Euro 2020: Why are England fans singing Sweet Caroline?
It has become an anthem for many sports in England, from darts to rugby league, as fans relish the idea that ‘good times have never been good’.
However, it appears to have its origin as a cross-Atlantic sports anthem as Major League baseball team Boston Red Sox claim its popularity.
It is alleged that during a game at Red Sox’s Fenway Park in 1997, ball-park music employee Amy Toby played Sweet Caroline because someone she knew had a baby named Caroline.
Over the next few years, the song was played on select occasions, but that all changed when Dr. Charles Steinberg joined the Red Sox as Executive Vice President of Public Affairs in 2002 and came to the conclusion that the song had transformative powers, so he ordered it to be played during every match.
On April 20, 2013, in the first emotional match in Fenway Park after the Boston Marathon bombings, Diamond went out to the Diamond to play his song live.
At the time, Premier League side Castleford, which had named new head coach Daryl Powell, began looking for ways to introduce some razzamatazz to the aging Wheldon Road, which has become Mend-A-Hose Jungle.
Then CEO Steve Gill, a Neil Diamond fan, became aware of fans’ reaction to “Sweet Caroline” at the Red Sox and the clips were played, along with Tom Jones “Delilah” and Oasis “Wonderwall”, after the match to measure. Fan opinions.
“Sweet Caroline got the most backlash and stopped,” explained Tom Maguire, Tiger Media Director.
Maguire says it was fully played for the first time after full-back Luke Dorn scored a last-minute game-winning attempt against Wigan on March 9, 2014, and by coincidence or not, Diamond’s catchy tone became something of a lucky charm. Castleford enjoyed a remarkable rise in fortunes under Powell.
The Tigers turned back the clock to the ‘Classy Cas’ era of the ’60s and ’70s, reaching the Challenge Cup final at Wembley in 2014 and their first Premier League final three years later after having topped the table for the first time. Time in the club’s 91-year history.
‘Sweet Caroline’ isn’t played until after a win, so Tigers fans are hoping to ring around Wembley at the final whistle for the Betfred Challenge Cup final against St Helens on Saturday.
Not traditionally associated with the English football team but after DJ Tony Parry chose to play it on Fat Les’ Vindaloo After beating Germany in the last 16, fans have since sung it and coach Gareth Southgate has been a huge fan. “You can’t beat Neil Diamond a little bit,” said the Three Lions president. “It’s just a really cheerful song that, I think, brings people together.”