June 7, 2018 6:37 PM   Subscribe

"Officially, Bondy is in Île-de-France, the broader Parisian region. To most in France, though, it is in the northern swath of the banlieues, a label that is both a euphemism and a stigma: places with large, working-class, nonwhite communities, synonymous with riots and social strife, thought of as breeding grounds for crime and terrorism. It is here, amid the tower blocks of the Parisian banlieues, that France finds its soccer players: hundreds who go on to Clairefontaine, the national training center, dozens who go on to play professionally at home or abroad and, this summer, the select few who will represent France at the World Cup in Russia." (Lire en français)
posted by ChuraChura (3 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
That was a fascinating article. I lived in Paris as a kid, in the now-fashionable-but-very-much-not-so-then suburb of Montreuil. I played a lot of football in the park, and it was mostly with other immigrant kids. As a 4, 5, 6 year old that didn’t register with me, but looking back it’s striking. It fits the thesis of the article that in France football is still mostly a working class game. Though in other parts of France than Paris, especially old industrial cities, football is the dominant sport.
posted by Kattullus at 1:04 AM on June 8, 2018 [4 favorites]

The French fans are utterly convinced that their team will reach the World Cup’s semifinal this year. At least.

If they do, expect some celebration of the team’s diversity à la 1998. If they don’t, expect some soul searching about those ill mannered second generation immigrants who are ungrateful for the country that made them. Remember Knysna, South Africa, 2010. It’s all so predictable.
posted by Kwadeng at 5:52 AM on June 8, 2018 [2 favorites]

Fascinating article, thank you.
posted by ellieBOA at 8:02 AM on June 12, 2018 [1 favorite]

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