Heard in Europe

The First Vice-President of the European Commission was on a charm offensive in London last week.

The UK is not known for its welcoming attitude of EU dignitaries. Undeterred, and armed with a barrage of cultural references, Frans Timmermans braced himself and decided to give it his best shot.

He opened with a joke about punk legends The Clash (“Should I stay or should I go now?,”) and mentioned how much he was enjoying British TV series Wolf Hall.

But he also warned the UK to avoid being like London team Millwall Football Club, AKA “The Lions”.

Timmermans urged the Brits not to adopt Millwall fans’ infamous motto “No one likes us and we don’t care”. The motto is usually sung before or after acts of casual violence (see pic).

Britain had an increasing amount of support in Europe for its reform agenda, but Britons too often took a “nobody likes us but we don’t care” attitude.

Millwall fans have a certain reputation in the UK. They’re known for fighting, hooliganism and fighting, and hooliganism.

Capable of starting a fight in an empty room (or among themselves in the national stadium), a recent YouGov poll showed Millwall fans to have the worst reputation in London.

Many an EU diplomat may well feel the comparison holds quite well.

 

Timmermans photo courtesy of Partij van der Arbeid. Published under a Creative Commons license. Screenshot courtesy of ESPN/YouTube. All rights reserved.

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