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It’s often said that sport, at its heart, is inherently a substitute for war.

In Europe, the animosity that festers from centuries-old conflicts can be felt most viscerally at many of the continent’s various soccer derbies. Whether it’s sectarian hatred flowing down from the terraces whenever Rangers and Celtic meet in Glasgow, or the clashing political and national identities that underpin Spain’s “El Clasico” between Barcelona and Real Madrid, proxy wars take place week in, week out across the continent.

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