United with altitude

By Published On: June 6, 2007Categories: Sports2 Comments on United with altitude
Evo in Chacaltaya

The biggest story in Bolivia in the last couple of weeks has been the decision by international football body FIFA to ban international matches above 2500 metres. That of course means no more matches such as the one I saw between Bolivia and Argentina in La Paz.

It is one of the few decisions that has united most of the country, led by football fanatic Evo Morales. (His first ever position in the coca-growers movement was secretary for football.) To prove that altitude does no harm, Evo led a team to play football at the ski resort of Chacaltaya at 5200 metres and scored three goals in the process. See, altitude complainers are just big wooses.

Of course, Bolivia has an advantage over international teams at altitude, but home advantages are part of the game. I also played some kids once at 4000 metres and was exhausted after fifteen minutes but that might just be my general unfitness. To balance out altitude, Bolivia’s teams are not really of the highest quality and even lose at 3600 metres, so I don’t know why others are complaining.

Anyway, as an adopted bolivian gringo, I fully support the campaign, "United with altitude" to send a million cards to President of Fifa, Joseph Blatter to complain against this outrageous decision against the universality of sport.

> Send an email expressing your outrage now
> Good article on Bolivia’s resistance against the decision by Jean Friedman-Rudovsky at time.com. Also worth checking out her site, Ukhampacha for more on politics in Bolivia

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2 Comments

  1. Sarah June 7, 2007 at 11:40 pm - Reply

    Hello Nick
    I’d like to send the email – probably the first and last I’ll ever send on football! – but it won’t let me unless I fill in something in the ‘Documento de identidad’ box. Can you suggest something suitable for non-Bolivians to put there?

  2. Nick June 9, 2007 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    I don’t think it matters really what you put down, but you could go for your passport number I guess? Nick

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