5 songs that accidentally became soccer anthems
Football anthems are chosen by fans — not the music industry. You'll hear these five songs in soccer stadiums around the world, though they originally had nothing to do with sports.
'Yellow Submarine,' The Beatles
Ringo Starr's famous melody is admittedly simple — after all, he was never very good at singing. But neither are most football fans. The singable chorus from "Yellow Submarine" is perfect for the stadium and the text can easily be adapted to suit the match. Spanish side Villarreal have gone even further, adopting "Yellow Submarine" as the nickname for their team, which plays in yellow.
'Guantanamera,' Joseito Fernandez
This song has been around for nearly 90 years, but first became a fan anthem at the 2002 World Cup in Jpan and South Korea. The band Rocca became a one-hit-wonder with the melody from the Cuban classic. Most people only remember the refrain, however: "There's only one Rudi Völler," referring to the German soccer legend. Fans sang it so often that the line was named sentence of the year in 2002.
'Nel blu dipinto di blu (Volare),' Domenico Modugno
This hit by Italian Domenico Modugno, which was supposed to be about the blue sky above Rome, was misappropriated because the word "volare" from the chorus rhymed too well with "finale." The chorus is usually whipped out when a team makes it into the final.
'Go West,' Village People
This stadium anthem has been successful in many different clubs and countries because it's so suited to modification. While Borussia Dortmund screams "Ole, jetzt kommt der BVB" (Ole, now BVB is coming), Premier League side Arsenal uses the text, "One-nil to the Arsenal." While teams may be arch-enemies on the pitch, at least some of them have "Go West" in common.
'You'll Never Walk Alone,' Gerry & The Pacemakers
"You'll Never Walk Alone," which originally came from a Rogers and Hammerstein musical, is a more solemn football anthem. And perhaps that's why it's been around so long. Unlike other soccer songs, its text is very important. First adopted in Liverpool in the 1960s, it is now sung in stadiums all over the world and is practically inseparable from soccer itself.