1971-72 – the title chase to end all title chases

MALCOLM ALLISON, that big, brash, iconic figure from the early 1970s, once said the period between 1967 and 1972 was a golden age for English football. Of course, during that time, Manchester City were very successful, so naturally, Allison would look back on this six -year spell as special. But this was an age where the big prizes were not monopolised, no matter how hard … Continue reading 1971-72 – the title chase to end all title chases

Why we all should treasure football’s urban roots

FOOTBALL is a sport that flourished during the industrial revolution, especially the professional game, so naturally, stadiums sprung up in red-bricked back streets, on the fringes of mill towns and close to mines, factories and railways. The vision of the working class community trudging to the game, flat caps screwed onto heads, turned-up collar and woollen scarf protecting the supporters from the elements, is one … Continue reading Why we all should treasure football’s urban roots

Football Read Review: Zonal Marking by Michael Cox

YOU could argue that Jonathan Wilson had the final word on football tactics, but if you want to know how European football got to where it is today, Michael Cox’s stage-by-stage story provides a different angle on whiteboard thinking. Zonal Marking is an excellent read and is thought-provoking in the way the author views the transitional phases of European football. You may not agree with … Continue reading Football Read Review: Zonal Marking by Michael Cox

1848 and all that …

ASSOCIATION FOOTBALL did not start with SKY Sports, Italia ‘90 or the Premier League. Moreover, it was not the sole property of the working class, although industrialised football did take root in the north of England rather than the south. The first rules of the game were formulated in 1848 in, of all places, Cambridge. It’s a fact that’s often overlooked, so what better way … Continue reading 1848 and all that …

Club of the Month: CSKA Moscow

AMID growing political tension between the west and Russia, CSKA Moscow will travel to London to face Arsenal in the last eight of the UEFA Europa League. (April 5). It’s not quite a cold war climate, but the tie does act as a prelude to the forthcoming World Cup, with Russian and English fans coming up against each other as the politicians continue to posture … Continue reading Club of the Month: CSKA Moscow