I’ve read and heard a lot from people suggesting the olympics has no place for football, suggesting that it indeed shouldn’t be a Olympic sport. It is said that the Olympics should be the pinnacle of any sport, however it’s agreeable that Olympic gold in men’s game is not the ‘pinnacle’ of football. It is debatable whether it in the women’s game. It is in my opinion the pinnacle of youth football game, an under 23 tournament that gives young players the opportunity to delve into tournament football, with the guidance and support of three overage players, something that I believe is good experience for young footballers. Many of whom have questioned football appearance at the games have come the European and mostly British audience. Where the European championship and the World cup bears a greater importance. However, in a south America, it holds much more importance than winning even the Copa America.

Football has been at the games since 1900 long preceding its greatest rival, the world cup. It was at that time, the pinnacle of sport. It has been at the games every time apart from 1932 in LA after it was took after the introduction of the world cup. The importance of gold may not be respected by football fans in Great Britain . But for Brazil, the Olympic gold in the football is probably their most prized after. Their squad at this tournament shows their clear intent to win gold, top class names such as Hulk, Neymar and Pato all have the capabilities to trouble a world cup tournament. I attended some Olympic football and despite the numerous empty seats, I enjoyed the occasion. The game between Mexico and South Korea was enjoyable and atmospheric despite a crowd of less than 16,000 I saw what it meant to the sides and their fans as I sat with the Mexicans who had traveled a long way to see their side.

The inclusion has been long been debated but it has develop some great names in recent years, Lionel Messi could arguably not be the player he is today without his development in the 2008 games in China. When he guided Argentina to the gold. The great of Brazilian side of the 2002 world cup was born at Atlanta 96′ with one of the world cups greatest strikers Ronaldo, commenting on the importance of the Olympic gold.

It has also been long debated at what format should Olympic football be played. David Seaman suggested that amateurs should take to the field and it had long been the case. But since the Olympics had really ditched the ‘amateur’ exclusivity football had gone the same way. Perhaps for British fans it would be positive move to change it an amateur tournament, a greater connection between the player and the fans would be met. And the players would feel a greater pride playing for their nation. A view took by the Team GB of 1960 in Rome who believe they held a greater pride as amateurs than the current crop of 2012. I do agree that amateurs would bring a more down to earth approach to the games, however the problem of selling seats would be more problematic, who wants to see a random team of Brazilians against a random team of builders from Holland. The tournament structure of the current games is an effective part of player development. So for me, let Olympic football continue for many years to come.