What defines being a good or bad football fan?

October 31, 2012 in Features by Jonathan Holdstock

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Something on social networking site Twitter caught my eye as I scanned through my timeline. It was a tweet from a journalist to another user describing Reading’s stadium and fans as the worst in the country; their reasoning behind this came from the other user’s tweet lamenting the fact that there is the famous “Darts” music after we score a goal. For the record, I don’t like it, I think it ruins the atmosphere after a goal, but hey, I don’t run the club so I do not get to make decisions on what happens at the game, I just get on with enjoying a goal. But because we have this music, does that make us the worst fans in the country? It is a laughable opinion, as is that the Madejski Stadium is the worst ground in England. Those who have been to Loftus Road and the New Den will confirm this. But it got me thinking, what is the factor that determines whether a team’s fans are good or bad?

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Why punishments for racism are currently not severe enough

October 31, 2012 in Premier League by Daniel Lloyd

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So during Sunday’s ‘Clash of the Titans’ between Chelsea and Manchester United, a few interesting things happened, with none more important than the supposed claims of racial abuse from referee Mark Clattenburg.

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Everton earn point as Liverpool let go of a two goal lead

October 29, 2012 in Premier League by William Kent

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David Moyes, earlier in the week, had criticised Luis Suarez for diving, and discussed how it deters fans away from games. There wasn’t much more Suarez could do in return to the Scot’s statements than scoring a goal, creating another and having a perfectly legitimate third denied, whilst adding in an humiliating goal celebration for good measure.

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Is the race issue in football becoming bigger than the game?

October 27, 2012 in Europe, Premier League by Lizzi Hollis

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My opinions on this issue have been to-ing and fro-ing this week. Last weekend, as part of the ‘Kick it Out’ campaign, all Premier League Footballers were expected to wear a Kick It Out training t-shirt before the games kicked off. A number of black players including the Ferdinand brothers and Reading’s Jason Roberts refused to wear it, as a form of protest that Kick It Out is not doing enough to tackle the escalating race issue currently in English football.

This latest row came only days after a brawl between players and fans broke out at England’s U-21 European Championship qualifier game against Serbia in Belgrade. The racism and monkey chants had been going on through the entire match but escalated when England’s Danny Rose scored a late winner and was subjected to abuse from Serbian fans and players, including having various missiles thrown at him. Subsequently, two Serbian players and coaches have been given a one-year international ban.

At the start of the week, I thought this boycott of the Kick it Out training t-shirt was wrong. I was of the opinion that, yes, Kick it Out is not doing enough, but surely something is always better than nothing in this situation?

But then my opinion began to change when I realised just how much publicity was generated from this issue. Read the rest of this entry →

A Drop of Claret and Blue: A Chance for West Ham’s Maiga?

October 27, 2012 in Features, Premier League by Darren Woon

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Welcome to A Drop of Claret and Blue.

Firstly, an apology. Due to an unfortunate accident, the last post, which included predictions for the Southampton fixture, didn’t appear on the site until the day after the match had been played.

I was initially concerned that some of my comments in that post would have been seen as post-match inclusions, particularly my mentions of Adam Lallana and Modibo Maiga, both of whom saw their name on the score sheet. However, I assure you that the piece was written prior to kick off, as is this one, looking ahead to the away game against Wigan. But first, a quick glance back at the Southampton fixture at Upton Park.

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