What better time than now to cover one of the best English phrases used in football – derby. In America this type of match is labeled a “rivalry” which is an equally powerful description. Growing up with the term rivalry, I have learned to really understand what this phrase encompasses; however, the history of the term derby includes so much more than just a sporting rivalry.
These local derbies are created for many reasons. It could be a social split (Liverpool/Everton), it could be political (Celtic/Rangers – Old Firm), but usually it is just plain old location. Having grown up in a country where the “main” rival of one team can be more than 3000 miles away, “derby” takes on greater meaning. In America, even if your rival is in the same state it can be hundreds of miles away. With a derby, usually called a “local” derby, your rival is across the street. Literally.
Manchester Derby – Old Trafford is 3.99 miles from the City of Manchester Stadium.
Merseyside Derby – Anfield is 0.5 miles from Goodison Park.
West London Derby – Stamford Bridge is 1.39 miles from Craven Cottage
North London Derby – Emirates Stadium is 3.81 miles from White Hart Lane
Birmingham Derby – Villa Park is 3.17 miles from St. Andrews
Tyne-Wear Derby – St. James Park is 43.71 miles from The Riverside (not Newcastle’s fault, they are in the middle of nowhere to be honest)
The fans of these clubs work together, play together, and live together every single day. I have no idea how they do it. I have a disgust for Manchester City fans and I’m thousands of miles away.
One last thing, we pulled the double on Man City! Two victories at the death! Glory, glory, Man United! I’m glad I got that off my chest. On to the title!