• Germany's news in English

Merkel praises diversity of national football team

AFP · 21 Jun 2010, 08:00

Published: 21 Jun 2010 08:00 GMT+02:00

Merkel told ARD television on Sunday that the German side at the World Cup, in which 11 of the 23 players were born abroad or have immigrant parents, presented a more ethnically varied vision of the country than is often seen.

"It is an example of how role models can be created - role models for our whole country," she said. "For those who are of German origin just as much as for those who want to integrate."

She noted that the ratio of immigrants on the German team was higher than in the country as a whole "but those are our shared idols."

Since Germany hosted the last World Cup in 2006, the chancellor has attended a host of matches, both domestic and international, to support the home side.

Polish-born Lukas Podolski and Miroslav Klose scored the first two goals in Germany's 4-0 drubbing of Australia in their opening World Cup match last Sunday and Brazil-born Cacau came off the bench for a third. Mesut Özil, whose parents hail from Turkey, has taken over a key role in Germany's midfield.

But Germany slumped to a 1-0 defeat by Serbia on Friday and must now beat Ghana on Wednesday to reach the knock-out phase.

Your comments about this article

08:47 June 21, 2010 by West_Indian
What about Cacau's goal? Cacau was born in Brazil.
09:33 June 21, 2010 by moistvelvet
So in other words she means that like certain areas of industry such as IT, Germany is reliant on foreign workers for growth and success.

Personally the degree of acceptance of foreign nationals in Germany was made pretty clear to me on Friday when several Germans expressed their feelings because we were not supporting Germany, "why don't you go home". With attitudes like that and general treatment of foreigners it isn't any wonder why integration is difficult.
09:41 June 21, 2010 by auniquecorn
"Chancellor Angela Merkel has hailed the diverse German national football team as a force for acceptance of immigrants and integration of foreigners in the country."

Until they loose the World cup, Then she´ll be wining that there´s to many auslanders.
12:00 June 21, 2010 by Johnne
I think it´s a good thing, even Jerome Boateng & Dennis Aogo are sons of Ghanaian & Nigerian immigrants repectively, Sami Khedira has a Tunisian background as well..his father is a Tunisian immigrant. Keep it up DFB afterall I always say it that this country is multi-cultural, you just don´t see it because of some bad elements and slow pace of migrants intergration programmes. Multi-culturaism in Germany showing it´s face..I wish the team success in this World Cup.
14:34 June 21, 2010 by trevzns
When has Germany and Europe not been multi-cultural?

The Multi-culture face in Germany is part of German and European history.

African¦#39;s and African descendants in Germany is as old as the people who migrated and settled Europe.

¦quot;why dont you go home¦quot; Ignorance and Envy is an insidious social disease.

I believe most Africans and African descendants know their heritage and Africa is home.
19:42 June 21, 2010 by derExDeutsche
something about this statement creeps me out a little bit. it just sounds so much like something a Dictator might say. Like someone very proud of their accomplishments.

Not to say its a bad thing that Germany is Diverse. I love everybody, except the PROGRESSIVE CIVIL DISOBEDIENT MARXIST BIGGER GOVERNMENT TERRORIST SYMPATHIZER types. And most of those are privileged middle to upper class Rheinrassige German kids anyway.
00:40 June 22, 2010 by wetdawg~
Brilliant praise~they are all men!
05:43 June 22, 2010 by Nur Ainne Johar
Who cares where you originally come from? I don't care, as long as you are trying to be the best citizen as you could, everyone deserves the acknowlegment.

And helllooo....duhhh these brave players are soooooo going to be germany people's warriors at the World Cup 2010. And I'm proud to say, I'm Ainne all the way from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia is so proud with these guys, in the name of sport spirit. I just can't wait to see them rocking at the final! :)
12:15 June 22, 2010 by derExDeutsche
would she have been more proud if they were more black? brown? green? 'what'? would she have turned off the tv if they happened to be all white? would she have been embarrassed? Would be nice to ask the Chancellor what what ratio her 'favorite' is.
Today's headlines
'He's back': Hitler movie hits nerve in Germany
Oliver Masucci as Hitler. Photo: DPA

'He's back': Hitler movie hits nerve in Germany

9 minutes ago

Imagine Hitler wakes up in today's Berlin, is mistaken for a hilarious impersonator of the Nazi leader and ends up a TV celebrity, widely cheered for voicing his demented worldview.

