More on Racism and Soccer

Did I really pick the Netherlands for the World Cup semifinals? Boy, was I wrong. I emailed my high school pal, Greg McNair, who is a jazz guitarist living in the Netherlands. Here is Greg’s explanation:

As far as our Dutch team goes; well they had it coming and I’ll tell you why. The new coach, Marco Van Basten, didn’t pick any of the players of color (from the former colony of Suriname) who have been kicking butt and taking NO prisoners in domestic and European competitions. Players like Patrick Kluivert who has scored more goals for the national team then anybody. Didn’t make it. Clarence Seedorf, a bigass star for AC Milan. Didn’t make it. Edgar Davids, as a defender they call the man the pittbull because when he’s on your ass, you give up the ball. You feeling me?

Not only that but Mr. Football (as they call it here) God himself, Johann Cruyff, even blamed the Minister of Immigration for our losing. She refused to naturalize Salomon Kalou, from the Ivory Coast. Her “advisors” said that he wasn’t a player of exceptional talent. Oh yeah? Well why did the brother (Bonaventure) just sign a mega contract with THE top English team, Chelsea? Hello! Did I miss something here? (By the way, that minister, Verdonk has some other heavy issues but that’s another story.) Cruyff said that we needed him because his talent lies in the fact that he can play with the ball (like the Brazilians). Not many Dutch players, though good players with tactical insight, can do that.

Fascinating to think that the Netherlands is now developing a reputation for nativism. As we learn today, Rita Verdonk’s fussiness over another darkskinned applicant may help to have brought down the Dutch government. I wonder whether the Netherlands’ humiliation in the World Cup did not play a part too.

(P.S. I should add that Greg McNair is a person of color himself…)