France

Mad monks pray for the Devils, then cheer Manchester United

Monaci pazzi per i Diavoli Pregano, poi tifano United

The screen of the TV is in the corner to the left, seemingly on the edge of the scene. But it is the same scene: the monitor is the image of a player that is filmed from behind having a throw. The eyes of the young Buddhist monks are all projected on the number 16 with the ball in his hands. The bar, near Lake Inle, Myanmar (or Burma): behind the camera’s Alessandro Five, Italian photographer who has made a documentary in one of the most fascinating places of the Orient. And his photographs have appeared on the website of Manchester United with an interview of the same photographer. Among other scenes of daily life portrayed there is also a Red Devils towel recently washed, hung on the same wire to act as a contrast to a number of Kesa, the traditional dress of the Buddhist monks.

For love of Manchester United

 “One evening after dinner, riding around the desert country I came across this bar attracted by the confusion and screams – told Five. Upon entering, I realized that the place was full of young Buddhist monks from 6 to 20 years old. So I decided to put myself to watch the game with them, I was the only Westerner, but it was not a problem either for them nor for me. Going to monasteries, I had already noticed the flags and the jerseys of Manchester United and finding a bar full of fan monks was a pleasant confirmation. Moreover Myanmar football is much more: for these people is the door to the Western world, is the connection that exists between different cultures and Manchester United in this case is the passion that unites them. In the monastery, as in most poor countries, they do not have access to television, and for this reason in their free evenings they come together to watch the games and discuss their ideas. They usually go to bed at 19, but when it`s a game, then they stay later. For me, football must be this glue between people. This is the football I love, not what is consumed alone in front of a television. The size of Manchester United in this case is suitable as an adhesive for watching a football game together in the evening, after a day of work, prayer and travel. “

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