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Hooligans Untold Story: BBC Panorama Documentary (Video)

 Hooligans Untold Story: BBC Panorama Documentary (Video)

Sometimes I’m proud to be British. But other times, I’m ashamed. After watching a documentary series on YouTube entitled “Hooligans Untold Story,” an investigative look inside the world of England football hooligans by the renowned team from BBC’s Panorama, I was very ashamed especially since the footage was only a few years ago, from 2006. It’s one thing to look back at football hooliganism from the 1970s or 1980s and to be scornful of their behavior. But it’s another thing entirely when it’s our generation. People like me, except that they’re not like me.

It’s interesting to watch this documentary because it shows how football hooliganism still exists. Not only does it still exist but now it’s more organized than ever with Firms organizing fights ahead of time in city centers or parks. And they’re organizing themselves online.

While it’s very rare for any hooliganism to happen inside Premier League grounds nowadays because 1) the tickets are so expensive, 2) the police presence is usually numerous, and 3) there are cameras and stewards throughout grounds to keep an eye on supporters, hooliganism does still happen but it’s being done elsewhere or in lower leagues.

The hooliganism documentary series by BBC Panorama is eyeopening. They follow the England supporters during the 2006 World Cup from each of their opening round games through to the second round and quarter-final. Because the 2006 World Cup was held in Germany, it was a nightmare for police to control the hooligans because there were skirmishes among groups from Poland, Germany, England and other countries. When you’re dealing with tens of thousands of soccer supporters, it’s impossible to keep an eye on all of them. Thankfully the police and authorities are better organized than ever before as you’ll see in this video.

It’s highly recommended viewing and broken up into seven parts. Here they are:

After watching the video, feel free to share your observations or questions in the comments section below. One thing that jumps out at me is the drinking culture by England football hooligans and how that turns them into animals. Yes, people drink in America but it doesn’t usually turn into violence in the form of mobs.


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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
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