A popular term for English football hooliganism (that's soccer to you insufferable Yanks). Apparently Continental Europe thinks that hooliganism before, during or after major football matches did not exist outside England, but several incidents in World Cup 1998 and Euro Cup 2000 proved them wrong. Besides the usual English, the Germans came out in force, paralyzing a young policeman in a savage attack. A surprise appearance by Turkish fans resulted in some severe violence. Football violence is common in parts of Asia and South America as well.

A hearty combination of malicious intent, beer and peer pressure ignites these spectacular riots, which are just as violent as any SoCal or Detroit ghetto summer riot. The riots are particularly bad if the team they are supporting loses. Anything goes in these little tiffs. I've never actually witnessed one, never mind participated in one, so I wouldn't know for sure.

Also derisively named "The Empire Strikes Back", poking at the now defunct Great British Empire. Again, note that England does not have a monopoly on football rioting.

One particularly spectacular incident took place in Italy in 1992 for the Euro Cup, when approximately 2500 English punks charged a numerically superior number of highly trained, entrenched Italian riot police (around 6000 of them), bypassed their barricades and shield walls and then proceeded to beat the beejesus out of them. Since then, sophisticated computer systems are being used to identify key riot leaders. Many habitual rioters have been arrested and deported during major football tournaments.

Apologies for my failure to distinct between British and English. I forgot about it for some reason. Oh yeah, why do I keep seeing the same soft-links to all my nodes now? Grow up, please.

Right on, themusic. The new disease is called My Little Tony and the Care Blairs.

If you look at the statistics, it's the English 'fans' who tend to cause the trouble - the tartan army (Scotlands supporters) are usually voted the most peace-loving, happy bunch at every tournament we actually qualify for - also, the Welsh, Northern Irish and Irish tend to be pretty laid back, knowing as they do that they have no chance of actually doing well.

The sad fact is, England will forever harp on about 1966, while Scotland simply looks forward.

ryano, i know, but i thought enough merkins tend to get confused that I'd explicitly state it.

I have an Irish girl working with me atm, and she is constantly getting called English by merkins.

it upsets her a lot more than it does me...

I think that The British Disease, or The English disease once had a different meaning.

After World War II, and the decline of British industry, the lament went up over the loss of position, and status in the world, to the United States.

Under Margret Thatcher, and now Tony Blair, they have regained some of what they lost. Enough, at least, so there is now a different disease.

DMan, I think the old disease, and its mutation, is called Blatcherism.


IainB, we Irish are not British, so you do not need to defend the honour of our football fans against the title of this node. In fact, during the two World Cups we contested (1990 and 1994), the Irish fans were widely praised for their friendly and peace-loving nature.

If only our team gave us more chances to show this off to the world :)

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