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29 November 2013 ~

The football authorities have been accused of complacency over corruption in the wake of the match-fixing allegations made this week. Who would have expected that when their rigorous fit and proper persons test has prevented all sorts of charlatans and con men from getting involved in club football.

Defensor150Badge of the week ~ Defensor Sporting Club, Uruguay
Among all the clubs with bog-standard striped crests, shines out this beacon of non-conformity, the rave lighthouse. Uruguayan rave culture was driven underground in the early 1990s by draconian laws forbidding the assembly of more than ten people at any one place, unless the individual had a doctor's note stating they suffered from separation anxiety.

In order to get around this using a legal loophole, those Uruguayans who wanted to dance and chat until very late had to organise rave parties somewhere other than the mainland. This is how the Uruguayan lighthouse rave scene began. Attendees would look out for the code word on social media and posters around town (the coded message would read something like "Family Carvery at the Lighthouse – Till Late", as "family carvery" was discovered to be the most bourgeois and dispiriting phrase in the language and, to put the police off the scent, the very antithesis of a goodtime drugs party).

Despite a health and safety problem on the lighthouse stairways, the scene absolutely flourished. The Uruguayan speedcore mix of Neil Diamond's Love on the Rocks can still leave 30-something Uruguayans misty-eyed with nostalgia. Defensor use the Lighthouse Rave image on their crest to signify the resourcefulness of coastal-living Uruguayans and how, if you take a certain amount of liquid ecstasy, you can see ships in the dark. Cameron Carter


"The worse miss ever," says Gillingham manager Peter Taylor of Adam Barrett's effort against Stevenage. At least it didn't go out for a throw-in.


from Russell Galbraith

"What does a new football ground need to do? 'Harmonise with the immediate locality,' according to Grimsby director John Fenty. In a very real sense the club must take that concept on board."


Delroy Facey's arrest for alleged match fixing is not the only controversy he's been involved with, as his Wikipedia entry shows.



Earlier this year, the Malawi government hit back at criticism from Madonna by comparing her to some footballers. That will teach her.


Also in the news this week
Mike Griffin of CSKA Tralee in the Kerry District League replicates Dennis Bergkamp

The sports minister doesn't know who won the FA Cup (or anything else)

Philippe Mexès's tan-induced injury


Getting shirty Notable kits of yesteryear

Telford150Telford United home, 1990-91

For Telford United, the 1980s are synonymous with Stan Storton, a curly haired window-cleaner from the Wirral, who managed the team for most of the decade. He led them to three FA Trophy finals, two of which were won, and to the fourth and fifth rounds of the FA Cup in 1983-84 and 1984-85 respectively. It took Cup-holders and eventual League champions Everton to knock Telford out in the latter season.

For most of the Storton era, Telford's shirts were predominantly white with an attractive navy blue on the sash and sleeves. They were sponsored by Japanese cassette manufacturers Maxell in an association which, in bringing together Asian investor and long-established local institution, seemed to exemplify the optimistic vision of the new town's planners.

By 1990-91, much had changed. Storton had left, to be replaced by former Manchester United and Republic of Ireland midfielder Gerry Daly. Daly's teams, though tending to consist of more ex-league players than Storton's, failed to capture the imagination in quite the same way. The shirts, now sponsored by local building firm Blockleys, were also less distinctive. To those of us who can never quite shed the notion that all life's most significant events are traceable to our own teenage years, the farewell to Storton and the end of the Maxell shirts marked the real beginning of Telford's decline – one which would end in liquidation in 2004. James Baxter

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