Cultured Football #48
This is the last issue of Cultured Football for 2021 and there’s no better way to wrap things up than by sharing five of the most read articles from the year. Normal service will resume on the 8th of January.
The Wild Story of an Amateur Footballer Who Scammed Four Teams in a Year
You would think that in an era of everywhere being within touch on internet and people’s lives being played out online, it would be impossible for a player to scam four professional teams into signing him. But you’d be wrong.
Reading Time: 5 minutes
Fan Ownership Is The Future of Football
One idea that has emerged strongly from the Super League’s ashes is the idea of fan representation and ownership of football clubs. The most widely touted example is that of the 50+1 rule that the majority of German clubs are governed by. It seems improbable that this rule could be adopted in England (and much less in other countries) but, then again, a year back it seemed improbable that twelve clubs would break away and try to set up their own league.
Reading Time: 6 Minutes
How the UK’s pursuit of the perfect pitch changed football
When Real Madrid go in for a player, it is very rare that they don’t succeed in getting him. Not even the riches of English football can shield clubs from their approaches as several high profile instances have proven. Their getting Paul Burgess from Arsenal in 2009, however, is not one of those well known cases and there’s a pretty simple reason for that: Burgess is not a player but a groundsman. And yet, that doesn’t make it less important. Nothing about football pitches is less important than what else we see about football, as this surprisingly engaging long article about the subject shows.
Reading Time: 22 minutes
Forest Green Rovers’ unique model of sustainability and its legion of global fans
There is no doubt that Forest Green Rovers do things differently. From only serving vegan food during matchdays to planning a new stadium built out of wood, they are focused on sustainability more than any other club. It is a strategy driven by owner Dale Vince that, whilst environmentally conscious, is also helping attract new supporters and boost their results on the pitch.
Full disclosure: this is an article that I wrote
Reading Time: 9 minutes
Erik Ten Hag – Ajax’s eclectic boss
It is somewhat surprising that, although he is frequently linked whenever a high profile job is available, Erik Ten Haag is never seen as top candidate. At Ajax, Ten Haag has done great things; rebuilding the side without losing local dominance, bringing through young players and, above all, doing well in the Champions League. Perhaps there is the fear that he will not make the step up from the Eredivisie but throughout his career he has always proven capable of quickly adapting to new surroundings.
Reading Time: 8 minutes