2023

CURRICULUM VITAE (AD ABSURDUM)

I spent most of my three years ‘working’ in Manchester down the pub. When I was in my shared smoke-filled office, I was more often than not playing a very early demo of football manager (four free seasons, on repeat), or compiling a regular comedy fanzine for the five-a-side footy team I helped to found and run. They were crazy and fun times. Every other weekend, I got a train back to Lincolnshire for band rehearsals, recordings and occasional gigs.

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2022

Dreamed I scored a hattrick in the World Cup Final and still ended up on the losing side.

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2016

SAME OLD ENGLAND

I’ve been writing (if that’s the right word) about the England football team elsewhere since 2006, and this is basically the theme: (even when we win) England are shit. If that’s not depressing enough in itself, and you are curious for more, here’s a little summary of what to expect should you enter the rabbit hole: The best place to start is my preview of England’s ill-fated plan to get to the final of the 2012 World Cup in South Africa under the guidance of disciplinarian Italian capo Fabio Capello.

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HOW TO BE A TOP FOOTBALL MANAGER

Leaked documents and video reveal the FA’s shortlist and assessment interview questions for the England manager’s job. Stuart ‘Psycho’ Pearce, who presided over some of the least attacking and creative Manchester City and England U21 sides in living memory, was asked to give some expert coaching advice on how to play more attacking and creative football in line with England’s DNA blueprint. In a rambling and incoherent response, he finished off by reminiscing about how he used to psych out opponents.

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2012

WHY ENGLAND DON'T HAVE A HOPE IN HELL OF WINNING EURO 2012

Six years ago I wondered if the lack of Englishmen in Arsenal’s team (and most of the other leading Premier League teams) would herald a new era of Scotland-like failure for the England football team? Well, thanks in part to Arsene Wenger’s penchant for Saintly youth team players (Theo, The Ox), we’re not quite there, yet, although undercover Scotsman Steve McClaren successfully tried and failed to qualify for Euro 2008.

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2011

(THERE'S ONLY ONE) JIMMY CARTER (THE FOOTBALLER, NOT THE PEANUT FARMER)

A long time ago, back in January 2010 in fact, Dan Lynch’s band 20lb Sounds released their song Jimmy Carter (20lb Sounds) / CC BY-SA 3.0: This is our first original release. It’s called Jimmy Carter and as you might expect it’s about… well… Jimmy Carter, the former US president. We didn’t set out to write a song about him particularly, it’s just that someone came out with the line “Jimmy Carter was a peanut farmer”, and it had to be put into song.

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2010

THE WORLD CUP ON DRUGS: PURE-GRADE HEROIN CUT WITH SHAVINGS OF CLIVE TYLDESLEY

If England’s game against Algeria had been a Wimbledon tennis match, the two sides would still be at it today with the Dutch Master Johan Cruyff declaring it the greatest example of Total Crap Football ever played. Both sets of players would be awarded (honorary) knighthoods for their part in simulating Barnsley versus Grimsby Town at a freezing cold Oakwell on New Year’s Day in the late 1990s/early 2000s and no doubt the two managers would be encased in marble as a living testament to their obduracy.

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NO FUTURE IN ENGLAND'S DREAMING? INSIDE THE MIND OF FABIO CAPELLO

Fabio Capello’s master plan to take England to the World Cup final is finally taking shape. On the evidence seen so far, truly it is something of a fantasy. The sorry bunch of posers (Wayne Rooney, our only hope and Sid Vicious-like talisman ready to self-destruct at any moment, excepted) that represent our once proud nation may fail even to qualify for the ‘It’s A Knockout’ stages let alone reach the final for what would be our finest hour-and-half (plus extra-time and penalties, if needed) for 44 years.

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WHY ENGLAND DON'T HAVE A HOPE IN HELL OF WINNING THE FOOTBALL WORLD CUP IN 2010

We don’t have any goalkeepers who are not proven to be accidents waiting to happen. James, Green, Foster, Robinson. OK, so there is the untested Joe Hart.We don’t have any defenders who are fit or in form. Johnson, Ferdinand and Cole all injured. Terry playing like he has his pants down around his ankles half the time. Replacements (based on Capello’s selections so far) would be Brown, Lescott, Upson and Baines (since the useless Bridge has withdrawn).

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2009

UNITED, BORN AND BRED: SUPER GLUE MACARI

The only United match I’ve been to in recent years was last season’s FA Cup tie at home to Spurs, courtesy of E.on’s sponsorship and their Family Football initiative. I went with a couple of my ‘clients’ from work, had a great road trip and fantastic all-round experience. One’s a Spurs fan, and I know he felt a mixture of joy and anxiety sat in amongst all the United fans (even in the Family stand) when Spurs went 1-0 up.

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2007

WHY WE'RE CRAP: THE PROBLEM WITH ENGLISH FOOTBALL

It’s often the case that what in one sense is an undeniable strength can at the same time also be a real or potential weakness. English football’s great history and tradition raises everyone’s expectations, yet the English football team must compete on an increasingly commercialised and sophisticated international playing field. We have more fans, more money and more foreigners in our game than any other country, so it’s no surprise that when things don’t go to plan, everyone feels quite upset and let down.

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2006

A NEW SCOTLAND? WHY ENGLAND'S FOOTBALL TEAM WILL SOON BE AS SHIT AS SCOTLAND'S

Is an all-foreign Arsenal bad for English football? But if all our top teams are made up of non-Englishmen….

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