with United.

    When i watch the el classico i couldn't give a shit who wins, i just want red cards, handbags and goals.

    I don't even care about my NT, don't watch Croatia play anymore, but that's a different story...
  17. Jan 14, 2018
    #17

    Gareth williams New Member

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    I actually don't much like football in terms of entertainment. Can't remember the last full game I watched which wasn't Everton (it's definitely not this season or last) think football is generally quite a poor product. 10 games a week and 8 are probably dull as
  18. Jan 14, 2018
    #18

    Adam-Utd Part of first caf team to complete Destiny raid

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    I'm a neutral to the NFL as I've only just got into it and don't have any reason to back a particular team.

    I can actually enjoy watching other high quality teams (like Liverpool v City later) just as much as you don't get the nerves or the stress, just the enjoyment. Chelsea v Arsenal the other week was a fantastic neutrals game, but I would imagine being a fan of them would have been awful as it was so end to end.

    While you don't appreciate a win quite as much not having a team, you certainly don't get the stress.
  19. Jan 14, 2018
    #19

    africanspur Full Member

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    To be honest, if you really analyse it, following football to the extent we do is a bit fecking weird.

    We're so emotionally (and many of us financially) invested in these 11 men kicking a ball around. Normally objective people will scream bloody murder at another person who happens to support another team, will shout abuse at a man who happens to be good at kicking a football around. We become blinkered.

    Especially at Wembley this season, the atmosphere is flat, it feels weird going there and it takes me longer. I went to the Burnley match alone earlier this season as my kids had other plans. All together, with travel, food and the ticket, the day cost me £100. £100 to watch an insipid performance and Burnely score an undeserved last minute equaliser. I went home hardly satisfied with my £100 investment. In what other field of entertainment would we think its a good idea to spend 100 quid and go home afterwards unhappy?

    I know you guys have started feeling a bit sorry for yourselves because you haven't won the league in 5 years but this is especially true for fans of clubs who aren't Man Utd or Real Madrid or Bayern. Even up to clubs like Spurs, who are one of the better clubs in the country and yet can't be expected to win trophies necessarily. What the hell is a Birmingham fan getting out of their misery? Poor feckers.

    I could never be a neutral in football but I almost wish I could, everything would be far less stressful! Even in my older days where these results don't matter anywhere near as much as before.
  20. Jan 14, 2018
    #20

    Snafu17 Full Member

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    I hate my emotional attachment to United. It's irrational and awful. It ruins most of the football I watch. It's an addiction to a useless drug that only works for a few minutes every weekend.

    So I'm not sure if I understand them but I'm definitely jealous.
  21. Jan 14, 2018
    #21

    Adisa likes to take afvanadva wothowi doubt Scouse Lover

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    Don't think there's ever been a game where I didn't have any preference.
  22. Jan 14, 2018
    #22

    T00lsh3d Full Member

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    The worst are people who don’t support a club side, but then get passionate when England play. How the fecking hell does that happe to you?!
  23. Jan 14, 2018
    #23

    buckooo1978 Full Member

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    can you ever be really neutral?

    I'm watching West Brom v whoever and I want West Brom to win because they play City/Liverpool/etc in three weeks and I'd like them to build confidence

    it's hard to be neutral really with the prejudices we feel about teams, players and a tackle from 2001 can shape an opinion in 2018
  24. Jan 14, 2018
    #24

    Cal? CR7 fan

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    I’m never neutral, hardly ever watch anything I haven’t bet on except United.
  25. Jan 14, 2018
    #25

    Crashoutcassius Full Member

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    I don't really understand neutral. I watch NFL and there are like 7 teams I like, and often in a game I root for one side or another but often if one team is down 10 pts + I hope for a comeback and an exciting game. Maybe that is what being a neutral is
  26. Jan 14, 2018
    #26

    nokillingmoths Full Member

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    I just hope for goals. Really good goals.
  27. Jan 14, 2018
    #27

    jojojo Moderator Staff

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    I'm sometimes a neutral at the start of a match, but I've usually picked a side or turned off before the end. That said, I'm seldom a real neutral watching the PL, I usually have a team that I'd like to see lose. Sometimes, I want to see both teams lose, which can be problematic.
  28. Jan 14, 2018
    #28

    JeffBoomTetris Full Member

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    No one can be a true neutral as you say. Even if one is consciously saying to themselves that they can't pick sides in a match, there are surely underlying biases that makes them want to support a team.

    But, overall being a vacuous "neutral" has its perks. You can equally enjoy both teams. You won't keep focusing on players of one of the teams. And supporting a team is great and all, but it boxes in your thinking. This can cause you to assume that one team's style or players are better than the other. It's almost like a religion in that respect.
  29. Jan 14, 2018
    #29

    Chipper Full Member

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    No, but I do basically understand that internet forums are full of people who look at statement by someone and then ask straw man questions that start with the word "So" whilst completely mischaracterising their position. For your punishment, I'll now give you a long drawn-out reply that will bore you death.

