The Premier League has two teams on the brink of greatness but needs a more even playing field

THE PREMIER LEAGUE, thankfully, has finished and the FA and the clubs must be breathing a collective sigh of relief. It has been a peculiar campaign, unprecedented in so many ways, but even without the disruption of the pandemic, it has not been a classic year. Liverpool fans, will, of course, claim it is the […]

A playground of testosterone: Going to the football match 1970s-style

FOOTBALL is a sport built around nostalgia. We remember our heroes, draw comparisons between the past and today and don the rose-tinted glasses of experience to complain about contemporary trends and behaviours. Not everything was marvellous in the past, not everything is bad in the 21st century, but as we all become our parents and […]

Anti-racism in football is more than a hashtag – and must go beyond scratching the surface

FOOTBALL has always been full of hypocrisy, from self-appointed socialists living in gated communities and driving marque vehicles to clubs trying to position themselves as representatives of a surreal people’s republic that charges its members astronomical sums to be a part of the tribe. And they are quick to show they are embracing the latest […]

Tottenham Hotspur 1970-73 – Bill Nick’s final flourish

IT IS hardly surprising, but when Tottenham Hotspur’s great teams and players are discussed, the conversation rarely moves beyond 1951 and 1961. The latter’s achievement, the then-hallowed double, would be something of a millstone round the neck of the club and its long-serving manager, Bill Nicholson, but 10 years on, Spurs did manage to rekindle […]

Great Reputations: Tottenham 1970-73 – Bill Nick’s final flourish

IT IS hardly surprising, but when Tottenham Hotspur’s great teams and players are discussed, the conversation rarely moves beyond 1951 and 1961. The latter’s achievement, the then-hallowed double, would be something of a millstone round the neck of the club and its long-serving manager, Bill Nicholson, but 10 years on, Spurs did manage to rekindle […]

Fleet Street’s first lady…how Julie Welch broke the mould

BACK in the 1980s, a rather amusing TV series called Hold the Back Page, scripted by Stan Hey, told the story of a Fleet Street sportswriter (played by David Warner) who had moved from a broadsheet to a tabloid in order to make some money out of his profession. The series, which was critically panned […]

Derby days: Chelsea, Tottenham and the 1970s slump in London football

THREE suedeheads sat on the London tube train at Tower Hill station chanting: “We’re the Tottenham, we’re the Tottenham, we’re the Tottenham, from the Lane.” There I was, with a Chelsea scarf tucked into my coat, on my way to Stamford Bridge to see Chelsea play Manchester City on October 10, 1970. I had just […]