American Red Devils Welcome Garet as Guest Contributor

In a place dominated by American football, how did I end up here?

It’s funny how something that you do for fun all your life actually becomes your life isn’t it? I come from northwest Ohio in a very rural area dominated by the Friday night lights of local High School football stadiums and I bleed the Scarlet and Grey of Ohio State on Saturdays. I may not personally invest time in the NFL, but the Cleveland Browns also dominate Sundays. It’s an all-out football assault, but not the one I have put above all others. But, why?

To understand my journey to this Club however, all you have to do is go back to the now iconic buzzing of the South African Vuvuzelas and the electric atmosphere surrounding the 2010 World Cup. That was my first experience of football. Actual football to be precise. I was hooked. Peter Drury’s iconic commentary of Siphiwe Tshabalala’s ridiculous opener against Mexico still rings in my head to this day. So how is this relevant? Unfortunately the World Cup only lasts a month every four years. How was I going to continue to learn about and embrace the game I loved so much at the professional level?

If you remember the broadcasting of ANY European matches in the early 2010’s here in the States you’ll remember just how limited it was. ESPN2 became the go to spot for anything football related and as it turns out the most frequently shown team on those early Saturday and Sunday mornings was Manchester United. Purely based off of television frequency and the fact my favorite color is red, I decided United was the team for me all those years ago. I had no idea of the Club’s history at the time and began the long and drawn out process of embracing the Club and learning everything I could about it.

It’s been a journey that’s gone from luck of the draw ESPN coverage to play by play apps that looked like they were run by the local Manchester Pub. I’ve seen it all since then and on more than one sketchy occasion been forced to rely on TotalSportek internet streams in Arabic coverage just to see the boys play. Don’t ever let anyone downplay foreign United fans and their trials in pursuit of seeing the team play. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do, right?

In more recent years I traveled to Chicago and Ann Arbor, Michigan to catch preseason matches against PSG and Liverpool, which we lost. Guess that’s not really the point though. The Club has dominated my free time for years and to this day I follow it like any other non-UK fan has to. Early mornings, races home to catch 3 p.m. kickoffs, and those always annoying 12;30 p.m. kickoffs that force you to watch all the other Premier League coverage that morning before the boys finally play. I wouldn’t change it for anything.

This Club has put me through the highest of highs and lowest of lows and I keep coming back for more. Although I’m quite unhappy at the state of the things at United right now, it drives me to get even more involved in whatever it takes to see us rise back to the summit of European football. I love this Club. It really has become my life outside of life. It was meant to be and I’m in it for the long haul.

About Garet 3 Articles
I hold Manchester United to it's rightful standards. Nobody is above criticism.

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