50,000 expected at Berlin anti-TTIP demo
People demonstrating against TTIP in Berlin on October 7th 2015. Photo: DPA

50,000 expected at Berlin anti-TTIP demo

18 hours ago

Organizers of a mass rally in Berlin against US-EU free trade agreement TTIP say that they expect around 50,000 people on Saturday from all over Germany to take part.

Bavaria threatens Merkel with court over refugees
Border controls between Austria and Bavaria. Photo: DPA

Bavaria threatens Merkel with court over refugees

1 day ago

The Bavarian government is threatening to take Chancellor Angela Merkel to the country's highest court to make her change her refugee policy.

This Week in History
What the Germans brought to America
Germany and USA flags adorn New York's Waldorf Astoria hotel in 2011. Photo: DPA

What the Germans brought to America

19 hours ago

German-American Day first gained a spot on US calendars over 130 years ago. An annual holiday on October 6th, it marks the day in 1683 when 13 German families arrived in Philadelphia to set up home. But what exactly made their arrival so important?

Berlin school bans Wi-fi hub over porno fears
Photo: DPA

Berlin school bans Wi-fi hub over porno fears

20 hours ago

A school in west Berlin has opposed the city putting a public Wi-fi hot spot on their roof – because they are afraid pupils will use it to view pornography on their smartphones.

How well does Homeland get Germany?
Photo: DPA.

How well does Homeland get Germany?

20 hours ago

As the first episode of the new season of Homeland, shot in Berlin, aired this week, The Local takes a look at what it got right on point - and where it totally missed the point - about Berlin and Germany. Obviously: spoiler alert if you haven’t seen it.

Klopp meets press as new Liverpool boss
Jürgen Klopp posing with a Liverpool FC shirt at Anfield. Photo: DPA

Klopp meets press as new Liverpool boss

22 hours ago

Jürgen Klopp was introduced to the media as Liverpool manager on Friday morning and spoke of his pride at taking over at one of English football's biggest teams.

Police hunt suspect after refugee child snatched
Mohamed Januzi (l) and the suspected abductor (r). Photo: Polizei Berlin

Police hunt suspect after refugee child snatched

23 hours ago

A four-year-old refugee child went missing in Berlin over nine days ago. Now police have released a picture of his suspected abductor.

Klopp calls Liverpool deal 'dream move'
Jürgen Klopp. Credit: LFCTV

Klopp calls Liverpool deal 'dream move'

1 day ago

German football coach Jürgen Klopp flew into Liverpool on Thursday to put pen to paper on a contract with the Premier League club, describing the move as "like a dream".

West must 'treat Russia properly': Juncker
Jean-Claude Juncker. Photo: DPA

West must 'treat Russia properly': Juncker

1 day ago

The West must "treat Russia properly" and address it as an equal, European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker said in Passau on Thursday, criticising the US for labelling Moscow a regional power.

Are the German public too happy to see Hitler?
The secret to more travel for less
Government blocks plans for Berlin 'cannabis cafes'
'Der Klassiker': no classic at all for Dortmund
Dortmund fans' bad behaviour in Thessaloniki
UK Ambassador wants more young Brits in Germany
How Snoop Dogg dissed Munich hip hop scene
More wind power generated so far in 2015 than all of 2014
Rent a nuclear bunker near Berlin for just €3,000 a month
German universities leap up world elite rankings
Business & Money
What to do if you own a cheating Volkswagen
Homeland star's fave Berlin spot is Berghain
Why Dresden Buddhists won't be using the swastika symbol
Mystery of 'murdered' student found alive after 31 years
What wearable technology might look like in the future
Why vegetarian food is more German than a Bratwurst
The very best of traditional German vegetarian food
The first glimpse of Neptune - from an observatory in Berlin
How VW was rebuilt from nothing... by an English army officer
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd