Outside the Box: If you're a Grimsby or Everton fan, don't mention the score
Sunday 23 August 2009
Apologies to any Everton supporters who were sufficiently sober last Sunday morning after the humiliation suffered at Arsenal's hands to spot that the League table in our early edition recorded the damage as 6-0 rather than 6-1.
Apparently we were not the only ones, but please make Louis Saha and the lads aware that leaving their best scoring efforts until the 93rd minute of a 5.30pm kick-off is not a recipe for maximum coverage in the first edition, whether or not the opposition have scored six beforehand. Everton's coach, Jimmy Lumsden, will understand that these things happen; he was Leeds' assistant manager at Grimsby on the opening day of the 1982-83 season, when in the very last minute Grimsby scored what appeared to be a winning goal. This dramatic intervention was duly phoned over by a harassed 'Sunday Mirror' reporter, who failed to notice that it was then disallowed. The match report duly appeared the following morning as a 2-1 win, when in fact the game had been drawn 1-1. To compound the error, Sheffield Wednesday's programme for Leeds' visit a fortnight later, clearly written by a 'Mirror' reader, gloated that their rivals "suffered defeat at Grimsby". First rule of football journalism: try to get the score right.
It's a Vale of tears
A Potteries reader wonders whether any away support will be as statistically impressive as Port Vale's at Macclesfield last Tuesday, when 2,219 travelling fans swelled the crowd to Macc's highest for two years, 3,433. Subject to correction by any A-level maths student, successful or otherwise, we make that 64.64 per cent. Those home fans who had been deterred by a 4-0 defeat three days earlier should have had more faith: their team sent all those Valiants home to think again with a 2-0 victory.
Making tweets of themselves
The England women's team at the European Championships in Finland – they play Italy on Tuesday, then Russia on Friday – are making up for any lack of media coverage with much blogging and tweeting, something the men's squad appear more coy about. Faye White's blog reveals who are the table tennis queens, although it risks attracting the attention of the apostrophe police (www.theFA.com).
England get Hammered
At one point during the second half of England's recent friendly in Holland, seven of the team were West Ham players past or present: Robert Green, Glen Johnson, Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard, Michael Carrick, Carlton Cole and Jermain Defoe. Of the other four on the pitch, John Terry and Ashley Cole are both East London boys, Shaun Wright-Phillips is South London and Ashley Young is Home Counties (Stevenage). Fabio Capello is clearly intent on improving his English by building a squad who all speak the same language. Innit.
Ferdinands have singular goal
On the subject of Rio and the Peckham massive, Manchester United's centre-half tells Virgin Media's magazine that he will "probably" challenge brother Anton of Sunderland to their annual goalscoring contest. But he is honest enough to admit last year's was a bit of a damp squib: neither managed a single goal all season.
s.tongue@ independent .co.uk
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