Day: March 15, 2010

The Beckham Fairytale Stalls Before “Happily Ever After”

It is a small piece of received wisdom that when a major sporting event ends, there is a small power surge as millions of homes put the kettle on in order to make a cup of tea. When David Beckham pulled up during Milan’s match against Chievo yesterday, the same phenomenon may well have taken place as a billion computers were powered up in order to discuss an injury that seems likely to end Beckham’s career, at least at international level. The operation, which was carried out today in Finland, is believed to have been successful, though, but this has not affected the face that many of the words written on the subject today have taken on the timbre of obituary pieces for his career. The press interest in Beckham is hardly surprising, and the premature end of any chance of him playing for England in South Africa pricks two simultaneous and contradictory bubbles in the eyes of the fourth estate. On the one hand, there is the angle of prurience. Beckham has long been considered the property of the media and to an extent lives his life in public. He will be likely to travel to South Africa regardless of whether he is playing in some sort of ambassadorial for the FA’s increasingly ill-starred 2018 World Cup bid, and he will still be one of the biggest shows...

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Durham City Finally Get Off The Mark

Uninformed viewers of Sky Sports News on Saturday evening might have expressed a degree of surprise at their decision over the weekly “Result Of The Day”, but it was hastily explained. Durham City’s 2-1 win away against FC United of Manchester wasn’t just an upset. It was a massive, massive surprise, of course but, considerably more importantly than this, it was a vindication for a season that has seen them trying to play out their fixtures with a degree of dignity in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds – odds that haven’t often been given by those pointing and laughing at the club’s record this season. Durham’s problems began at the start of the season, when it was confirmed that they would not be considered for promotion from the Unibond League Premier Division – or for a place in the play-offs – on account of a 3G artificial surface that they had installed at New Ferens Park a couple of years ago. This decision irked the club’s backers to th extent that they withdrew all funding and left Durham City to go it alone this season. Unable to pay any of their players, they might have taken the decision to fold the club, but instead Durham City decided to fight on with a group of youth team players in the hope that, if nothing else, it would be an...

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