Fútbol! Europe is all about it. I have been very fortunate to visit Germany this summer because it happens to be the UEFA EURO 2016 games, which is being hosted in France. This event occurs every four years and the biggest fútbol teams from across Europe have the chance to battle it out to become the EURO 2016 Champions. The previous tournament was hosted by two countries in 2012, Poland and Ukraine, and the final match was between Spain and Italy. Spain defeated Italy 4-0, but was no surprise since Spain was also in the EURO 2008 championships with Germany. Spain defeated Germany in the finals with a 1-0 win and since then, they have won title the EUFA EURO title. This summer they are the overall favorite to win the entire championship once again.
The national fútbol team of Germany is also very good and globally recognized. The head coach, Joachim Löw, has coached the German national team since 2006 and has had a very successful campaign thus far. His contract will expire in 2018 and during that time, the biggest fútbol championship will be hosted that summer in Russia, which is the “FIFA World Cup 2018.”
To bring it down a notch, Germany also has a huge association called, Bundesliga. The association comprises 18 teams with two different leagues, with the best league being the first. Currently, the Frankfurt team is in the first league but tonight’s game against Nürnberg will determine if they stay in the first league or drop down to the second league. The game tonight and the previous game last Thursday, have been labeled as the relegation games. After conversing with my host family, which happen to be HUGE Frankfurt fans, told me that if Frankfurt drops down to the second league, they will lose 30 million euros and many sponsors. This is a huge deficit and will affect the pride of the Frankfurt fans potentially. Germany loves fútbol so much that the entire country has more clubs than any other country in the world.
Apart from sports, beer consumption is also very important to the people in Germany. My host family lives in Lich, which is famous for its beers and many restaurants and local eating areas serve Licher beer. I am not a beer drinker by any means, but to embrace the culture and understand their pride; it only makes sense to at least try it. Luckily, the Lich brewery makes non-alcoholic beer that tastes really good. Germany is also known for being the second largest country to consume beer, with Ireland being the first.
I work in the city of Frankfurt and the largest stock-exchange in Europe is located here. With the largest economy in Europe, it would be interesting to visit this building. Another spectacular attraction in Frankfurt and one of a kind in all of Europe, is the largest outdoor shopping mall. The shopping mall is commonly called the “Fifth Avenue of Germany” or even “Frankfurts Zeil” and is nicknamed the “Golden Mile:” It has stores such as Apple, Swarovski, Thomas Sabo, Boss, Adidas, and many other popular European stores.
One of my blogs showed a picture of all the different types of gummy bears and flavors. This is significant because gummy bears were actually invented by a German citizen named Hans Riegel. He is credited for inventing the HARIBO brand, which is famous for gummy bears.
Even though it is an exciting time to be in Germany and Europe in general, I chose to return to see the country for a different experience. Four years ago I was a tourist and this time, I have the opportunity to work and observe the business culture of Germany.