"Yet the so-called rivalry is quite obviously an illusion, existing only in the minds of those wishful to the point of insanity – which is to say, the English." — Marina Hyde, The GaurdianQuite right. It takes two to have a rivalry and the 'rivalry' of England with Germany is a one-sided affair. It's staulker logic. The Germans don't feel it, for the simple reason that they are historically the better team. Nor do the Argentinians, which whom we also have supposed rivalry, also for the simple reason that they are historically the better team. "Rivalry with" here seems to be code for "resentment of", or "extreme wish to beat." Richard Williams insists otherwise — no the Germans really do reciprocate.
Airy suggestions that the significance lies entirely on one side are wide of the mark. Franz Beckenbauer and Philipp Lahm confirmed this week that they and their compatriots also see these as special occasions.Special! The heart leaps like a deer!