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Year Of The Tiger
(Lewis Moody)

A common belief in the British Isles is that it is football which is the sport of the people. As the game grows however, things are changing and the general public is finding it easier to identify itself with the game of Rugby and its players. Commonly known as the game of the upper classes, the sport is steadily filtering through into schools, and with more accessibility to the professional game and its players, Rugby is slowly catching up football as the sport in which Joe Bloggs from down the road can identify with.
Leicester and England flanker Lewis Moody is one such player who can be easily identified with. A world cup winner and extremely succesful professional player for a number of years, Moody comes across as a guy you would like to go for a pint with down the local with his refreshing honesty and amusing anecdotes. This is one reason for the sudden rise in the popularity of Rugby in this country. While football players are spoonfed every politically correct line they give to the media, their Rugby counterparts are allowed to live a normal life, and actually talk about having a couple of pints on a saturday night.
Football is known as the game of the working class, while Rugby the game of the upper classes. However, on the same weekend in the same city, it would cost on average ¢20 less to watch a top flight Rugby match. This statistic is slowly alienating fans away from football grounds, to an atmosphere which is more friendly, exciting, and more respected by the powers that be. If football chiefs do not recognise this growing trend, they risk pushing away future generations for good, and it will not be so easy to bring them back, especially when they can go for a drink with their heroes after a game.

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