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Interesting study on Coded Racism in commentary

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Interesting stuff.

I might be recalling incorrectly, but the first time I started picking up on this (and it'll doubtless have gone on long before he was playing in England, with plenty of other players) was with Yaya Toure; nigh on every single game the commentators would talk predominantly about his pace and power/athleticism, and it nagged at me at some kind of subconscious level since some of his finishes with Man City were technically outstanding.

Maybe not right in the aftermath of him curling one in from 25 yards or whatever since the focus there was on the goal and technique itself, but it'd shift back to praising his physicality in any pre-match, half time and post match chat.

Edited by Thistle_do_nicely

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Interesting stuff.
I might be recalling incorrectly, but the first time I started picking up on this (and it'll doubtless have gone on long before he was playing in England, with plenty of other players) was with Yaya Toure; nigh on every single game the commentators would talk predominantly about his pace and power/athleticism, and it nagged at me at some kind of subconscious level since some of his finishes with Man City were technically outstanding.
Maybe not right in the aftermath of him curling one in from 25 yards or whatever since the focus there was on the goal and technique itself, but it'd shift back to praising his physicality in any pre-match, half time and post match chat.
But can you think of a 'white' player with the same characteristics and style of play playing in the EPL? I genuinely can't off the top of my head.

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Noticeably less tendency to call physically strong black players 'beasts' in recent years but cannae tell if that's down to growing awareness of unconscious racial bias or a general fear of Nizzy's 'keep pushing' warning

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That's not really the point, is it m8?
My response was in direct reply to Thistles post and not the article as I've not had the chance to read it all yet.
Toure was (rightly) regarded as the best powerful, direct midfielder in the league (possibly the world) at that time, its not unreasonable that commentators/pundits would highlight these attributes in his play over say his technical ability, which whilst being very good was bettered by other players in the league.

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52 minutes ago, NotThePars said:

Noticeably less tendency to call physically strong black players 'beasts' in recent years but cannae tell if that's down to growing awareness of unconscious racial bias or a general fear of Nizzy's 'keep pushing' warning

Given that Ade Akinfenwa has a clothing line called Beast Mode On...

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Noticed various Sportsound pundits talking about black players recently as "he's very intelligent as well" like they've found a rare butterfly. Sure it's quite innocent but it grates.

P.S. After a quick look at the OP's article maybe they were trying too hard to do the right thing.

Edited by welshbairn

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Have you ever noticed if someone is trying to describe the style of a black player they almost always compare them to another black player? It’s something I always try to keep away from.

Edited by Highland Capital

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I picked up on this a while ago. Black (especially African) players were always referred to by their physical characteristics and white players by their intelligence. It wasn't Yaya Toure that I picked it up from but Drogba. Kevin Davies, for instance, was always a physical player but was also clever and canny with his physicality yet Didier Drogba, twice the player of Davies, it was always just pure brute strength. But you can go back further. Thierry Henry was all about pace, Desailly was a rock, etc. As tho' the only reason they're world class is due to them being good in a gym and not on a football pitch.

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Guest JTS98
On 02/07/2020 at 16:07, AsimButtHitsASix said:

I picked up on this a while ago. Black (especially African) players were always referred to by their physical characteristics and white players by their intelligence. It wasn't Yaya Toure that I picked it up from but Drogba. Kevin Davies, for instance, was always a physical player but was also clever and canny with his physicality yet Didier Drogba, twice the player of Davies, it was always just pure brute strength. But you can go back further. Thierry Henry was all about pace, Desailly was a rock, etc. As tho' the only reason they're world class is due to them being good in a gym and not on a football pitch.

I think the article raises some good points but also leaves some questions.

For example, the part about commentators being more likely to criticize the intelligence of the play of black players certainly seems significant.

However, I'm unconvinced by the point about praising black players' physical attributes. For example, is it the case that black players do just tend to be bigger? If so, it's not really a story that football commentators mention this.

For example, in 2015 75% of NBA players were black. Clearly a sport geared towards being big. And since 1980 (which was boycotted by America) no white guy has won the 100m at the Olympics. So should we be surprised if black footballers do tend to be faster and more powerful than white players?

Someone like Bobo Balde, for example. Clearly a good player who reached a good level. But where do you start describing his game if not by talking about power? Or Jose Goncalves who we had at Hearts. A good defender who could obviously play, but again clearly his main attributes were pace and power. I think most Hearts fans will remember his remarkable ability to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick from about 25 yards out.

To get to the bottom of that issue we need more data on the players.

Edited by JTS98

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28 minutes ago, JTS98 said:

I think the article raises some good points but also leaves some questions.

For example, the part about commentators being more likely to criticize the intelligence of the play of black players certainly seems significant.

However, I'm unconvinced by the point about praising black players' physical attributes. For example, is it the case that black players do just tend to be bigger? If so, it's not really a story that football commentators mention this.

For example, in 2015 75% of NBA players were black. Clearly a sport geared towards being big. And since 1980 (which was boycotted by America) no white guy has won the 100m at the Olympics. So how much of this should we be surprised about?

Someone like Bobo Balde, for example. Clearly a good player who reached a good level. But where do you start describing his game if not by talking about power? Or Jose Goncalves who we had at Hearts. A good defender who could obviously play, but again clearly his main attributes were pace and power. I think most Hearts fans will remember his remarkable ability to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick from about 25 yards out.

To get to the bottom of that issue we need more data on the players.

I always referred to Bobo Balde as the Parkhead Baresi......

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On 01/07/2020 at 19:49, spud131 said:
On 01/07/2020 at 19:31, Thistle_do_nicely said:
Interesting stuff.
I might be recalling incorrectly, but the first time I started picking up on this (and it'll doubtless have gone on long before he was playing in England, with plenty of other players) was with Yaya Toure; nigh on every single game the commentators would talk predominantly about his pace and power/athleticism, and it nagged at me at some kind of subconscious level since some of his finishes with Man City were technically outstanding.
Maybe not right in the aftermath of him curling one in from 25 yards or whatever since the focus there was on the goal and technique itself, but it'd shift back to praising his physicality in any pre-match, half time and post match chat.

But can you think of a 'white' player with the same characteristics and style of play playing in the EPL? I genuinely can't off the top of my head.

Steven Gerrard.

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On 02/07/2020 at 01:21, Highland Capital said:

Have you ever noticed if someone is trying to describe the style of a black player they almost always compare them to another black player? It’s something I always try to keep away from.

Paul Pogba-Patrick Vieira is a good example.

Both tall, black, French midfielders but that's where the similarities end for me.

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20 hours ago, Crawford Bridge said:

Steven Gerrard.

Yaya Touré was a far more intelligent player than Gerrard to be fair. I'm actually surprised at how well Gerrard's doing as a manager as he seemed tactically clueless as a player

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On 01/07/2020 at 20:50, bluearmyfaction said:

Given that Ade Akinfenwa has a clothing line called Beast Mode On...

take one look at him on a football pitch amongst all the normal sized players and beast is entirely accurate,hes fucking huge!you wouldn't want to piss him off.would like to see him play live just the once

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