Posts Tagged ‘Football History’

An Explorer’s Guide to the Football Programme

3 August 2011

Contributed by David Garreth Toms

Recently, I have begun to collect old football programmes. This is perhaps one of the more unusual hobbies in which one can engage, no doubt the kind likely to attract derision in some quarters. Of course, when I say that I have begun to collect football programmes, I mean I have been willing to pay money for programmes dating from long before I was born. I have been “collecting” – i.e. hoarding – programmes since I was quite young.

As I trawled through research on soccer over the past few months, it occurred to me that there might be programmes from around, or just after, the period in which I was interested. Sure enough, eBay has answered that question affirmatively. Thus far I have acquired six programmes. This is one of the two (the other is pictured above) for which I began this entire quest:

There is an entire world of programme collecting out there, and it doesn’t occur just online. There are fairs, exhibitions, collectors’ magazines and even a history of the football programme. According to an article published a decade ago in The Guardian, the trend for collecting match-day programmes was on the up. Read more

Top five: football histories

26 May 2010

By Kevin O’Sullivan

It’s now only sixteen days until the beginning of the most bloated, over-hyped, quality-diluted, greed-driven (see FIFA’s recent clampdown on South African airline Kulula for advertising themselves as the ‘unofficial national carrier of the “you-know-what”’) sporting show on earth. But do I still love it? Will I still collect and pore over a variety of free newspaper world cup guides in the way I did as an eight-year-old watching Francois Oman-Biyik head that goal against Argentina in 1990? Absolutely, although I think I might give the Star sticker album a miss this time.

Brian Glanville, The Story of the World Cup (newest edition: London, 2010).
First published in 1973, Glanville’s book is now on its eighth edition, and still offers by far the best synthesis of the competition’s history. In his long journalistic career, including columns for World Soccer magazine and frequent match reports for the Sunday Times, Glanville has been an original and refreshingly honest voice. The Story of the World Cup is an extension of that writing, managing to walk the difficult tightrope of match description, background information and pithy asides with confidence and style. I can’t think of any other writer who could quote William Wordsworth to describe Maradona’s ephedrine-fuelled exit from the 1994 World Cup – ‘Men are we, and must grieve when even the shade / Of that which once was great has passed away’ – and get away with it. Read More