Day: May 7, 2009

Short Stories From The Sharp End

A loss of the ability to see past the end of their noses is one of the more repugnant character traits of the modern football supporter. While the media were treating Chelsea’s absurd claims that “UEFA has got the European Cup final that it wanted” (as a commentator on here this morning pointed out, shame on the BBC in particular for peddling this particular lie on “Breakfast” this morning), clubs were in the process of dying. It brings me no great pleasure in saying this, but the more apocalyptic visions of some observers could well come to pass this summer and no-one seems to care. Here, then, is a brief summary of some of the worst-hit clubs in English football at the moment. Darlington: We wrote a little about Darlington earlier on in the season, when they became the first Football League club in England this season to go into administration. Since then, the club’s manager David Penney left for Oldham Athletic and his assistant Martin Gray has been made redundant, along with nine of the club’s backroom staff, leaving just five full-time staff at the club. A charity match played last weekend to raise funds to keep the club alive attracted a crowd of just 3,500 and raised just £25,000, and a deadline for bids to buy the club passed on Tuesday evening with no new buyer having...

Read More

Shit Shot Mungo: Episode 14

Well, it’s near the end of the Scottish football season, and Heart of Clackmannanshire’s new caretaker manager, Mungo McCrackas, has started to realise that his team’s biggest problem is goalscoring. So, it’s off to Japan to try and sign The Goalinator (the robot that scored all forty-one of their goals this season in one match – do keep up) and, when he’s unable to do so, he attempts to build a replacement himself. Scribbled on a sheet of toilet paper with ink made from extract of a wettened pig’s ear by Dotmund. You can find a variety of different sizes of this strip (along with all the previous episodes)...

Read More

Shit Shot Mungo: Episode 14

Well, it’s near the end of the Scottish football season, and Heart of Clackmannanshire’s new caretaker manager, Mungo McCrackas, has started to realise that his team’s biggest problem is goalscoring. So, it’s off to Japan to try and sign The Goalinator (the robot that scored all forty-one of their goals this season in one match – do keep up) and, when he’s unable to do so, he attempts to build a replacement himself. Scribbled on a sheet of toilet paper with ink made from extract of a wettened pig’s ear by Dotmund. You can find a variety of different...

Read More

A Few Words About Chelsea Last Night

UEFA, according to conspiracy theorists, have “got the final they wanted”. Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League by Barcelona last night, and the opening line of this post is already being widely repeated as the truth. One would have to have a heart of stone to not feel some degree of sympathy for Chelsea – they had approximately two and a half strong calls for a penalty waved away and Barcelona’s goal was their only shot on target of the entire match. There is a big difference, however, between this and a conspiracy of any sort. The flip side to this argument is that if there was such a massive conspiracy against an all-English final, why did the referee send off Abidal for barely making any contact whatsoever with Nicolas Anelka? The most persuasive argument of all would be to say that Barcelona scarcely deserved the win over two legs, but that the referee had a pretty poor night overall, with decisions that affected both sides. Talk of a conspiracy theory, if anything, proves how detached from reality the Premier League has become, especially when there is no basis for it bar a poor refereeing performance. The behaviour of Chelsea’s players haranguing the referee at the final whistle made it yet more difficult to feel much sympathy for them. We all know how tempers rise in the...

Read More