Sport as War – The Racial Politics of Football


The 2006 Football World Cup offers a timely opportunity to consider the wider social and political implications of sport in general and football in particular, with particular reference to the racial dimension to sporting competition. Now of course, Dr Frances Cress-Welsing in her much acclaimed book, ‘The Isis Papers’ (1991), provided an in-depth psychological analysis of the racial/sexual symbolism of a variety of sports. Similarly, Abdullah Nazir Uhuru in his excellent book ‘Killing “Me” $oftly’ (2005), provides an insightful analysis of football, drawing upon Cress-Welsing’s work. The aim of this essay is to build upon these works and also to assist Afrikans to understand that, life is politics and everything in life is political, therefore sport has a politicised and racialised dimension to it, just like all other forms of people activity.

We are at War

If viewed from the narrow perspective promulgated by ‘the West’, war involves military conflict between nations. However a more holistic definition of war would be:

“any sustained aggressive action by one identifiable group, be it national, racial, ethnic, religious, socio-economic etc. against another similarly identifiable group where the aim is to cause significant harm – be it physical, psychological, emotional or spiritual – to the other group over a sustained period of time.” (Grant 2006)

According to this definition; Caucasians have been waging a racial war against Afrikans for over three thousand years (and we should not forget their cousins the Arabs). This war manifests itself in different ways, for example the physical war is not just confined to overt physical violence but also includes acts designed to directly attack the physical health of Afrikans e.g. the use of medicines banned from use in ‘the West’ in Afrika, the whole HIV/AIDS scenario and the deliberate and concerted attempts to reduce Afrikan fertility worldwide, of which it forms a part, being examples of European aggression.

One of the most important tactics in war is what is described as ‘Psych Ops’ or Psychological Operations. It has been well established that propaganda is crucial in warfare, even during overt military conflict, and the creation and dissemination of propaganda is a crucial component of psychological operations. The purpose of psychological operations is to weaken or destroy the enemy’s will to fight and resist, or crucially – particularly with respect to Afrikans – convince the enemy that in fact there is no war taking place and that his/her goals and aspirations coincide with and are in harmony with that of the propagandist.

Sport as War

Sport is used as an expression of national pride and prowess on an ongoing basis, but particularly at times of collective national anxiety. In this context team sports become more crucial than individual sports from a nationalistic perspective, particularly when the team is representing the nation as opposed to a club. From a racial perspective; individual sporting encounters can have great psychological significance, particularly when they take place in highly combative sports e.g. boxing.

During the so-called ‘Cold War’ the Olympic medal table was a source of fierce competition between the US and the Soviet Union (White Russian Empire) and the GDR (German Democratic Republic). This desperate desire to top the medal table was the catalyst for the proliferation of the use of performance enhancing drugs by both the US (using a ‘free market’ capitalist methodology) and the Eastern bloc nations (using a state controlled methodology).

Nations have even gone to war over the outcome of sporting contests. I believe it was the result of a World Cup qualifier in the 1970’s that led to a military conflict between Honduras and Ecuador.

When you add in the element of ‘race’ the psychological concoction becomes potent. We need to understand that in the conflict between global Europe and global Afrika Caucasians are defending and promoting a psychological position which says:

‘We are the most evolved and human of all peoples/races. It is our destiny to rule the Earth and everything above and beneath it. We will do anything that is required to maintain our dominant hegemonic position, including acts of genocide. Afrikans are in the position they occupy (economically, educationally, militarily, healthwise etc.) because of their inferiority (genetic and cultural) and the benefits of European intervention in Afrika (despite any past wrongdoings) have outweighed any detriment caused.’

Now, the Afrikan position is generally confused and whilst it should be built around the position that:

‘Europeans have proven themselves utterly ruthless, untrustworthy, imperialistic, racist and intent upon world domination. Since they will not and cannot accept the equitable sharing of the Earth’s resources in line with the population sizes and needs of different groups of people on Earth they must be confronted and defeated by us. History has taught us that we cannot rely upon any other group of people to come to our aid.’

It is in fact more often based around the belief that:

‘We are all people and through our suffering we hope to show all people the meaning of true humanity. We should forgive Europeans for their past errors and should not affront them by seeking redress/reparations for past wrongs. We hope that over time Europeans will accept us as their equals and whenever and wherever we live as a minority amongst them our priority should be to integrate and gain acceptance from Whites.’

This latter Afrikan position is a recipe for degradation, defeat and elimination and is based upon Afrikan xenophilia (at one and the same time our greatest strength and weakness) and the inferiority complex that most Afrikans now possess.

These very different psychological positions determine the collective or dominant, comparative; European and Afrikan responses to all aspects of people activity, including sport. Whereas Europeans have developed a whole lexicon of words and phrases which bring together the psychology of war/killing/violence and sport e.g. ‘killer instinct’, ‘finish them off’, ‘hammer blow’, ‘sucker punch’, ‘kill off the opposition/game’ to describe events, even in non-violent sports, Afrikans do nothing more than mimic this aggressive approach to sport having no indigenous cultural reservoir of such extreme sporting hostility to tap into. One of the most famous quotes in British sport came from Bill Shankley, a former manager of Liverpool football club. When asked about the significance of football, Shankley said,

“It is not a matter of life and death. It is more important than that.”

