Thursday, 10 July 2014

Miroslav Klose, Soccer and the Case for Christian Ethics

Miroslav Klose with team mate Thomas Müller in the 2014 World Cup semi-finals. Image courtesy of Agência Brasil.

Joel Kontinen

Soccer has had its share of foul play. In the 1986 world cup quarter-finals, Diego Maradona of Argentina scored a goal against England with his hand, claiming it was the "Hand of God".

Not all players in this year’s world cup have been true gentlemen. There has been no shortage of cheating. Perhaps the worst case was that of Uruguay's Luis Suarez, who bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder.

This is a striking contrast to German striker Miroslav Klose, who with his goal against Brazil became the top World Cup scorer (16 goals) of all times.

Klose is a practicing Catholic who obviously takes his religion – and Christian morals – seriously. While playing for the German Bundesliga club Werder Bremen, Klose once protested against a penalty kick the referee had given his team through error. More recently, when playing for the Italian team Lazio against Napoli, he scored with his hand and told the referee to disallow it.

One might call it honesty, which, as many would know, is a Christian virtue.