Euro crisis to be played out on the soccer field

Greece' defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos and forward Fanis Gekas look on during a training session at the Municipal stadium of Legionowo on June 20, 2012.

Jeff Horwich: Tomorrow, another euro clash between Germany and Greece is looming. But this time it's not economics -- it's soccer. The two face each other in the Euro 2012 quarter-finals. At least this meeting is not about debt, bailouts and austerity... Or is it?

Here's Marketplace's Stephen Beard.


Stephen Beard: Relations between the two nations have soured over the debt crisis. So perhaps this soccer match can heal the rift.

Don't you believe it, says Rogan Taylor, a soccer expert at Liverpool University.

Rogan Taylor: No, football isn't about bringing people together and love and peace and all that stuff. It's about showing who's in charge.

Right now that's Germany, both in soccer and finance. Just as they dominate, the eurozone economy -- and dictate the terms for bailing out Greece -- so the Germans have been crushing opposition on the soccer field.

And that, Rogan says, is why humiliated Greeks will be desperate for victory and revenge.

Taylor: As if this cures everything that's gone before. At least for a moment, restores every sense of national pride and respect.

A Greek victory is not impossible, the Greek team won the Euro championship in 2004 -- but that was after coaching by a German.

In London, I'm Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

About the author

Stephen Beard is the European bureau chief and provides daily coverage of Europe’s business and economic developments for the entire Marketplace portfolio.

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