We’ve all seen videos of siblings losing it when a brother or sister has a birthday and the spotlight is shining brightly on them.
A tantrum unfolds as the child cracks the sads about not having eyeballs on them at every single moment.
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On Sunday morning that exact situation played out, but instead of it being a child … it was a professional sporting organisation.
As all eyes in Australia locked in to watch the Socceroos Round of 16 game against Argentina, the AFL cracked the sads they weren’t receiving any attention.
Right as one of the biggest matches in Australian football got underway, the AFL released the fixture for round 1, 2023.
The move left footy fans perplexed and came across as nothing more than a “hey look at us” moment.
Backlash to the AFL’s decision came in thick and fast with veteran journalist Caroline Wilson blasting the move as a sign of disrespect to the national team.
“It’s really interesting to watch the response from the other codes, and, you know, the story was 10, 20 years ago when Australia failed in World Cups, AFL and NRL broke out the Champagne,” Wilson said on ABC’s Offsiders.
“I thought the response this morning to release the round one fixture of the AFL 2023 season was just lame of the AFL to release it today.
“I would have just given them a bit of clean air today. I thought that was disappointing by the AFL.”
Sport broadcaster Daniel Garb labelled the move from the AFL as “pathetic and petty” before saying “the AFL has made itself look petty and insecure with its move here. Read the situation terribly.”
ESPN’s Matt Walsh wrote: “Literally 6.00am on the dot. On a Sunday. Weird enough in normal circumstances but a piss take given the kickoff this morning!”
The response on social media was even more damning with fans blasting the league for attempting to steal the spotlight away from the Socceroos.
ABC’s Evan Morgan Grahame wrote: “Oh was there a game of kicky-soccer this morning? I didn’t notice, as I was up at 5:30am reading the AFL round 1 fixture (???)”
CODE Sports’ Adam Peacock wrote: “Village sportz.”
AAP’s Oliver Caffrey wrote: “The AFL dropping the round-one fixture during this World Cup game is next-level parody.”
ROUND 1 FIXTURE
Thursday, March 16
Richmond v Carlton, MCG, 7.20pm AEDT
Friday, March 17
Geelong v Collingwood, MCG, 7.40pm AEDT
Saturday, March 18
North Melbourne v West Coast, Marvel Stadium, 1.45pm AEDT
Port Adelaide v Brisbane, Adelaide Oval, 4.05pm ACDT
Melbourne v Western Bulldogs, MCG, 7.25pm AEDT
Gold Coast v Sydney, Metricon Stadium, 7.00pm AEST
Sunday, March 19
Greater Western Sydney v Adelaide, Giants Stadium, 1.10pm AEDT
Hawthorn v Essendon, MCG, 3.20pm AEDT
St Kilda v Fremantle, Marvel Stadium, 4.40pm AEDT