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14 August 2015 ~
Earlier this week the FA released plans for £260 million investment in grassroots football over the next four years. But this is only a £15m per year increase on what they already spend, and some of that is to come from redundancies with a quarter of the FA’s 900 staff to be laid off. No news yet on how much will go towards grassroots from the next £8 billion Premier League TV deal. Don't get your hopes up.
Badge of the week ~ Chennaiyin FC, India
Chennaiyin’s club crest depicts the famous Man In The Cardboard Mask. A long time ago there lived a man of wealth, popularity and great swordsmanship who was known for his strong moral compass at a time when the rulers of the land were blemished by great avarice and corruption. The Man In The Cardboard Mask (he wasn’t called that at the time because he wasn’t in a cardboard mask yet but for the sake of clarity we’ll refer to him by this one name throughout) was a constant thorn in the side of the ruling families, standing up for wronged citizens and all victims of injustice.
Things came to a head one day when The Man In The Cardboard Mask openly rebuked the Maharajah’s eldest son, who had just slain a farmer at the climax of an argument concerning the correct way to dip bread in tea. The Man In The Cardboard Mask was imprisoned in the deepest, darkest cell in the district and made to wear a cardboard mask to make things just a little more uncomfortable. Also it caused him problems when he was ordering his meals because the gaoler routinely misheard him. It wasn’t so bad – he could have been made to wear an iron mask or one of living bees, but he was arrested on one of the Maharajah’s good days.
The Man In The Cardboard Mask was eventually released with a full pardon on another of the Maharajah’s good days and is now associated in the region with inviolable probity and partially inaudible speech. Cameron Carter
Richard Keys shops Diego Costa. There may be repercussions.
In a strange reversal of the usual trend for English clubs to play in the Middle East, QPR staged the Saudi Super Cup this week. It was a “keenly contested” fixture apparently, which may be why some tickets cost £75.
from Paul Beecham
“Well, the Bundesliga are making quite an effort to promote their YouTube channel. I assume that these people are meant to be irritating?”
from Andy Kynaston
“West Ham need to raise money however they can now there’s a stadium to pay for. Oh, wait…”
from Tim Free
“The bike rack at Stamford Bridge. Not a great advert for cycling to the game but at least the fag packet is colour coordinated, eh?”
Sky Sports clearly aren't looking to win friends at Sheffield United, after placing this poster outside Bramall Lane.