famous teams
the fans
home and away
social context
the game

[ parts: intro | 1 | 2 ]

The World Cup, 1998, Introdcution

Scotland’s most recent appearance in the World Cup in France, in 1998, acts as a symbol of the team’s performance in the 1990s and into the new millennium. It is more remembered for the behaviour of the fans – the Tartan Army – than the football. As to the football itself, Scotland’s first game – the tournament’s glamorous opener against Brazil - saw them performing their usual battling heroics, only to lose to the South Americans. The rest of their tournament was much the same as in the previous forty years; Scotland drew with a dour Norwegian side they should have beaten, and then lost comprehensively to a non-European team, Morocco.

Meanwhile, to some it didn’t matter what the results were on the field of play, as the Tartan Army celebrated and commiserated the same way. Scotland’s fans have now got rid of their notorious reputation as being overly boisterous and rowdy supporters of their national team. While the heavy drinking of previous trips remains, Scotland fans are now welcomed wherever they go. One of the chants emanating from the lavishly dressed supporters is “We’re the best behaved supporters in the world.”

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