FootballOpinion

More Late Drama Than Sky Atlantic’s Through the Night Programming

On Friday BornOffside published my latest Lower League Week.

It begins with a summary of the events in the League One and Two playoff semi-finals, which were pretty dramatic.

I also covered the smaller, end of season stories.
Bury fan favourite Efe Sodje is in conflict with manager Kevin Blackwell, refusing to sign a new contract unless he leaves. Steve Fletcher has finally retired at the age of 40, not because decades of centre-forwarding have taken their toll on his body, but simply because he’s pretty far down the pecking order now.

Steve Fletcher: Retiree
Steve Fletcher: Retiree

Coventry were locked out of their stadium again after continuing to refuse to pay the rent (what are they like!) and Martin Ling, who’d been on sick leave, has been replaced as Torquay manager by Alan Knill.

Having narrowly survived relegation, Dagenham caretaker manager Wayne Burnett has been appointed as permanent manager, while Brian Flynn has decided against continuing as Doncaster boss despite their last minute title win.

And Luke McCormick has returned to Plymouth, the club that terminated his contract after he was convicted of causing the death of two young boys. Yeah, it’s not all sweetness and light.

Click here to read The Lower League Week – The Stoppage Time Equaliser Edition

FootballOpinion

A Noticeably Delayed Link to a Lower League Week

I’ve neglected the blog recently, although I have been writing for other places. I’ve written a short story from start to finish, which I intend to try and get published soon (and will write more about in a day or two), and I’ve had promising discussions with a couple of sites about writing for them.

But I’ve also been writing my weekly Lower League Week for Bornoffside, which I’ve not quite got round to linking to from the blog for some reason. I’m going to catch up now, both in this post and another to follow shortly after.

On Thursday March 7th I wrote about Swindon’s new manager, seemingly chosen for his dullness; Coventry being placed under a transfer embargo; Plymouth’s supporters association picking a bad time to criticise the board; Port Vale hitting a rocky patch as they challenge for the League Two title; and Gary Mills, who led York City to two Wembley wins last season, being relieved of his position as manager.

Click here to read The Lower League Week – Noticeably Less Exciting

FootballOpinion

T’was the Season to Be Jolly…

Over at Bornoffside.net, my weekly round-up of Leagues One and Two, the Lower League Week, has returned for the first time this year, cleverly disguised as The Lower League Christmas. (Okay, maybe not so clever).

Football in the midst of World War One. Back in the days when players wore their international caps while representing their nation.
Christmas day football in the midst of World War One. Back in the days when players wore their international caps while representing their nation.

In it, I covered the form of Gillingham, Port Vale and Tranmere over Christmas. All of them are battling for the title in League Two, Two, and One respectively, and all of them surprise challengers for one reason or another.

Leon Clarke has signed for Coventry, Hartlepool United have broken two club records in the last month, and Barnet’s management team have broken up. Bristol Rovers have appointed a new boss, who’s helped to force his Plymouth equivalent out of the door. Rotherham have a transfer target which is either delusionally ambitious, or a sign of how far the Scottish league has fallen, dependent on how things turn out.

And there’s evidence that it’s not Lazio, Roma or Millwall who have the most extreme fans in Europe, but Oldham. I also round up the other significant news over Christmas.

All of that can be found in The Lower League Christmas

FootballOpinion

Eddie Howe’s a Talented Chap

After missing last week, this week sees a Lower League Fortnight on BornOffside.

Bournemouth have been in form under their new manager (but don’t seem to have properly disposed of the old one), David McGoldrick is in form for Coventry, Carl Fletcher’s job isn’t in danger at Plymouth, a Leyton Orient youth striker has been involved in a robbery, and Hartlepool United are all but confirmed as the first English team to be relegated this season. Oh, and Scunthorpe manager Brian Laws compared his team’s defending to the holocaust.

Come this way for The Lower League Fortnight: Air of General Negativity

Comedy, FootballOpinion, Recaps

Hey – I forgot I had this blog!

Nine days without posting – if I don’t write more often, I’ll never clog up people’s inboxes.

Right. After spending a few days away, I missed a week of lower league column for Born Offside, and compensated with Born Offside’s first ever Lower League Fortnight.

Knowing my issues with reliability and consistency, I’m sure it won’t be the last time that happens.
This issue covered transfer movements, changes in management, Bournemouth paying a huge ¬£800,000 transfer fee…it’s crazy, a tell thee.

I’m so happy to have signed for Bournemouth. Yayyyyyyy.

This past week, Fabio Capello, the Italian manager of the England national football team, walked out. It was the culmination of a long series of irritating events – the media attacked Capello for not walking on water, Wayne Rooney did something stupid and Capello didn’t stop him from doing it so is therefore dangerously incompetent, John Terry may or may not have said something potentially hugely offensive and faces a trial for it, Capello wanted to stick by him, his bosses didn’t, Capello told Italian television he wanted Terry to remain as captain.

Continue reading “Hey – I forgot I had this blog!”

FootballOpinion

Born Offside – Lower League Week

Just a brief post to tell everyone reading this (and statistically, that means you’re probably a random googler who was searching for a picture of a mountain or jawless zombie) that my latest column for BornOffside is now up.

In it you’ll be able to read about Les Parry at Tranmere, Paolo di Canio’s actions at Swindon, and Giles Coke making a bad impression at Bury, which is pretty much¬† the same thing, right?

Go on, you know you want to.