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Word of the day: Footix

Word of the day: Footix
When discussing football with friends or colleagues, you’ll want to avoid being accused of this ultimate sin.

Why do I need to know Footix?

Because if France does well at Euro 2020, it could make a comeback.

What does it mean?

It broadly refers to football supporters who aren’t seen as being sufficiently “legitimate” by other fans. For example, somebody who expresses a strong opinion about a player based on a single game.

World Cup 98 mascot Footix Photo by Eric CABANIS / AFP

Footix was the name of the cartoon rooster chosen as the mascot for the 1998 World Cup in France. While the sport didn’t have the greatest reputation in France at the time, when the host country won the competition, lots of French people jumped on the bandwagon and began supporting the team. Those who had been following Les Bleus since the beginning began using the name as an insult towards these new fans.

Today, the term has taken on a broader meaning. It can still be used when there’s an international tournament, and suddenly people who don’t usually follow football are discussing the matches.

But it can also apply to club football. Much like “glory hunter” or “plastic fan”, Footix now refers to somebody who supports the most successful team of the day, only to dump them for a different club at the first sign of trouble.

L’Equipe has even published a guide for how to spot a Footix. According to the newspaper, a Footix will “come to the stadium wearing another team’s shirt”, “comes to watch videos on their phone”, and “comes to the stadium but doesn’t sing”.

Use it like this

Il faut que je me renseigne, je ne veux pas passer pour un Footix – I need to do some research, I don’t want to be taken for an armchair supporter.

C’est un Footix, il a un nouveau club toutes les semaines – He’s a fair-weather fan, he has a new club every week.

Ne l’écoute pas, c’est un Footix – Don’t listen to him, he’s not a real football fan.


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