Day: October 28, 2011

This Week In Plymouth: The Final Chapter & A New Beginning

Clever man, that James Brent, the (drum roll)… new owner of Plymouth Argyle. In the past week he has revealed himself to be far from the philanthropic ‘saviour’ many fans have keenly labelled him, while displaying a sure political touch, to protect his financial interests, against those of staff, players and administrators owed money. Yet across those same seven days, he has re-affirmed what most people outside certain parts of Cornwall, and the mind of a certain insolvency practitioner, have known for months; that he is the best available hope for Argyle’s future – by some distance. And now he has the chance to prove it. It was appropriate that administrators, the P&A Partnership, would be the last obstacle to a deal. The issue of their fees – the most money, to those who need it least – kept fans on tenterhooks to the end, threatening another e-mail bombardment of P&A offices. But when Brent made his “best and final offer” this week, even P&A grasped what “final” really meant, after months of missed “final” deadlines throughout the administration. And bout time too, as it was hardly a last-minute issue. Like almost everything that has gone wrong at Argyle since the CVA was agreed in May, it dates back to P&A and lead administrator Brendan Guilfoyle’s kid-glove treatment of Cornish property developer Kevin Heaney; on this occasion their failure...

Read More

My Favourite Match: Chelsea vs Liverpool, The 1996/97 FA Cup

We briefly started the My Favourite Match season during the summer with my own personal selection of the 1984 European Championship semi-final between France and Portugal. This morning it’s back, with Andrew Harding recalling a 4-2 win which, as a seven year-old, came to define his relationship with the London club. When posed with the question what is my favourite game of football, there is one game that leaps to the front for reasons of intense emotion. The first game I can remember where the impending doom of a defeat and the sheer joy of jubilation were inflicted on me. I was only seven years old. Given that the game was played almost fifteen years ago, my memory is one of emotive recollection rather than imagery. The writing of this presented me with the chance to re-assess the game. At the age of seven, I’d only been interested in football sufficiently for seven months or so. I had acquired reasonable knowledge of the game and a passing interest grew thanks to the 1995-96 UEFA Champions League Final and Euro ’96. They developed my interest in the game as a whole but on an emotional level, it was a FA Cup Fourth Round tie played on a cold Saturday evening in January 1997 that elevated my liking of the game into a passionate adoration. Earlier in the season, Liverpool had...

Read More