- Fri Oct 23, 2015 11:27 pm
Up close and personal. This is simply a recounting of a quite remarkable evening and I'll be brief.
We were at the football. This is the fifth tier of German footie and, whilst we have had our glories is decades past, we are where we are; in a regionalised version of the Conference and with barely 600 die-hards for every home game.
Thing is though, we started the Football Fans Against Homophobia action which has spread throughout all the major leagues across Europe and were welcoming refugees as long as four years ago. In a way, you get kinda used to being part of who we are and what we do.
Nothing though, could have prepared me for what happened tonight.
An away against against Seelow in the east of Brandenburg. The site of the last significant battle before the brave men and women of the Red and Polish armies finally brought the monster to its knees. Also the site of a home for 160 refugees. We took a good three hundred tonight and that alone aint too shabby.
Now, I am used to the collection tin and usually chuck in a fiver or so, but tonight was different. The collection was to pay the Syrian lads in to the game and to get them a Coke to break the monotony. Holy fucking fuck.
Me struggling across five or six languages: "How do you say "offside" in Arabic?"
Bloke:" Erm.."offside"." (Fall about laughing)
Me: "What's your team at home?"
Bloke: "Aleppo. Here's a photo of my daughter wearing her Aleppo shirt, cool eh?"
Silence...more silence. I'm feeling a little nauseous by now. More chat. "what? You fucking swam the last mile and the Greek cops nicked your outboard?"
And then, after being 1:3 down, we finally pulled it back to three each with a minute to go.
Cue the whole TeBe/Syria block going mental and chanting, in Arabic, "Yella, yella Borussia!" with one of the Syrian lads taking on the role of capo.
I am so proud of our wee club tonight. We are Jewish, communist and a bunch of new Muslim friends have gone back to their barracks proud to wear the Lila Weiß of Tennis Borussia Berlin.