Cultured Football #100
Football in Ukraine and more
Greetings, I am Paul Grech, editor of Cultured Football. Every week, I sift through numerous football articles to carefully select the cream of the crop that I'm confident you'll enjoy. If you're finding any pleasure in reading this newsletter, I would be very grateful if you could spread the word to your fellow football enthusiasts.
‘The military call and I deliver’: voices from Ukraine’s football after year of war
By Nick Ames and Larisa Kalik for the Guardian // 2,073 words
The year that has just passed has left an indelible mark on the lives of every Ukrainian, including its footballers. Amidst this upheaval, here are four personal stories of players and a coach, representing different levels of the country's football scene, that reflect their humanity.
How Starboy Saka evolved to become the Real Deal for Arsenal
by Sam McGuire for WhoScored // 628 words
Bukayo Saka (17) ranks third in terms of goal contributions in the Premier League this season, with only Erling Haaland (30) and Harry Kane (19) ahead of him. If Arsenal were to win the league, Saka's significant contribution would be a major factor in their success.
How a former Man City defender ended up spearheading Papua New Guinea's World Cup dream
By Emma Smith for BBC Sport // 883 words
Ever since he retired from playing, the former Norwich, Leicester, Derby and Manchester City defender Spencer Prior has embarked on a coaching career in Asia and Australia. Most recently, he was appointed manager of the Papua New Guinea Women's team, a job that is proving to be far more difficult than he expected.
Weep for Southend United, but there must be an opportunity for rebirth
By Neil Jensen for Game of the People // 744 words
The future of Southend United (incidentally, the club where Spencer Prior began his career) looks bleak, with the team facing extinction on March 1, 2023, unless owner Ron Martin can come up with the £1.4m the club owes to HMRC. The team's financial struggles, which stretch back over several years, have led to questions about the viability of small and mid-sized town/city football clubs, and whether there needs to be a huge reset to ensure their survival.
The renaissance of Magallanes, Chile’s ‘Old and beloved’
By Neel Shelat for Glory Magazine // 880 words
In a history spanning over 125 years, Chilean football club Club Deportivo Magallanes won five titles in the Asociación de Fútbol de Santiago, the first organisation to host seasonal football tournaments in Chile. It also won the first three titles of the Liga Profesional de Fútbol, the first professional football tournament in Chile before spending well over three decades in the wilderness of lower tiers. Theirs is a wild story.
Something Else I Loved This Week
Walsall season-ticket holder Oli Swift had given up hope of finding his wlallet after losing it on the London tube. As fate would have it, former Premier League manager Alan Curbishley found it and sent it to Walsall Football Club with a note shows that he knows how much football means to fans. Classy.
Last Week’s Most Read: What's Boehly's plan at Chelsea?
By Grace Robertson for Grace on Football // 1,591 words
I was not aware that, apart from Chelsea, Todd Boehly has also taken control of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the organisation behind the Golden Globe Awards, and is looking to expand the brand. That link to Hollywood makes everything much clearer.