Category: Eastern Europe

Auschwitz and the perversion of football

Auschwitz and the perversion of football

On Holocaust Remembrance Day, we interview William Heyen about his poem “Parity,” concerning a 1944 football match at Auschwitz-Birkenau. Beside crematoriums, Nazis engineered the ultimate perversion of sport.

Ahead of 2012, Ukraine reclaims iconographic and football treasures

Ahead of 2012, Ukraine reclaims iconographic and football treasures

With Orthodox nativity celebrations upon us, we wonder if Ukrainian traditions of religious iconography and football offer creative ideas for recovering lost history and making one nation.

Ukrainian will, Carpathian pride and the summer of ’69

Ukrainian will, Carpathian pride and the summer of ’69

Some 30,000 Ukrainians descended on Moscow in Aug 1969 and sang folk songs in the heart of the Soviet empire. FC Karpaty supporters celebrated the regional second-division club’s surprising place in Soviet soccer history.

Anatoly Kuznetsov and Dynamo Kyiv's 'almost incredible' story

Anatoly Kuznetsov and Dynamo Kyiv’s ‘almost incredible’ story

Anatoly Kuznetsov‘s work, smuggled to the UK in 1969, contained what would become, when translated, one of the first English-language accounts of Dynamo Kyiv’s deeds during World War II.

Canada | Far west of the Carpathians, Ukraine unites

Football universes exist in parallel. Such was the case in May 08 when Ukraine United and Shakhtar played a friendly, not in the motherland, but on an artificial pitch at Ontario Soccer Centre.

Ukraine | Near Chernobyl, the ‘football forest’ designed to radiate life

Twenty-two years ago, more than 1,000 buses commandeered from Kyiv rumbled north toward the company town of Pripyat to evacuate its 50,000 residents. By sunset on 27 Apr 1986, as Chernobyl reactor no. 4 burned, in one soldier’s recollection, like a “beautiful blue fire,” the town was empty.

Left behind in the silence: a newly built football stadium sitting just to the north of a bright yellow Ferris wheel, a gift from Soviet authorities in commemoration of the upcoming May Day holiday.

Internet | ‘Liveblogging’ Dnipro Dnipropetrovs’k v. Dynamo Kyiv

We have covered the revival of the Ukrainian championship—back after winter break—and the weekend’s top fixture, second-place Dnipro Dnipropetrovs’k (43 points) hosting fourth-place Dynamo Kyiv (39). (Mar 2)

Ukraine | Coal mining, football and other former Soviet spheres of influence

Within the textured, contested, sad depths of Ukrainian history, few political gestures go unexegeted in a Talmudic-like zeal for obscure associations and hidden meaning. Such occurred following prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko‘s Dec 23 visit to perennially troubled Zasyadko mine in eastern Donetsk, where 101 coal miners died in a Nov 18 explosion. Her comments stirred memories of past mining disasters and of the wheelchairs that regularly circled the Shakhtar Donetsk football ground (see also 26 Dec 04.) (Dec 28)

Hungary | Ferenc Puskás dies, aged 79

Articles on the death of Ferenc Puskás at 79; Hugo Sánchez‘s first statements as coach of Mexico; Ligo Revelacion in Decatur, Alabama; a grumpy columnist in Israel; and another study on sectarianism in Scottish football.

Women’s football | 5,624 miles, 7 goals, 2 Portlands and 1 mole (U.S. v. Ukraine)

Portland, Oregon | U.S. Soccer Federation officials in 2005 improvised to fill out a slate of impromptu summer friendlies. One of those was a game against Ukraine, assisted on its visit by a West Coast–based expatriate known as “the mole.”

In the end, they opted for Christmas Orange

Kiev, Ukraine, Dec 28 | Football has been part of the upheavals contested in an election following the “Orange Revolution” of Nov 04.

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