Is Spain the new Germany? Is Germany the new Spain?
When Germany played the Netherlands back at the start of Euro 2012, a Germany-supporting friend asked why I refused to cheer for his team, especially since I don’t have any Dutch friends. The answer isn’t any lasting prejudice against Germans over the two major wars fought against them last century. We Europeans have spent millennia fighting each other, so it’s hard to hold something as insignificant as a couple of wars against them.
No, apart from some resentment at the regularity with which Germany knocks England out of international tournaments, the reason is that German fans simply don’t know what it feels like. They don’t understand what it is like to put all of your country’s hopes and dreams into a soccer game and fail, again and again. Or, at least, they didn’t.