Search Results for: herbert chapman

1878: Football and Floodlighting

New technology and the new sport of Association Football just seemed to go together in the last years of the nineteenth century. Not only was the modern game as we know it born in amongst cutting-edge manufacturing and mining in … Continue reading

Scotch Christians and the 1902 Ibrox Disaster

Later, they blamed the rain for bringing the stand down. The eventual toll from the accident on 5 April was 25, but the deaths took time: the stand collapsed on a Saturday, and by the following Wednesday the count was … Continue reading

Can Manchester United Win Four Titles on the Trot?

Of course, if Manchester United do win a fourth consecutive title next season, they will be the first team do win four, and it will be at the fifth time of asking. That alone makes it unlikely – dominance of … Continue reading

Different Kinds of Corruption in Football History

(What follows derives from research for a fiction project) By 1979, English football was clapped out. Decaying stadia, violent fans, and the fading away of the post-War talent boom left most lovers of sport with little to cheer. There had … Continue reading

The Friendly Clubs: Watford

There was a period in the early 1980s when the great clubs of England’s industrial cities gave way to smaller clubs from quieter places. Southampton, Ipswich, Norwich, Watford and Luton all had their great days between Clough’s first European Cup … Continue reading

The National Football Museum

Martin Samuel criticises the siting of the National Football Museum in Preston on the grounds that The National Football Museum, like all projects of historical worth, has to be based where it is accessible. That is why there is a … Continue reading

John Cameron and the History of English Football

(WARNING: this is quite long) I’d been casting about for months for an image that might effectively sum up the history of English football. A face, a stadium, perhaps a team lineup or training session. Perhaps a German airport, snowbound. … Continue reading

What Where the Worst Years in Football History?

No trouble naming the great years: 1946 (England’s greatest ever national side), 1953 (Puskas and co.), 1962 (Garrincha and Pele), 1966, 1970 (Pele and co again, this time in glorious technicolor), 1972 (Netzer’s West Germany), 1974 (total football) and 1982 … Continue reading

The Ten Greatest Mistakes in British Football History

Most of you will have read the contributions to Danny Finkelstein’s Ten Greatest Mistakes in British History question in The Times. I found most of them dubious – the Chartists not arming the London masses? But it led me to … Continue reading

Newcastle: An Astonishingly Stupid Idea

UPDATE: also see George Szirtes’ contrasting view here and here. British football can choose, if it likes. But there are only two options. Either determine to develop the most skilled young players in the world, and the most intelligent, groundbreaking … Continue reading