Andrey Shilov at WordPress

The notes of a journalist working in Europe for Russian TV

Posts Tagged ‘EURO-2008

Bronze

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So I touched a medal of EURO-2008.

Yeah, Bilyaletdinov is right: “It’s quite heavy”.

It is clear now what inner little pockets in rucksacks are made for.

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June 30, 2008 at 4:27 pm

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A-a-ah!

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Spain vs. Germany, the break after the first half. The biggest fan zone in the centre of Vienna. Fans are mixed, their amount is approximately equal.

A “presenter” is shouting from the stage:
-Espana!
-A-a-a-ah!
-Deutschland!
-A-a-a-ah!

Both parties are shouting as loud but Spanish sound much higher, Germans lower.
It is so clear as if they made a deal!
Amazing.

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June 30, 2008 at 1:54 am

Russia vs. Spain. An afterword

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I have seen during the EURO-2008 so many different football fans here. They were drunk, shivering with cold, completely wet after a thunderstorm, excited, crying. They were Spanish, Dutch, Russian, Swedish. I respect them, really. Their passions are unknown for me but they are so sincere.

Here is a friend of mine in the main fan zone in Vienna, watching Russia vs. Spain game. Russians lost then (0-3), for the second time during the Championship, and have been kicked out from it. I took the picture in the middle of the match, before the first goal – she is still angry, not desperate.

By the way about passions and consequences.

Here is a quotation about the significance of EURO-208 for Russia, I heard it myself (before the last game vs. Spain, to be precise). I wonder whether the author is obvious?

“It is a momentum for the Russian football and it is a big challenge (…) The importance is now how can the managers, how can the presidents, everyone who is in charge, but really in charge in Russia, how they can use this momentum – and this is ideal momentum – and this is the biggest challenge for the Russian football”.

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June 29, 2008 at 1:54 am

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Arsha is not only Arshavin’s nickname anymore

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Russian information agency Interfax reports from my native town:

The name Arsha will be given to a baby camel born in the Nalchik zoo. The zoo staff made the unanimous decision on Wednesday to name the camel after Andrei Arshavin, a forward of the Russian national football team.
Young female camel Juliette gave birth to the unusually white camel in the Nalchik zoo. First the name Snow White was considered but success of the Russian team at EURO-2008 corrected the plans of the zoo staff.

I should have said it to Andrei today.

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June 26, 2008 at 3:12 am

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How would Russian fans behave?

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What does it feel like to find oneself in the centre of “Dutch” Basel at the evening when Dutch football team lost to a Russian one?

And to wear not an orange clothes, and to have a video camera with not a Dutch name on a mic?

In other words, to be Russian there?
A middle finger to the camera – 10 times.
Screaming straight to the lens – 5 times.
Personal and geographical curse – 5 times.
Gripping our mic – once.
Covering my cameraman and his camera with Dutch flag – once.
Pulling Russian flag from the hands of a girl we were interviewing – once.
And hitting the back of my head (with a palm, not a fist) – once.

Still I got an impression of a calm crowd.

Just there will always be a “bastard” among 100 thousand young people, especially after so many pints.

P.S. An NTV cameraman – young, slim, with curly hair – got his tooth knocked out while shooting at the entrance of the Russian Parliament in Moscow .

So I don’t complaint.

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June 23, 2008 at 6:07 pm

Ole!

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Russian football fans lost to Spanish ones just like the national team did.

At least in Innsbruck.

 

They look similar if a group meets a group – both shout, laugh, take photos of each other and together.


But general picture is different.


First of all, there were more Spaniards on
Innsbruck streets. Well, GDP per capita, visas etc. – the reason is obvious.


Second, Spanish fans are younger, slimmer and more dynamic. The reason is probably the same: just 5% of Russians can afford a foreign trip, primarily when they are over 35-40, they have money and a beer belly.

 

Also, Spaniards are more various. They have flags, hats, wigs, toreador costumes and all possible clothes in red and yellow.

