The beautiful game's history lesson

Sports shouldn’t be overdone, nor should its place in society, both as a driver and reflection of our individual and collective histories, be underestimated.¬† One of the key binding forces of sports is the short and long-term history of the franchise, the league, individual player, or the event. “Remember when?” is the start of thousands of conversations about sports and the local, national and even global events which help contextualize that sports moment.

In Europe, we are seeing a traveling exhibition which has already had tremendous success in Brussels and Liverpool. The “Only a Game?” exhibit, now in Turkey, explores multiple stories highlighting the development of European society and the sport of football (soccer).


According to the UEFA website, “Only A Game? has already enjoyed resounding successes in Brussels and Liverpool. It has a wider appeal than just to football fans, however, as it examines the links between the development of European society and the growth of its most popular sport. Visitors are invited to plunge into the emotions of the game, inspired by a selection of prestigious artefacts, trophies and memorabilia, covering in particular the last 50 years of European football. The exhibition also aims to provoke visitors into considering the social and cultural impact of football.”

The Only A Game? exhibition, designed by Olivier Guilbaud and marking the Turkish city’s year as European Capital of Culture will run from 21 January until the end of April at the Taksim Cumhuriyet Sanat Galerisi in Istanbul.

Turkey is already an incredible place to visit. Here is another reason to book that trip!