It’s not often that you see a team’s fans give a standing ovation for the opposing goalkeeper, but that’s exactly what the Go Ahead Eagles faithful did on Friday night in the Netherlands.
NAC Breda keeper Jelle ten Rouwelaar’s mother passed away this week at age 61. In a tasteful tribute — despite ten Rouwelaar playing for the opposing team — the crowd in attendance at the Adelaarshorst stood at the 61st minute and gave a minute’s applause.
Tel Rouwelaar, 35, acknowledged the tribute from the crowd at the home of the Go Ahead Eagles, which also broke into a rendition of the "You’ll Never Walk Alone." It couldn’t have been a cooler sight to see.
Often times, the sprit of competition can be obfuscated to the point where the outcome is the only thing that matters, especially when it comes to soccer. So, it’s refreshing to get a reminder that sports can be about more than just winning and losing.
Kudos are in order for both the Go Ahead Eagles and their fans.