The sun is shining and the new season is almost upon us. Which means it’s time for the usual suspects to dust down their tired old opinion pieces about summer football.
It’s claimed switching the season could be the saviour of the game and quite possibly sole the UK’s budget deficit at the same time.
These arguments have been given more respect than they deserve this year as we’ve actually had some warm weather.
Summer football proponents thus can make grand assumptions about how much more enjoyable football would be if only it was played in balmy conditions - conveniently forgetting that a) winter can last for nine months in this country; and b) this time last year, more people drowned at T in the Park, as monsoon conditions gripped Balado, than on the Titantic.
I readily agree there are moments when I wish I was a supporter of Seville, or Napoli, or any other team that plays in a warmer climate. No one enjoys sitting in a half-empty stadium when it’s cold, dark and miserable and you’re stuck watching your team lose a fourth goal.
But I doubt I would be any happier watching my team take a pasting if it so happened to be 30 degrees outside and there was not a cloud in the sky. Instead, I’d be wondering why on earth I had chosen to go to a match when I could be have been outside doing any number of other activities and taking advantage of the good weather.
There are three very good reasons for persisting with the traditional August-May season. The first I’ve already hinted at - taking a break from domestic football in June and July allows us time to do other things. Such as watching international football.
Secondly, who would want the Scottish Cup final to be played in November? Because that’s what would happen if we switched to a supposedly summer season. It already happens in the Republic of Ireland. No thanks.
Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, if it wasn’t for football, a large slice of the population would not bother to leave their house in the winter months. When presented with a day off work, or school, they would simply opt to sit at home, gazing out of the window and wishing that the football season had never changed.