    Football is sport and sport is competition, that's why it is exists. The reason to ever play and compete in sport is to see how you match up against someone else/another team and you obviously hope to win. It's exciting because it has ups and downs, twists and turns, overcoming adversity, crumbling in the face of it etc.

    I find it hard to see how people get away from that when watching when we're talking about it to the point of literally never hoping one team or another wins and always staying neutral at all times. Obviously it's not you (the watcher) playing when viewing a game, but you live vicariously through whoever, or which team you're cheering on. It's fun to get involved emotionally like that. If someone has never had that feeling of wanting someone to win that is absolutely beyond me. It's cold. As it happens, football is probably the most tribal of all sports too which makes it so easy to invest in that way.

    There's a lot of entertainment that doesn't involve competition so sport is obviously different in that way. Music is one, there's no win there and you just enjoy it for what it is.

    However, even with things like tv, film and stage production there is a "win". If you were to ever hope a fictional character would achieve something, overcome something or not suffer something bad then you're cheering them on in a way. You might even hope something bad does happen to them if you don't like them. Don't know about you, but I could never watch something repeatedly or like something in this kind of entertainment field if I literally didn't care what happened to the characters. As an example, it's going back a goo few years but I'd heard Wolf Creek was supposed to be a good slasher film. I watched it, there was an good hour or maybe more of three boring people doing not much. By the time the maniac bloke started trying to kill them I didn't care whether they lived or died and as such it's not a film I thought was any good.

    I'm rambling on here, but yeah, investing in people is and can be a big part of certain entertainment genres otherwise it would be a lot less enjoyable. It is difficult for me to grasp how people can do that all the time and still have fun. Sport in general, and arguably football in particular because of just how tribal it is one of those genres.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2018
  30. Jan 14, 2018
    #30

    kouroux 45k posts to finally achieve this tagline

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    This. It's impossible to somehow not root for a team.
  31. Jan 14, 2018
    #31

    ZAGREB RED Full Member

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    i actually quite enjoy a good game between two teams where the outcome of the game is secondary to enjoying the football.
  32. Jan 14, 2018
    #32

    Denis79 Full Member

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    I'm not a neutral in any game, might sound strange but I always find a reason to support one or the other. Because that former United player plays there, because I like their style of football more, because their colours are nicer, because the oppositions manager looks like cnut. I always find a reason.
  33. Jan 14, 2018
    #33

    zing Zingle balls

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    Been watching football for 14 years and have not supported a team.

    I am from India. I am pretty sure I would be a gloryhunter - would lose interest in watching a team if they dont entertain.
  34. Jan 14, 2018
    #34

    Neuron Banned

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    Yeah, I sort of agree with this. Even further, when watching the Champions League sometimes I can watch a game and not really have a favourite to win, but still have a great time watching the football.

    Like some have pointed out, it's pretty difficult to be a hundred percent neutral at any point, of course, since there's always some sort of unconscious bias.

    On a more simplistic level though, I think it's perfectly reasonable to be a 'neutral' football fan. My dad, for example, usually watches the latter stages of the Champions League with me, but basically doesn't follow any other football all year round. Nonetheless, he seems to enjoy most of the games just as much as I do.
  35. Jan 14, 2018
    #35

    SirAF Ageist

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    Nah. Never watch any match without some sort of relevance/connection to United.
  36. Jan 14, 2018
    #36

    Kinsella New Member

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    The idea that a neutral would 'happily' watch West Brom v Stoke is a really stretching it. :lol:
  37. Jan 14, 2018
    #37

    Chipper Full Member

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    I don't know if gloryhunter and neutral are the same. A gloryhunter to me is someone who starts to follow an already successful team, and hope that they continue to be successful. They will feel good when that team wins and bad if they don't. What they may do is jump ship to another team after a short while if that team doesn't continue it's success, but they will always have a team or sometimes teams in multiple countries that they are cheering for. Neutral would be a complete absence of ever cheering for a team.

    I'm interested to know, even though you don't support a team overall, do you ever watch individual matches hoping one side or the other wins?
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2018
  38. Jan 14, 2018
    #38

    zing Zingle balls

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    I understand the difference between a neutral and a gloryhunter. I was just saying that I would probably be a gloryhunter if I chose a team. I wouldn't switch allegiances but would struggle to relate to a team that wasn't entertaining me. If I picked United and 5 years later they're mid table, dishing out mediocre football, there's really nothing keeping me supporting them.

    I always prefer one team to win above the other. I have my preferences in football - I like watching teams that retain possession well, dislike football that's built around negating the opposition, enjoy watching certain types of players, like clubs with history. These naturally extend to preferring one team over the other in pretty much 99% of the matches.

    It's always better if you have a horse in the race - I support India in cricket, which is easy for me to do even if they're not doing well, and that's clearly a much better experience. I just enjoy watching football a lot.
  39. Jan 14, 2018
    #39

    SalfordRed18 Full Member

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    That's exactly the match I had in mind for being truly neutral.