Blogs Of The Week: Leave the FA Cup alone, dealing with disability in football and the streets of TNS
Thank you to everyone who tweeted me links to the blogs they’ve enjoyed over the past week. Here are three of my favourites from the past seven days, plus one post that I scandalously managed to miss a couple of weeks ago…
1) IF IT AIN’T BROKE, DON'T FIX IT!
The news that the Football Association are considering a revamp of the FA Cup, with suggested changes including the introduction of seeding for the big clubs, has been met, at least from the people I've spoken to, with dismay. Mirroring the views of many is this article on The 72 blog , whose David Bevan argues the problem isn't with the competition, but with people's approach to it, on and off the pitch.
"When it comes down to it, though, there is not an awful lot wrong with the FA Cup. The crux of the issue is this: beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If you do not hold the FA Cup in the same regard that you once did, you need to turn a mirror on yourself."
2) RECOGNIZING FOOTBALL FOR ALL
People tweet links to their own blogs all the time and often they’re retweeted by others. The response to this particular blog post by George Ogier was hugely positive and the post itself - dealing with the issue of disability football - is certainly deserving of a much wider audience. It’s a topic that gets precious little informed coverage and we’re looking forward to reading more on this topic from George as the season progresses.
“At school I had turned out for various teams but that was more to do with the fact that I kept turning up for practice and the PE teacher thought “we’d better let the poor sod play in a match”. The games were played around me and whilst I might have pictured myself as a rampaging left-sided dynamo the only touches of the ball I got were accidental. A bit like a 14-year-old Wayne Bridge.”
3) WHEN THE (NEW) SAINTS GO MARCHING IN
They were originally called Llansantffraid F.C. Famously they were once known as Total Network Solutions. But these days TNS stands for The New Saints, or The New Saints of Oswestry Town & Llansantffraid Football Club, to give them their full name.
Most people know them purely as a Welsh side whose previous moniker inspired Jeff Stelling's "They'll be dancing in the streets of Total Network Solutions tonight..." comment. But now, thanks to Welsh blogger Chris Hunt, you can find out much, much more about one of the Welsh league's most storied, and at times controversial, clubs on the excellent In Bed With Maradona blog.
"Llansantffraid F.C. have found national and international fame thanks to a combination of league dominance and the quick thinking and wit of Soccer Saturday host Jeff Stelling. But what lies beneath is a story of franchise, finance and fierce cross-border debate. Amidst the success, the towns of Llansantffraid and Oswestry in England first became united and then divided again by Total Network Solutions FC, with dancing in the streets the last thing on their minds."
4) A TRAGEDY WE MISSED FIRST TIME AROUND...
A Shakespearean tragedy, that is. It may be from a few weeks ago, when the transfer window closed, but this piece of brilliance from ClockEnd5 definitely deserves a second look.
"Hail all fellows and welcome made,
'tis Prince Fernando who doth stride,
Through old Stamford's verdant glade, and
We gathered here at Carlo's gate,
Wonder how, accommodate
Anelka, Drogba and Torres be
In an offensive 4-3-3!"
Want to recommend a blog to add to our list, or a specific post to feature in this column? Tweet your suggestions to me @simonhead . I can’t feature them all, but I do read them all and I’ll do my best to reply to everyone who gets in touch.