Wednesday, 31 December 2008
These last few days have been a time to remember - not just for me but for those around me.
My dad had his triple heart bypass operation yesterday. I heard this morning that after a night of being sedated they were bringing him round and he had started responding. A major trauma for the body in any event but for a man with a chronic renal condition and carrying too much weight, nothing short of life threatening.
It's not all plain sailing yet and I'm sure we will have more challenges to face.Hopefully though this signals his first steps on the road to recovery and an improved quality of life.
And while all this was going on, my friend David, who is in his early 50s, has been riding solo through Welsh mountains on his bike to raise money for my charity. His latest post shows what a personal challenge his adventure has been, testing him to his limits and requiring him to draw on his strength of spirit.
I have no doubt he is looking forward to a few less taxing days now to allow his body to recuperate.
With all this in my head, I was therefore very struck upon reading an interview with Foxes' defender Chris Powell. It is clear that at long last we have someone managing the club who recognises that things have been sick at Leicester for a number of years and that as with any serious illness it takes time, effort and commitment to bring about healing.
Lets hope 2009 continues to offer a pathway to recovery for such things dear to my heart.
Monday, 29 December 2008
A world record has been broken today.
David Pratt, striker with non-league Chippenham, has got the record for the fastest sending off ever in the world. 3 seconds!
What a plonker!
And what about that idiot Ricardo Fuller - another striker? Slapping his own captain in the face!
I mean - what??!!
As for today's top story - well I'm obviously not going to comment directly on the incident which is subject to Criminal Justice process, but I would certainly suggest that anyone who is a friend of Saint Stevie of Me might have a word in his ear about how sensible it is to be out at 2.30 in the morning in a place where he is at the very least vulnerable to drunken trouble.
Let's hope he proves not to be involved.
Otherwise he will have to leave Liverpool and join the other fallen angels.
Sunday, 28 December 2008
A weird thing happened to me today.
As you may know, the manner by which Leicester City became the love of my life was somewhat unusual compared to the usual routes people follow to become a supporter of their team.
One of the reasons I chose them was a slightly distant family link. My paternal grandmother was from the area and my father's cousin lived there until her death a year or so ago.
When I was at the hospital today visiting my dad, his sister and her husband were there too.
And yes you've guessed it - I managed to turn the conversation to football.
We talked about my cousin being a Stoke and Liverpool fan. He and my uncle went to the Britannia on Christmas Day to see Stoke play the ManUre (having queued for about 4 hours for tickets!).
When I mentioned that I support Leicester City, my aunt told a story about how Gary Lineker used to live next to my dad's cousin as a boy. He apparently regularly kicked his ball into their garden and on occasions her husband kept it.
Sadly none of these balls has yet made an appearance in the collection of family heirlooms but you never know do you?
Saturday, 27 December 2008
You'll be pleased to know that I managed to follow the games as they happened yesterday, by fair means and foul. I even got to watch MOTD!
Oh no you didn't!
Oh yes I did!
Hooray for Robbie Keane! Lets hope this really is the end of his Liverpool goal drought.
Boo to you Arsene Wenger - you are a great manager so just stop whingeing! It is very undignified.
Drat drat and double drat those pantomime villains who scrambled a last minute equaliser against us.
Anyway I'm off to my Mum's house now.
Where is it?
Well behind you of course!
So this is your pantomime dame signing off for tonight.
Bye bye girls and boys.
Friday, 26 December 2008
My son loved his Arsenal shirt. Of course.
He in turn bought me a book called "1001 Football Moments", a great gift for a girl trying to backfill years in her football knowledge.
Today brings a day with my lover's family in Bath. The biggest day in the footballing calender. Every league team in action.
Unfortunately, no-one else in the family is really into football.
So in amongst the laughter, presents and music I'm going to have to find surreptitious ways to track the action.
A pocket radio and frequent trips to the loo (better they think I have a weak bladder than I am being antisocial). A walk down the street to see if any curtains have been left open displaying footballing action on the TV screen.
Oh and one member of the family is a part-time Barnsley fan. A few kind comments about pies might persuade him to let me take a peek at the live scores on his computer.
Other than that I might have to rely on telepathy.
So if you start feeling sorry for yourself at any point during the day, just remember - there is always someone worse off.
Georgina is in football wilderness.
Thursday, 25 December 2008
Are we all feeling Christmassy?
Enjoying the season of goodwill to all men - and women (apart from Leeds United fans of course)?
Lets hope all our footballers have got over their Christmas parties and are concentrating on preparing for tomorrow's fixtures.
It's been quite a year in the beautiful game hasn't it?
I can't wait for the next one.
I'm off now to grab a crab, nibble a lobster and lick a langoustine.
