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Showing posts from 2020

'The greatest comeback since Lazarus!' Boro's 2005/06 European Fairytale

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When Middlesbrough left the Stadio Olimpico in March 2006 with an away goal-aided triumph over Roma in the Last 16 of the UEFA Cup, you would have been forgiven for thinking that was the best it could get for the Teessiders in Europe. Against a historically renowned Roma side: that had reached a European Cup final; had won a Serie A title in the past five years; and had a squad comprising Francesco Totti, Samuel Kuffour, and Vincenzo Montella, Boro would progress despite a 2-1 defeat in the Italian capital.

Even manager Steve McClaren felt that this was the pinnacle of a remarkable season. ‘You don't have nights like this very often in your career; it ranks as one of the best in mine’, said the future England head coach. Yet, this was going to be European campaign so monumental that this triumph over Roma wasn’t even going to be the talk of Teesside a few weeks later. A European season so memorable that it’s easy to forget that in this same campaign, Boro scored league victories ov…

The First Euros: The Soviets vs. The Spanish

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The end of Second World War introduced a new Europe. From the communist east to the capitalist west - the continent was steeped in opposing ideologies and radical ideas. The Soviet Union had grown into a genuine superpower with a nuclear arsenal to rival even the USA. Repressive rule from Stalin and later, Khrushchev, had caused friction in Europe with many critics believing the USSR to be lacking the freedoms of the west. To the south-west of the continent, Spain was also under the control of a ruthless dictatorship. A result of the cataclysmic Spanish Civil War - the country found itself under the watchful eye of General Franco. In football, both had begun to form excellent national teams and the birth of UEFA's European Nations' Cup offered both the chance to dominate Europe - at least in football.
The founding of UEFA in 1954 had seen General Secretary Henri Delaunay intent on promoting the idea of an international competition exclusive to Europe. Described by UEFA as a ‘fa…

REVIEW: Historic Newspapers Sports History Books

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Newspapers play an incredibly important part to all that The Football History Boys do. Our first book, published in April 2020, was reliant upon newspaper sources, the local and national papers playing a fundamental role in recording the history of the beautiful game. The website Historic Newspapers, have seized upon this in a fantastic way, offering customers the opportunity to purchase their piece of history, both sporting and otherwise.

Ever since I heard about Historic Newspapers I was been desperate to get my hands on one, in fact, it was on my Christmas list for this year! So when they got in touch asking to link up with The Football History Boys I was delighted to see what their Cardiff City book would be like. Here is our review, plus details about a competition to win one of your own.
Historic Newspapers were able to personalise our high-quality hardback book with 'The Football History Boys' embossed on the front, and as the picture below shows, contains the opportunity…

Football and Education: What Does the Future hold for Wales?

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In the last two parts of our study into the history of football's role in Welsh education we have looked at almost 150 years of stories and personal tales. In this piece, we are going to take a closer look at the direct role football, and indeed sport in general, has taken in the Welsh Curriculum. Since 2000, both football and education have evolved rapidly. Now, more than ever, sport is everywhere. Children and indeed parents and teachers cannot escape it. Such prominence in people's lives would suggest that in schools, games/P.E must take a central place in any curriculum. However, from experience, this is simply not always the case. With a new Welsh schools curriculum coming into practice in 2022 - what can be learned from the past to help create an inclusive and engaging environment for children and teachers?
Football in the Curriculum

So, let's go back to the early 2000s. Only recently devolved, education was put into the hands of the Welsh in 1999. Immediately, the ne…

QUIZ: Trimmed Football History

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We at The Football History Boys love a good Sporcle, the quiz website where we have learnt and revised so much Geography/History/Science/Music/etc over the years. We also love a good quiz on our podcast too.
This one is a bit unusual, we have trimmed each answer here by taking off the first and last letter. We want you to find the European Cup/UCL winners, the World Cup winners, the European football clubs, the English football club, the women's international footballers and the cup competitions/tournaments. Let's see what you're made of, it's out of 60 and you have 12 minutes!


