Day: September 12, 2010

Wayne Rooney, Mohammad Amir and the News of the World

The News of the World has been much in the news lately, as well as making it and printing it. The ‘phone-tapping scandal will run its course and might or might not come to anything – if they are as deep in that as allegations suggest then of course I hope they’re held to account for it. But for me it’s a bit of a side issue. It’s hardly necessary to find evidence of illegal activity in order to hold the NotW in contempt: the evidence of their toxic effect on public – and private – life is there for all to see in the published edition of the ‘paper.

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Match Of The Week: Burnley 4-3 Preston North End

On the eighth of September 1888, on the opening day of the Football League in England, Preston North End beat Burnley by five goals to two in their first match of ther season. It was the start of the year of The Invincibles, the Preston side that ran away with the Football League championship by eleven points. The margin was all the more remarkable for the twin facts that they only played twenty-two matches in that first, nascent season of league football in England and that, of course, teams only received two points for a win at the time. To put it another way, in their first season as a Football League club, Preston North End only dropped four points. One hundred and twenty-two years on, Preston North End and Burnley resumed hostilities in the Championship in front of BBC television cameras last night. This is something of a secondary derby match for both of these Lancashire clubs. Burnley’s real ire is reserved for Blackburn Rovers, while Preston North End’s traditional rivalry sees them look towards the coast and Blackpool. Both of these rivals, however, are sunning themselves in the Premier League so Burnley and Preston have to make do with with each other for the time being. It’s an unsatisfactory situation and the empty seats at Turf Moor seem to indicate that this particular match hasn’t really caught...

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