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Germany Stumbles at the Finish Line With Gaucho Dance

Germany Stumbles at the Finish Line With Gaucho Dance

Have you ever wondered about the difference in how Germans and Argentine gauchos dance? Fresh off their World Cup finals victory over Argentina, six stars of the German national team have an answer: The gaucho, he is hunched over; the German, he is straight-backed and proud.

On Tuesday, the German national team returned to a rapturous crowd of several hundred thousand people in Berlin. They rode a big black bus through the streets, sang, and then six players, including Mario Götze, who scored the brilliant winning goal in the final game, performed the so-called Gaucho dance. Reportedly, the dance is a favorite of the traveling supporters of the Mannschaft, as the German national team is known.

The refrain goes something like this, while hunched over. "This is how the gaucho dances, the gaucho dances like this." And with a straight back: "This is how the German dances, the German dances like this."

The whole thing is, well, unfortunate:

As we wrote on Monday, Germany has reacted to its World Cup win with a deep sense of ambivalence. On the one hand, Germans are deeply proud of their brilliant, workmanlike national team; on the other, the wild feelings of patriotism kindled by the team have left some Germans feeling uneasy. Can Germany harbor this kind of nationalism, many wonder, without it leading down the road of the country’s dark 20th-century history? That may seem like something of a bizarre and overblown way to look at a soccer game, even one as popular as the World Cup, but the fact of that feeling is a measure of the degree to which World War II still haunts the German conscience.

So here then we have six strapping German lads, fresh off a World Cup win, comparing Argentines to hunchbacks and contrasting their own straight backs with the Argentines’ physical decrepitude. While many Germans were quick to write this off as a case of boys being boys, others found it frustrating to see the celebration marred in this way.

Here’s a translated selection of the German Twitter reaction.

There he is again, the ugly German.

Naturally, six German footballers are dumber than one German footballer:

Four weeks of the German national team’s anti-racism campaign erased by five seconds of this gaucho crap. Shame.