FootballOpinion

The Truth about Hillsborough

On 15th April 1989, a football match between Liverpool FC and Nottingham Forest at Sheffield Wednesday’s ground, Hillsborough, went drastically wrong.

In basic terms, for those not familiar, crowd control issues meant not all fans were inside the ground by the time the match kicked off, and security decisions, as well as the ground was structured, made things worse. In the end, 96 Liverpool fans died needlessly.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, both the police officer in charge and national newspapers tried to shift the blame onto the fans themselves. The Sun famously claimed that many were drunk, violent, and that some were thieves and necrophiliacs. Sadly, I’m not exaggerating the last claim.

The families of the victims have fought long and hard to clear their collective names, with the results of an inquiry released today, propelling the story back into the headlines here in Britain. If you’re unaware of the facts behind what happened at Hillsborough, I’d recommend this article, which gives a pretty thorough explanation, but you’ll find dozens more written in the last few days.

Though I’m far from an expert on the facts of the story, I’ve written a brief emotional reaction to the news at Born Offside.

FootballOpinion

And So, The End is Nigh

The English season has finally came to a close, with the playoffs finals of League One and Two coming last weekend.
There’s also been serious economic troubles for Kettering Town and Darlington, in both cases the culmination of a series of struggles both on the pitch and the ledger book.
In addition, for reasons that are beyond me, a number of goalkeepers have moved club, including two former England internationals.

I’m also going to try something a little different with this link – I’m going to tease the start of the article here at the blog, so readers have the ability to read before clicking over to Born Offside, just to see if that has any effect on clicks.
Basically, I’m treating you as my guinea pigs.

Do you think they're used for science because they seem really curious?
Do you think they’re used for science because they seem really curious?

You can read The Lower League Week – Dramatic Endings here.

 

 

 

Kettering Town Rolls Downward

It was starting to look like Kettering would, relatively speaking, be alright. Although relegated from the Conference, new owner George Rolls has already poured some of his money into paying off the club’s debts.

However, Kettering still have debts of £1.2m, and the Conference authorities demand all the debts of teams in their leagues (Blue Square Premier, North and South) are repaid in full. By reaching an agreement to pay creditors 10p in the pound, Kettering have guaranteed that they’ll be relegated an additional division.

There is an unusual complication to Rolls’ ownership. When in charge of Weymouth…

Continue reading…

FootballOpinion

A Column In Which I Try To Write About Literally Every Thing That Has Happened In English Football’s Lower Leagues

 

The latest edition of the Lower League Week is now up at Born Offside, and boy, it’s a long one.

"Being long means something's good right?" - Peter Jackson quote*

In it, I rundown all of the biggest events in the lower leagues –  the managerial change at Sheffield Wednesday, Wrexham’s deal with a local university, Bradley Wright-Phillips’ apparent return to form, the Oxford-Swindon derby, Nobby Solano going missing, and a bizarrely dramatic nine goal thriller.

To read all that news in a column that has been described as ‘genuinely bearable’ come this way for the Lower League Week.

*May not be an accurate quote.

FootballOpinion

The Lower League Week – Linked To While Still Topical

My latest Lower League Week is now up at Born Offside, and for a change I’m linking to it on the day, rather than a fortnight after. It’s a radical approach, but I feel it may help keep the blog more timely and relevant.

My reference to Hartlepool's Town End 'rocking like Vanilla Ice' was timely when it was written, but not when it was linked.

My latest column features news on the weekend’s Sheffield derby, Bournemouth’s half time team talk (more interesting than that sounds), Keith Curle’s start at Notts County and Port Vale’s financial troubles.

Just come along this way for this week’s Lower League Week.

FootballOpinion, Recaps

My Neglected Blog

Looking back at the dates of recent posts, I’ve been neglecting the blog in the past few weeks, and, like the alcoholic father I am in this metaphor*, I intend to overcompensate dramatically in a way that embarasses everyone.
So, in the next few days I intend to polish off a few things I’ve been working on, and get them up either here on the blog or elsewhere (and remember to link to them this time).

So in the next few days there should be a follow up to my earlier Life’s Too Short article in a shameless attempt to cash in on the show’s American debut. I intend to write reviews of the books I’ve read since my last review was posted, and more.
That is, if my day job of rocket scientist/rockstar doesn’t get in the way.

Hard at work

Since my last post here at the blog, I’ve written two entries for Born Offside. The first of the two, filed on the 15th, went into depth on the lovely cuddly Steve Evans, while covering Torquay’s remarkable winning streak, Kettering not being able to afford to pay police for their matches, and more.

Despite his crimes, this is the closest he gets to a prison these days

Then, last week, I covered the reasons for Stevenage’s rise and congratulated them on holding Tottenham to a draw, the reasons why Lee Clark’s sacking at Huddersfield was reasonable, and once again giving Darlington sympathetic press.
Really, as a Hartlepool fan, I hope they sort their finances out so that I don’t have to be sympathetic to them so often.

Once again, in case those links were hard to find in the text: February 15th’s ‘P All Draw Edition’
February 22nd’s ‘You Wait Ages for a Full Fixture List and then Two Come Along at Once Edition’

* Not literally of course. I’m really more of a junkie than an alcoholic.