The pogroms 12 years ago at the Manezh are to blame for alcohol, police, advertising and … the media

I read on a note by colleague Yuri Volokhov about the pogroms on the Manezh 12 years ago and decided to share his memories. Moreover, to some extent I was an eyewitness of those events in the center of Moscow, from which it was close at hand to the editors of "Soviet Sport". Of course, much has already been erased in my memory. But I definitely remembered that it was generally a very calm day. Right Checked. Everything happened on Sunday. Our editorial office was then still located in its historic building in Bolshoi Spasoglinischevsky Lane (former Arkhipov Street) and before the sale of the newspaper Moskovskaya Nedvizhimost to the KP publishing house, there was still more than a year. The Moscow Hotel, where the screens were installed, could be reached on foot in 10-15 minutes. In 2002, Soviet Sport was on the rise. Circulations grew at a record pace. The Monday issue, 90-95 percent dedicated to football, was especially popular. During the World Cup in South Korea and Japan sold more than 200 thousand copies! By the momentous event, for Russia, in fact, the decisive match of the 2002 World Cup, which, without exaggeration, was waiting for the whole country, at the same time it began at the most convenient time – at 14.30, there were business people who organized the installation of screens on Manezhnaya Square for live broadcasting Japan. We at the editorial office also made a fuss: we issued a special leaflet on coated paper with announcements of materials on the Monday issue and distributed among the fans, and there were ten thousand of them free of charge. Sunday is the quietest day in the editorial office. The authorities, as a rule, are not present, and the morning planning session is not. Who did not work in the room, pulled himself up to two – three hours. After watching the match on TV, at 17.00 gathered for an evening meeting. Our photo and writing correspondents have already called back and recorded riots of drunk hordes on the spot. It was decided to give almost the entire issue to the riots, and to make the cover page reversal. That is, to double its format and put photos of flaming upside-down cars with drunken rioters dancing on them, waving tricolors. After the planning session, I went to eat at the Aist cafe, a cult place for all generations of Soviet Sport employees. But what is it? At the exit of the Kitay Gorod metro station, I saw small groups of inflated youth. In small dashes they moved from above – from Lubyanka Square. In the eyes of some teenagers, I saw a fright. Soon riot policemen chasing them appeared. They failed to catch anyone … What happened at the Manezh, and most importantly – why? I see several reasons. 1) The police turned out to be completely unprepared. There was no gain from the word at all. The then-chief of the Moscow police, Vladimir Pronin, later explained the small number of law enforcement officers as follows: “It was as much as was required by the weekend regime.” And added: “The reserve approached on time.” During? No matter how! I was ashamed of the police and terrified of ordinary citizens, after our guys who arrived from there told how stoned hooligans drove people in uniform during execution, and they cowered with a cowardly raid and hid in porches or shops. 2) Sea spilled of alcohol. In fact, this is the main reason. It is already difficult to believe in it now, but in those years, alcohol was sold literally everywhere – in underground passages, in kiosks on the street, at the entrance to the subway. And besides, around the clock! The sellers could not have come to ask someone for a passport. Unless the children were really given a potion. Since it was Sunday, fans — 80 percent of them were young people under 25 — arrived in advance, including from the Moscow Region. Naturally, they immediately began to warm up with beer. Alcohol consumption on the street then was also not regulated in any way. Then, as a rule, drinks were stronger. Apple cider, which was sold in one and a half liter plastic bottles, was very popular, and it cost a penny. By the end of the match, after these libations that were plentiful for several hours, many youths were already turned off, but they were also skillfully provoked … 3) Before the game, during the break and after the final whistle, the company’s advertisement was regularly displayed as I understand it, who organized this mass supervision. I don’t know whether this was done on purpose or it all happened by chance, but this video actually called on the public to pogroms. The creators of the advertising clip did not find anything better than to use frames from the cult action movie "Big Lebowski" in the promotion of their company. The ones where a fat man breaks the windows of a car near his house with a crowbar, after which there is an advertising message: “We have no bad news …” 4) Well, a little self-criticism. In all these outrages, a huge "merit" of the media. Later, Andrei Arshavin rightly says: "Your expectations are your problems." It was only after the defeat from the Greeks and the shameful departure from the Euro that Russian fans in Warsaw were too few, and the police – a lot, and alcohol was excluded in the vicinity of the stadium, but here … Probably, not only me, but everyone who is small Malsky is interested in football, have not forgotten what bacchanalia long before the start of the 2002 World Cup, the media arranged with us after the draw. Like, the Russians got the weakest group! Tunisia, Japan, Belgium – put one left. Many immediately began to wonder who we would end up in the 1/8 finals, which threatened a date with Brazil. The tortured victory over Tunisia 2-0 even higher raised the degree of expectations before Sunday's meeting with Japan. Moreover, in the starting round the hosts, unlike us, lost two points, tied with Belgium – 2: 2. In the first half, nothing portended a conflagration in the heart of the capital. Otherwise, police chiefs would have called for reinforcements long ago. Everything changed at the beginning of the second half, when the Japanese opened an account. Every minute the tension in the square increased. Moreover, ours looked extremely unconvincing and toothless. The hosts controlled, as I recall, the course of the game. Unless the Beschastnykh had a half-chance to soak the score. In addition to tension in geometric progression, the number of drunk in the insole increased. Towards the end of the game, bottles flew from the crowd towards the screen. Just from under that cider. Many did not reach the goal and fell into the heads of those who stood in front. So the genie was released. Mass disappointment reached its climax for the final whistle, which was the signal for the start of hostilities. Advertising tricked – bad news still happens. Crazy from alcohol and impunity, the youngsters began to destroy everything that fell into their hands. Busoters have made all their unfulfilled expectations a problem for owners of cars that were blithely parked opposite the State Duma. It went to RTR television broadcasters, who were nearly burned alive in an editorial minivan. Fortunately, after the drunken redneck began to break the windows of a car, the driver managed to give a gas report … All this was described in detail, with an abundance of photos and eyewitness accounts the next day our newspaper wrote.

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