Who won the infamous Christmas truce football match?
The Christmas Day truce of 1914 – when, for a few precious hours, British and German troops laid down their weapons and fraternised in no man’s land – is one of the most poignant events of the entire war. We know that, at various points up and down the Western Front, the combatants emerged from their trenches and sang carols together, shared wine and cigarettes, and even donned fancy dress. And we’re also told that they took each other on at a game of football, which the Germans are reported to have won 3-2. The fact of the matter is that evidence for this friendly match is scant. While we know there were men that did play football that day, the players may well have been entirely British and there is no certainty as to the score line. Either way, the military authorities took a dim view of the festive amnesty, and the two sides would return to killing each other within a matter of hours.