Tag: Leyton Orient

In Support Of Leyton Orient And Safe Standing

We have a quick word this evening for the Football Supporters Federation and two petitions that they have organised for campaigns that they are supporting. First up is safe standing at football matches. Since the Hillsborough disaster in 1989 and the subsequent Taylor Report, terracing at football grounds has been largely phased out. The Taylor Report, however, didn’t state that terracing was intrinsically unsafe and it could even be argued that it has been used by bigger clubs to artificially inflate ticket prices. Safe standing works perfectly well in Germany, a model of how to run the game in so many ways, and there is nothing inherently unsafe about terracing. With this in mind, Don Foster, the MP for Bath and Co-Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Policy Committee on Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport has launched a Safe Standing Bill that is due for its second parliamentary reading in June. The Premier League is against it and the government appears at best lukewarm on the subject, but what slight chance that we might have of changing their minds might come if we, as supporters, can express our support for the bill. The FSF has, therefore, started a petition that you can sign if you agree that we, as supporters, should be given the choice of whether we sit or stand at matches, no matter what league they are...

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Imperfect, Impractical And Immoral, The Olympic Stadium Fiasco Holds A Mirror Up To The True Values Of British Sport

If, as seems likely, the decision to grant the post-2012 use of the Olympic Stadium in Stratford to West Ham United is rubber-stamped over the next few weeks, we should perhaps pause for a moment to consider what the decision says about the state of English sport at the start of the new century. For the last few weeks, we have seen an unseemly attempt at a land grab between two large sporting organisations who both seemed to cherish one thing above all else – a site in East London with outstanding transport links, a relative rarity in London, that was available on the cheap. Money, as ever, trumped all other concerns. The Olympic legacy, a central part of the reason why the games are being held in London in the first place, were put firmly on the back burner and the future of the football club nearest to Stratford feels a little less certain today after the parachuting in of one of the game’s behemoths, but very few people seem to care very much about that. In thrall to the twin false gods of Mammon and the Premier League, the timbre of the debate on the subject had a thoroughly modern feel to it, yet both the Spurs and West Ham bids had the feel of being thoroughly imperfect for completely different reasons. The one aspect of the...

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The Olympic Stadium’s Legacy Must Be As It Was Intended

The final submissions, then, are complete and now comes the waiting game. The tug of war over the Olympic Stadium has become one of the more unseemly events of the football season so far, a desperate battle for a piece of land that very few people involved in football had a great deal of interest until it became clear that there was a chance of building a vast, new stadium there on the (relatively) cheap. With an open letter issued by a group of former British Olympians stating that removing the track from the Olympic Stadium after the 2012 games would mean that the stadium would, “effectively become an Olympic Stadium with NO Olympic connection or legacy”, the question of whether Premier League football should be muscling in on what was supposed to be a legacy for British athletics is one that has finally become something of an issue over the last few days, and this is a question that should be at the forefront of the minds of those making the final decision over this issue. Tottenham Hotspur’s bid for the stadium seems to have little going for it other than that they will get a new stadium for £200m less than if they stay in N17 (which is questionable in itself) and the fact that they will be able to turn an operating profit from it. How...

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FA Cup Third Round Weekend 4: Norwich City 0-1 Leyton Orient

Josh Clarke supports Leyton Orient, but in his younger days was an apprentice with Norwich City. Sod’s Law meant that they would draw each other in the Third Round of the FA Cup, which meant an unexpected trip back to Norfolk for him. In what is normally the most romantic weekend of the English football calender, a week of deep introspection and soul-searching has left me unable to bask in the potential banana-skins, giant killings and Ronnie Radford moments that the FA Cup 3rd Round is capable of throwing up. The reason for my anxiety is that the cruel mistress that is the FA Cup draw, shoddily overseen by Noel Gallagher and Serge from Kasabian has slung together my two clubs. I’ve found out what happens when your home team, the team you know and love, comes head-to-head with your newly adopted local side. Indeed, it’s hardly a game to capture the imagination of the countries sporting press, but when Leyton Orient take the trip up the A47 to meet Norwich City, my usually unwavering loyalty may have an uncharacteristic wandering eye. Having represented the Canaries from a young age and becoming an apprentice for the club in my teens, I have a long personal history with the club from Norfolk. And for that reason, I should be supporting Norwich. I will be supporting Norwich. Yet the step taken...

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Ralph Coates: 1946-2010 – A Burnley, Tottenham And Orient Legend

It is surprisingly uncommon to find a player whose passing will be marked equally between two different clubs, but the death of Ralph Coates at the age of sixty-four will be marked with sadness at all three of the Football League clubs at which he played: Burnley, Tottenham Hotspur and Leyton Orient. Coates joined Burnley in 1961 as an apprentice, turned professional with them and made his debut for them in 1964. He was, at his first club, slightly unfortunate with his age. The early 1960s were a period of great success for Burnley, but Coates’ emergence into the first team at Turf Moor coincided with a slight dip in their fortunes. Even so, Coates was an uncommonly elegant player on the mud-bath pitches of 1960s England and he made four appearances for his country as well as being in the initial squad for the 1970 World Cup finals, although he didn’t make Alf Ramsey’s final cut. He left the club in 1971 after they Burnley were relegated from the First Division, and Tottenham Hotspur were prepared to pay £190,000 for his services. Coates’ career at Spurs began with a flourish. In 1972, Spurs won the UEFA Cup and the following year Coates was the hero, scoring the winning goal at Wembley against Norwich City. This, however, had been the last hurrah for the great Spurs side of the...

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