Outside the Box: Derby's ban on white beards is clause to keep 'cuddly Ken' out
Sunday 15 August 2010
Relations between Leeds United and Derby, which as the book and film of
The Damned United pointed out, have rarely been harmonious, seem unlikely to improve in the immediate future after last week's fixture at Elland Road. Nigel Clough, whose late father made no secret of his loathing for the club he managed for 44 days, had wanted to watch the game from the directors' box but was banned because he was wearing a tracksuit; not unreasonable attire for a football manager. Steve Bruce, Sunderland's manager, fell foul of the same dress code when he dared to turn up without a tie for the Carling Cup tie against Lincoln in midweek. Word reaches us that Derby officials are considering reprisals for the return fixture, when they could unveil a little-known regulation banning white-bearded septuagenarian chairmen from their boardroom. Father Christmas will be allowed in.
Move heaven and turf
Chesterfield's Saltergate, a stadium which looked so 1970s that it doubled for the Baseball Ground in the filming of The Damned United, is no more, the club having now played their first games at the new BNet Stadium. Fans already feeling nostalgic for their former home can visit a pub in the Brampton area of the town called the Rose & Crown, which now has Saltergate turf laid in its beer garden and seats from the main stand, which are reached by passing through the old match-day turnstiles. Meanwhile a local jeweller, Stuart Bradley, is offering a reward of £2,000 for information leading to the recovery of a special replica jewel that was presented to Chesterfield as a memento of their appearance in the 1997 FA Cup semi-final, when they were cruelly denied a place at Wembley by Middlesbrough and referee David Elleray. It is a 9ct white gold jewel, set with sapphires and diamonds, specially crafted by Bradley. The club programme says it "mysteriously disappeared" from the Saltergate trophy cabinet 10 years ago "and has not been heard of since".
Extra special Sky
The name of Chesterfield's stadium is one of many items that need updating in the football yearbook that many still refer to as Rothmans, even though the last eight editions having been under the patronage of Sky Sports. The panic in putting the 40th edition together at the end of a World Cup season can only be imagined, although Chelsea supporters may still be surprised to learn (on page 134) that their team finished as runners-up in the Premier League last season. The daily milestones section of the 1,056-page whopper has been expanded this year, albeit into what reads like a series of crossword clues: "RM may be in Man C unrest mix" and "S Cup: Livi held in reprise". The main recommendation of the Editorial comment, which can be equally tortuous, is having indefinite extra-time instead of penalty shoot-outs on the basis that "continued play is good enough for tennis players" (this in the year that a singles match at Wimbledon lasted 11 hours). On the plus side, old boys' football and the University of London league tables have disappeared at last, and one useful innovation that could catch on is in the principal league tables, which include a P or R in brackets next to the name of all promoted and relegated clubs.
How long until we are all studying our football books on an ebook reader weighing rather less than the Sky Sports Football Yearbook? A new Kindle reader launches this month and according to the website The Sports Bookshelf ( www.thesportsbookshelf.com) United States analysts predict that ebook sales could overtake paperback sales on Amazon within 12 months. And the football title that the man on the commuter train is most likely to be reading? Apparently it is Chris Kamara's Mr Unbelievable, which can be downloaded for £8.07.
Latest in Sport
Petr Cech demands talks over Chelsea future as Thibaut Courtois begs him to stay – as mentor
Angel Di Maria: Manchester United to push ahead with £50m move for Real Madrid winger
Marcos Rojo to Manchester United: Sporting Lisbon confirm deal with Nani heading back to Portugal on loan
Sami Khedira to Arsenal: Midfield omitted from Real Madrid squad for Spanish Super Cup
David Gold furious after Carlton Cole parody account mocks up a picture of West Ham chairman as a suspect in the Madeleine McCann case
- 1 Michael Brown shooting: Police shoot and kill second young black man near Ferguson
- 2 James Foley 'beheaded': Isis video shows militant with British accent 'execute US journalist' – and warns Obama of more to come
- 3 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns aged 27
- 4 Cilla Black defends Cliff Richard: 'I am positive that the allegations are without foundation'
- 5 James Foley 'beheading': Met police warn public watching murder video could be criminal offence
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Crisis? What crisis? A visiting US doctor gives the NHS a rave review
Russell Brand calls for Israel boycott: Comedian urges big businesses that 'facilitate the oppression of people in Gaza' to pull funding
Ukip MEP calls for reintroduction of death penalty on fiftieth anniversary of last deaths
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head