The 2020/21 season and the concertina effect

This is my thirtieth weekly blog post I know, how time flies. Having started back in August we are now entering the final straight so it feels as good a time as any to reflect on what has happened over the last seven months. The 2020/21 season did not begin in August as is theContinue reading “The 2020/21 season and the concertina effect”

London Calling: Palace’s curious derby habit

Most fans have a sneaking suspicion that fate conspires against their club now and again. In extreme circumstances this feeling develops into rapidly escalating levels of paranoia reaching a consensus that firstly, the whole world is against you and secondly and more worryingly that there is very little that can be done about it. ForContinue reading “London Calling: Palace’s curious derby habit”

Own Goals Part One – Keepers’ Clangers

They are football’s equivalent of tragicomedies. Own goals litter the football landscape with an intoxicating mixture of laughter and tears. Over the next few weeks here on The Football Mine I will be publishing an occasional series of pieces that focus on these captivating slices of football history, those little vignettes that can define aContinue reading “Own Goals Part One – Keepers’ Clangers”

Kits fit for a king – a personal history of Palace’s fine line

There have been numerous times when I have questioned the sanity of following my football club. Like the vast majority of supporters, the mixture of good and bad has leaned towards the latter. But one thing that has been an almost continuous source of joy with very few disappointments along the way has been ourContinue reading “Kits fit for a king – a personal history of Palace’s fine line”

The referee’s a ****** – How abuse has reached a disturbing level

Referees are considered by many football fans to be fair game for having abuse hurled at them from a dizzy height. They are the Aunt Sallys of football – an easy target when things are going wrong for your team and you need to vent your frustration. A variety of chants cascade from the standsContinue reading “The referee’s a ****** – How abuse has reached a disturbing level”

Footballers’ flaws in flouting the laws

If there is one thing that really gets my goat it is when people describe professional footballers as pampered prima donnas. This stereotype ignores the fact that all these players are operating at the very height of their profession, and a highly competitive profession at that. They have reached that point through hard work andContinue reading “Footballers’ flaws in flouting the laws”

Kenny Sansom’s fight against his demons and dementia

Kenny Sansom was one of my first football heroes. He made his debut as a 16-year-old and was described by club historian Reverend Nigel Sands as “the first tangible product of the youth policy instituted by Malcolm Allison…and was unquestionably Palace’s best ever left-back.” He was an integral member of that enticing, exciting “Team ofContinue reading “Kenny Sansom’s fight against his demons and dementia”

The madness of Lombardo, Goldberg and Palace: An interview with Dom Fifield

In November 1997 an aspiring journalist arrived at Selhurst Park on a work internship. No sooner had Dominic Fifield started than things changed. “Originally I was only meant to be there for a month as the editor went on a four-week trip to Australia, but I was kept on as his assistant after he returned.”AndContinue reading “The madness of Lombardo, Goldberg and Palace: An interview with Dom Fifield”

Pulis, Pragmatism and Points deductions

When Tony Pulis arrives at your club in November it usually means you are in a bit of trouble and in need of the footballing equivalent of Red Adair to come to the rescue. Sheffield Wednesday are the latest club to enlist the services of a manager who has famously never been relegated. Considering WednesdayContinue reading “Pulis, Pragmatism and Points deductions”

A Return to Plough Lane: Andy Brassell on a 29-Year Wait

On many occasions Andy Brassell would have been extremely busy trying to keep the BT Sport audience abreast of the goals as they rained in across Europe. Liverpool’s 5-0 demolition of Atalanta was put into the shade by Borussia Monchengladbach’s shellacking of Shaktar Donetsk, and on it went. 36 goals in just eight Champions LeagueContinue reading “A Return to Plough Lane: Andy Brassell on a 29-Year Wait”