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6 January 2012 ~
The new series of coins produced to commemorate the Olympics has caused some controversy already. The explanation of the offside rule on the football-related coin has been criticised by referees, while some of the other designs include a showjumper with a silver spoon in his mouth and a drug-filled needle for athletics.
Badge of the week ~ Al-Salmiya Sporting Club, Kuwait
Al-Salmiya's badge is based on a modern fairytale in which the captain of a pub league team returns from an away game at around 5pm on a Sunday afternoon. Passing through empty streets and crossing traffic-free roads, he takes the escalator through a deserted pedestrianised shopping centre. However, instead of acting as a short-cut to his house, the escalator takes him lower and lower, past alien landscapes (in one, half a dozen snow leopards wait, stranded, for the charity sponsorship money to come through to fund their continued existence; in another, three men scream through thick briars at a fourth man to recycle an empty milk carton, while the fourth man seems to be gesticulating to the effect that there is still a bit of milk left in it).
Finally, the pub team captain arrives at the bottom of the escalator and, stepping off gingerly, encounters a Wise Old Man who asks him three questions: What Is Life For? How Must We Live? Should An Outside Aerial Go Into The Back Of The Television Or Directly Into The Freeview Box? Apparently this sort of corruption, whereby Wise Old Men would slip-in a self-serving question of their own that had no bearing on self-improvement, was not uncommon in the Middle East at this time. Anyway, marked forever by this encounter, the captain formed a professional club that live and play to a high moral standard and have an unparalleled knowledge of digital television connection techniques. Cameron Carter
A Korean website offers their interpretation of Ji Dong-won's winner for Sunderland against Manchester City, including a dash of homoeroticism and someone (an away fan?) being sick.
The title of former Celtic striker Dixie Deans's autobiography refers to his nickname being derived from Dixie Dean. But his publishers seem to have got confused when entering the book's details on Amazon.
from Dave Winter
"This plaintive appeal was the first item in the News section on the Dagenham & Redbridge website. Maybe she was just trying to get rid of it."
from Adam Geragty
"While looking through every single internet report after an extremely rare Coventry City win I saw a page from the Vital Football site giving the stats for the match against Bristol City. I know that Coventry have had problems in front of goal this season but it appears that Bristol City may have trumped them. I am however impressed that anyone can manage a goal attempt every 23 seconds. No wonder the City goalkeeper was said to have had his best game of the season so far."
from Mick Blakeman
"Nathan Luscombe of Hartlepool is only 22. How did a professional sportsman get to be so fat?"
Can you imagine around 6,000 flashes lighting up the Anfield Road end all at once?
Our resolution for 2012 is to live up to WSC's 12+ rating by the App Store, which is due to:
• Infrequent/Mild Mature/Suggestive Themes
• Infrequent/Mild Alcohol/Tobacco/Drug use or References to these
• Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humour.
Getting shirty Notable kits of yesteryear
York City home, 2002-03
It's hard to know where to start with the first – and last – York City shirt of John Batchelor's ill-fated reign. The fresh look encapsulated Batchelor's intentions for the Minstermen, then hovering around mid-table in the old Division Three, when he bought the club in March 2002.
The change in name – to York City Soccer Club – was intended to make the City "brand" more attractive in the US, but that wasn't the end of Batchelor's plans. Rather than moving to a new 15,000-seat stadium as promised, players and fans found the right sleeves of their shirts adorned with a chequered flag. It was a reference to the motor racing team owned by Batchelor, who was a touring car driver himself in 1999 and once changed his name to John Top-Gear by deed poll to gain sponsorship from the BBC television show.
In an attempt to keep a sense of identity and history the shirt returned to City's much joked about "Y-front" kits of the 1970s. Quite why Batchelor chose to get nostalgic about that period of City's history is unclear. They dropped from Division Two to Division Four while wearing the shirts between 1974 and 1978. It also spelled the end of the club's long-standing sponsorship deal with Portakabin. Into the breach stepped York's local newspaper, the Evening Press, to sponsor the club back to the "good times" of the early 1990s.
It didn't work. Under Batchelor the good times never returned and York City entered administration in December 2002. Despite being bought by a supporters’ trust who restored them to Football Club and more traditional non-Y-fronted all-red shirts, they were relegated out of the Football League in 2004, having failed to win any of their final 20 league games. Although they have reached the Conference play-offs three times, York City haven't escaped non-League since. Tom Hocking