On Sunday in France, Team USA won its second straight FIFA Women’s World Cup. It was a another watershed moment in the growth of the global sport and the American national soccer program, which saw its women’s games outpace its men’s game in revenue generation by nearly a million dollars in 2016-2018.
The women’s game is a huge tourist draw, as well, attracting fans from all corners of the nation including northwest Arkansas. Below, two Fayetteville girls representing FC Arkansas talk about how their trip to France to see Team USA play. The trip inspired them to one day become Arkansas’ first senior national team members in the world’s most popular sport.
Janie Kramer and Ashley Kramer
“Always go strong, and end like a beast,” is one of the lessons the Kramer girls learned abroad. No doubt, that’s exactly the kind of ending and aftermath many American fans, players and coaches went for as they poured out onto the cobblestone streets of old Lyon after the 2-0- beatdown of Holland.
One of the places where they likely ended up to celebrate Team USA’s historic fourth World Cup title is is the town’s only Razorback sports bar:
Little is known about how this pub, apparently founded in summer 2013, got its name or trademarked Razorback logo. The Arkansas fan who took this photo wasn’t able to enter, and nothing online indicates that the owners are American or have Arkansas connections.
It would be awesome to imagine a group of Arkansas Razorback fans ducking into this little dive after Team USA’s huge win to chat about the World Cup win, as well as the merits of Ben Hicks vs. Nick Starkel, or how many three-pointers Isaiah Joe projects to swish in what could be an historic sophomore season.
Alas, this swine-tastic scenario is unlikely.
What’s more likely is that the owners named the bar after the wild boar native to much of Europe, including certain parts of France. Indeed, the “Razorback” is the object of many fancy-pants French hunts:
It’s more probable that the owners of Lyon’s Razorback bar simply took the Arkansas Razorback logo and have used it for their own money-making ends. (It’s highly unlikely the University of Arkansas gets any cut off this.)
Other bars across Europe, apparently, also base their theme off the Razorback. Here’s one in Lille of northern France:
This appears to be a local dive, based on fairly good Yelp reviews by French natives. In 2013, “Jade P.” noted that one of the positives is that “they finally put a plate on the huge hole in the girls’ bathroom door.”
Wholesale co-opting of the Razorback name (and logo) doesn’t just stop with bars and restaurants. It also bleeds over into the world of American football itself. At least six football teams named after Razorbacks or Hogs exist throughout Europe.
Buckle up, dear reader. In the below post, you’ll see things get a whole lot weirder.