THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

The new WSC is out now, available from all good newsagents or dispatched on the day of order from the WSC shop. Including:
Is the good start by promoted clubs a sign of Premier League progress?
The charm of Brisbane Road in the 1980s
Difficult decisions to be made at Old Trafford
Malcolm Allison – tribute to a legendary figure
Barcelona can't balance the books
Screensport Super Cup – an failed alternative to European competition
The strange case of Lee Trundle, South Wales superstar


Also in this issue:

Seize the moment Is the patience of club chairmen really a virtue?
"On October 18, Steve Gibson accepted Gordon Strachan's resignation as manager of Middlesbrough. The Championship season was just 11 games old. It is the second October in succession that the Boro chairman has overseen a change of manager. This may lead some to question Gibson's long-established reputation as the most patient chairman in English football. In truth, could he perhaps be guilty of that little mentioned phenomenon – changing the manager too late. We all know the drill. There's a familiar sequence of events that follow a sacking. First we are treated to a damning set of statistics from the League Managers Association – an organisation that somehow equates deposed football managers to those puppies discarded with the Christmas decorations. If this isn't enough, the boss in question will then be guaranteed a warm welcome on the Goals on Sunday sofa – cue back-slapping and contrived belly laughs." Buy here to read the full article

Nottingham Forest 2, Ipswich Town 0 Bringing up memories of past success
"I don't mean to bang on about the past, but this fixture really brings it out in me. Forest v Ipswich was the first game I ever went to, on October 4, 1977. I stood as a nine-year-old in the Trent End with Ian Marriott and his dad, gasping at the sight of the blues and reds merging with the green, floodlit pitch – just like the picture on the Subbuteo box that I'd just got from him in exchange for an Action Man (in one of those undersized tanks, where his arms hung over the side) – my head fizzing as Kenny Burns, Peter Shilton and Viv Anderson ran about in front of me just like they did on the telly." Buy here to read the full article

Hiding football's heritage Sporting history loses out to light entertainment in the blue-plaque count
"In 1999 the writer Hunter Davies asked: 'Why are there no blue plaques for footballers?' Over a decade on, they are still so rare that you begin to wonder if those who administer our heritage simply don't see football as being part of it. Surely Bobby Moore is worthy of a blue plaque? Yet if you consult English Heritage's directory you will find George Moore, author (1852-1933), and Henry Moore, sculptor (1898-1986), but not a mention of Bobby. Bill Nicholson is listed, but only in the guise of Sir William Nicholson, painter and printmaker (1872-1949). A journalist, author and topographer called Arthur Mee (1875-1943) is deserving of recognition, but he is not followed by Bertie. It's with considerable relief that you finally locate Herbert Chapman in Hendon." Buy here to read the full article

Ethics of victory Turning a blind eye to questionable practices
"A lucky viewer watching Sky's Goals on Sunday show a few weeks ago will have seen the star pairing, Ian Wright and Jermain Defoe, being quizzed on that weekend's horror tackle furore. Have you, the question went, ever witnessed a manager telling his players to hurt the opposition deliberately? Jermain and Ian agreed that would never happen, though Wright then offered the caveat that no one needed to tell some of his ex-team-mates to do that – they were naturals at it." Buy here to read the full article



Plus
Liverpool welcome some new American owners and England's 2018 World Cup bid struggles for support
No time to talk on TV; dangerous cuts to health and safety; football's inherent homophobia; no money to be made online
The Peak District provides a backdrop for the early rounds of the FA Cup
Does Darren "Sicknote" Anderton have an unfair reputation?
The decline of the tackle
Another Alex Ferguson biography gives little away
Panic in Poland; Serbian ultras cause consternation in Genoa
Mexican clubs make use of US short-sightedness; the manager has a mixed impact in Argentina
Peter Taylor gets his dues; finding Gilzean; the rise of Rochdale; a Savage story
Season in brief USSR Class A 1952

Availability
WSC is the only nationally available independent football magazine in the UK, and you can get it monthly for a very reasonable £2.95. 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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Photo by Colin McPherson, illustration by Tim Bradford

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