Through the turnstiles: Southampton v Sunderland

EAVESDROPPING on trains is something you cannot avoid, so for my entire journey from London to Southampton I was able to listen  to a young wannabee trying to impress a couple of Sunderland supporters about his exploits as a “journalist” – a “youtuber” with an obsession for “selfies” of the animated kind. Oh well, if it makes him happy. “I am living the dream,” he kept saying. “And Southampton v Sunderland is next for me.” The red and white shirted Sunderland fans hadn’t come quite as far to see their team, but they were exiled Mackems living in the south. … Continue reading Through the turnstiles: Southampton v Sunderland

Great Partnerships: MacDougall and Boyer, brothers in boots

Making the leap from a lower division to the top is never simple, but it was arguably easier to achieve in the 1960s and 1970s. In days when a star name could exist on the periphery for some years before making the leap to a higher level, teams in Football League Divisions Two, Three and Four could keep a local hero much longer than they could possible hope to today. But then, the gulf is much greater today than it was when the likes of Ted MacDougall and Phil Boyer played for Bournemouth & Boscombe Athletic. There are far fewer … Continue reading Great Partnerships: MacDougall and Boyer, brothers in boots

Put your cap on the table

Around 20 years ago, I won a cap for England. I bought an England amateur international cap in an auction. Nobby Stiles, who knew a thing or two about England caps, having won a few himself, handed me the prize after leading the bidding. I paid £ 100 for the faded pink velvet cap and doubtless, it is worth more today. But I won’t sell the cap as it is a slice of football history. It was awarded to Frank Vivian Monk, a centre half who was playing for Southampton at the time. Monk won six international caps, but this … Continue reading Put your cap on the table