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

When the ball can be heard

When the ball can be heard

On this day in 1946 Hans Laurenzen and Sett Randlem pioneered Goalball. But football for the visually impaired has older historical roots.

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When the ball can be heard

When the ball can be heard

On this day in 1946 Hans Laurenzen and Sett Randlem pioneered Goalball. But football for the visually impaired has older historical roots.

read more
August in Football

August in Football

As the UEFA 2020 European Championships got pushed ahead one year, the team of Football Makes History will provide you with a 365-day #onthisday series of posts to help all fans out there to go back in time, think, and reflect.

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Football in Primo Levi’s Work

Football in Primo Levi’s Work

On this day, 31 July, in 1919, Primo Levi was born in Turin, Italy. In his works about his experiences in the Shoah and afterwards, Levi recalls football on two occasions.

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SPECIAL  Lockdown Football Stories

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.

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A World in Motion

A World in Motion

Today in 1966, England won the World Cup. This represented a key moment of change, both in post-war Britain and for the post-colonial politics unfolding across the globe.

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A tournament for not competing

A tournament for not competing

On this day in 1997, the first Mondiali Antirazzisti, or Antiracist World Championship, was held. In 2020, due to corona, it is – just like the Euro2020 – postponed.

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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.

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.

Explore Europeana’s Football Heritage Mini-Exhibition

Explore Europeana’s Football Heritage Mini-Exhibition

Are you looking for historical football-related sources – in particular stunning visuals from the collected European archival record – this is the place to go. Find out more by visiting the mini-exhibition on the Europeana’s website and browse away!

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