Dedicated to PAOK FC supporters all over the world.
This essay aims to unveil the opinions, thoughts and perceptions of Greek fans as far as the causes of violent incidents in the Greek football league are concerned. In the first part of this research project some theoretical considerations about determinants of violence, crime and delinquency in general and in sports are being analysed. For the purposes of this study I contacted a small-scale case study research project with 300 PAOK Thessaloniki FC supporters; in an attempt to determine the factors that contribute to the genesis or escalation of violence in the Greek football league. The research findings of this project have been categorised and analysed in five major areas: a) factors bearing on the enjoyment of matches, b) fencing and segregation, c) police, policing and football crowds d) corruption in the Greek football league and e) politics and football. Those areas were not chosen randomly. They were highlighted from the fans themselves as factors that promote violence in football grounds. Contents
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2. Theoretical considerations and literature review
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2.1 Violence in sports: Definitions and theoretical considerations
- 8 - 2.2 Literature review.
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3. The survey.
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3.1 PAOK supporters: An overview and ideological profile
- 24 - 3.2 Methodology and research approach.
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3.3 Data collection
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3.4 Data analysis and research findings
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3.5 Characteristics and viewing habits of respondents.
- 38 - 3.6 Factors bearing on the enjoyment of matches.
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3.7 Fencing and segregation
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3.7 Police, policing and football crowds
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3.8 Corruption in the Greek football
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3.9 Politics and football.
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The origins of football could be found in ancient China. Around 200 BC a game similar to football called Tsu Chu (“kick ball”) was played with two 30ft high bamboo poles acting as goals. Pheninda, a game played by the Greeks since 4 BC, was another game that had many similarities with football. It involved kicking the ball, running with it and handling it. Hapastum was the Roman version of football. It was played in a rectangular field and the object of the game was to throw the ball beyond the opponent’s goal line (For history of football SEE: Butler 1991, 1996, Walvin 1994). In Japan around 400 AC a game called Kemari involved eight players kicking the ball across a ground 14 meters square. In the fifteenth century AC Italy a game called Calcio (from the word “calciare” which means kick in Italian) was played in Florence (For history of football SEE: Butler 1991, 1996, Walvin 1994). As far as the modern version of the game is concerned, it was firstly developed in the eighteenth century. Tony Brown espouses the opinion that football as we know it today has little or nilpotent relevance to the games mentioned above (Brown, 2003). In his article “the early rules of soccer” Brown argues that “in tracing the history of the game, there are three sets of laws in particular that made a significant contribution to today’s game. They are known as Cambridge (1948), Sheffield (1857), Uppingham (1862) and Football Association (1863) rules. The amalgamation of Sheffield and Football Association rules in 1878 provided the first foundations for the development of the game. Since then the phenomenon of football has affected almost every country in the world. FIFA, the organisation responsible for the management of the game has nowadays 205 country-members (FIFA, 2004). The growth of football, though, had a negative aspect; as it considered contributing to the escalation of violence. Incidents of violence in football firstly reported in the 1960s...
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