2016-17 FA Cup 1st Round – map and attendance list./+ the 3 FA Cup 1st Round first-timers (Merstham FC, Stamford AFC, Westfields FC).

November 2, 2016

“The map (click on image at the top of this post) shows all 80 clubs who have qualified for the 2016-17 FA Cup First Round Proper. Also on the map page is the 1st Round fixture list, and there is a list of the 80 clubs’ current home league average attendances. There were 736 clubs accepted into this season’s tournament. The 44 clubs from the Premier League (the 1st division) and the Football League Championship (the 2nd division) will join the competition in the 3rd Round (played in early January). The 1st Round and the 2nd Round are contested between all the clubs from the two lower leagues of the Football League (48 teams) – League One (3rd division) and League Two (4th division) – plus the 32 Non-League clubs who qualified through the preliminary and qualifying rounds (6 rounds).” Bill Sport’s Maps

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Denis Kelleher: An ‘Unpredictable Irishman’

October 27, 2016

“Below the professonal ranks, Denis Kelleher was regarded as one of the finest footballers in Britain. In a remarkable life, the Irishman, capped eight times at amateur level, escaped from Nazi Germany, played for Great Britain at the Olympic Games, and became a folk hero at Barnet. Cian Manning tells his story.” Póg Mo Goal


Can Wales create more history with World Cup qualification?

September 6, 2016

“Later today, Wales will start their World Cup qualification campaign. For the Welsh faithful, it’ll be a strange feeling. No longer is history holding them back, no longer are they nearly men. Can the most successful Wales team in over half a century qualify for a World Cup? By the time the 2018 World Cup rolls along, it will be 60 years since Wales competed in their last one.” backpagefootball


Book Review: Bendelow and Kidd’s Dictionary Of Football

September 1, 2016

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The army of terms required to talk convincingly about football has been a great source of mirth over the years. As far back as the 1970s, footballers were depicted as alternating between being ‘over the moon’ or ‘sick as a parrot’ depending on their feelings at 5 o’clock on a Saturday while Ron Atkinson let loose a whole new phalanx of phrases during his co-commentating days alongside Clive Tyldesley – to the extent that ‘crowd scene’, ‘little eyebrows’ and the daddy of them all, ‘early doors’ started to gain common currency. Ian Bendelow and Jamie Kidd are the latest to draw attention to the sheer glorious illogicality of soccer phraseology. That they are merely the latest is the one criticism one might level at their eponymous Dictionary of Football, for this exercise was carried out in pretty much identical fashion in Leigh and Woodhouse’s Football Lexicon published in the early Noughties and re-republished for as wider audience by Faber & Faber in 2004.” thetwounfortunates, amazon


2018 World Cup qualifiers: Coleman ready for next adventure

September 1, 2016

“It is a scene every Welsh football fan will recognise: rewatching goals from Wales’ historic Euro 2016 campaign in an attempt to relive the euphoria of an unforgettable summer. The moment has passed, the rapturous celebrations fading from view, but still they cling to the memories. As does the man who masterminded it all.” BBC


The Beauty of Mediocrity

July 23, 2016

“Winning isn’t everything in football. As Evertonian and Sheffield student Alex Leonard explores, relationships with underachieving clubs are not only unexpectedly romantic but can teach you valuable life lessons too. An uncomfortable consensus of disgust led much of the Kop end to leave early. A slow grumbling stream of red and white headed for the exit. Yet despite the utterly woeful football on display, I felt compelled to stay, shivering in the bitter March evening.” Football Pink


Wales exceeded expectations at Euro 2016 – but must now deal with them

July 8, 2016

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“Commiserations to Wales, whose exhilarating Euro 2016 journey came to an end at the semi-final stage in Lyon, but congratulations to all concerned for lighting up the tournament – particularly from a British point of view – and showing what is possible when a team functions as a team and takes a strong mentality and deep reserves of self-belief out on to the pitch. This is not intended as veiled criticism of England, though some may read it that way, for the Welsh and the English narratives have been inextricably entwined in France. They were drawn in the same group, and though England won the head-to-head battle – just – they lost the war by finishing second to a team with two victories.” Guardian