Football fame

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The Independent Online

American football and baseball are fine games if you like that sort of thing, but their idiosyncrasies should be kept on that side of the Atlantic as part of their own rich cultural ecology.

Anti-American? Us? Heck, no. We have nothing but admiration for the country that gave us life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, decent coffee, black-and-white thrillers from the 1940s and the architecture of Canary Wharf.

Plus, while giving due recognition to the Russians, we are also pretty grateful for being baled out of two World Wars.

We just have two niggling points of difference with our special cousins. One is this little global difficulty over Iraq. The other is halls of fame. American football and baseball are fine games if you like that sort of thing, but their idiosyncrasies should be kept on that side of the Atlantic as part of their own rich cultural ecology. The Hall of Fame for soccer, which opened last night at the Museum of Football in Preston, is a long ball too far. Let this one roll into the back of the net and we'll be calling David Beckham the quarterback next.

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