Smash & Grab! Bristol Rovers – The Warboys & Bannister Years

By on Apr 16, 2012 in History, Latest | 7 comments

It is now almost forty years since Bristol Rovers ran up one of the most remarkable unbeaten runs in the entire history of the Football League, and their attack at the time was one of the most feared around. Here’s Paul Caulfield on a team that is fondly remembered by its supporters, and the strikers that took them to promotion from the Third Division. The...

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Hillsborough And I: Where We Were On 15th April 1989

By on Apr 15, 2012 in History, Latest | 3 comments

Twenty-three years ago today, a disaster occurred that would claim ninety-six lives, indelibly alter the character of one of Britains great sporting institutions and change the face of football in Britain forever. The Hillsborough disaster of 1989 had an indelible effect on both Liverpool Football Club and British football in a wider sense, and to mark this years...

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European Championship Stories: 2004 – Greek Economies Of Scale

By on Apr 13, 2012 in History, International Football, Latest | 1 comment

As football entered the twenty-first century its race towards full industrialisation had more or less been completed. Resource management had become everything. In club football, scouting networks had diversified in order to fall quickly upon any young player spotted that hadn’t already got a professional contract, whilst at international level the stigma...

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European Championship Stories: 2000 – Belgium, The Nearly Men

By on Apr 7, 2012 in History, International Football, Latest | 0 comments

On the sixth of December 2011, Belgium finally ended a record-breaking run of five hundred and forty-one days without a formal government when new Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo was sworn in by King Albert II in Brussels. Following the general election of June 2011, the fragmented political landscape was represented by eleven different political parties taking seats in...

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Suffolk Punch: How Ipswich Town Shocked The Football League In 1962

By on Apr 3, 2012 in English League Football, History, Latest | 3 comments

It is entirely appropriate that Ipswich Town should have chosen last Saturday’s home league match against Barnsley as an opportunity to rename their South Stand as The Sir Alf Ramsey Stand, for this month marks a very special anniversary in the history of the club. It is fifty years ago this month the Ipswich Town became, against all odds, the champions of...

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European Championship Stories: 1996 – A Whole New Ball Game

By on Mar 28, 2012 in History, International Football, Latest | 2 comments

It almost goes without saying that the near-death Рand very much beyond Рexperiences suffered by English football during the 1980s shaped the game that we watch today. There was a time Рa period from the middle to the end of that decade Рwhen the definite feeling that this was a game on its last legs became tangible. Crowds dwindled to...

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European Championship Stories: 1992 – A New Europe, But Old Enmities

By on Mar 19, 2012 in History, International Football, Latest | 3 comments

This, perhaps, was not the new Europe that the leaders of the continents nations had envisaged when the Berlin Wall came tumbling down in November 1989. The years between the European Championships of 1988 and 1992 were the most politically tumultuous since the end of the Second World War. At varying points over the course of those four intervening years, the...

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The Hillsborough Leak: Why Now, And By Whom?

By on Mar 16, 2012 in History, Latest | 2 comments

The devil, as so often in these cases, is in the detail. While the reflex reaction to this weeks leaking of documents concerning the Hillsborough disaster of 1989 may be to focus on the word “drunk”, it may be more informative to focus on the use of the word “Merseyside”, in terms of which police force it was that was making unfounded claims...

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