Goal! Bean is Obsessed with Football
Since the World Cup, Bean has been obsessed with football. I mean ob.sessed. Before that, he could take it or leave it. He didn’t have the opportunity to play when he was at school and they didn’t learn it in PE. Then the World Cup arrived and he’s hardly talked of anything else since.
Just before Summer he told us he’d had enough of Judo and would like to stop. He’d like to join a football club instead. It took us a little while, but we finally found a local under 9s club he could join and he started last month. He’s just training with them at the moment, but he’s really enjoying it.
Shortly afterwards, his Uncle – who is football mad – took him to a football match. A real one. With fans and chanting and all that goes with it. They’re not one of the big teams and most of the players have jobs, but Bean loved it. His Uncle bought him the team shirt which he wears with pride. The fact that the team ended a long losing streak that day and Bean saw seven goals scored (and was behind the net for several of them) just cemented his new found love of football.
Over the Summer, there was a lot more football played in our garden. Bean and his friends would play mini matches, and penalty shoot outs. A lot of penalty shoot outs. Inevitably, the ball was hoofed over the garden fence into the neighbour’s garden more times than enough. And it always seemed to go to the grumpy side, the ones who would tell him if it came over again, they would keep the ball. Grrrr.
And then we heard about a goal net that was available for these situations. Rather than just being the goal itself, there was a surrounding net which stretched across the garden and ten feet high, to stop errant balls disappearing into Grumpy Land. It’s called Open Goaaal! and it may have saved us from many, many tears.
Stonelaughter put it up by himself. The instructions suggest it should take two adults two hours to construct, but Stonelaughter reckons for most of it, one person is enough, but two would be handy when it comes to hanging the net. The box contains all the poles, fixings and tools – including a lump hammer – needed to erect the goal, and the materials are good quality. There’s a video on the website which shows how to put it all together, and Stonelaughter recommends watching it. Having done so, construction was really straightforward (and didn’t involve any swearing or tantrums, so it must have been pretty easy!). Stonelaughter, not easily impressed, and loathe to spend money, stated that he firmly believed it was worth the price tag. Praise indeed.
Bean was over the moon. He’s not all that bothered by the surrounding net, practical considerations not being at the forefront of his mind when it comes to football. He loves that there is a goal to shoot at for their penalty shoots outs.
I am loving the surrounding net. No more “the ball’s gone over the fence again”, “she says if it comes over again she’ll pop it”. No more tears. Lots, and I mean LOTS of happy playing in the garden, running around, scoring goals, letting off steam. Aside from the football side of things, it has spurred Bean on to get his work done quicker – the sooner he’s done today’s work, the sooner he can get outside and play football. Big bonus.
Open Goaaal comes in standard and large sizes, as well as a system without the backstop net and starts at £119. Its width is adjustable to fit your garden (though there are minimum width requirements – check them out on the website) and the whole net can be drawn to one side like a curtain when not in use, so you don’t lose the use of your garden.
If your kids are continually launching a ball into orbit and over the neighbour’s fence, and you have space in your garden, then I thoroughly recommend the Open Goaaal system. We haven’t found a bad thing to say about it!
Disclosure: We were sent an Open Goaaal Standard size set for the purpose of review. The content of the review is wholly our own, and is an accurate summary of our experience with the product.