Champions League Soccer Fans Love Them Some John Denver, West Virginia

I can appreciate and enjoy important athletic contests even when they occur in sports I don’t care about. Take soccer, for example. So this is why I was duped into watching the Chelsea-Man U pregame show this afternoon. Well, that and the fact that there were no day ball games before 3:00 today. ↵
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↵After the 30 minute studio show, they switched to the Scot, Irishman and Dutch/Surinamese guy in the booth who were calling the game from Moscow. As I’m listening to them speak, and trying to understand their brand of English, I heard something quite odd in the background. Observe and listen: ↵ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵⇥ ↵ ↵
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↵Yes, that would be John By God Denver blasting over a Russian stadium’s sound system. As The Guardian’s liveblog points out, “Either [communism is officially dead] or there are 50,000 Englishmen wishing that they lived in West Virginia.” ↵

↵Like I said, I’m no soccer fan, so if the playing of “Country Roads” before major matches is some sort of Russian/English soccer tradition, by all means, let me know. Tradition or not, I have no idea what West Virginia has to do with Europe. Aside from good ol’ fashioned riotous, fiery football celebrations. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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