Welcome to Issue 4
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Strangers on a train
By Daniel Gray
Floating in A sea of staples, meandering font sizes and murky photocopies
From Can I Bring My Dog? to Never Say Dai, one thing unites all fanzines: love of the game.
By Neil Forsyth
Thanks for the memories
From humble beginnings 13 years ago, a nationwide sports reminiscence project for people living with memory loss has become a huge success story.
By Hugh MacDonald
“A thousand miles for one of your goals”
From Romania, the story of a long-distance love affair
By Danny Coposescu
When Hibernian chose me
How does a Brazilian football writer end up in Edinburgh, fall in love with Hibs and become convinced Jason Cummings is better than Lionel Messi? Here’s how …
By Alex Sabino
Confessions of an expat Jambo
Trying to follow Hearts from Finland over the past 15 years has been by turns illuminating, frustrating and hilarious. And in terms of seeing the media landscape evolve, it’s been an instructive journey.
By Chris Smith
How the Hooverettes and Prima Donnas won the long game
Fifty years ago the women’s game in Scotland was a novelty characterised by exotic team names and beset by hostility from the SFA. Not any longer.
By Alan Campbell
Scotland’s most successful football export, by a distance
Eight Scudetti, four Italian Cups and two French championships: it’s unlikely anyone will ever eclipse the achievements of Rose Reilly
By Ginny Clark
Paul Gascoigne, poetry and the nature of genius
The poet, critic and essayist Ian Hamilton wrote just four biographies: of poets Robert Lowell and Matthew Arnold, author J.D. Salinger – and Gazza.
By Alasdair McKillop
Joe Garner: The kamikaze cult hero
How do you become the object of adulation in one half of Glasgow without actually being a success on the pitch? A boy with a thorn in his side from Lancashire has the answer.
By Scott Fleming
Sharp and Gray: Everton’s deadly duo
Strike partnerships rarely come any better than the Glasgow goal-getters who transformed a good side into a great side.
By Mark Godfrey
Nicholas & Marinello: The Arsenal misfits
Charlie Nicholas and Peter Marinello were each brought to Highbury to add glamour and panache to the club. Then came the models, the modelling, the cars, the haircuts and the appearances with Pan’s People.
By Jon Spurling
Let the drums beat louder
Young ultra groups such as Fair City Unity and Motherwell Bois bring passion and theatre to a game in danger of losing its soul. We should celebrate their commitment, not castigate them.
Photographs by Fraser McFadzean
Words by Stuart Cosgrove
Bordering on madness
The football teams of the Borders are as far removed from the rest of Scottish football as ever. Is that necessarily a bad thing?
By Thomas Clark
What became of the airdrie Spanish Armada?
One minute they were playing in Spain, the next they were catapulted into North Lanarkshire as part of Steve Archibald’s revolution and the next again they were locked out of the Airdrie stadium by administrators. What did they make of it all?
By Martin Domin
Pride, passion and politics in Pristina
Kosovo’s long journey to international football, led by a man with fond memories of Hampden Park.
By Andrew Gray
The King and I
An encounter with my hero, Denis Law
By Graeme Macpherson
Injury time with Jim Baxter
An encounter with the legend at one of the lowest points of his life.
By Bryan Christie
A legend to many. ‘Paps’ to me.
Bobby Brown is renowned as a Rangers and Scotland goalkeeper and the manager who led the Wembley Wizards to victory over England in 1967. To his eldest grandchild, he is much more besides.
By Jim Campbell
How Raith Rovers fans almost lost their club
Today, the club is financially stable and hopeful of securing its second-tier status. A few years ago it all looked very different, as the chairman of the Raith Supporters Trust explains.
By Alan Russell
The number’s up for those ignoring statistical analysis
Forget splashing out on a big striker. Here’s why many clubs would be better off buying a couple of nerds, a few laptops and a Wyscout subscription
By Joel Sked
My part in Celtic’s Hampden year
One of Fergus McCann’s first objectives after buying Celtic was to double the number of season ticket holders. Which was what prompted a surprise call to a small marketing agency in Edinburgh.
By Heather McKinlay
It’s all in the mind
The real impediment to Scottish clubs trying to break the Old Firm hegemony is a crisis of confidence.
By Martin Stone
The legendary game that led to a legendary headline
Caley did indeed go ballistic. Celtic were indeed atrocious.
By Lawrie Spence
The forgotten genius of the first Wembley Wizards
His name on his unremarkable military gravestone in Egypt is Major AS Jackson. The man buried there was anything but unremarkable.
By Richard Winton
The Scottish Professors and their role in football’s first Invincibles
Preston North End’s mission in the 1880s was simple: to become the greatest team of the age. They couldn’t have achieved it without a remarkable group of Scots.
By Michael Barrett
The man who made Chelsea
Chelsea FC began life with a stadium – and nothing else. The person who built an almost-immediately successful squad from scratch was a 28-year-old midfielder from Dumbarton.
By Dominic Bliss
Given the brush off
Artist Fraser MacDonald’s project to paint the portraits of all Scottish and English senior club managers to lose their jobs during the 2015/16 season captures the brutal, unforgiving nature of football.
By Grant Hill
Thirds and Queen’s: side by side but a world apart
Maurice Smith talked to some of the modern-day heroes at Hampden, and the man leading the campaign to restore Third Lanark to senior football.
Just what The Doc ordered
Tommy Docherty’s brief reign as Scotland manager transformed the fortunes of an under-achieving squad, instilled optimism among the Tartan Army and laid the foundations for two decades of comparative success.
By John Penman
Following Cowdenbeath, my second team, has taught me many things. Above all else, that there is more to football than the football itself.
By Joel Sked
Montrose have been resident in Scotland’s lowest division for 21 seasons. What is it that keeps the fans coming, still dreaming of life in the lofty heights of League One?
By Andrew Galloway
Everything to play for
A short story.
There’s a new regime at Uppin FC, fresh players have been brought in and manager Paul Deacon is looking forward to the coming season.
By Colin McPherson
“To us he was always ‘Cardigan Bob’”
An illuminating peek into the inner world – and the knitwear – of the man who bestrode the Clackmannanshire Association Football League like a colossus.
By Duncan McCoshan
The ones that got away
No other country has anything like as poor a record as Scotland when it comes to clubs going out of Europe on away goals. Is it just bad luck, or is there something deeper going on here?
By Mark Poole
By Stephen Watt
My offensive scarf
By Kevin Graham