MOZAMBIQUE: Soccer – from Leipzig to Portugal

Soccer (football, I know!) is Mozambique’s favourite sport, and while they have their own national league and play internationally, I found a couple of stories that really stuck with me about Mozambique’s international football connections.

Apparently there is a dedicated fan club in Mozambique to one Germany football club – RB Leipzig. Founded by an East German ex-pat, the club is mainly made up of Mozambicans who worked in East Germany as part of Communist-era work exchanges. However, while they love their footie, they are also protesting to get wages still owed to them even today from their East German employment.

Mozambique has also produced players that have gone to play abroad, especially for Portugal – the most famous being Eusebio. He started playing on the Portuguese national team before Mozambique gained independence, and has been a sports hero in both countries. However, since he left to play for the colonial power, there are some very differing opinions if he really counts as “a Mozambican footie player”. I’d recommend comparing this boldly titled opinion piece “Eusebio is not African, and a more complicated essay on Eusebio’s background and experiences with racism in soccer, “Eusébio, A Life in the Shadows of the Colonial Past“.

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