There are a bunch of things that a super intimidating in sports, but nothing compares to the walk from the dressing room to the pitch at Rajko Mitić Stadium in Serbia, home of the Red Star Belgrade.
Napoli players will have to walk down this tunnel onto Red Star Belgrade’s ground, Rajko Mitić Stadium, tomorrow in their UCL group stage opener.— Matthew Santangelo (@Matt_Santangelo) September 17, 2018
This is no joke.... pic.twitter.com/6hDjEgCFR2
It’s a cavernous, winding route in the bowels of the stadium — lined by heavily-armed police and with the ever present sound of screaming voices and the occasional fireworks explosion. The intimidation factor is through the roof, and the whole thing looks like a game play video of Fallout 4.
There’s something kind of beautiful about this. Sure, it’s terrifying — but also relieving that in an age over hyper-sanitized sports and perfect million dollar locker rooms, there still exists a dank murder hallway that mega stars have to walk down.
A little bit of fear makes you know you’re alive. It’s the same reason I can’t help but buy deeply discounted cold cuts on their expiration date.