Tuesday 30 April 2013

The Worst of Modern Football?

Here in the Attic, we love the "good old days"! This doesn't mean we don't like football now, but there are some things we just can't stand!

What with the growing Against Modern Football movement and a general sense of disenchantment about the game we all love, Chris and I were discussing what we despise most about the modern game.

My personal bugbear is one word..."Tekkers." Just hearing that word as I type it makes me want to punch a wall!!!

We started drawing up a list of anything we could think of... and it started growing rapidly. There's 22 things on there already!

Retro Random Video: Man United NOT appearing on Top of the Pops

We've seen it so often before, the sight of a football team appearing on Top of the Pops, singing (or rather 'miming') badly to their latest chart hit (if indeed 'hit' is the word we're looking for there).

But in 1983 there was one occasion when a football team were due to appear in the BBC studios to perform their song but didn't. This was because Manchester United, the team in question, were rendered unavailable on account of their participation in the 1983 FA Cup Final replay at Wembley against Brighton & Hove Albion.

Monday 29 April 2013

World Cup - A Daily Mirror Special (1970)

It can never be underestimated just how much English football fans were looking forward to the 1970 World Cup. Having hosted and won the 1966 tournament, England were ready to take on anyone that dared snatch their title from them. With such self-confidence and excited anticipation, the entire country lapped up every bit of Mexico ‘70 ephemera they could find.

The Daily Mirror was not to be left out as it produced its special guide to the Finals. Calling on the talents of its writers, designers and photographers, the Mirror had all the ingredients required to inform and educate its readers.

Sunday 28 April 2013

Attic Podcast 8 - Memorabilia Collecting

Once again we bring you two podcasts separated by a matter of days, although they were recorded a matter of minutes apart... who cares???

This time we discuss the exciting (stick with me!) topic of memorabilia collecting and cover everything from eBay buying tips to whatever's at the other end of that spectrum.

Also, Rich alienates all our Scottish listeners... and all our female one.

Oh, and if you can guess what the theme tune is (and moreover the specific variant), then well done! 

Subscribe on iTunes or download here

Friday 26 April 2013

Retro Round-Up: 25 April 2013

As if to prove that The Football Attic can't keep the football memories of yesteryear alive on its own, we bring you our weekly selection of top posts and news items from around the globe...

When football kits go bad: Who Ate All The Pies tell us the sad tale of Kevin Pressman’s goalkeeper outfit from 2002/03...

A fine tribute to a great servant of Brighton & Hove Albion and the Republic of Ireland - Tony Grealish - over at The Goldstone Wrap...

Wednesday 24 April 2013

Attic Podcast 7 - FA Cup Memories

As it's nearly time for another FA Cup Final, we thought we'd wander down memory lane and ramble all about our own FA Cup memories from hours of match build up to why it's all gone wrong nowadays!

Listen to Rich go for an hour without really mentioning Coventry in 87 or Sutton Utd in 89...useless!

Subscribe on iTunes or download here

Tuesday 23 April 2013

Super Action Soccer, 1984

The Colecovision games console was much prized for its near-perfect arcade titles back in the early-1980s. With games like Donkey Kong Jr, Zaxxon and Q*Bert, you could be entertained by great graphics and top sounds in your own home just like the coin-operated classics.

Unfortunately when Super Action Soccer was published in 1984, little of that quality seemed to remain. Oh sure, the graphics were better than we’d seen in other games on other consoles... but only just.

Having booted up your Super Action Soccer cartridge (I wonder why it was never known as ‘SAS’, by the way?) you were quickly greeted by the sight of two teams lined up and ready to play. The players, for their part, looked like the symbols off a Gents toilet door - one team coloured light blue, the other in a shade of yellow we shall henceforth refer to as ‘Smoker’s handkerchief.’

Saturday 20 April 2013

The Hotspur Handy Book of Football Club Colours, 1969

There are so many great football nostalgia images around that it would be easy for us to upload one after the other and say "Wow - check these out!"

We wouldn't need to do much more because a picture, as Telly Salavas once implied, paints a thousand words. On this occasion, however, we came very close to doing just that, for this post takes The Hotspur Handy Book of Football Club Colours as its subject.

This simple booklet of sixteen pages measuring just over 15 centimetres by 25 contains nothing but hand-drawn illustrations - 141 in all - showing the football kits worn by league clubs throughout the United Kingdom.

I never bought The Hotspur comic. I was more of a Whizzer and Chips man myself (sorry - 'boy'), but had I known it was prone to giving away free gifts like this back in the day, I'd have quickly turned my back on Sid's Snake, Shiner and Mustapha Million.

