The Importance Of The Northern League

March 18, 2011


“On March 25th 1889 nineteen clubs from across the north east of England met in the Three Tuns Hotel in Durham City. The meeting had been organised by Charles Craven, a goalkeeper with Darlington FC, who duly took their place as one of the ten founding members of the Northern League. What is now renowned as the world’s second oldest surviving football league got underway on September 7th, Darlington travelling to Newcastle East End in the first round of fixtures. Darlington St Augustine’s won the inaugural title with twenty-six points, edging Newcastle West End on goal difference. A team called Middlesbrough finished sixth that season, just ahead of South Bank.” In Bed With Maradona

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United’s forwards destroy Marseille; Marcelo key for Real

March 18, 2011

“Tactical observations from Champions League action this week…” SI


A Brief History of Nous

March 18, 2011

“Did you know that Sir Alex Ferguson still doubts his tactical nous? The headline leaves no room for doubt: “Sir Alex Ferguson: I still doubt my tactical nous”. I find this sad. Sir Alex would seem to have it all: a long record of championships, a range of expensive outerwear, a ruddy Glaswegian complexion, a knighthood—but if you can’t trust in your own nous, what is it all worth, really?” Run of Play


Lower leagues across the globe #8: Sweden

March 18, 2011


“Despite an alpine outlook, football remains the most popular sport in Sweden. Most of the focus is on the Allsvenskan, the top flight which runs from Spring until late Autumn, with the winter months being dominated by coverage of the English Premier League. Stuart Fuller tells us all about life in the Swedish lower leagues.” The Seventy Two


La semaine en France: Week 27

March 18, 2011

“Once may have been a fluke, but to score match-winning goals in injury time twice in the space of a week suggests Lille may have the stomach for a bare-knuckle title brawl after all.” Football Further


1950s Month: ‘O Rei’ and the Defiance of Understanding

March 18, 2011

“In September Brian Phillips, founder and editor of the glorious Run of Play, wrote one of the greatest sporting essays I have ever read. Never mind the ‘blogosphere’, this made even some of Brian Glanville and Hugh McIlvanney’s efforts look tame. I really mean that. It was entitled ‘Pelé as a Comedian’ and dealt with the sheer aesthetic poetry of the great Brazilian, the disbelieving laughter his transcendent genius brings to our lips. Pelé, Brian argued, is a comedian, a man who creates chaos out of peace and thrills us by restoring that peace with dizzying ease.” The Equaliser


Champions League draw – as it happened

March 18, 2011


Jean-Pierre Clatot
“The draw begins at 11am UK time. By which what we mean, of course, is that the video montages, unnecessary musical interludes, and same-old boring lecture we get every year about how wonderful the Champions League is begins at 11am. Then, all of a sudden, the draw will happen very quickly just when you’ve given up waiting and gone to make a cuppa instead. Fear not, though, I shall be here without to make sure you don’t miss a thing.” Guardian