"During the Spring Festival, the football match in Babao Village, Peixian County, Xuzhou, Jiangsu Province became popular in the local area. Every day, villagers from ten miles and eight towns came to watch the game... commercial facilities such as roasted sweet potatoes also came, and the parking could not stop. The villagers also I stopped playing cards, and all came out to watch the game.” According to a report from The Paper on January 31, this was a Weibo post published by People’s Daily during the Spring Festival.

This microblog quickly became popular, and the CCTV news channel also carried a report titled "Small Village Football Game, Thousands of People Gather for New Year's Eve".

  The basketball "Village BA" will be popular in 2022, and the football "Village World Cup" will also be popular in 2023?

In recent years, even in the domestic football league, it is difficult to see such a hot game scene.

Although the professional level of the rural grassroots football game is not high, it is popular because of its strong popularity, good folk foundation, high participation of the masses, and the enthusiasm of the villagers to watch it. It can be called a real mass sport.

  According to reports, this football field was opened to the common people free of charge after it was built by the local government in 2019.

In the past three years, more and more teams played football, and finally formed the "Village World Cup" competition.

This year, in addition to the local teams in Pei County and teams from other regions in Xuzhou City, there are also teams from Shandong participating, and the influence of the event is growing.

It can be seen that the existence of free football fields not only stimulated the villagers' interest in playing football, but also boosted the popularity of local football and the rise of the "Village World Cup".

  The "Village World Cup" became so famous that the villagers came to watch the game, which sparked a "commercial support" and formed a virtuous circle, even attracting young players from surrounding schools to watch the game.

Well-known local football players also went to watch the "Village World Cup" when they went home for the New Year, cheered for the participating players, and posted Weibo to promote football activities in their hometown.

  This self-organized non-governmental grassroots football game has enriched the amateur culture of the villagers, promoted the development of mass sports, and helped to encourage more people to participate in football.

From last year's basketball "Village BA" to this year's football "Village World Cup", this kind of original grassroots sports activities are not only welcomed by villagers and fans offline, but also sought after by many netizens online, restoring the countryside The characteristics of wild sports show the vitality of national sports.

  The popularity of the "Village World Cup" showed a different kind of competitive attitude, and the people's sincere love for football on the field was moving.

Such events have ignited the public's enthusiasm for football and sowed the seeds of Chinese football among the people.

Those passionate runs and shouts may be gestating the future of Chinese football and even Chinese sports.

  We cheered for the "Village BA" and "Village World Cup", not only to be infected by the sports enthusiasm of the masses, but also to encourage the sports of the whole people and cheer for the future of Chinese sports.

It is hoped that this power and spirit will continue to be passed on, so as to drive the better development of national sports in various places, increase the investment in sports facilities and resources at the grassroots level, and allow the masses to have more free sports venues and exercise freely.

(Jiang Debin)

  (Source: Workers' Daily, February 2, 2023, Edition 05)