Wednesday, 24 December 2008
Hey! Sorry for not posting yesterday. Bad headache.
But here I am back tonight.
And feeling excited.
"Because it's Christmas?" I hear you ask.
Well yes of course I'm looking forward to that.
My dad's coming out of hospital for the day (he is still waiting for his op).
We are having a quiet Christmas at home my lover and I. Lobster, crab, scallops and prawns for lunch followed by Christmas Pud and clotted cream.
Then my children over in the evening for home cooked ham and other goodies.
All good stuff.
But what I'm really excited about is our fixture on Boxing Day.
How fitting that to celebrate this Christian festival, the forces of good will be taking on the forces of evil.
Personally I think their new manager should have stuck to his stage act.
Oh and the best Christmas present ever. Matty Fryatt has renewed his contract.
Monday, 22 December 2008
Am I alone in thinking Tony Adams is a little - well - unusual?
Whenever I seem him interviewed on the telly I want to yell at him to take 6 months off and rest. He looks like a man who has not had a day's leave in 20 years.
The worries of the world on his shoulders.
According to someone on Talk Sport yesterday, his wife has a 'grudge' book, in which she writes the name of anyone who says anything negative about her man.
I'm not sure if she has dolls she sticks pins in too. Either way I'm probably courting danger with the title of this post.
I know he has had a personal and very public journey to get where he is today which can't have been easy. But it's almost like he is inside out, his inner feelings and vulnerability exposed for all to see.
Question is can he somehow turn this into a strength or is he simply the wrong man in the wrong job?
No doubt time will tell.
I think my doll just got a pin in it's bottom.
Sunday, 21 December 2008
This is my 600th post.
You may have noticed earlier this week I had to put a new hit counter on. My old one proved too small and reaching the 100,000 mark returned to 0. As you can see this one is bigger.
So since I started blogging on 7th March 2007, this site has had over 100,000 hits. How amazing is that?!
So many girls learning about football with me - and a few boys too!
All sharing the joy and the grief of the beautiful game.
Some joining in the debate.
Others content to sit and watch from the sideline.
So would I stop posting if people stopped reading the blog?
Would I stop following football?
I'm Leicester 'til I die remember.
Saturday, 20 December 2008
Today I'm loving Craig Morgan, Matty Fryatt, Andy King and Steve Howard!
4 -0 to the Foxes.
Wish I had been there.
I could have got up and sung with the crowd to this 4 times.
I could have rolled up in my Parka and Leicester City scarf, with a radio earpiece in one of my ears to listen to the BBC Leicestershire commentary. I could have had a slightly dodgy veggie pasty at half time. And chanted abusive songs at The Posh fans.
I'd have had a fry up on the way at the little roadside cafe we visit when we go up the Fosse way.
And I'd have smiled all the way home.
Thursday, 18 December 2008
Mystery of the day: What's going on at Arsenal?
Best quote of the day: "I wouldn't sell them a virus"
Boast of the day: I'm the man
Surprising geographical change of the day: Norwich, it would seem, is now in Scotland
Consolation of the day: My lover couldn't answer any more questions than me of this quiz - i.e. nul points!
Highlight of the day: Georgina Best sang a solo in Gloucester Cathedral.
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
I'm sad to say my dad is in hospital at the moment.
He was admitted last week following a suspected heart attack and we have been told today that he needs a triple heart bypass within the next couple of weeks.
Hard to find much cheer in such circumstances but there was a small incident last week that brought a smile to my face.
When I was on my way to visit my dad I decided to get him something to read. My lover suggested a rugby magazine, which given my father's love of the egg chasers seemed a good idea. After carefully checking no one I knew could observe me overcoming my feelings of distaste, being the ardent fan I am of the only beautiful game, I acquiesced.
And what an eye opener it proved to be.
Used to the somewhat 'boysey ' style of my favourite publication, Four Four Two, with its action shots of great strikes, and grinding tackles, I was shocked to see the photos in what in the egg chasing world is known as a rugby magazine but to the rest of us is strikingly more like a soft porn magazine.
Rippling pecs barely concealed beneath the skimpiest of Lycra. Poses worthy of any male model.
And done in a way more likely to appeal to other boys rather than girls I would suggest.
Nothing wrong with that of course, but I did have a wry smile to myself when I remembered how my father is always lampooning "cissy footballers who get carried off on a stretcher if they so much as break an eyelash".
I guess it just goes to show there is more than one sort of macho.
Tuesday, 16 December 2008
As Mother Superior said in The Sound of Music, when one door closes another one opens.
Something along those lines anyway. Just before she sings this if my memory serves me correctly.
Anyway to more important things.
Today's closing door was in the face of Paul Ince.
Not entirely unexpected.