Friday 19 April 2013

Retro Round-Up - 18 April 2013

Our weekly buffet of football nostalgia from which we invite you to try an appetising mouthful of the following:

The Goldstone Wrap brings us the larger than life Brighton & Hove Albion team photo from 1979, which includes everyone at the club - even Hilda the tea lady...

An excellent assessment of the 1977 League Cup Final over at Got, Not Got - probably the longest Cup Final England's ever known...

In all their pinstriped brilliance, the 1983/84 Bordeaux team containing what looks like the entire French national squad, courtesy of The Vintage Football Club...

Wednesday 17 April 2013

Subbuteo catalogue, 1988

When you come to appraise Subbuteo football kit designs as a fully grown adult, you accept the fact that some of them won’t look quite right. This isn't a problem most of the time because we understand that Subbuteo’s charm comes from the way it simplifies the real world in miniature form.

Unfortunately, there’s an exception to every rule and in the case of Subbuteo’s 1988 catalogue, it’s the Tottenham team shown on the front cover. Ignore for a moment the not-so-subtle use of Umbro product placement worn by the six boys and instead focus your attention on the white-shirted players on the Subbuteo pitch. According to the kit listing inside the catalogue, this is Tottenham Hotspur but I ask you, kit aficionados of the world - when have you ever seen Tottenham wear a kit like that?

Sunday 14 April 2013

Merlin World Cup 90 Sticker Collection

As we've already seen, I'm not averse to treading a non-Panini sticker book path and here again, we take a look at someone other than the mighty P attempting a sticker collection of their own.

This time it's Merlin, who had only come into existence the year before, with only their 2nd attempt - the first was Team 90, which I'll review another time. While Team 90 covered the domestic league, for their second outing, they went international with their first World Cup collection.

As with Team 90, which featured flip-book style goal animations on the corners of each page, 'The World Cup Sticker Collection - Italia 90' featured its own little extra hook to reel you in. This idea was fully integrated not only with the album, but the stickers themselves.

The Admiral Book of Football 1978

“Welcome aboard... and this is your editor speaking”... With these wonderful words, we’re introduced to a football annual created with only one thing in mind - namely to show off Admiral sportswear. It’s enough to make a football nostalgist positively moist with excitement.

The introduction to this 1978 annual explained why it had come into existence in the first place: “Overseas teams wearing Admiral kit include leading club sides Eintracht of Frankfurt, Servette of Switzerland and PS Jayakarta of Indonesia. International sides include Bahrain, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Singapore, but Admiral merchandise is sold all over the world thanks to TV programmes like Match of the Day and The Big Match, which is screened in almost every country where soccer is played and create a huge demand for the strips of British clubs.”

Saturday 13 April 2013

Great Tracksuits of Our Time: No.13

Norway (1986):

One glaring omission from our Great Tracksuits series thus far is Hummel, the Danish sportswear manufacturer (and not the German World War II tank of the same name).

Friday 12 April 2013

The League of Blogs 2013 Deadline!

As you may well know, we're running the League of Blogs project again. Last year, we never really set a deadline as we had no idea how popular it was going to be. We eventually decided to set a limit to the number of places on the wallchart (so I didn't have to redraw it for the 50th time ;-) ).

This year however, as there is no wallchart and people keep asking if they've missed it, it would make sense to actually create a deadline so you know how much time you have to get your submissions in. As this is no small project, the deadline will be quite a long one so don't worry :)

We've therefore decided to set the closing date the same as the end of the football season (which we're deciding is when the Champions League European Cup finishes).

So...you have until Saturday 25th May to get your League of Blogs entry in.

Don't forget, if you want any help with creating your badge or kits, just ask...we're more than happy to help :)

Retro Round-Up - 12 April 2013

This week's selection of the best retro footy stuff on the web over the past seven days...

Our fears surely confirmed - Panini have been best friends with Photoshop, according to the evidence provided by Old School Panini...

A classic moment in England football history, brought to our attention by The Stiles Council, created by 8Bit-Football...

A rare piece of Clough-related Brighton memorabilia over at The Goldstone Wrap...

Spirit of Mirko finds extra footballing significance in the recent passing of Margaret Thatcher...

Wednesday 10 April 2013

Esso Collection of Football Club Badges - The Adverts

We might start calling this 'Discovery Week' on The Football Attic...

After Rich J recently discovered the true source for his free Winterthur Subbuteo team, I was today able to shed more light on a previous post of my own.

One of the most popular posts on our website is one of the most unexpected successes. Back in September 2012, I reviewed a largely overlooked piece of memorabilia called the Esso Collection of Football Club Badges. Coming from the same people that brought you the England World Cup Coin Collection, this was a set of football insignia (made from foil) available individually from Esso petrol stations whenever a tankful of fuel was purchased.