(If the quiz does not load click here: https://www.sporcle.com/games/monegt/trimmed-football-history)


Our book is available to buy here! https://www.amazon.co.uk/Footballs-Fifty-Most-Important-Moments/dp/178531632X

©The Football History Boys, 2020

Euro 2008 - The Forgotten Tournament | @Alfieeswilson

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The Euros/UEFA European Championships are always a pretty special competitions. Each tournament has significant European footballing stories to tell, but 2008 is often a forgotten summer. @Alfieeswilson has decided to re-explore UEFA Euro 2008 as Austria & Switzerland hosted...
As the ball squirmed through Scott Carson’s arms on that sodden night at Wembley in 2007, thousands of fans’ flights to Austria went down the drain. England had failed to qualify for a major tournament for the first time since the World Cup in 1994, going out to Russia and their already-qualified opponents that day, Croatia. Little did they know that Euro 2008, co-hosted by Switzerland and Austria, would match both Euro 2000 and 2004 as a fantastic tournament and perhaps even surpass it.  


The reason why it is a forgotten tournament is quite simple - not only did England themselves not qualify, but, to diminish interest further, there were no representatives from the British Isles (I know Irish people hate th…

QUIZ: Where Do These Premier League Players Come From?

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We at The Football History Boys love a good Sporcle, the quiz website where we have learnt and revised so much Geography/History/Science/Music/etc over the years. We also love a good quiz on our podcast too. So with that in mind, we thought we could create a Premier League themed Sporcle quiz for you to enjoy! 
Here we have created a clickable map quiz for you about some Premier League players, past and present... Can you find all the countries each of these players represents? It is tougher than you think! Sadly this quiz can't be embedded but click the link below, you have 6 mins to complete this map click!
Load the quiz here: https://www.sporcle.com/games/monegt/find-world-countries-copy




Our book is available to buy here! https://www.amazon.co.uk/Footballs-Fifty-Most-Important-Moments/dp/178531632X


©The Football History Boys, 2020

Ten Years On: The Rise of the WSL

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A decade ago, Women's football in the United Kingdom would embark on a revolutionary journey as it introduced a new division. Intended to help disseminate the game throughout the nation, it would be called the 'Women's Super League' and replace the FA Women's Premier League. From its inaugral season, which saw eight teams battle it out for domestic success, to its current 12 side format, the past ten years have been nothing short of remarkable for the division. The recent signings of Rose Lavelle and Pernille Harder to Manchester City and Chelsea respectively have thrown the spotlight onto women's football yet again and can offer serious weight to the argument over which is the best league in the world.

Despite its current state, the history of women's football in the UK hasn't always been so smooth. The misogynisitc and draconian ban placed on the game in the early 1920s has been well documented in recent years, but upon its lifting in 1971, the subsequ…

QUIZ: The Great Scottish Football Quiz

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We at The Football History Boys love a good Sporcle, the quiz website where we have learnt and revised so much Geography/History/Science/Music/etc over the years. We also love a good quiz on our podcast too. So, with us creating a load of quizzes lately, our Scottish football history correspondent and radio presenter @AlexHTheMAX got in touch with a challenging quiz for you to enjoy.
We want you to see how you will do with our 25 Scottish football history questions in just 12 minutes - it's a toughie!



(If the quiz does not load: https://www.sporcle.com/games/monegt/the-great-scottish-football-quiz)



Our book is available to buy here! https://www.amazon.co.uk/Footballs-Fifty-Most-Important-Moments/dp/178531632X

©The Football History Boys, 2020

The Greatest World Cup of All-Time? | @Alfieeswilson

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The World Cup is the greatest of all sporting tournaments, stirring memories in all who love the beautiful game. Be it nostalgia of youth, moments of glory or shocking scenes of controversy, the World Cup every four years never fails to amaze. @Alfieeswilson saw TFHB's Tweet about the first World Cup that our followers remembered and shared with us his spreadsheet about how to find the greatest competition of all-time. He will share that with you today...
The mind wandered for everyone during lockdown. Some baked banana bread. Some started painting. Some leaped on the opportunity to start a new exercise regime. Some, like myself, decided it the perfect opportunity to start new fairly pointless football spreadsheets. One of which was my own plan for a Europe United trip, inspired by the excellent book by Matt Walker who travelled to all 55 UEFA member nations to watch a football match in each. But the one I’ll share in this article is less niche; an attempt to scientifically rank th…