Category: England

Kicking it with Karl | Both the ball and head are round

London | Talk on the world’s most downloaded podcast—some 8 million downloads confirmed by Guinness World Records—occasionally turns to sport and to football. Ricky Gervais Show co-host Stephen Merchant on 22 Aug 06 asked the third man of the trio—the world’s favorite Mancunian, Karl Pilkington—if he had been paying attention to the Commonwealth Games.

Mundane observations | In ‘Worktown,’ games of chance, snapshots in time

Bolton, England | A New Yorker article by Caleb Crain has peaked our interest in the Mass-Observation phenomenon and its relationship to football in Britain. Near the top of Crain’s treatment, “Anthropology of football pools” appears, tucked between “The aspidistra cult” and “Bathroom behaviour,” as one of the potential objects of study.

Patriotic support | The fifth photo-contest winner

Artist Ruth Franklin of Decatur, Georgia—the Global Game’s hometown—submits from East Anglia our fifth photo-contest winner.

The culture cup | Copping awards for purple prose, Icelandic chic and fish graphics

FIFA may have its Golden Boot, but notable performances at the 2006 World Cup finals were not confined to the pitch. We present our awards in musical, advertising and website categories, including an homage to our favorite tonsured French footballer.

Barking instructions | Soccer dogs feature in ‘dog culture’ magazine

Berkeley, California | We could not include everything in our article on dogs and soccer in the current issue of Bark, the “modern dog culture magazine” founded in the Bay Area in 1997.

In April we reached Jim McNichol, former right back for Torquay United, in his current job as proprietor of the Exeter Inn pub in Ashburton, Devon. Shortly after picking up the phone, he knew exactly why we were calling.

News of import | Times of London plans to splash footie in U.S.

London | An American edition of the Times of London—for distribution in New York and Washington—will try to capitalize on “unsatisfied demand” for soccer coverage, especially during the World Cup finals. The staid London daily, owned by the Rupert Murdoch–controlled News Corporation, is responding to trends in Internet traffic that show close to 40 percent of […]

Steppe-ing out | Before Cup, 2 lads spread sphere of influence

London | Christian Wach and Phil Wake have scheduled a Battersea Park kickabout for Sunday, 28 May, to launch the second consecutive pilgrimage of “Spirit of Football” to the World Cup finals. The two Brits, now 39, conceived the Olympic torch relay equivalent four years ago and embarked on a two-month cross-cultural football exchange across […]

Flush with pride | Time stops ticking on Arsenal’s Clock End

London | Having nipped rivals Tottenham Hotspur for a final Champions League spot on 7 May—on the same day they were honoring their Highbury ground of 93 years—Arsenal Football Club had reason to feel elation and melancholy. We try to capture both in our interactive Flash tribute.

E-mails | M. Lukes consoles Sven re Rooney

Atlanta | Architect of a-b glöbí¢l’s Integethicsâ„¢ and Creovationâ„¢ management modules, Martin Lukes counsels England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson on team-building in the wake of Wayne Rooney‘s foot injury. In today’s Financial Times, Lukes, presently transitioning to head a-b glöbí¢l’s U.K. operations, says that the striker’s broken foot need not derail England’s chances in the World […]

Seeking refuge | Mourinho finds trouble in land of ‘Apache’

São Paulo | Life for Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has been anything but halcyon since the Blues clinched their second straight Premiership title. Mourinho traveled last week to see Chelsea transfer target Carlos Tevez, who plays for Corinthians of Brazil, face River Plate in the Copa Libertadores round of 16. The match was halted early, however, […]

Managers | Does England really need a Scolari?

London | In considering Luiz Felipe Scolari‘s rejection of the job as England manager, Observer columnist Mary Riddell writes that the influences from abroad have “transformed the English league and society itself.” The game is irrepressibly global, irrepressibly political, as illustrated by the row over whether Iran president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad will attend the coming World Cup. […]

Slide tackles | Football proceeds on ice, in the name of research

Halley Research Station, Antarctica (U.K. claim) | The Kansas City Star shirks no continents in a summary of how world cultures will be captivated by the forthcoming World Cup finals. An e-mail exchange with Simon Herniman, general assistant at the British Antarctic Survey’s most isolated station, confirms that radio and Internet will aid researchers as they track England matches as well as the rest of the competition.

Not real, but simulated | FIFA wants tougher policing on dives

London and San Francisco | Dave Eggers states the facts straight in a book excerpt published last weekend in the Observer. In yet another permutation of the “Why Americans don’t like soccer” argument, Eggers mentions, first, the Cold War–era “commie” taint and, second, the prevalence of diving (aka “simulation”).

Rice of the Rovers | ‘Condi’ cottons to Lancashire lads

Blackburn, England | The visit would not exactly qualify as ping-pong diplomacy, but sport as a means of high-level diplomatic exchange continues with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s excursion to what has been termed “the center of the world.”

London diaries | The sweet embrace of the crowd

Part 2 of the diary finally arrives, featuring evenings at Upton Park and Highbury. At Upton Park, home to West Ham United, we fake a Cockney accent and most of the words to “I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles.” Besides this, we learn what literary theorist Mikhail Bakhtin might have to say about our zest for football chants.

Keyboard flurry | Writer’s cramp setting in for academics, Rooney

London | Wayne Rooney may be developing writer’s cramp along with his football injuries in years to come. But of more interest than Rooney’s £5 million publishing deal are several other football titles showing that the game lends itself to multiple genres.

Global Game Wallpaper 26

Global Game Wallpaper 26 Originally uploaded by GlobalGame. Highbury at night, Arsenal v. Wigan Athletic, Carling Cup, semifinal, 2nd leg, 24 January 2006. With quote from Bob Ferrier, “Underground to Highbury.” Copyright © 2006 JZ Editing & Publishing.

Global Game Wallpaper 25

Global Game Wallpaper 25 Originally uploaded by GlobalGame. London royalty | At the Brick Lane market on 22 January 2006, hawkers traffic in knock-off images, some incorporating Premiership players and logos. Copyright © 2006 JZ Editing & Publishing.

Folk football | Lenten rite when pancakes aren’t enough

Ashbourne, England | Brendan Harwood, born south of the River Henmore in this Derbyshire town, goaled a ceremonial, cork-filled ball for the Down’ards at 2130 GMT today to complete a Shrovetide Tuesday football match that some believe has been contested annually for more than 1,000 years. A second match with the Up’ards takes place tomorrow, Ash […]

Silly sketch | Building from the back, with Leibniz in goal

London | Some might object that Monty Python’s Personal Best, airing in six installments in February and March on the Public Broadcasting Service, merely provides another money-making rehash for the famed comedy troupe. But the installment hosted by Eric Idle at least offers the classic Python Olympiad, featuring the second-leg football final in Munich between […]

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