Since this season has begun, one of the players that has caught football fans’ eyes the most is Arsenal’s Santi Cazorla. The Spaniard impressed from day one and bagged his first goal for the club at Anfield at the beginning of September, and since then has gone from strength to strength. Many were waiting with baited breath at what nightmares he’d cause the young Chelsea midfield (they were without the benched Lampard) today. But in fact, it was his fellow countrymen of the opposing team, Fernando Torres and Juan Mata who shined. Both scored goals, both ran themselves restless and both celebrated endearingly with each other, adding fuel to a Chelsea bromance that is becoming rather popular – Morres. Since this season has begun, one of the players that has caught football fans’ eyes the
It was a thrilling London derby, full of memorable moments and hilarious dives from both sides. David Luiz was booked for his bout of simulation, but the most atrocious tumble of the match had to go to Carl Jenkinson, who not only escaped sanction, but managed to dupe the referee into awarding Arsenal a free-kick. Away from shambolic diving, there was also some embarrassing defending from both sides. For Chelsea’s first, Luiz was completely unmarked in the penalty area from a Mata free-kick. The defender was unable to get to it, but provided sufficient distraction for Torres to hook his right foot around Koscielny to volley the ball into the net.
Gervinho equalised from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross, pirouetting neatly before firing a powerful drive past Terry and Luiz, who were both lingering too close to their goalkeeper to level the scores before half time. By then, Chelsea were coming under siege and felt lucky to go into half-time with the scores at parity. But, shortly after the re-start, Koscielny erred again, again from a Mata free-kick. The ball was heading goalbounds anyway, but the Frenchman slid in, which bamboozled Mannone. Mata goal, or Koscielny own goal, it’s all semantics. The point is, Chelsea withstood some late Arsenal pressure – Petr Cech made two outstanding reflex saves and Giroud had a perfect opportunity to level things up but missed in a manner that was reminiscent of Torres for Chelsea, ’11, which meant that the west London team earnt three points and the bragging rights.
Morres is a blend of Torres and Mata’s surnames, and it is an affectionate amalgam used to refer to the two together. After all, the first goal was, quite literally, Morres – Mata assisted, Torres scored.
In addition to the euphoria of getting a win at Arsenal, I was treated during the game, to some “Morres” action. Morres is a blend of Torres and Mata’s surnames, and it is an affectionate amalgam used to refer to the two together. After all, the first goal was, quite literally, Morres – Mata assisted, Torres scored. The two shared some sweet cuddles afterwards, as they often do when one scores for Chelsea, and, despite the frequency of such displays of affections, they never fail to warm this Chelsea fan’s heart.
The reason for this is twofold. The first is aesthetic – the novelty of seeing the tall, clean-shaven Spaniard, hugging the short, furry-faced, brunette one, is endearing. But the second runs deeper; football-wise, Mata and Torres just get each other. Torres’ trials and tribulations as a Chelsea player are pretty well documented, but if there was one player who got him playing anything close to his true potential, it is Juan Mata. The fact that Torres helped convince Mata to join Chelsea further illustrates the bond the two men had, and continue to have as footballers and friends. This can be seen in the way Mata always watches out for Torres on the pitch – witness how Mata volunteered to let Torres take a penalty against Birmingham in March for the Spaniard to try to break his goal duck (Torres resisted).
There are also occasions of “Morres in reverse”, ie, Torres assisting Mata, and a very famous example of this is the last goal scored of the Euros this Summer. In fact, it was that Morres goal that won Torres the Golden Boot – he was tied on goals with Gomez, who also had an assist to his name, but once Torres set up Mata, he too had 3 goals and an assist, and took Golden Boot by way of the fact that he’d played less minutes than Gomez. So not only are bromances cute to watch, but they can actually reap rewards too.
What with the hyperkinetic, frenzied world of Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, where images can be taken in a second and shared with the world even faster, manlove is fast becoming a common phenomenon amongst randy young women. A very popular non-football example is of the band One Direction, where having five handsome boys makes for 10 possible permutations of matching the boys into pairs. Now just imagine the possibilities with footballers. Sometimes, as with Morres, the two-compatriots-playing-for-the-same-club makes for a foundation of a bromance, but often, just one of the two ingredients is needed.
What with the hyperkinetic, frenzied world of Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, where images can be taken in a second and shared with the world even faster, manlove is fast becoming a common phenomenon amongst randy young women.
For example, Joe Hart and Vincent Kompany of Manchester City is one I am very fond of. It’s the combination of Kompany’s authoritative skipper and Hart’s cheeky swagger, as well as the way the goalkeeper often looks out for his captain, and isn’t afraid to touch him or show genuine concern when he thinks Kompany might be injured. After Kompany scored the only goal of the Manchester derby last season – a goal that helped City towards their first Title in 44 years, Hart and Kompany were the two chosen to be interviewed post-match for Sky. The rapport and easygoing chemistry between the two men was plain as the eye could see; they were delighted to have won, delighted for their own performances and delighted for each other. The fact that Joe Hart is a man who wears his heart on his sleeve means that this pairing is more interesting than others in that it has downsides as well as ups – witness the look of contempt Hart shot Kompany after they conceded a late goal to Real Madrid two weeks ago; from the Englishman’s look of thunder, he thought the Belgian should have dealt with it better. It is these kind of rollercoaster ride moments that make bromances rather fun; sort of like Eastenders amongst footballers.
There are countless bromances in football – undoubtedly even blokes have noticed prominent manlove between certain players of their teams, and they can come for weird and wonderful reasons. Another Chelsea one I liked in addition to Morres is “Dary” – that is David Luiz and Gary Cahill, purely because when they both started playing together they were utterly hopeless, but graduated to become pretty decent players. The fact that Luiz is a crazy Brazillian and Cahill, a shy Yorkshireman, makes for a striking personality contrast too. When Adam Johnson was a Man City player, AJ/Silva was another City pairing I loved, both were pint-sized playmakers who loved to run into each other’s arms when one scored a goal.
As previously mentioned, bromances work on a visual level – footballers who are nice to look at often look even better when hugging another attractive player. But it is the friendship, and teamwork beneath the embraces that really make them beautiful. After all, in a world where footballers are regularly criticized for only looking after number one, the looks of unadulterated glee on their faces when celebrating the successes of their teammates illustrates that this, after all, might not actually be the case.
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