Fascist Football: Imagining ‘Nation’ through Calcio

“Studies of Italian Fascism have spent a lot of time assessing the roles that rituals, myths and symbols of the regime played in ‘regenerating’ a mystical, national collective; however, few have considered the cultural role that football played in the imagining of Italy’s national community under Fascism. In the post-World War One era, Italy was still a rather disparate nation-state. During the 1920s therefore, one way the regime attempted to construct an imagined national community was through the popular sport of calcio (the ‘Italianised’ term for football).” The Equaliser

1980s Month: Le Carré Magique
“When it comes to footballing combinations of flair and panache, it appears that three really is the magic number. Down the years there have been a host of attacking triumvirates that have excited passions and frightened defences. From Sunderland’s infernal triangle of Cuggy, Mordue and Buchan in the 1910s, Brazil’s 1950 inside-forward trio of Ademir, Jair and Zizinho, Manchester United’s ‘holy trinity’ of Charlton, Best and Law in the 60s, to the three R’s (Rivaldo, Ronaldo and Ronaldinho) that dominated the 2002 World Cup, threesomes have always had something special about them.” The Equaliser

1980s Month: A Tale of Two Teams
“Prior to Uruguay’s encounter with Denmark at Mexico ‘86, coach Omar Borrás had already condemned their group – which also comprised West Germany and Scotland – as “El Grupo de la Muerte” or “The Group of Death”. Nowadays the term is thrown around all too regularly, often being attached to any conglomeration of recognisable international names, but when Borrás employed it it was more than fitting. Eventually three of the four teams progressed to the knockout rounds, but in that group each team epitomized a style of play so distinctive in relation to the others that one could not help but feel that the teams wouldn’t be able to survive in the presence of one another: such complete competitors simply could not coexist.” The Equaliser

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