February issue available online and in store

wsc324 The new WSC is out now, in all good newsagents or dispatched on the day of order from the WSC shop.

Why match fixing happens
Hull City fans fight rebrand
Shock of Sunday matches
Luton target League return
Super-stadium for QPR
Tribute to Eusébio

Scientific methods Stats miss the point
"'In the early 1970's Monty Python famously parodied philosophy by presenting it as a football match between the intellectual heavyweights of Greece and Germany. Such is the pseudo-intellectual state of modern football that you'd be forgiven for thinking the sketch had just been made. In the aftermath of November's fixture between Tottenham and Manchester United a remarkable match report appeared on the Squawka website – an organisation that claim to have built their own 'scientific player performance scoring algorithm'" Buy here to read the full article

324 MOTMLuton Town 6 Kidderminster Harriers 0

Hatters' Conference escape plan
"Nowhere is the eternal optimism of the football supporter better illustrated than at Kenilworth Road. On this chilly December day some 8,488 souls – all but 203 supporting Luton – stream past the rows of terraced houses that hem in the ground from all sides, a general sense of dilapidation in the air that also reflects one of the game's most ramshackle venues and, until recently at least, the quality of football played therein." Buy here to read the full article

Holy commotion Sunday matches
"Football was facing a crisis at the start of 1974. Attendances in all four divisions had been in decline for a while and floodlit matches were banned as part of the 'three day week' introduced by Prime Minister Edward Heath to save on electricity consumption. Sunday football was regarded as one way to inject some life back into the flagging domestic game." Buy here to read the full article

324 secondteamsFreedom of choice Second teams
"From the semi-scholarly ruminations of journal articles to the caps-locked rage of online message boards, the nature of the 'proper' football supporter is regularly debated. An indisputably important feature of this proper supporter's make-up – ranking in importance alongside the ownership of matching his 'n' hers training jackets – is loyalty to one club. Reinforced by patronising adverts paid for by corporate sponsors, this one-eyed devotion to a single cause – beyond good sense and, sometimes, beyond even basic standards of decency – has acquired such weight as a measure of superior fandom that any deviation from its course represents something sinister. The true supporter would sooner give up his or her interest in football, and possibly life altogether, than follow another team." Buy here to read the full article

Do we have to spend so long is silence?
Real Madrid ultras banned
Anelka gesture sparks fury
Fulham's foreign fans
How US supporters choose teams
Focus on the 1970 World Cup
Boxing Day derby in Runcorn
Celtic's Green Brigade fired
Harry Pearson: The sacrifice of managers
Croatian player chants his way out of World Cup
The tradition of testimonials
Coventry's exile was avoidable
The FA Sunday Cup
Soccer Saturday's winning formula
How Mike Walker came unstuck at Toffees
Hyde seek an end to their misery
Reviews: The Life And Times Of Herbert Chapman, Girls With Balls, The Rocky Road – Eamon Dunphy, The Bald Facts – David Armstrong

WSC is the only nationally available independent football magazine in the UK, and you can get it monthly for a very reasonable £3.25. 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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5. Ask your local newsagent to order it for you

Photo by Simon Gill, illustration by Adam Doughty

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