I'm not quite sure how I feel about it though. On the one hand I am not sure he was really cutting it. On the other hand I can't help noting that the Blackburn Board knew he did not have management experience in the Premiership when they appointed him. It might be argued that they should have expected to give him more support and more time before calling time.
The opening door sees the return of Eduardo, who is playing tonight in the reserve team against Portsmouth.
I'm delighted to see him back. How timely that I just happen to have purchased for my son an Arsenal home shirt with Eduardo and the number 9 on it for Christmas.
Merry Christmas son.
Monday, 15 December 2008
One of the things I really love about my job is that I work with older people.
I've only been in the field for about 3 years, having previously worked within the Criminal Justice System. Amongst the many things it has brought me is a deep appreciation of older people and the contribution they have made and still make to our society.
In a fickle world that makes someone a celebrity one minute, only to shoot them down the next and which celebrates youth and beauty above all other things, I have learned to admire and respect our 'elders'.
What delight then to see Sir Bobby Charlton given a lifetime achievement award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year ceremony last night.
Older people are so often invisible nowadays.
But imagine a world without them.
Sunday, 14 December 2008
Whose got a red face this weekend then?
Well Portsmouth for a start. West Brom. Blackburn Rovers for definite. But Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Man U to some extent too.
11 games without a win for Blackburn. I think perhaps we had a lucky escape back in the summer. It is certainly starting to look bleaker for Mr Ince. Firmly ensconced in the relegation zone with 5 points to even catch the team above (who are also in the relegation zone!).
Then there is West Brom who have only managed 3 wins all season. Even though there is quite a way to go before the end of the season, it is hard to imagine they are going to be able to pull themselves out of the mire and avoid relegation.
Still you know what they say. You have to have losers to have winnners.
Not that losing is really a word in the Foxes' vocabaulary at the moment (smiles!)
Do I think we might see at least one manager go before Christmas?
I think there is a good chance.
Friday, 12 December 2008
It's dark. It's cold. And it's wet.
The weather I mean.
And it's a slow football news day.
So why not have a laugh instead.
Here's something to whet your appetite;
Football: A game consisting of 22 skilled players, one impartial referee, two eagle eyed referee's assistants and one stupid ball.
Teammate: Another person that you have to dribble around
Fans: Two sets of abusive referees
Offside: The Bermuda Triangle area of the pitch where "innocent" players are drawn towards.
Scoring: When 11 men spontaneously start dancing and kissing, regardless of any injuries, whilst 11 others droop like wallflowers
Striker: Faultless, overpaid, box hogging layabout who only misses the goal when he is fed a bad ball
Defender: Player who's function is to commit fouls just outside of the penalty area
Ball: Round object used by referees to entice players into committing foulsFind more here.
Thursday, 11 December 2008
Wednesday, 10 December 2008
I work in the world of social care.
I attended an event today which was focussed upon the changes that are coming about in the world of social care.
Put in a nutshell, the emphasis will shift away from providing a range of services which you then slot people into according to their needs, to the whole process being driven with the individual where they get allocated a budget according to their assessed need but can then use it pretty much as they want to buy the care and support they need.
Anyway, as part of this, we were given the example of where the approach has been used in an area piloting the scheme. A man who became severely disabled and needed a high level of care provided by his partner chose to spend his allocated budget on two season tickets for his football club. One for him and one for his neighbour.
This might seem bizarre to start with but it meant he could do something he really loved (i.e. watch live football), cared for by his neighbour, who's reward was seeing the football too. His partner in the meantime regularly got an afternoon off, providing her with valuable respite from his full-time care.
Anyway, I overheard a conversation about this case during the lunch break. A small group were discussing the pros and cons of the approach.
I leaned forward and said " It strikes me that there is one critical question to ask here to determine if this use of public money is reasonable. Which team does the man support?"
They looked at me then someone said " It's Rotherham".
"Then I think it is OK", I said.
Needless to say my view might have been different had he been a Leeds United fan.
Tuesday, 9 December 2008
Today's lesson girls is Maths.
The important thing about Football Maths is that unlike ordinary Maths, the rules of logic do not necessarily apply.
For example, what do you think you get if you add a good player to a good team?
Your answer is probably "a better team".
Not unreasonable and in some circumstances correct.
But not all.
Lets try another.
This time we will make it a bit more complicated and include negative values.
If Z = success then -Z = failure
With me so far?
So if M = a successful manager and T = a successful team then T x -M= -T
Quite straightforward isn't it.
OK - here's another.
If you add a lost match to a grumpy hotheaded goalie what do you get?
Answer - Trouble.
For homework, I'd like you to work out how many more points Leicester City have than Swindon.
Monday, 8 December 2008
I received my first Christmas present today.
I was delighted.
Well to start with.
It was a little book entitled "What Girls Know About Football"
Black with pink writing about the size of a small diary.
