Football clubs were born to be a patrimony of the societies from which they come. Argentine Helenio Herrera, manager of the famous Inter Milan side from 1960 to 1968, popularized the notion of the tifo organizzato (organized supporters) as his team collected trophies around Italy and Europe. He believed the home crowd provided an advantage and pushed clubs to create fan groups that supported their teams with chants and slogans representative of their cultural origins. By the 1970s, every city and town in Italy had one or more teams and with them came supporters groups. Italians interpreted foreign styles of spectatorship and made them their own– something between the South American torcidas and the British “hooligans.” Thus, ultras groups were established, born to represent the distinct cultures and traditions from which they originated.
As we’ve seen in Brazil, Egypt, Algeria, Darfur, and Montreal to name a few, football has taken on a greater role in shaping political and cultural movements as people continue to find their voice in stadiums and streets around the world. Through football, a global identity has begun to shape itself, an identity that has realized our similarities through the sport and uses the game to galvanize a collective politics of participation. Notwithstanding, the state of modern football often feels removed from and, at times, in opposition to these ideals. The articles and images contained in TIFO’s Issue II aim to shed light on this collective reality so that people may find hope in knowing that their philosophies are actively supported and promoted by other lovers of the world’s game.
English + Italian