French Media Study Newcastle United’s Fan Culture
What better place to start than The Strawberry, where they chatted to a number of our fans about the French invasion. As always many thanks to our translation expert, Pierre.
Blue – White – Strawberry
À NEWCASTLE, THE STRAWBERRY EST UNE INSTITUTION
AT NEWCASTLE, THE STRAWBERRY IS AN INSTITUTION
A true museum of the club (photos, paintings, programmes, shirts, balls, etc.).
A small Pub that has been there many years, located just in front of St.James’ Park, is the meeting place for the supporters.
Brian, who lives in Newcastle but works in London, in the building right next to … Chelsea – for him, the arrival of the new French contingent , “given us a welcome boost”. “We want them to feel at home here,” claims Brian, waving a beret.
Behind the counter, Matt, the head barman, gets into action by serving a… Kronenbourg. “If it works for them, we are intending to make French dishes. Or to serve other brands of French beer.” Meanwhile, Michael, the owner, has renamed his pub LA FRAISE,” so that players feel a bit at home.”
<<CETTE FOIS, ON A BIEN EU WENGER! >>
“THIS TIME WE’VE BEATEN WENGER!”
At the Strawberry, you’ll find people from everywhere. The same can be said for Toon supporters. There is Kent-Erik, from Norway, and Hans from Zurich with his jersey on the back bearing the name Cabaye.
Joe, who made the trip from Derry (Northern Ireland), also bears the number 4 in the name of … “Cabhai.” “Because Bhai means friend in Gaelic.” Paul, his friend, praised the French arrival. “They are great players. This time, we have beaten Wenger! Before, it was him who took all the good ones, but he no longer has the monopoly. Here they will be kings. And, unlike the English players, we will not see them in pubs. They’ll spend more time going after the “chicks” than drinking down pints!
In view of the game against the Blues, Nathan and Peter, two well padded pure Geordies, added: “We will be behind them. But when you see how good it was today, there is reason to be optimistic. It has been a very long time since we have felt like that.”
I think clearly the French media are tickled by Newcastle fans embracing the French culture and the quirky touches such as The Strawberry renaming and fans wearing berets.
Makes me wonder what would happen if a French club suddenly brought in ten or more English players, what would be their take on English/Geordie culture?
The thought of hordes of French football fans sitting in their local in bowler hats/flat caps, with their fish and chips and Newcastle Brown Ale in front of them and a whippet each by their side. The mind boggles.
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