By Eric Odhiambo

‘Religion is the opium of the masses.’ These are not my views but those of renowned German philosopher Karl Marx. When he coined this phrase in 1844, soccer was several decades away from being a worldwide popular sport. Thus, if football had existed at the time, Karl Max would definitely have shared the same views regarding football.

There’s a correlation between how opium works for an individual who’s in excruciating pain and how we watch football. Both distract and satisfy. Both numb the pain and suffering and make you feel good, typically via pleasurable illusions and thoughts. This is what football followers of the BetKing Kenya Premier League are missing now.

Transfer news

Football always creates new talking points. It is breakfast, lunch, and supper. So with live football currently suspended, player transfer rumors are our new opium especially in the open football window. Just like the actual playing of football itself, transfers attract wider interest, more discussion, more enthusiasm, and more debate.  

Because of the popularity of transfer news, the prospect of acquiring a given player is more interesting than the actual player himself. It’s a strange phenomenon when the most popular news are the transfer rumors. Look at the comments by fans on a club’s social media pages and you’ll notice a series of demands for new acquisitions or queries regarding why no signings have been made yet.

The massive interest in new player acquisition as reflected in football isn’t surprising especially when shopping is often promoted to the masses as the route to nirvana. Fans love their club being active in the transfer market. It stirs the blood. It excites. It means the club is on the rise and ambitious. Thus, with the pressure of the tag ‘moneybags,’ all eyes have gazed at Wazito Football Club on how they’ve conducted their transfer dealings.

Far-sighted approach

While fans love and expect big-name signings per se, Wazito FC have learned their lessons and adopted a prudent approach.  To sum up, the club’s transfer activity so far backed by Club President Ricardo Badoer; they’ve signed young but established, under-the-radar transfers that draw less headlines but are very effective. Big headline signings feel a lot more like upper case capitals screaming in an environment that needs lower case thought. Important lessons have been learned and implemented.

Indeed, we anxiously wait for the government to open the door for the resumption of competitive sports. The return of good old football will restore our daily supply of opium to distract us, pleasure us, occupy our minds and soul, and numb the pain that we’ve experienced since Covid-19 led to football suspension. It is our game, our drug, our opium and footballers are our dealers. In the meantime, let’s dope ourselves on the prudent Wazito FC transfer dealings.

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