With it a short note.
Everything that you know about football is contained in this book.
How lovely I thought.
What a kind gesture.
On the first page a picture of a green teddy holding a sign saying "A Happy Christmas To Some".
The second page was blank.
And the third.
And the fourth.
In fact they were all blank.
Derek - just remember, like all good football fans I have a very very long memory.
Oh and I shall spend the year filling my book with all the things I know about football ready to return to you next Christmas.
In the meantime you may want to reflect on this.
Sunday, 7 December 2008
As you know, my lover and I have a radio show on our local radio.
Our show is called "Peeky Blinders" and we chat and talk about football and other stuff and then more football.
We do 3 hours every other Saturday.
Yesterday was one of those Saturdays.
We talked about our two local teams, Cheltenham and Forest Green Rovers.We talked about the Premiership matches on during the afternoon and about the performance of the teams more generally. We talked about Roy Keane and who his successor might be. And we talked about the January transfer window.
And because we are the local radio equivalents of football pundits, we say things like "Paul Jewell's Derby are coming to play Forest Green Rovers in the 3rd Round of the FA Cup" and "Phil Brown's Hull have done it again".
I pop in and out of the recording studio to check the latest scores and read them out, introduced by high pitched beeps from my lover - a creditable simulation of sporting tension.
It's a small first step but you would have to say Georgina is on the road to football fame and fortune.
Saturday, 6 December 2008
Da da da da da da Matty Fryatt. Da da da da da da Matty Fryatt.
Another hat trick.
The worry of course is that one of the bigger teams will make him an offer he can't refuse.
In the meantime though we'll just enjoy the success he is bringing us.
We love you Matty we do
We love you Matty we do
We love you Matty we do
Oh Matty we love you
Thursday, 4 December 2008
Roy Keane - Man of Honour or Spineless Wimp?
Is his decision to quit Sunderland evidence that he has put the interests of the club before his own or is he simply running away?
His critics will say;
- He's like Keegan - a great player but no good as a manager
- He's never had any bottle - running out again just like he did to the Ireland team in 2002
- He's too much of a maverick to be a consistent manager
- He recognised he had taken the team as far as he could and left in the best interests of the club
- He has left enough time for another manager to be found and make best use of the transfer window
- It takes courage to know when to walk away
Wednesday, 3 December 2008
Today children we are going to look through ......... the transfer window.
The January 2009 transfer window to be exact.
It's always a time of increasing speculation in the run up, false stories, double bluffs and brinkmanship and a last minute flurry of activity before it closes.
This time will see the added dimension of the "Abu Dhabi" phenomenon.
Of course these are business men so they are not going to squander their money without thought.
By the same token though they have already demonstrated they are quite happy to raise the stakes.
If you believe the rumours, almost anything goes.
So children- teddies at ready!
PS My lover knows the man (a Crystal Palace fan!) who wrote the theme tune for Play School. A pretty good claim to fame I'd say. Unless you have a better one of course.......................
Tuesday, 2 December 2008
Back in 2005 this travelling Liverpool football fan was convicted of the attempted murder of a Bulgarian barman.
This man confessed to the assault soon after the incident, but the trial and conviction of Michael Sheilds continued.
He remains in prison to date.
His friends and family have never ceased their campaign to clear his name and get him freed. Last week his mother took a petition to 10 Downing Street.
As a mother, the thought of one of my children getting locked away for something they had not done breaks my heart.
If he really is innocent (and there really is strong evidence to suggest this, or that at the very least the conviction is unsound), then like many others who have heard Michael's story, I wish him swift justice and hope he will somehow find a way not to let this overshadow the rest of his life.
So Jack Straw if you are listening - free the Liverpool One!
Monday, 1 December 2008
Sometimes when considering what to post about it is difficult to find a story that inspires my creative muse (how pretentious does that sound?!).
On other occasions, such as today, its like being in the shop at the Walkers Stadium.You know - looking at lots of wonderful things to buy (how do you choose between a Leicester City hat and a set of blue and white fluffy dice?). Spoilt for choice.
Should I take pleasure in Ronaldo's spectacular sending off? Celebrate the fact the Wenger has actually admitted to seeing that one of Van Persie's goals was offside?
Shall I marvel at the magic of the FA cup as Histon gave Leeds the biggest red face in their history (proof that good always triumphs over evil)? Or delight that the Foxes are through to the third round of the FA Cup?
I could recount the conversation of our supper guests on Saturday about parent's behaviour on the touchline in youth football. The one where we all expressed disgust at the bad conduct of some, but then proceeded to admit that when we watch our own children playing, the opposition cease to be their peers and become objects to be hacked down or anything else required to ensure you child's team wins.
I just can't decide.