Last weekend Dennis Bergkamp, the person most responsible for my renewed interest in football (if we ignore certain friends of mine who introduced me to him via the FIFA computer games) has retired as a player, after playing for the last eleventeen years for Arsenal.
I remember two of his [real] goals in particular: the one against Argentina in 98, which caused me to get up and shout with joy at that beautiful goal as well as the demise of the evil Argentineans to such a beautiful pass and clinical finishing; and the one against Newcastle (you know which one I'm talking about), scored while Jo was visiting me in Israel and I went to the kitchen to bring some food (she still teases me on this one).
Anyway, in this Chelsea day and age where money and more money are all that matter, a player that is loyal to a team that is good to him is rare. In this day and age where looking good is all that matters, a player that trains hard and is a family man after work is also rare. It seems to pay, literally: Up until two days ago, Bergkamp was the second richest active football player in the world.
So it's nice that he retires nicely without much fuss, even if he hasn't been scoring much lately. Football will not be the same for me anymore.