Notes: No Sports Heroes without Fans


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American owners of sports teams tend to forget that,

Without fans and supporters, there would be no sports heroes.

It’s too bad MLS, NFL, and many EPL owners don’t seem to appreciate fans very much. According to Forbes, television revenue has become such a large income stream that 10 of the EPL teams would still be profitable even if their stadiums were empty. Thus, the bigger name sports teams aren’t concerned about pricing their working class fans out of the stadium.

Another issue is that clubs want atmosphere, but they need fans to toe the line. The whole point of hooliganism though, is to break that line whenever possible. On the Ultras-Tifo website, hooligans self-report incidents.

Many filmmakers see the value of fans and the stories in fan culture. As a result, I have reviewed almost 20 soccer and football movies that explore supporters groups and what they contribute to the sport and the clubs. Or how the fans are misused by clubs or politicians. Or the films capture the crazy things fans do because they are such crazy fans.

Following is a list of the movies I have reviewed that focus on the Fans.

  • Ayaktakimi – how the Turkish government keeps fans under surveillance
  • Celtic Soul – kinda about being a Celtic fan, but mostly it’s about being a zoned out Jay Baruchel
  • Fever Pitch – a character study of a depressed Arsenal fan in 1989 when Arsenal finally rewards his loyalty
  • Forever Pure – reviewing the sad effect of anti-Muslim racist Israeli fans on Beitar Jerusalem
  • Fútbol Violencia S.A. – how mafia-like supporters (barras braves) collude with Argentine clubs, police, and politicians, resulting in the deaths of innocent fans
  • Hillsborough – a detailed documentary on how the Hillsborough tragedy was falsely attributed to the fans
  • Jack to a King – Swansea and its supporters who saved the club, albeit it might be temporary
  • Le Gran Final – a fictional story of fans in Mongolia, the Amazon, and the Niger desert trying to watch WC 2000
  • Looking for Eric – a suicidal postman, who is a rabid ManU fan, follows the sage advice of his imaginary friend, Eric Cantona
  • One Night in Istanbul – a comedy about the Miracle of Istanbul that maybe only a Liverpool fan could love
  • Reds & Blues: The Ballad of Dixie & Kenny – a comedy about the rivalry between neighbors who are fans of Everton and Liverpool
  • Romeo and Juliet get Married – is true love possible when 2 fans belong to opposing supporters groups
  • Russia’s Hooligan Army – militant fans training to fight and coming soon to a World Cup near you
  • Save the Crew – fans working to stop MLS from relocating the Columbus Crew
  • Sons of Ben – how fans convinced MLS to create the Philadelphia Union
  • The Other Half – a deplorable Danny Dyer comedy where he tries to juggle Euro 2004 with a honeymoon
  • Those Glory, Glory Days – a girl pack of Tottenham fans  during the 1961 completion of the Double
  • Will – a Liverpool orphan goes to the Miracle of Istanbul

Hope you enjoy the show!