“Stick to Football” – Politics & humanitarianism in the modern game

In a world that’s as polarised politically and socially as it’s ever been, it can be very difficult for anybody to air an opinion without being shouted down. Say something in support of A and people will criticise you for not supporting B, while judging you for not even mentioning C.  Add social media and …

Contrasting Fortunes: Ole vs Super Frank

At the start of the 2019/20 Premier League season, Manchester United and Chelsea were in similar positions. The two clubs, who for so often have demanded success at all costs, now appeared to have been set much lower expectations of the coming season. Both were going into the new campaign with an ex-player at the …

The Curious Case of British Asian Footballers

At the time of last Census, British Asians (Britons who trace their origins to South Asia: India, Bangladesh, Pakistan, The Maldives & Sri Lanka) made up nearly 8% of the UK’s population. Of all British professional footballers in the UK, just 0.3% are Asian. Why and how is such a large proportion of the population …

Wolves at the Door

Anybody who loves watching football will have loved watching Wolverhampton Wanderers this season. They are on course for a Top 7 finish and are through to the semi-finals of the FA Cup after a comprehensive victory against a resurgent Manchester United. They excite and entertain us whilst delivering the sort of steely, resilient performances we’d …

#Spygate – Hysteria & Hypocrisy

Football punditry is divisive by its very nature – it’s usually a subjective view of on-the-pitch events by people who are well placed to have an opinion on the matter. The best kind of punditry analyses facets of the game, provides evidence and, above all, teaches. The worst kind of punditry patronisingly re-tells in-match events …

An Ode to the Shitehouse

The antihero, the flawed protagonist, the shitehouse. We love to see them fail, we love to see them prosper. From Tony Soprano to Patrick Bateman to Walter White, we are hardwired to love these characters – they justify our flaws and help ease our internal conflicts – and ultimately, we can’t keep our prying and …

Success in Modern Football

Bill Shankly (7), Sir Matt Busby (8), Bob Paisley (12), Sir Alex Ferguson (24). The most decorated managers in English football. What made them successful? Above all: Trophies. Trophies are still the most quantifiable way of measuring success in the modern era, but the goalposts of ‘success’ have undeniably moved.   Of course, ‘success’ needs …