For Europeans, it is and always has been more than just a game. It is war on a pitch, track, court, or on whatever playing area the sport is contested.

The significance of football

Association Football is the most popular sport in the world. It is played in every country in the world and almost every country in the world has a national team. Given this situation; football generates a huge amount of domestic and international media coverage and success becomes the source of a great deal of national pride. It was even reported that a ceasefire was called to the civil war in the Ivory Coast for the duration of that country’s participation in the 2006 World Cup. Team sports are seen to represent a nation’s culture and character far more than individual sport and therefore as the most popular sport in the world the way a national team plays football is presented as telling the viewer a lot about who and what that nation is like, their strengths and virtues, weaknesses and vices.

Therefore, when watching football; even the alert novice will notice that Afrikan teams – as well as individual Afrikans playing for majority Caucasian nations and clubs – are characterised according to enduring negative Caucasian racial stereotypes i.e. physically strong, fast, athletic, naïve, exuberant, brutal, whilst lacking in tactical awareness, finesse and thinking skills. It is presented as brains vs brawn when European confronts Afrikan.

The media discussion around Tiger Woods epitomises this profound negative racial stereotyping of Afrikans. Tiger Woods’ ability to drive a golf ball long distances has consistently been ascribed to his explosive attributes stemming from his Afrikan genetic ancestry inherited from his father. On the other hand his mental strength, ability to focus and perform under pressure is just as invariably attributed to his Oriental genetic ancestry inherited from his Thai mother. This is despite the fact that his father has played the major role in developing his golfing talent and is on record as stating that he used the psychological techniques he learned as a soldier in the US army to help develop his son’s mental strength.

When Portugal played Angola in the 2006 World Cup, great play was made of the fact that Portugal ruled Angola until 1975, however this was not presented in a negative light from either perspective and the commentators were quick to note how they had found groups of supporters from each country who mingled together and said that their nations were ‘brothers’. Of course you can always find slave minded Afrikans if you try and it just shows you how the mind can come to rationalise an abusive relationship. This inferiority complex, which is one of the real factors retarding the development of Afrikan football is manifested in the number of high profile continental Afrikan footballers – particularly star players – sporting ghastly chemically straightened and/or dyed hair.

The Ivory Coast team at the 2006 World Cup was a good example with their star striker Didier Drogba parading his greasy, chemically straightened hairdo along with another teammate, apparently using a different formulation, whose hair was simply stiff and dry and a third teammate whose hair, worn in china bumps, was dyed a bizarre shade of grey and purple. The sad desire to attain European hair texture and the desire for and attainment of European women as success symbols by Afrikan footballers are simply manifestations of the deep-seated self-loathing that prevents Afrikan teams from looking the top Caucasian nations squarely in the eye and truly believing that they can win consistently. How can you overcome those whom you believe to be your superiors and whose approval you desperately crave? Indeed despite his Europeanised hairdo and mind; Drogba has been the target of fierce criticism in England for his extreme – although not unique – diving and feigning of injury.

There are in fact three key determining criteria for success in the football World Cup. These are:

1. Wealth of the nation,

2. Long footballing tradition,

3. Population size.

To be successful, countries almost invariably need to meet at least two of these criteria. In fact these are key factors for most international team sports and for nations climbing the Olympic medal table.

Ethnic cleansing in action – The England and Netherlands football teams

In my first two books ‘Niggers, Negroes, Black People and Afrikans’ (2003) and ‘Blue Skies for Afrikans’ (2005) I provided an in-depth analysis of the process of cultural and biological assimilation taking place in the UK, Brazil, Australia and other locations around the world. I set out six steps to Whiteness, which can be briefly summarised as:

Stage 1 – Initial contact

Stage 2 – First a trickle then a flood

Stage 3 – The Dam breaks – The coffee coloured dream

Stage 4 – The Silent Elimination Begins – Rise of the Near Whites

Stage 5 – Decline of Mixed Race people, Death of Afrikans

Stage 6 – Death of Mixed Race people and Absorption of Near Whites

As suggested above, this process on the one hand involves biological assimilation through miscegenation and on the other hand cultural assimilation through social psychological processes and techniques leading to dramatic changes in the social values of the target group.

Sport reflects both the biological and cultural transformation of the target group (in this case us) as well as reinforcing the prevailing racial hierarchy. Most of you will be familiar with the well worn adage:

If you’re White that’s right,

If you’re Yellow you’re mellow,

If you’re Brown stick around,

If you’re Black step back.

And all the structures, systems and processes of the social, political, economic, educational, religious etc. institutions of Caucasians are designed to reinforce and maintain this racial hierarchy. Football is no exception and provides very clear, tangible examples for Afrikans who have awoken from our collective cultural coma.

