Football (like the world)
is not the exclusive property of Europe (including Americans of European
descent), although sometimes it seems thought to be. So, in the past, different
styles of football and different interpretations had developed. The West-Africans
once neglected the question of winning when they were celebrating the event,
the magic and played a style that fit well with the weather conditions
and the call&respond heritage of the African oral culture. When such
a side came to Europe it got rolled over by teams who had developed a tempo
that was possible in the Northern weather conditions, rolled over by the
help of the organisation that resulted from the concentration on the score
as the exclusive target, and by the help of the knowledge which was made
possible by a better media infrastructure and a longer experience. A better
experience not at last determined by the colonialistic structures and its
This all caused some bad results
which in some European countries fitted well into racist images of
the stupid 'negroes' (still commonly used word for Africans 1974 in Germany
when Zaire fulfilled all requests to satisfy the racists desires), not
intelligent enough to play the game.
||1. the European
too stupid for the game?
||3. Asia's role
||4. the right to contribute different
||back to top
Today Africans have conquered
the European leagues and although it is known that they usually need some
years to adapt the German football mentality, they have become strong even
in the typical German attributes. But on the way those players have lost
some of their typical African properties, they think 'professional' in
a European sense now.
Africa has changed their
style. At the African Cup Of Nations 1998 the only magicians left have
been the exciting Côte d'Ivoire, all the others mixed their playing
style with various European (or South American) interpretations. And the
tempo of the matches in the Burkina Faso heat had become remarkably high.
Some might be sad about a touch of magic got lost. But it is the right
of Africa determine on their own what they want and not just satisfy the
role, Europeans consider now for them to be the best one.