Category: Latest

The Saturday Movie Club: Murphy’s Mob

Grange Hill has a lot to answer for. When the BBC launched its drama series set in a secondary school in inner London in 1978, children’s television drama in Britain tended to err towards period drama and, occasionally, the supernatural. The arrival of Grange Hill on our screens might be considered childrens’ television’s punk rock moment. True enough there was no swearing and very little spitting, but the comparatively vérité nature of the show was revolutionary for its time, and it would go to run for three full decades before finally ending in 2008. Perhaps one of its most...

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The OBFA – An Act of Folly: Part One

On 15th March, the catchily-titled Offensive Behaviour at Football and Threatening Communications (Scotland) Act 2012 (OBFA) was repealed by Scotland’s parliament. In the first of two articles, Mark Murphy examines the origin of this particular species and how, as ever, the rush to produce legislation produced bad legislation. In the 1970s and 80s, the West Indies cricket team were menacingly successful, leading to calls for heavy restrictions to be put on a menace which usually came from four very fast bowlers indeed. For the cricket uninitiated, a “bouncer” is a short-pitched delivery designed to pass, and usually aimed at,...

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York City’s Tense End of Season

With the end of the season fast approaching, one might think that a football club with half a chance of promotion could do without the distraction of being put up for sale. At a time of the year when all focus might be expected to be placed upon what’s happening on the pitch, instability of any sort behind the scenes within a club seems considerably more likely to have a destabilising effect than anything else, and we all know the extent to which the margins between success and failure can be extremely narrow indeed. Considering the last few seasons...

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The Ongoing Soap Opera Of The Billericay Dickie

Schadenfreude isn’t often a strong look, but sometimes there is something so delicious about it that it can be difficult to resist, particularly when to indulge such feelings is at the expense of the pompous or self-important. Small wonder, then, that yesterday afternoon’s events at Silver Jubilee Park brought about such glee on social media. Billericay Town has been a circus since Glenn Tamplin took ownership of the club in December 2016, but it has also been an arrogant circus, with Tamplin as its ringmaster. His behaviour on social media has been appalling, and his behaviour towards players that...

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The Saturday Movie Club: 101 Great Goals From Match Of The Day

These days, of course, it’s all there at the touch of a button. Despite the best efforts of FIFA and other rights holders, Football YouTube is a genre unto itself, featuring documentaries, goal highlights, full matches and, of course, compilation videos of the greatest moments of some of the world’s players, lovingly created by fourteen year old boys and backed with soundtracks truly befitting the high emotion with which they consider their heroes. There is, to put it bluntly, no such thing as “no football” any more, and you don’t even have to search very much to find it....

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