July 7, 2008

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Spain does it again, taking another major sports victory

Spain did it again, and we want to be sure the world recognizes Spain's athletic prowess. Yesterday a Spanish tennis player won at Wimbledon in what The New York Times refers to in its Page One story as an "epic battle," replete with a five-column picture of the winner celebrating. And only a week ago Spain took its first major soccer title in 44 years by beating Germany in the Euro Cup.

What about the European press, you ask? Well, of the front pages from Spain on our Web site today, about two-thirds either whooped-up the event on Page One or have teases to inside coverage and a third of the dailies have nothing about the victory on the first page. El Periodico in Barcelona has a page-wide photo similar to that in The New York Times, El Mundo in Madrid has a different page-wide photo of "The hero of Wimbledon," while Malaga Hoy in Malaga runs off with the prize for two Page One action pictures that seem to be moving of the man who made it happen, Rafael Nadal.

As to where it happened, The Guardian in London also has a large photo and a lead story about how "Nadal wins historic final," by defeating Roger Federer, The Daily Telegraph in London has a picture of our hero with his trophy, while The Herald in Glasgow, Scotland, also has the winner with his trophy and a story about "Victory in record-breaking final."

Coverage varied in the rest of Europe. De Morgen in Brussels, Belgium, teases to an inside story with a photo of Nadal, 24 Hours Daily and Trud in Sofia, Bulgaria, do the same, as do Lidove Noviny in Prague, Czech Republic, and Corriere della Sera in Milan, Italy. However, Publico in Lisbon, Portugal, and Dagens Nyheter in Stockholm, Sweden, feel that an action photo of the Wimbledon winner is worthy of Page One.

Wimbledon didn't get the play that Spain's win last week did but maybe that's the difference between tennis and soccer.

Gene Mater is a Freedom Forum media consultant.

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