A Brazilian player who plays for MP of Mikkeli, a second-division football team, walks out in protest in the middle of a match against FC Myllypuro. His team is trailing 4-5. MP chairman Harri Kivinen and the team manager, Mika Korpela, are outraged and state that the player, Denis, probably won’t play for MP anymore and can go back to his home country.
What would have happened if a Finnish player would have done the same thing as Denis? Certainly you couldn’t send him back to a country because he’s a Finn. But you could slap him with a fine and suspend him from a few practices and matches.
Even if Kivinen and Korpela said that Denis could be handed a one-way ticket to Brazil, the player has a two year contract with MP. Kivinen said that the player could be leased to another club or even be playing for MP next season.
Suggesting that Denis should be given a one-way ticket to Brazil appears harsh. Add to this the fact that the chairman of MP, Kivinen, is a councilman for the Perussuomalaiset (PS),* an anti-immigration party, and some questions arise.
When Kivinen ran for councilman of the Mikkeli city council in October 2012, he “totally agreed” that Finland should tighten immigration policy and funding to immigrants with tax euros.
Read full story (in Finnish) here.
If we left Kivinen’s and his party’s anti-immigration views aside, we could ask why he’s making generalizations about foreign players. He claims on Länsi-Savo that they are more temperamental than Finnish ones.
“He’s [Denis] a player with a fiery soul,” he said, “Brazilians have a different mentality than us. They are these type of people, when they don’t get the ball they get angry and show their feelings.”
Kivinen adds that “foreigners show their feelings in a more heated manner than us [Finns]” and that “they over-react more easily than our [Finnish] players.”
I wonder where Kivinen gets his facts. Is there a study that proves that foreign player over-react more than Finnish ones and have fiery souls?
I seriously doubt it.
The only matter that Kivinen’s opinions reveal are his stereotypes.
* The Finnish name for the Finns Party is the Perussuomalaiset (PS). The English names of the party adopted by the PS, like True Finns or Finns Party, promote in our opinion nativist nationalism and xenophobia. We therefore prefer to use the Finnish name of the party on our postings.