The most devoted foreign fans admire British fan culture. Some of the foreigners try to imitate the British, which explains the Union Jacks on terraces all over Europe…
British fans are unique. In Britain, football itself is almost incidental to fan culture. The British fan’s main virtue is devotion (to his or her team). Nothing else in football matters nearly as much to him.
British fans are also historians. When two British sides play each other, their histories play each other too. When John Motson, the famous English TV football commentator tells us that ‘these two sides last met in the Cup in I954, Rovers winning 1-0 thanks to a 31st minute own goal’, he is making a very British point.
With that said, Kuper does very well in his examination of why soccer is played the way it is. His look into African soccer really gives an insight into what life is like there. He shows the absolute dictatorial rule that many people suffer under, and how soccer can become the one true expression of how people feel. This startling insight can catch the reader off guard.
From his many encounters and observations, Kuper believes that a top player today has metamorphosed from the working class hero of the post-war period to “a slightly monomaniac corporate man and yes-man,” while the idea that they are driven fanatics is largely untrue. In short, the great players have more natural talent, more time and more money than us, but are not in any grandiose way super-humans or geniuses.
英国球迷也历史学家。当英双方互相比赛，他们的历史发挥对方太。当约翰·莫特森，著名的英国电视足球解说员告诉我们，“这些双方最后一次在杯i954，流浪者队赢1 – 0感谢一个第三十一分钟的目标”，他是一个非常英国点。