The land that football forgot

Posted by on Sep 19, 2010 in Uncategorized | 7 Comments

Does the national football media know where the West Midlands is?

I sometimes wonder.

Yesterday’s match between West Brom and Birmingham was the first of 12 derbies between the big four of West Midlands football this season, the other two — apologies Coventry — being Villa and Wolves.

It’s the first time the four teams have been in the top flight together since 1983.

But this was not considered noteworthy …

Are West Brom excited about the new season? Hardly…

Posted by on Aug 12, 2010 in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

The atmosphere in B71 is not what you might expect at a newly promoted club.

Rather than eager anticipation, weary resignation is the most common sentiment among West Bromwich Albion fans on the eve of the new season.

But then, familiarity breeds contempt. It’s been eight years and four promotions since the team’s debut in the Premier League, and most fans routinely expect a fourth relegation to follow this term.…

The Monday Profile: Gonzalo Jara

Posted by on Jun 28, 2010 in Uncategorized | One Comment

“Chile defender Gonzalo Jara will be familiar to fans of West Bromwich Albion, after helping them win promotion to the Premier League last season.”
It’s a home banker for your World Cup bingo cards tonight, when La Roja face Brazil in the round of 16.
Commentators panicking about researching players based at ‘unknown’ clubs like Udinese heave a sigh of relief when they spot an English team on the squad …

Once more unto the breach…

Posted by on Apr 13, 2010 in Uncategorized | 6 Comments

So here we are again. A fourth promotion for West Bromwich Albion in nine seasons, though most people quote that stat as if it’s a bad thing; obviously they were not following Albion during the 1990s.

But will it be a matching fourth relegation, or is there reason to expect survival? And if so, how, and with who, will it be achieved?

Firstly, hats off to the gaffer. Despite arriving …

Book Review: Football’s 12 Apostles: The Making of the League, 1886-1889

Posted by on Feb 24, 2010 in Book Review, Uncategorized | One Comment

Football’s Twelve Apostles
By Thomas Taw
Published by Desert Island Books
April 2006, £16.99, ISBN: 9781905328093

Maybe it’s the hype and money – not to mention scandal – in present-day football, or maybe I’m just getting old, but I find myself increasingly drawn to nostalgia-laden accounts of the game from more innocent times.

Which is what made me pick up Thomas Taw’s account of the Football League’s formation, at the …