As many ultimately know that follow football, there are many different aspects to the sport that we all love to watch and read about.
Of course, winning is perhaps the most important thing when it comes down to watching our teams, although the addition of new players or a lower-level club’s ascent up the football period are also equally as enjoyable, however nothing beats being able to beat your closest rival on the pitch.
Rivalries are a huge element of the game. Always have been and always will be. For football fans and the club itself, there are not many better feelings in the game that can be matched by beating a fierce rival. Indeed, inflicting defeat on an enemy, especially over an extended period of time, can potentially be incredibly lucrative for a club as they may be able to strike top quality transfers in the future or improve their financial standing in the game via the use of gambling sponsorships.
With the sport played around the world, there are rivalries in all corners that can be considered huge around the globe, let alone just the continent that they are being played in. However, there are some rivalries that are just plain odd and would not make that much sense without any context. These are just a few of the weirdest ones to currently take place…
Uruguay vs Australia
Yes, Uruguay vs Australia is a rivalry. Two countries from different continents have a rivalry between each other (and they are not the only ones, either). In fact, the rivalry between the two countries started because of some rather foul play between them
Starting in 1974, Uruguay arrived in Australia to play two friendlies as a send-off before Australia left for Germany to play in the 1974 World Cup. However, the first match saw the South Americans use “dirty” tactics with the second game seeing Ray Baartz get karate chopped and ending up in a coma for two days because of a stroke.
Things have remained heated between the two sides ever since, and things certainly do not look to be calming down any time soon, despite rarely playing each other.
Iran vs South Korea
Yes, another international rivalry that does not appear to make too much sense. Politically, there are fractured relationships between the two nations and those issues have spilled out onto the pitch. Iran and South Korea have contrasting relationships with a number of superpowers around the world, although their football has also seen each other at their throats.
The two countries have long been considered to be two of the best in Asia, with both having been winners of the Asian Cup a number of times. The two sides may be separated by over 4,000 miles, but there is still a dislike that a rivalry brings between these two.
Hansa Rostock vs St Pauli
For those that know about rivalries, Hansa Rostock vs St Pauli may not be a weird one, although it perhaps has nothing to do with the football.
In fact, the two sides are about 250km away from each other in Germany, with many other teams closer geographically. Nonetheless, the rivalry and just sheer hatred between the two clubs runs deep.
Politically, the two sides could not be any further opposite if they tried. Rostock found the collapse of the Berlin Wall a little difficult to handle, whilst St. Pauli supporters identify themselves as left-leaning and perhaps a little more accommodating to new ideas.
1992 saw this match played for the first time when St. Pauli travelled to Rostock and things certainly turned sour. All sorts of anti-social behaviour and riots broke out in the stands, and the bitter taste still remains today when the two sides meet.