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Robert Enke

Germany
by AdamLeedsUnited (U14128620) 10 November 2009
Date of birth:
24 August 1977 10 November 2009
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I have just heard of the tragic suicide of Robert Enke. The thoughts of all football fans should be with his family at this awful time.

R.I.P.

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posted Nov 12, 2009

There is a very sensible article on the German football portal 11 Freunde which every football fan should read and think twice about his behaviour in a stadium. As the author tells, everyone might carry a piece of collective guilt for the terrible tragedy that happened.

Here's the link to the article:
http://www.11freunde.de/bundesligen/125586

When I got home on Tuesday night to phone calls telling me to watch the news about Robert Enke, I wasn't quite sure what to expect. But from the crowds already gathering at Hannover's ground to mark his tragic death with tributes, candles and tears, it was obvious that huge public sympathy existed for the troubled goalkeeper and the family he left behind. Two days later, I switched on the news this morning to see the crowds still on television, signing a book of condolences, leaving tributes at his former clubs and holding back tears during interviews to camera. As much as many are left asking 'why did this happen?', it is important to ask 'why are we reacting in this way?'. As I ate my breakfast this morning, the notion of guilt popped into my head.

At the heart of the ostentatious shows of affection for him now are several questions, such as 'Why didn't we know?' and 'Why didn't we help' Perhaps because as fans we judge players extremely quickly and with very little consideration for what they feel as human beings. Have you ever booed a player, or shouted out from the stands that he's hopeless, doesn't know what he's doing, or worse? I know I have.

'They are on the stage, I have a right tell them they're no good'

Actually, I am a terrible b**tard who has booed bands, clapped ironically at rubbish theatre performances and who has been thrown out of clubs for shouting abuse at DJs. I tell myself, 'They are on the stage, I have paid to see them, they have taken the choice to put themselves up there and perform for me, therefore, I have a right tell them they're no good.' Football is the same, right?

I came late to football. The first live match I went to see was England B v Belarus in May 2006 (we lost 2-1) and I returned to the office saying that I felt like a voyeur. I had been reading Roland Barthes at the time, which might have influenced my thinking, but today I remembered why I felt like that: there is a fundamental difference between football and theatre (or other such performances): Unlike theatre, a football match does not need an audience to have meaning. It has an internal meaning because it has a result. That is why managers can justifiably say, 'It's the result not the performance that counts.' That is why matches played behind closed doors still have a winner. However much fans add to the atmosphere and embellish the meaning of football, they are not a prerequisite and are instead privileged voyeurs of a confrontation between 22 human beings. Unlike the actors, bands or DJs I have heckled, those human beings are not fundamentally there to be appraised by me.

Hannover's Martin Kind was quick to point out that Enke's mental state had nothing to do with football. But that doesn't mean in future there might not be players out there on the pitch playing badly because of emotional turmoil that we can't possibly imagine from the stands. Football can be a sanctuary for players precisely because of its internal meaning, one that exists separately from 'real' life. In fact, as fans aren't we often looking for that same escape either in the game itself or as part of the community we tell ourselves we create?

I wish I could remember that next time I'm shouting 'A...loch!' at someone with a few thousand other people.

RIP Robert Enke

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posted Nov 12, 2009

RIP Enke. The thoughts of all football fans are with your family at this awful time

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posted Nov 13, 2009

"You are absolutely correct LiverBirdMate (U3190365)whenever I see dying and starving African children on the TV I crack up - no sympathy at all! (I am being sarcastic just in case you are too stupid to realise!)"

What in heaven's blazes is this guy on about?? The point about African children wasn't even mine to start with.

"Why don't you go back to dreaming about winning the Premiership and leave the intelligent conversation to those with a brain?"

I don't believe this. A Chelsea fan talking like this in a thread where we come to pay our respects to Enke. He questions me about intelligence and a brain, and has to bring the winning of the EPL into this.

'cfcthruanthru', in case YOU are too stupid to realise, this thread is nothing to do with English football, winning, silly banter to wind up others. Man has taken his life very drastically, has endured a lot of pain and suffering, leaves behind a wife and adopted child, family, friends, colleagues, football fans.

If you dont wish to pay the thread the respect it deserves, just leave it. I'm not interested in winning trophies, football in general, considering Enke. You didn't get it - football is put aside in memory of the man. And you had to mock it with words about 'winning the Premiership'.

You go back to dreaming. I'll continue to pay my respects here.

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posted Nov 15, 2009

If the guy had the balls to throw himself in front of an oncoming train, strange how he didn't have the courage to deal with his own issues.

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posted Nov 15, 2009

The man had depression since 2003. I think he was trying to come to terms with it during that time.

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posted Nov 15, 2009

I think he tried to in private and felt he couldn't the problems come out into the public for fear of losing another daugther and maybe even picked on in the press/by other fans etc?|

Saw the funeral service on the BBC site.

Moving and as you would expect very respectful (heard there were 50k fans alone which shows how popular he was)

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posted Nov 15, 2009

Its true there are always worse people off than us in life (I do try to tell that to some who thought think this country is a mess and rubbish etc) but I think football fans wanted to show respect (if it happened to one of their players they'd hope for the same)

Clearly having "millions of Euros" wasn't the perfect life maybe?

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posted Nov 15, 2009

"Well, how depressing it must be earning millions of euros just for leaping about in front of a net!"

Would he, if given the opportunity, have swapped the "millions of euros" from "leaping about" for his Lara back and his depression forever solved?? People love to put things into a monetary prospective and think others must be happy because they earn or look to be earning substantially.

"It would have done him good to visit an impoverished African nation and see the very real daily hardships that ordinary people have to endure. I think such an experience would have made him feel rather ashamed."

And you think that would have ended his depression? Does anyone know why he was depressed?

"Good medicine too for all you 'sympathetic' posters on this thread!"

You need to look a little further than you have done. I know of many who appear to have the trappings of life, only to find they got them illegally. Others too who appaear to have most that many dream of, only to still commit suicide.

I gave the link of a banker of 20years experience, big mansion, wife, child, who committed suicide. There's another banker who was on a six-figure salary, who committed suicide recently this year. Do you think money was their appropriate medicine?

And this example of the under-privileged in Africa. Is that the only place in the world with a poor level of living? Or is it the only one to pick up from other comments, because people dont really focus on the under-priviliege elsewhere unless someone else mentions it.

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posted Nov 17, 2009

"Would he, if given the opportunity, have swapped the "millions of euros" from "leaping about" for his Lara back and his depression forever solved?? People love to put things into a monetary prospective and think others must be happy because they earn or look to be earning substantially."

His "depression" started before his daughter was born as far as I am aware. My point was that he must have taken things a little too much for granted.

"And this example of the under-privileged in Africa. Is that the only place in the world with a poor level of living? Or is it the only one to pick up from other comments"

I did not read these 'other comments'. The example comes from my own experience. I had visited third world countries in other parts of the world too I may well have mentioned them.

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