Day: July 26, 2012

Match Of The Past: Aston Villa

And so we reach the end of the current run of Match Of The Past, our summer series covering some of the great matches in the history of the clubs that will be making up the coming seasons Premier League. Our last club – and these haven’t been done in any particular order, in case you were wondering – is one of the founder members of the Football League in 1888, Aston Villa, and we have six matches from the years between 1972 and 1994. Our first match comes from 1972, a year during which the club found itself in the Third Division after some years of slow decline, and is a home match from a very different looking Villa Park against and AFC Bournemouth side featuring one of the lower divisions’ star players of the era, Ted McDougall. By the end of the decade, the club was back in the First Division and set to embark on one of its greatest periods as a club. We have three matches from this era, firstly an away match against Wolverhampton Wanderers from October 1979 which features the highly unusual sight of a double sending off for John Richards and Brendan Ormsby, then a match which Villa supporters might just already be familiar with, the 1982 European Cup final from Rotterdam and finally, at the beginning of what would turn out...

Read More

The 2012 Olympic Games: Womens Football Day One

Like the line-up on the Thursday evening before my first Glastonbury Festival officially started, the actual opening day of the Olympics proved an unexpected bonus, with a day of entertaining, virtually cynicism-free football, only blemished by a “flag issue” and a terrible tweet. When England hosted the 1966 World Cup, one of the BBC presenters – Frank Bough, possibly – marvelled on-air at how all the North Koreans looked the same. Now, in supposedly more-enlightened times, all Korean flags must look the same.Imagine a Scottish team being displayed with the flag of St. George and you are probably a tenth of the way to the offence caused by South Korea’s flag accompanying North Korea’s players on Hampden Park’s big screen, before kick-off in the DPR Korea v Colombia group game in the Women’s football tournament. And, as if to prove that the BBC’s just-finished comedy series Twenty Twelve couldn’t be funnier than the real thing, the apology from Olympic authority LOCOG confused its Korean Republic with its Democratic Peoples’ Republic. It was sixty-five minutes before an offended DPR Korea team eventually started playing football – by which time the Hampden Park crowd had diminished from one Queen’s Park would be proud of to one they’re probably used to. And the Koreans didn’t look over-offended once the game kicked-off, outsmarting and outplaying a disjointed Colombian team and eventually proving almost...

Read More