An Old International

No Winners, Just Losers

With the World Cup behind us and the national league competitions well underway across Europe, it is time to share some reflections on what has happened in Germany and German football that it has come to where it is right now. Read more →

Colourful Bundesliga

Who ever has said that the Bundesliga is dull needs to re-think after watching this video in which female and male models alike present the new shirts of the Bundesliga clubs by dancing through the broadcast studio. The presenter is Hans Joachim Friedrichs, an icon of German journalism and he is accompanied by Günter Netzer, one of the best players Germany ever had and possibly the best of the 1970s.

European Cup, Reloaded

A pre-season tournament saw the hosts FC Magdeburg in good form against international opposition from Swansea and Genoa. The home team won and managed to convince for large parts in this tournament. Read more →

A Sporting Tsushima: Russia vs. Germany 1912

In late May 1905 Russia suffered a humiliating defeat in the Strait of Tsushima against Japan. During the Olympics of 1912 Germany beat a Russian side by a double digit score; the game has been labelled as a ‘Sporting Tsushima’. Read more →

World Cup Heroes for Kids – Review

The world cup is upon us and with it come many books and special editions of magazines. The extent is tiring and it’s difficult to find something interesting in that sea of publications. Something rather different is a series of books published by John Blake Books with their Ultimate Football Heroes series which is edited by Matt and Tom Oldfield. In this series they are looking at several players: Manuel Neuer, Paul Pogba, Lionel Messi, Harry Kane, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar and describe their careers up to 2017. The books are short and written for children. This is important as it provides kids with much information about these players, i.e. where they grew up, their first experiences as professional players and moves from one club to another. In doing so, the players are portrayed in an easily understandable way. Critical issues such as injuries are left out or are mentioned in passing but the message is positive, that is: nothing can stop them and injuries are easily and quickly overcome. If it only were that easy in real life! Even more so as this series is aimed at kids aged 8 and older. This is an age when kids start to realise that it can hurt to play football and that tackles can be dangerous.

However, it was a pleasure to have read some books in this series in a matter of days. The books featured were on Manuel Neuer, Paul Pogba and Lionel Messi; three players to play a key role at the world cup in Russia. Two of these three will be pushing hard to get to the final and win it: Messi and Pogba. Whatever the outcome of the tournament in Russia these books can be read at any time and are not necessarily to be consumed ahead or during the tournament. The printed books have also section providing links to the greatest moments of each player. This is somewhat unpragmatic as one still has to type the key words to search in YouTube.

An overview of the whole series is available at the accompanying website or via amazon From the Playground to the Pitch.

The Battle of Gothenburg 1958

What happened on June 24, 1958 at the Ullevi Stadium in Gothenburg when the hosts Sweden met the World Cup holders West Germany? Conspiracy Theorists had a field day despite Germany having a bad day at the office. Read more →

Uruguay: A Past That Promotes The Glory Dream

The World Cup is upon us. Everyone who is in the slightest interested in football will tune in and watch, discuss and remember. Juan Carlos Luzuriaga is a Uruguayan and describes what the history and the present have in store for Uruguayan football and football fans. Read more →

Tschutti – Collecting for a good Cause

Every tournament is accompanied with tons of memorabilia: books, shirts, scarves and of course: the compulsory Panini Album. As always there are alternatives and one of them is giving part of the money to a good cause. Read more →

The No Shows

The internet is full with World Cup previews either as videos or as blog posts. This posts looks at those teams who will not be there, some are shocking, others surprising. Read more →

The World Cup according to John Oliver