There has been a trend appearing recently: blogs on football that used to provide excellent content are being discontinued for various reasons.
An Old International will also take an extended break. You may have noticed that since July there have been less posts than the usual a-post-a-week. This was initially only seen as a summer break as I did not intend to cover about the World Cup. Well I did anyway but it was not as much as say for the EURO 2012.
Be not alarmed, however. This blog is not going to be discontinued. Rather, the break is necessary now as I am in the midst of finishing my research project. All energy and focus are on this now and I hope to submit my thesis by late September. I have tried to put posts together but my mind drifted off to the editing task of an 80000-word PhD-thesis. Writing 1000+ words on football history or a comment does not go together with a full-time academic task. The exception will be match reports on an unregular basis; I need to get out some times and also guest posts which will be highlighted. Anything else will have to wait. I have forbidden myself to save any drafts except for hand written ones. My notepad is seeing some ideas develop; sprinkled on it with my Waterman.
Over the past six years my research has accompanied me like a good friend and a pain in the back side at the same time. I want it to remain a friend and a source of inspiration for An Old International. Seeing it coming to an end will be a relief. It will open up capacities to research more on topics hitherto not covered here. Hence this break.
There are ideas for the future, rest assured. An Old International will not vanish.
My dear readers, be patient. Thanks for your comprehension and your trust.
Match day 2 in the Championat National saw Red Star welcome Vendée Luçon at the Stade Bauer for this season’s home debut. After the away defeat at Amiens, Les Audoniens found themselves in a position they were all too familiar with: with their back to the wall. Read more →
It did not come as a big surprise; in fact it was inevitable: Miroslav Klose has retired from the German national team. Read more →
The 2014 World Cup in Brazil is history and finished with a final worth the competition. The general opinion is that Germany are worthy winners. It has shed a light on the state of Brazilian football and will enter the history books as one of the better tournaments of our age. Read more →
Sixty years ago Germany won the World Cup for the very first time. That feat doesn’t seem so impressive nowadays; Die Mannschaft have become a force to be reckoned with on the international stage, going on to lift the trophy twice more, and this year they are once again expected to do well in Brazil. Read more →
Since Magdeburg have won the Cup Winners’ Cup in 1974 40 years have passed; years during which the club has not seen the best of times. Since 1989 the club appears to be in a loop of promotion, insolvency and scandals. ‘Quo Vadis?’ thus seems to be the appropriate question in 2014. Read more →
Every time a World Cup is about to kick-off, the Germans are somehow said to be among the favourites. While some teams were great, many German or West German teams were simply lucky: the team of in 1982 that beat France on penalties in a semi-final which was overshadowed by Toni Schumacher’s criminal assault on Battiston. The team in South Korea and Japan 20 years later were at best plucky but bloody minded enough to reach another final, the seventh in total. Ever since being re-admitted onto world football’s grandest stage in 1950, West Germany managed to secure a semi-final place in all tournaments but 4: 1962, 1978, 1994 and 1998. This is an impressive record. Add to that 3 victories, several runners-up and third place finishes and one has to consider Germany as the most consistent team in World Cup history since 1950. The other Germany, the GDR meanwhile often played well in friendlies but when matters became serious, the East Germans bottled it. Always. Except once: 1974. Read more →
Football has penetrated all spheres of life. It has not done so always in the best manner, though. The design of football shirts in the 1980s and 1990s bordered on the ridiculous; as did the haircuts of football players and fans. Thankfully, this has changed for the better. Football fans are now as fashion conscious as those unfortunate ones who do not follow football. A small designing company has re-created some of the game’s greatest moments impressively. Read more →
Among the calls for reform of FIFA, there are also calls for an alternative to the behemoth of world football to be established. Well, this already exists for those federations or countries that are not officially recognized by the United Nations or by FIFA. Read more →
The most recent of FIFA’s president Sepp Blatter carried resemblances of the late Erich Mielke, the head of the notorious East German security service, Stasi. Read more →