The growing popularity of English national insignia in international football tournaments has been widely interpreted as evidence of the emergence of a renewed English national consciousness. However, little empirical research has considered how people in England actually understand football support in relation to national identity. Interview data collected around the time of the Euro 2000 and the 2002 World Cup tournaments fail to substantiate the presumption that support for the England football team maps onto claims to patriotic sentiment in any straightforward way. People with far-right political affiliations did generally use national football support to symbolise a general pride in English national identity. However, other people either claimed not to support the England national team precisely because of its associations with nationalism, or else bracketed the domain of football support from more general connotations of English patriotism.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
- Political Science and International Relations