As I grew older I began to watch soccer on TV more and learn about the big teams in Europe and around the world. Most of the girls I knew didn't like watching soccer on television, they preferred playing it. I knew a few guys who watched it but none of them were my close friends. I turned to the internet and found friends there. The internet is full of people who love the sport and are passionate about their teams and the players.
I know that loving many different teams seems to be a no no but when I was younger there wasn't any restriction on it. I was just a silly Canadian girl from a small town and I hope no one who reads this post will view me as any less of a soccer fan for not having strict loyalty to one team when I was growing up.
My first jersey I ever got was a Cristiano Ronaldo Manchester United jersey. It came all the way from the UK and I even had a backpack. I had that backpack for years. This was during his younger days with United when he was coming out of his awkward stages. I really liked United then. Alan Smith, Michael Carrick, Ruud van Nistelrooy.
There wasn't a lot of big soccer in BC. Sure, there were the Whitecaps but they were in Vancouver and not yet part of the MLS as they are now. In 2007 the U-20 World Cup came to Canada and my sister, best friend Stephanie and I attended. We were lucky enough to see Spain play several times until they advanced to Edmonton. The team we saw had Gerard Pique, Juan Mata and Javi Garcia playing for it. To know that I have been so close to such big stars that they are now makes me very happy and I am glad they have improved so much.
I will post below some shots of me wearing the various kits I have owned over the past few years. Please don't judge me.
Wearing my Liverpool Luis Garcia kit and meeting the Scottish team in Metrotown.
England - Steven Gerrard
My Mikel Arteta Everton jersey
My Xavi Spain jersey
My Thierry Henry France jersey with lovely Stephanie in her Real Madrid jersey
My latest Arsenal jersey, a gift from Stephanie.
I have a lot of jersies, too many. I am now trying to get rid of them as I prepare to move to the UK. I'm really excited to experience the World Cup in the UK where I can go into a pub and watch the game.
Again, please don't think less of me for my evolution as a football fan. There was no right and wrong for me growing up. :)