I’ve been enjoying email exchanges and telephone conversations with John Sinnott and Chris Bevan of BBC Online in the last week or so, and I’m very grateful to both of them that you can read some of my thoughts about Chelsea v Nottingham Forest here. UPDATE: Apologies if I seem overly negative about Forest’s chances….
Month: January 2007
Penalties In Nature
Thanks to Harry Rutherford of Heraclitean Fire for pointing out this article in Nature. Harry didn’t let on what he made of it. I suspect he was being polite, because this is academic psychology at its worst. Let’s start with this: On a summer evening last year, more than a billion pairs of eyes were…
The FA Cup and Giant Killing
Have you noticed how few examples of cup giant killing there have been lately? The last truly extraordinary one that I can think of belongs, oddly enough, to the team whose ground I can see from my window here – Sutton United, who beat First Division Coventry City in 1989’s 3rd round. Since then, there…
Commercialization – A 1930s Example
Between March 1936 and July 1937, the London and North Eastern Railway built a tranche of 25 B17 mixed traffic 4-6-0s (the “Sandringham” class) and named them after top football sides. The railway preservation movement that emerged in Britain in the late 1950s is an underestimated phenomenon – the Bridgnorth-based Severn Valley Railway made such…
I’ve put together the beginnings of a More Than Mind Games reading list here. At the moment, it’s little more than a bald list of titles under a variety of headings, but I’ll try to annotate it more fully over time. If I had to boil it down to absolute essentials, I’d plump for Madness…
Building a World Cup Stadium: Uruguay 1930
In some senses, Uruguay was an altogether appropriate location for the inaugural World Cup. It’s population, 97% European in origin, has contingents from Spain, Italy, England, France, Germany, Portugal, Ireland, Russia, Croatia and the Scandinavian countries. Although Italian and Spanish dominate, in that context, the first football World Cup was won by the footballing world….
Mad Dogs and Englishmen
Or should that be, pray for rain? Anyway, just one way in which weather can influence the progress of a game of football.
Simon Jenkins on Beckham
I wasn’t expecting to like Simon Jenkins on Beckham. It’s been years since I liked Simon Jenkins on anything. Except, of course, for architecture, where, thanks to him, we no longer have to put up with Karl Pevsner’s tin eye and Open University prose. Jenkins had become one of those columnists who went further than…
More Historical Sports Broadcasting on the Web
If you have Flash and speakers, enjoying playing with the BBC’s collection of radio and TV clips here: And this is glorious: the great Brian Clough, looking incredibly young, reacting to his Nottingham Forest side’s reaching their first European Cup Final: [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SN3F19y8HMM]
Tips for Managers
I was asked by email what I advice I’d give managers. On the proviso that I’m not really into giving “tips” as such – it’s best to treat each person and situation on their merits – I came up with ten rough points. Some of these will be familiar to regular readers: British football is…