Sepp Herberger und globalization?
Above: A poster sketch of mine from old school days. Carbon 60, or Fullerenes, make a strong argument that football is truly a universal phenomena. How else could such a structure so uniquely take form in a small human invention millions of years later?
From a previously posted page: The ball is round. Clearly, any attempt to understand things on a global context must embrace the beautiful game. European football especially mirrors a modern world with competitive players from all countries – sometimes seemingly threatening the integrity of the concept of a home side.
The debate that continues today in UEFA circles around this matter echoes the concerns of globalization in general, and offers an interesting microcosm. UEFA President Micheal Platini said recently that the stories of the clubs are the stories of the city, an equally interesting perspective on a sport and a world interconnected through finance, and not through local culture or tradition. (See the recent efforts of Liverpool fans trying to reclaim their team from, gasp, American hands.)
Update: See this excellent March 24, 2008 analysis from The Korea Times by Prof. Danny Rodrik of Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Really good summation, and it is clear that he actually knows the emotion of the game, a bonus!