In 1914, at the outbreak of the First World War, several of Britain’s greatest footballers were interned in a brutal prison camp at Ruhleben, near Berlin. My new book tells the true story of how the prisoners used the game of football to survive, and how some of them used it to escape.
Savage Enthusiasm explores the complete history of watching football, from the very earliest days of the game, via golden ages and troubled times, through to the present day.
A great myth associated with Newcastle United is that the club was formed in 1892 courtesy of a merger between East End and West End. In fact, the club was formed in 1881, and there was no merger. Contemporary sources and modern histories make this clear, yet the 1892 myth still persists. This article looks […]
Away days adventures are among the many joys of being a football fan, and have been since the Victorian era. But how did fans travel to or follow away matches in the days before cars and buses, or TV and radio? This article looks at Newcastle’s earliest away days, tied to the release of my […]
All With Smiling Faces takes a wander through the early history of Newcastle United to discover how the club came to mean so much to so many.
This is a short piece written for the 2014 Northern League Cup Final match programme. The match was played at St James’ Park, where Marske United beat Whitley Bay 2-1 after extra time. The Northern League is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. The first Northern League match at St James’ Park was played 125 […]
The Victorian Football Miscellany is a quirky and fascinating collection of trivia, facts and anecdotes from football’s earliest years.
[Editor] Goal-Post is a new anthology collecting the very best Victorian football writing, covering the birth and development of the world’s greatest game, and written by those who were there to witness it.
Why do Newcastle United play in black and white stripes? And did they really play in red and white? In the third (and last?) trawl through the club’s history, here’s a look at NUFC’s early kits. Previous posts covered the original grounds of NUFC, and the history of St James’ Park. Kit illustrations are courtesy […]
Last time out I visited the original grounds of the club that became Newcastle United. This time I had a traipse around and inside Newcastle’s home since 1892 – St James’ Park: I’m biased, of course, but I reckon that this place is a bit special. Packed with believers and full of noise, illuminated by […]