zahid lilani

Soccer or Football, that’s the Question

Growing up in Dubai, I experienced Football first hand. Arabs are more fond of Football or Kurat-al-Kadam and there were more places where one could play Football than Cricket. I played Cricket a lot but loved playing Football whenever I had the chance. There were not that many Pakistanis playing Football in Dubai.

I have played Football with a tennis ball, Pepsi can and golf balls. I am not kidding, we did keep score and there were winners and losers. Fast forward to 2010 and it is FIFA World Cup and I am in America out of all the places in the world.

For me, there are two kinds of Football, American and Non-American. American Football never made sense to me since the ball doesn’t look anything like a ball (not round or circular) and most of the time is spent hand carrying the ball from one end to another. Not to mention the tackling and so much protective gear. Is this wrestling or Football?

In the U.S. it is Soccer, not Football. That’s why we have Soccer moms and only girls play Soccer. That shouldn’t come as a surprise since U.S. Women’s Soccer team has already won two world cups and Olympic Gold medals.

Now, here’s the dilemma: Soccer or Football

I have stopped referring to Football as Football because I am in a country where Football involves a different sport. To avoid all the confusion, I now say Soccer. Right or wrong is the dilemma since I would look weird if I said Soccer in Dubai, they would get it but then they would say 8 years in America and you call Football, Soccer. What’s next… 110V is better than 220V? On/Off switches should be changed… ?

What do you think? Soccer or Football? Which one do you prefer as an American? or if you are not an American, is Football better than Soccer?