The 2006 World Cup has provided some very stark examples. Let us firstly examine the England football team. Since Viv Anderson became the first Black man to be selected for the full England team in 1978 there has been a trend of increasing numbers of Afrikans selected to represent England at football. Viv Anderson like other Afrikans achieving sporting ‘firsts’ was selected as much for his docile, Uncle Tom personality as for his undoubted footballing talent. There were other Black footballers who were worthy of consideration at this time and similarly; in baseball, Jackie Robinson was selected as the first Afrikan to play major league baseball because of his combination of talent and docility. He knew his place in White society and was willing to accept the many racial insults and slights from his White team mates and others in order to be ‘accepted’. In fact Jackie Robinson should not have been the first. There was an Afrikan from Cuba who was selected to join a major league baseball team, however he was discarded after he punched down a team mate who insulted him.

There has been a trend in English football whereby it has proved far easier for Black footballers to be selected for the England squad as opposed to actually making the starting line-up. As Abdullah Uhuru (2005) has eloquently described; the key central positions: centre half, central midfield and the highly coveted striker positions have proven most difficult for Afrikans to secure, since they comprise the ‘spine’ of the team (with only the least glamorous centre half positions regularly coming into Afrikan possession), whereas the more peripheral wide positions have always been made more available to Afrikan players at all levels.

The 2006 World Cup has marked a sea change in the fortunes of Afrikans footballers with regard to the England football team. The composition of the 23 player squad reflects both the individual racism of the England manager, Sven Goran-Erickson, the collective racism of English football and the huge growth in miscegenation involving Afrikan-Caribbeans over the past thirty years. Erickson selected one Afrikan player (Sol Campbell) for his squad and five Dual Heritage players (Rio Ferdinand, Ashley Cole, Aaron Lennan, Jermaine Jenas and Theo Walcott). Two of the Dual Heritage players (Ferdinand and Cole) form part of Erickson’s preferred first eleven. Erickson’s selection reflects the racial hierarchy of White, Brown, Black with the omission of two Afrikan players (Darren Bent and Jermaine Defoe) from the World Cup squad and the inclusion of one Dual Heritage player (Theo Walcott) being absolutely inexplicable.

When behaviour cannot be explained on rational grounds then one needs to consider irrational explanations. Racism is irrational behaviour and provides the best explanation, not only for the selection of the England 2006 squad, but also for patterns of team selection throughout English football at club and national level, right down to schoolboy football.

We need to be clear that this is not an attack on Dual heritage footballers. They have no more control over – or understanding of – White Racism than Afrikan footballers and are simply trying to pursue their chosen profession. On the other hand this recognition should not cause us to shy away from the reality described above which also includes the fact that lighter skinned Afrikans will be treated preferentially to darker skinned Afrikans unless they demonstrate some degree of race consciousness, in which case all bets are off.

If we move on to considering the Dutch national team; we see the same scenario. Holland have taken to the field in the World Cup with an all Caucasian starting eleven for the first time in many years. It has not been uncommon in the recent past for the Netherlands to field a national team with five or six Afrikans in the starting line up, however the new Dutch manager Marco Van Basten decided he would clear out the old (Afrikan) guard and bring in new (Caucasian) talent. What is interesting is that he has kept some older experienced players in his team such as Edwin Van der Saar and Philip Cocu and they are all as old, or older, than the discarded Afrikans and are all Caucasian. Van Basten’s team selection is reflective of the backlash against Afrikans and non-White Muslims in the Netherlands and symbolically reflects the desire of the White Dutch to assert European culture and values. This ‘clash of cultures’ was brought to a head in the Netherlands by the murders of a homosexual right wing politician, Pim Fortan, and a ‘radical’ film-maker by two different Muslim men.

The racial slight in the Dutch squad selection was so stark that an Afrikan recent Dutch international player, Jimmy Flloyd Hasselbank, noted how Dutch managers always blame the Afrikan players when things go wrong for the national team. These racial disputes go back many years and in the lead up to the 1996 European Championships there was a huge falling out between the Caucasian manager and the Afrikan players which ultimately led to a dismal performance by the Dutch team as team morale disintegrated.

Similarly, in England we see the growth in English nationalism – which can be traced to Scottish and Welsh devolution and first made itself visible in a sporting context at the 1996 European Championships – leaving Afrikan footballers out in the cold, even though virtually all of them are assimilated Negroes with only one Afrikan Premiership footballer, Andrew Cole, having an Afrikan wife/partner.


We are at war, but only one side is fighting. Caucasians are; and always have been, an extremely warlike people. Sports such as boxing, American football and rugby reflect the strong European cultural desire for modern gladiatorial combat. Sport is war without the killing. The desire for the maintenance of the racial equation White/Black = White Power and the reality of the other sociological equation White + Black = Racial Conflict means that all areas of human activity are racialised and until Afrikans snap out of our collective waking coma we will continue to be defeated in a game we don’t even realise is taking place let alone know the rules.

Since most professional sportsmen are Negrotised I shall be cheering on the teams with the greatest number of Afrikans during the 2006 World Cup whilst keeping the relative unimportance of twenty two men chasing a leather ball around for ninety minutes in context.

Up you might ‘Race’!

Paul Ifayomi Grant

June 2006

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