No, no, read on. Really. Germans are, if you allow me the generalization just once, usually pretty much used to being, well, confronted with the German past by English soccer fans. “So what?“, you might ask after reading the two paragraphs below, “This is just the usual British anti-German soccer rant.” Nope, it’s actually a pretty sensible article about British identity.
The World Cup fills me with dread. I want to look, but also to look away. Not because I don’t like football. I do. Not because I’m fussed about the St George flag. I’m all for it. Nor am I in any liberal confusion about wanting England to win. I want that too.
No. For me the problem about this World Cup is that it is taking place in Germany. As a consequence, in spite of the noble efforts to prevent it, we face a month of waiting for the inevitable moment when the terraces or the press proudly vomit a surfeit of war-obsessed, Nazi-fixated anti-German excess on to our national living-room carpet.
The Guardian’s article about Britain’s identity and how it’s defined by soccer, or not. Good stuff:
The Guardian > Martin Kettle > The worst thing about this World Cup is it’s in Germany