Jerusalem’s Racist Soccer Fans Are Few in Number, but They Rule the Show

Everyone is waiting for the handful to somehow calm down.

Elad Lipshitz
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Elad Lipshitz

The so-called “handful” of Beitar Jerusalem fans who are vocally racist may be just a handful, but they are strong enough to usurp the team’s agenda. They are a group of several hundred people who came to Grundman Stadium in Ramat Hasharon last night, and dictated how things turned out as Beitar lost 1-0.

They were just a few hundred, but they are the bosses in every respect. They prevent Beitar from achieving its routine. They determine that the team will stay scattered, terrified and disturbed.

From the chairman though to the coach and players, everyone is praying for a few quiet moments in which they could perhaps concentrate on the soccer. Everyone wishes for a moment of appeasement, a moment of unity at Beitar, for the curses to stop in the name of reaching the common goal
But the handful won’t allow for a moment’s rest. Compromise is completely unacceptable. The bosses are now irritated. Perhaps it’s not a handful, but the handful that is the center of gravity has condemned Beitar to life in the jungle.

Perhaps coach Eli Cohen will not break, not give in, but he can’t really concentrate on the game when the yellow-clad crowd curses him incessantly. It’s impossible to run a game, impossible to just turn one’s head, ignore everything and give orders as if it were just another workday.

The handful is roaring and not healing. What will Cohen do? Try and give his players the feeling that nothing is happening? The players know and feel it it’s embarrassing, silencing, abnormal and definitely happening.

It’s the handful’s biggest victory creating an impossible work atmosphere. Now, everyone is waiting for the handful to somehow calm down. Waiting for the handful to stop striking. Maybe next week.

Well, Bnei Sakhnin is next week. Perhaps it will be another two weeks, and then the handful will decide to show a little compassion.

YELLOW PERIL: Beitar slipped to defeat on Sunday. Credit: Sharon Bokov

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