William Keo


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The Coupe d’Afrique des Nations des Banlieues 2022, or Coupe d’Aulnay, held its fourth match in Aulnay-sous-Bois, in the French Banlieue. Like the famous African Cup of Nations, the tournament involves teams of African origin, but the players are now first, second or third-generation French citizens. The tournament is part of a wider movement of soccer competitions in the suburbs, which have gained momentum since its debut in 2019, in Créteil. Its success goes beyond the sport itself: for the 1.6 million inhabitants of Seine-Saint-Denis, a region best known for its high levels of poverty or violence, the event brings communities together in a feverish but joyous atmosphere.
Created at the dawn of the Covid-19 events to open up the French banlieue’s population from social isolation, the match has become a source of pride for the locals who come to support the teams. In preparation for the 2024 Summer Olympics, whose events will be held in Seine-Saint-Denis, sport is already shaping life in the Banlieue, where I grew up and live. “Offside” paints a social portrait of the French Banlieue through its most popular sport: soccer.


First Edition
Publisher: Four Eyes Editions
Publication Year: 2023
Format: Softcover


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