THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

A small portion of despair and enlightenment delivered to your inbox every Friday
6 May 2011 ~

Finally, it's over. After years of intrigue and speculation, claim and counter claim, one of the most divisive figures of recent history has been cornered. We can now say without a shadow of a doubt that Ken Bates is the owner of Leeds United. The world looks a very different place today.

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Badge of the week ~ Rampla Juniors, Uruguay
Sometimes a room can get too much sun in the morning. Rampla Juniors' club crest commemorates a house near Montevideo in which the club was founded, which has remained unsold for over 40 years on account of its too-close proximity to the sun. Originally, when its visually impaired owners first put the house on the market, the location was felt to be strongly in its favour – it was detached, had unsurpassable river valley views and immediate potential for a loft conversion. Also there is plenty of parking room for vehicles with reliable handbrakes. However, viewers found that they were blinded by the light in the front bedroom – not in the figurative sense employed to great musical effect by Manfred Mann, but literally, with burned retinas. The owners tried cutting the price but the viewings dropped off and the local estate agents began to grow sick and die. A lot of people like the sun for its warmth and life-giving properties, but it can, in extreme cases, be detrimental to a house sale. Cameron Carter

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from Derek Larkin
"There has been some debate about whether Cardiff's Kevin McNaughton deliberately barged into Sian Massey though his lack of apology makes me wonder. One thing's for sure – if she had been a player she wouldn't have got up so quickly."

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Looking for a fresh challenge? You could try being manager of Stockport County. They'll only give it to Paul Hart otherwise.

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"Is it just me…?" asks the Times' Matthew Syed. Could be.



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from Marc Bell
"During Match of the Day's coverage of the Leeds v Forest game, I noticed that Gabby Logan, Danny Mills and Steve Claridge all had their own personal microphones at pitchside. I further noticed that Claridge had the trailing flex in his left hand while holding the microphone to his mouth with the right, just as if he was a Vegas crooner. He was sort of pivoting around a bit as well. I thought it was inappropriate mic technique for a common-or-garden journeyman pundit at a second-tier football match.""

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from Robin Foot
"Following on from the mention in the last Howl, Dean Austin isn't the only bit-part member of the 1993 Spurs defence to whom Wikipedia has bequeathed an unusual post-football occupation."



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from Graham Lockyear
"The Green Party may be wary of getting endorsements from sports people after their experiences with David Icke but I wouldn't be surprised if Rio Ferdinand got roped in for a party political broadcast. 'Gazza's got a Prius' – I don't know what that means but it can only be good."

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Getting shirty Notable kits of yesteryear

Partick Thistle home, 2002-04
Partick Thistle have spent the last five seasons in the Scottish First Division. By their standards this is relatively stable; between 1996 and 2006 the Jags were promoted three times and experienced four relegations. This shirt, which they wore between 2002-04, is from the last time they featured in the SPL.

The club has experimented with various designs in red and yellow over the years and is currently favouring hoops. TFG Sports were a popular kit supplier at the time among football clubs in Scotland and in the English lower leagues, at their peak providing strips to 19 professional clubs. Since then, they have seemingly all but disappeared.

Perhaps most unusual about this jersey is that it was worn, briefly, by Portuguese international Jorge Cadete. He is known best here for his time at Celtic as one of Tommy Burns's "Three Amigos" of the mid-1990s, along with Paulo di Canio and Pierre van Hooijdonk. For Cadete to play at Firhill was odd enough, but to have come back from retirement (and a stint on the Portuguese version of Big Brother) to help the Jags' battle against relegation was bizarre. Unfortunately for Thistle, the Cadete gamble did not pay off. David Childs

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