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Mon Jun 5, 2017, 01:23 PM

The Punk Rockers of Football: A Story of Pirate Flags and the Anti-Nazi St Pauli

http://www.footballparadise.com/punk-rockers-of-football-a-story-of-pirate-flags-and-the-anti-nazi-st-pauli/

February, 1976. Bang in the middle of a glorious era of Pink Floyd’s Echoes and Dark Side of the Moon, and Led Zeppelin’s Houses of the Holy and Physical Graffiti, a band from Queens, New York, released an album that took the world by storm. Abstract, endless layers of instrumentation and lengthy tracks – stretching the limits of the vinyl – had become commonplace on rock ‘n roll records. When The Ramones came to the party, listeners across the world had never heard something like this before. Their songs were short, played at a high-tempo with minimal orchestration, and carried very strong personal, social or political messages through their lyrics. The band and the album, also called The Ramones, are credited with the birth of punk rock.

Like most of popular Rock ‘n Roll produced in the 1960s and 70s, modern football is currently in an era of excesses. It is now a full-blown industry where the giants of European football are like kingpins rivalled only by each other. In a race to spread their brand image farthest, clubs leave no stone unturned and no territory uncharted. Manchester United have ex-players flying out to Soweto, FC Barcelona and Paris Saint Germain have opened soccer schools and coaching centres in Tokyo, while Jamie Carragher inaugurated a Liverpool academy, gave a press conference and packed home a kilo of Shrewsbury biscuits all in one afternoon in Pune.

The Millerntor is not your average football stadium. One of the first things you’ll spot when you’re walking towards the stadium is a massive structure behind the north stand which engulfs the stadium. The Hamburger Flakturme was made during World War II as a fortress, which doubled up as shelter from the Royal Air Force bomber aircrafts. The bunker can give shelter to about 30,000 people, as many as the Millerntor can hold. True to its purpose, it was built in a way that prevents destruction by any natural means. The stadium of the most socialist club in the world stands in the shadow of the one of the most powerful monuments of fascist Germany.

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