Are Americans The Worst Hooligans Of All?

Some stupid British guy has made the outrageous claim that the United States has a worse hooligan problem than his UK. That makes me so angry I want to punch someone in the face!

Stephen Wells—nice name, jerk!—comes from England, the birthplace of soccer riots. These people will shiv you in the back just for wearing the wrong scarf to nil-nil friendly, but somehow he thinks we're the ones with the problem. Even racist Spaniards think the British take things a bit too seriously.

Honestly, where does this guy get off? Yes, occasionally, things can get a little heated out in the bleachers. But it's all in good fun. Yankee and Red Sox fans may profess a mutual hatred that rivals most Mid-Eastern land disputes, but they know that it's all part of the game and they never take it too far. Except for that guy that ran over a Sox fan with his car because he shouted "Yankees Suck." Or the family that was pulled from their vehicle and hit with baseball bats simply because they had New York license plates. But that rarely happens.

The list of "incidents" this guy makes up is ridiculous. Yes, Boston, Philadelphia and L.A. all experienced riots after their teams won (or lost) championships this year, but was that just an excess of community spirit. It's not like they were targeting opposing fans. (Except for the Celtics fans who were targeted.) And yes, Montreal backers nearly burned down their city after a playoff win last spring, but guess what? That's in Canada! Which used to be British! Shows what you know!

Are Americans The Worst Hooligans Of All?

Maybe the occassional youth event gets called off because of fighting parents, and pepper spray and tasers are standard issue for most stadium security guards, and a few nine-year-olds got beer poured on them at the World Series, and Wells didn't even mention all the people in Alabama who get shot over Crimson Tide football games—but those pond jumpers are way worse than us. I mean, the people that got beat up at that Columbus Crew game? They were from West Ham! That's English! And they were watching soccer, so what do you expect?

However, I do agree with him on one point. Fans who get angry enough to start fights at a bicycle race? Those people are fucking nuts.

Does Europe really have a bigger hooligan problem than America? [The Guardian]