Stories

New and meaningful ways

Football gives as an opportunity to explore the 20th and early 21st century history – full of migration, conflict and change – in new and meaningful ways.

– Gijsbert Oonk (Historian at Erasmus University Rotterdam)

History

Some would say history is just one damned thing after the other, that it should be put to rest in the past and that bygones should be bygones.

These people are not necessarily wrong, but in an ever-complex world of globalised societies and rising exclusivist identity-politics, the stories we tell ourselves about the past help us define ourselves in the present and orient toward an unpredictable future.

Football

Some would say football is nothing more than 22 people chasing a ball around a pitch for 90 minutes.

Also those people are not necessarily wrong, but history is made up of whatever people have come to value, and certainly football – a game played and watched by billions for over 100 years – seems highly valued.

Our Latest Stories

A final painted in contrasts

A final painted in contrasts

On this day, 12 July 2020, Euro2020 would have reached the final. In 1992 Denmark, which hadn’t qualified, won. While Yugoslavia, a favorite, never made it due to UN sanctions.

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A final painted in contrasts

A final painted in contrasts

On this day, 12 July 2020, Euro2020 would have reached the final. In 1992 Denmark, which hadn’t qualified, won. While Yugoslavia, a favorite, never made it due to UN sanctions.

read more
The last defectors

The last defectors

Today 30 years ago in 1989 three players of the East German football club Wismut Aue were getting ready to escape from the DDR.

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SPECIAL  Lockdown Football Stories

Football Lockdowns: Smallpox outbreak in 1972

Football Lockdowns: Smallpox outbreak in 1972

Football Makes History Developer and history teacher Igor Jovanovic wrote for us about other times when Football was stopped like it currently is. This time it is the Smallpox outbreak in Yugoslavia.

Football Lockdowns: Tilburg (NL) 1951

Football Lockdowns: Tilburg (NL) 1951

Dutch sport historian Jurryt van de Vooren wrote a historical overview of other times when Football was stopped, like it currently is. Small story of a local epidemic.

Football Lockdowns: World War Two

Football Lockdowns: World War Two

Dutch sports historian Jurryt van de Vooren wrote a historical overview of other times when Football was stopped like it currently is. The Second World War is our second short piece.

Football Lockdowns: The Spanish Flu of 1918

Football Lockdowns: The Spanish Flu of 1918

Dutch sports historian Jurryt van de Vooren wrote for us about other times when Football was stopped like it currently is. Spanish flu of 1918 is the first story.

Saga of a small nation in a bigger Europe

Saga of a small nation in a bigger Europe

On this day in 2016, Iceland’s football men lost to France at the European Championship. It ended an amazing run for the team which had not yet reached such heights. This is a story of a small nation in a bigger Europe.

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Football without frontiers for a Europe without borders

Football without frontiers for a Europe without borders

On this day in the year 2000, the final of the first European Championship co-hosted by two countries was played. The idea to host such an event together is an example of the 1990s momentum in European cooperation. Euro2020, now postponed till 2021, is co-hosted by 12 European cities. This is the story of crossing borders.

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Local football history closest to school teaching

Local football history closest to school teaching

A conversation with Football Makes History developer Geir Ove Halvorsen, a teacher at a secondary school in Norway, about his experience using football history, connecting local and global perspectives in his lessons.

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More Football Stories

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The Climb to Equality

The Climb to Equality

Football Makes History spoke with Laura Youngson, co-founder of Equal Playing Field and co-owner of the world record for highest altitude official football match ever played. This is the story of why we wanted to retell this story, and how we did it.

Discrimination and Social Inclusion

Discrimination and Social Inclusion

This Toolkit is part of Fare’s #footballpeople campaign, this campaign challenges discrimination and promotes inclusive values and practices.

Educational game about dealing with discrimination

Educational game about dealing with discrimination

An educational game about dealing with discrimination and confronts young people with their own choices. The players get to react to discrimination and have the choice to either let it happen or do something about it. The game developed by the Anne Frank House is available in several languages.

Refugees

Refugees

The Fare Network – partner in Football Makes History – believes that sport can play a role in helping to meet some of the challenges faced by newly arriving migrants into Europe and ensure the safe integration of individuals into communities. In the wake of the 2015 migration peak, activists and volunteers across Europe have been involved in supporting refugees, sometimes with the simple act of offering space and friendship to participate in football through grassroots clubs to help newcomers integrate.

Have World Cup Team become more diverse over time?

Have World Cup Team become more diverse over time?

Researchers of the Sport and Nation Programme at Erasmus University Rotterdam conducted an analysis on 4.761 footballers, derived from the fifteen national teams that competed in at least ten editions of the World Cup between 1930 and 2018, which comprises of 301 foreign-born football players.

Europeana’s Vintage World Cup Photographs

Europeana’s Vintage World Cup Photographs

Want to get a visual idea of the history of international football competition? Have a look at this impressive collective from the vaults of European national archives, brought together here by Europeana.

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