Dublin: 21 °C Sunday 13 June, 2021

10 reasons why people need to stop being cynical about the Irish fans in France


Italy v Republic of Ireland - UEFA Euro 2016 - Group E - Stade Pierre Mauroy Source: Chris Radburn

OVER THE PAST fortnight, Irish football fans have been roaming around France like a merry gang of rapscallions.

They’ve been singing football chants, drinking unprecedented numbers of cans, removing their shirts, holding giant street parties, making flags, breaking things, fixing things, standing up for the boys in green and sitting down for the boys in green.

And they have managed to charm the pants off most of the world in the process — except for a sizable contingent here at home, that is.

Republic of Ireland v Belgium - UEFA Euro 2016 - Group E - Stade de Bordeaux Source: Chris Radburn

But we’re here to say that we shouldn’t be cynical about Irish fans. 

Because I don’t know if you have noticed, but the world is a pretty miserable place right now!

The UK electorate has voted to leave the EU. Nigel Farage’s head is constantly on TV. Boris Johnson and Donald Trump are mounting bids to be the most powerful men in the world. And God knows Ireland isn’t exactly killing it on every front either.

In other words, there is an awful lot to be cynical and despondent about. Irish fans singing Westlife songs on the streets of Paris is not one of them.

Because 99% of the fan antics have just been harmless and silly

While English and Russian fans were flinging plastic chairs at each other, Irish fans were literally singing Abba songs and sweeping up after themselves. In other words, it’s all relatively good-natured and silly. Chill.

Tweet by @Barry Fitzgerald Source: Barry Fitzgerald/Twitter

And they’ve brought a lot of joy to people in France

Case in point? This French fan’s open letter to Irish fans where he praised them for their “generosity, brotherhood and good atmosphere that you put in the stands” or this Buzzfeed France article that declares us the winners of Euro 2016.

Or these tweets.

Tweet by @Barbe Rousse Source: Barbe Rousse/Twitter

Tweet by @Pierre B. Source: Pierre B./Twitter

Or this girl who described being serenaded by Irish fans as “a magical time filled with kindness and joy”.

f Source: Daily Mail

Or this bar owner, who praised both Irish and Northern Irish fans.

Honestly, how can you not be amused by the sight of a man in a horse mask successfully kicking a ball through a window?


Posted by on Sunday, 13 June 2021

Or by this act of stupidity

da Source: Tom Williams/Twitter

Or by this testimony from a hotel owner

Even the French police aren’t immune to their charms

See? They can’t be that bad.

Fair enough if you’d rather stab yourself in the eye than knock around in France singing Fields of Athenry, but you can’t deny that the Irish fans have acquitted themselves well…

Tweet by @Matt Spiro Source: Matt Spiro/Twitter

fans Source: Washington Post

Plus, those of you who are cynical are missing the bigger picture — this is all part of the long game

France will think we’re super sound and won’t know what hit them when we turn out to be merciless football wizards on Sunday!


In short? There’s loads to give out about in this crazy, crazy world, but Irish fans being praised for their soundness is not one of them

Live and let live, y’all.

#coybig #ireland #euro2016

A photo posted by Cricky Diver (@cricky_diver) on

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About the author:

Amy O'Connor

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