When I wrote the article well over six months ago, I'd barely heard of the Esso badge collection, yet as if to prove I wasn't alone, thousands of you have been visiting this website to find out more about those shiny club crests yourselves.

And if you count yourself as one of that band of loyal and inquisitive souls, you're in luck because just today I've unearthed further evidence as to how those badges were marketed back in 1971.

Tuesday 9 April 2013

Winterthur...The Truth Revealed!

You may recall (though given the number of hits it got, you probably don't ;-P ) I wrote the below article all about how I got a free Subbuteo team from Shoot! Magazine.

Well, as it turns out, it wasn't, it was from Match...how do I know this?

While surfing eBay the other day, I chanced upon a copy of Match from December 1987. Across the front was a strapline: "Free Subbuteo Teams - Collect Token No. 1 Inside"

Could it be?

Then, purely by chance, good friend Rob Stokes of theglovebag.com sent me a pic and mentioned he'd been going through a decade's worth of Match mags. I asked him to see if he could find the one I'd seen and he did! Not only that, but he kindly scanned in the original articles / offers (and the tokens...evidently he didn't get a free team ;-) )

Monday 8 April 2013

Palitoy Pocketeers 'World Cup' (1975)

Think of the phrase 'Flick-to-kick' and you're immediately likely to summon up images of the hemispherically-anchored figures of Subbuteo. The trouble is, Subbuteo was never very good as a game to play in the back of a car on a long journey.

Luckily, there was one game worthy of the slogan. Kind of. 'World Cup' was one of a whole range of games by Palitoy called 'Pocketeers'. Their aim was to provide fun entertainment that kids could easily buy with whatever pocket money they had. There were no batteries to fit and no computer gadgetry involved; all the moving parts in each game were built around clockwork mechanisms and manual interaction on the part of the owner, and that was all.

There were many games to collect in the series emulating everything from angling to motor racing, and all of them fitted snugly in an average school child's pocket. Inevitably football came into focus for the Palitoy boffins and in 1975 they came up with a design that simulated the end-to-end cut and thrust of the beautiful game... in plastic.

Saturday 6 April 2013

Shoot! 14 November 1981

Imagine a world where football fans across England could, in effect, choose which players could represent their country in international matches. Back in November 1981, Shoot! magazine wasn't quite able to offer such a direct influence on England team selection, but it did invite readers to send in their preferred team to beat Hungary in the upcoming crucial World Cup qualifier.

Having received a “phenomenal” response to their appeal in a previous issue, Shoot! compiled the team that its readers thought Ron Greenwood should pick. “Some positions were clear-cut” it said, while for “one or two we almost needed a recount” due to the closeness of the vote.

Friday 5 April 2013

The Football Attic & Backpass Magazine

It's a very proud day for us here in the Attic as the latest issue of Backpass (no. 28) features an article written by Chris and myself, covering what we think were the best and worst Subbuteo accessories, ranging from the "ahead of its time" trainer's bench to the useless pieces of plastic that masqueraded as floodlights.

Backpass is a fantastic magazine dedicated to football in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, but also touching on the 1950s and 1990s and frankly, if you're into retro football and you haven't bought a copy before, then I can only assume you are insane ;-)

This month also contains an excellent feature on Plymouth kits from John Devlin at True Colours as well as a look into the memorabilia past of none other than my beloved Coventry City by the retro godfathers, Got, Not Got.

You can obtain your copy from most WH Smiths and my local Sainsburys...ok that last one is only really useful if you live near me.
You can also get them direct from Backpass

It's out today, so seek out a copy and bathe yourself in its retro-warmth :)

Retro Round Up - 5 April 2013

Our weekly selection of the best retro football articles from across the internet over the last seven days...

First up, The Goldstone Wrap remembers happier times for John Gregory while a player at the Goldstone Ground...

The Vintage Football Club brings us The French Olympic team that faced Israel in 1976, featuring the future President of UEFA...

There's been many a club badge discarded on the rubbish heap of football history, but Chris Wright of Who Ate All The Pies has unearthed 20 of the best for our viewing pleasure...

Thursday 4 April 2013

Retro Random Video: BBC World Cup Grandstand 1986

If you search YouTube long enough, you'll soon realise there are enough clips to delight and amuse you well into the next century. Yet it's not the quantity of the clips that often delights - more the randomness of them.

To that end, we'll be trying to bring you exactly that kind of overlooked randomness here on The Football Attic, and as ever, if you find any such footage of your own that you'd like to bring to a wider audience, do drop us a line and let us know.

We begin our trawl of the video archives with this quarter-hour clip taken from the end of the very last edition of the BBC's World Cup Grandstand in 1986.