 

We had just flags and t-shirts with the text of the national anthem, rarely some faces were painted with Russian tricolor. All that reminded me some kind of organized Soviet event with a few officially confirmed patterns.

 

Spaniards sang beautiful melodies, short and familiar even to me (I am not at all a specialist in Spanish culture). Our guys sangOleole, Rossiya vperiod!” (“Russia, full ahead!”) – which is a local version of international football hymn.

Someone sang Yellow Submarine with Russian lyrics “My preiehali shtoby pobedit” (“We came to win”). Even some Soviet song with military connotations were heard.
The fans are clearly searching for the right tunes but they haven’t succeeded yet.


And the main thing.

 

Spaniards unite easily, sit down on streets as big companies, sing together, dance and enjoy themselves. Ours move as small groups of two, three, four people. They shout somehow very loud and even a bit aggressive. I don’t think they do it on purpose. It seems to be current Russian understanding of public support.


In other words, there is something to work on.


By the way, the same thing with the national football team.

 
P.S. “Ispaniya parasha, pobeda budet nasha” (“
Spain is shit, we will win”) have been heard sometimes, too, but rarely.  

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June 13, 2008 at 4:39 pm

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They make a pair

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Press accreditation for the EURO-2008 requires permission from UEFA and Swiss and Austrian police. We were waiting for the papers in a Basel press-centre. After a few hours in the late afternoon a volunteer looked at a computer screen and admitted:

-Austrian police stopped working at 8pm sharp. They do it even before the opening of the Championship! What can I do? Well, Austrians, you know…

In Austrian Salzburg some guys were playing super horns at the opening of the Russian House (national football fan club for the Championship). I asked them:
-Is it a folk music instrument?
-Yes, it is a local music instrument. Not a Swiss one! Not a Swiss one!

The people look so similar from foreigners’ point of view (for Russians, Spaniards, Scandinavians) and their attention to national differences is very touching.

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June 13, 2008 at 4:29 pm

I know those guys!

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Russian police is working on EURO-2008 – for the first time in history of football.

The guys were walking in the centre of Innsbruck, as I could see, accompanied by two local policemen. People shouted “Russland!”, took pictures with their mobile phones (on the photo below, right side), teenagers were excited, some adults even tried to talk to them.

They were photographed as often as some football fans in bizarre clothes.

Those policemen did look bizarre on that carnival. But in fact, it is a normal thing for a football competition nowadays. Well, perhaps, they were a bit too fat.

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June 10, 2008 at 12:25 am

Women get the ball

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An advertisement in Basel during EURO-2008:

There is a German expression “Frauen an die Macht” (something like “Women get the power”). Now it is “Women get the ball”.

An ordinary shop is running the campaign, even not a sport clothes or sport equipment store. The guys felt the Zeitgeist and made a football “A-Z”: “What is football?” Football pitch?” “How many players?”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel in her recent interview sounded as a representative of all women fans when she said she has been watching football games since she got a TV set in the 60s. After attending a football match she said, “When I’m watching at home I comment even more but I don’t jump up as much.”

We filmed in Basel before the first game. There were some women in the crowd, not much, about 5% – but they were not necessarily with boyfriends or husbands, there were girls gangs, too.

It looks like a carnival not less than like a sport event. Perhaps that’s what makes it so interesting.

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June 9, 2008 at 10:50 pm

Before EURO-2008

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A few hours ago we landed in Basel airport. We are going to play football, aren’t we?

The airport turned out to be run by three countries: it is an aiport of French Mulhouse, German Freiburg and Swiss Basel.

It is bloody cold here! I checked weather forecast right before the flight: according to CNN it is +13 Celsius, rain, according to Russian Hydrometeorological Centre +15, cloudy, no rain.

At 11pm CNN forecast has been proved :(

What an opening are we going to see tomorrow? I didn’t take warm clothes with me! What about all these tourists here?

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June 6, 2008 at 10:21 pm

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