Blog: Chris Brook-CarterFor the good of the food sector, we should cheer on Germany and Spain

Chris Brook-Carter | 2 July 2010

Europe's economy is in danger of sinking into the bog so, for the sake of retail sales, let's all support Germany and Spain in this weekend's World Cup Quarter Finals.

Reports of Germans partying like maniacs after thumping England at the World Cup last weekend made me feel ill. But, my national pride aside, I bet retailers were rubbing their hands.

Beyond the street parties, the dark shadow of bank debt is threatening to block out the sun in Europe. Banks in the eurozone owe hundreds of billions of euros to each other in a horrible dominoe system that stretches from the rot in Athens to Berlin, via Madrid and Paris.

If Europe's economy were a football team, it would be England - sluggish, rotten and reliant on past glory.

FIFA's World Cup is not going to deliver us from this fiscal nightmare-in-waiting.

But, there has been growing acceptance down the years that World Cup success really can lift the mood of a nation.

Legend has it that an England victory in the 1990 World Cup (they lost, of course, to Germany in the semi-finals) would have prompted an ailing Margaret Thatcher to call a snap election.

While, only this week there have been reports that New Zealand's Government could time its own General Election next year to the fortunes of the All Blacks at the Rugby World Cup.

If a World Cup win means that people are happy enough to vote for you, then they will be happy enough to buy things too. Just for a brief moment, they may forget their own impending doom and splurge out on celebratory food and drinks.

So come on (hesitates) Germany, and Spain, let's build some consumer confidence. Vuvuzelas at the ready.


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