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31 first world problems of a modern Irish sports fan

Having to take the cap off your bottles in stadia and more struggles of the sporting classes.

Dejected Leinster fans 6 /4/2014 Source: James Crombiee/INPHO

1. Sky are covering a football game and Gary Neville is nowhere to be seen

2. Your province is playing in a PRO12 game that’s not on TV and you don’t live local so you have to listen via internet radio — deplorable.

3. Your province is playing in a PRO12 game that is on TV, but the commentary in a language you went out of your way to avoid at school.

4. American Football games being on at crazy hours.

5. Those summers without a World Cup or an Olympics.

6. A big All-Ireland match clashing with a big Premier League game.

7. A really interesting game becomes very boring when a referee unnecessarily sends a player off and awards a penalty, essentially winning the game for the attacking team.

Monaco Soccer Champions League Source: AP/Press Association Images

8. You’re watching a match on the red button on Sky so you can’t pause or rewind — oh the humanity!

9. You were really looking forward to sitting down and reading your favourite sports star’s new autobiography, only for the internet to spoil it by ruining all the best bits via endless 140-character extracts.

10. A big UFC event gives the ‘it’s not a sport’ brigade an excuse to get attention.

11. Your favourite podcast takes a sudden break and doesn’t announce when it’ll be back.

12. Post-match interviews — players and managers give a masterclass in using so many words to say nothing.

13. Tiresome jokes that have long outstayed their welcome (yes, we’ve heard the ones about Luis Suarez being ‘hungry’ and Liverpool’s attack ‘lacking bite’).


14. Twitter’s tendency to often bring out the worst in athletes and sports fans

15. That awkward moment when you realise one of the athletes you most admire and have grown up watching is, in fact, a drug cheat.

16. You travel a long distance to see your favourite team get absolutely destroyed in a pivotal game.

17. You’ve recorded a big match and have gone out of your way to avoid the result, only for some blabbermouth to give it away.

18. The obligation to excessively celebrate big All-Ireland wins versus the fear of having to be up early for work the next day.

19. Missing a big sporting event having made a prior commitment to attend a non-sporting event

Source: alexbentonvideos/YouTube

20. Your former favourite player refuses to celebrate against his now ex-club, which you support. The same club he gleefully left in an instant when offered a bigger contract by a rival team.

21. People who complain about bandwagon jumpers. Have you ever watched Michael Phelps in any race other than at the Olympics? No? Then be quiet, you’re a bandwagon jumper like the rest of us.

22. The endless queues that make getting food or drink during any big sporting occasion virtually pointless.

23. You miss a goal/try because you’re reading about the match on Twitter (this may be both self-inflicted and unforgivable).

24. You lose all excitement for McIlroy’s upcoming 10-footer for eagle because the online leaderboard shows you he birdied.

25. You delete the Paddy Power app off your phone to save money, only to download Betfair instead.


26. Idiots forming opinions on sportsmen based on four-second clips.

27. Your NFL team not being on Sky forcing you to watch the game on a laptop.

28. Liking sports teams that are niche, thus not being able to discuss them the next day.

29. The constant tiredness that comes with the crossover of the NFL/MLB/NHL seasons.

30. Having to pay for Gamepass apps because you want to be able to watch American games.

31. Having to take the cap off your bottles in stadia.

Additional suggestions by Paul Hosford, Sean Farrell and Rónán Duffy.

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About the author:

Paul Fennessy

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