THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

wsc366 biggest

August issue available online

The new WSC is out now, available to order from the WSC shop.

This month
The players who hate training | Football’s most famous song | Youth coaching – success at last | Scotland v England: elation and despair | End of money madness in China? | The Istanbul team with no fans | Russia’s surprise champions | New order in Surrey non-League | WSC writers’ competition winners | Safe standing moves closer | Britain holding up Laws | Hornets refuse to let managers nest | England C the way forward | Pelé’s latest ringing endorsement | Gunners’ split opinions | Champions League final photos | Harry Pearson on nurturing young talent | Focus on Mick Channon | League of Ireland 2006 | Origins of the beautiful game cliche | Non-League in Surrey

Inside WSC 366

Scotland 2-2 England Match of the month

The sun, like most other things, isn’t kind to the Gorbals. More demolished than gentrified, the area always paid highly for Glasgow’s “Engine room of the Empire” status but isn’t the only reduced icon south of the Clyde, surviving on myths and raised prices. I’m driving towards the ground and fixture responsible for Europe’s biggest-ever football crowd. Wembley may have the profile and Cardiff had last weekend’s Champions League final but Hampden, with almost every UEFA attendance record – including nearly 150,000 for that 1937 Scotland v England game – has people power like nowhere else in Britain. Or it had. Buy here to read the full article

366 Surrey

Surrey state New generation surpassing old guard

It’s easy to feel a twinge of nostalgia for London and the Home Counties’ fancifully named amateur leagues – Athenian, Spartan, Corinthian, Parthenon, Delphian – that largely disappeared between the 1960s and the 1980s, with the all-consuming Isthmian League now featuring many of their former clubs. Along with the leagues, plenty of the clubs have gone too, some lost completely, some swamped in mergers, with land values usually responsible. Harder to fathom, though, is the diminution of Surrey’s leading clubs since the mid 1970s, and the simultaneous rise of clubs previously playing, at best, at county level. Buy here to read the full article

366 writerscomp

Voluntary sector WSC writers’ competition winner

Five years ago my son’s under-tens football team were about to fold. The two previous managers, a couple of football-mad teenagers, had decided to give it up. Who could blame them? Not many lads find the time to run 30 training sessions a year with 15 or so boisterous Year 5s on cold, wet Monday nights in winter. Fewer still are willing to get out of bed on Sunday mornings to drive all over Sussex to watch a team play league matches for which the word “drubbing” was invented. And nobody wants to spend hours filling out incomprehensible online forms with stats to avoid the club getting petty fines from the FA. We once had to cough up £20 because I’d listed only eight players on our teamsheet when there should have been nine. Thanks, FA. Buy here to read the full article

Melody makers You’ll Never Walk Alone

A couple of years back I was listening to The Beatles In Mono boxed set when I had a rather mundane musical epiphany: the 1963 band-breaking hit She Loves You, which I’d heard so often in my life that it no longer even registered, is the most perfectly crafted pop song you could ever wish to hear. After hearing it hundreds of times, I finally began to enjoy and appreciate every note and beat of its immaculate, buoyant brilliance. I was reminded of this while watching a new, eponymously titled German-made documentary about the song You’ll Never Walk Alone. Buy here to read the full article

Availability
WSC is the only nationally available independent football magazine in the UK, and you can get it monthly for a very reasonable £3.50. You should be able to find a copy in your local newsagent, otherwise outlets that stock WSC include WH Smith, mainline train stations plus selected Tescos. If you're having trouble finding the magazine, you could do one of the following:

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4. Email us
5. Ask your local newsagent to order it for you

Surrey photo by David Bauckham; illustration by David Sparshott

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