Question submitted by Anna aged 5:
It is the start of the game. The ball is on the ground in the middle of the pitch. A player kicks it but the ball doesn't move. All the players try to kick it and it still doesn't move. What would you do if you were the referee?
You might ask a ball boy to throw another ball on. But what if that ball didn't move when the players tried to kick it? How many new footballs would you try before you abandoned the game?
What if this form of paralysis became widespread? Striking league fixtures at random. One premier league fixture per week, no telling which. An expectant crowd of 36,000 people, waiting for kick off, all eyes on the centre circle and the ball just freezes, can't move. The replacement balls are similarly stricken, the game gets called off. How long would fans, sponsors, health and safety inspectors and TV companies stay patient with football?