MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : MATCH – 26.5.1984

Kevin Richardson and John Bailey are the cover stars of Match, which reviews the FA Cup Final, won by Everton by 2-0 against Watford.

Winning the FA Cup wasn’t enough for Everton captain Kevin Ratcliffe, who wanted this to be the springboard for a league title triumph.

In Scotland, Dumbarton have been promoted to the top flight for the first time, with star striker Kenny Ashwood confident his side can shock a lot of people.

One player leaving Scotland is Gordon Strachan, having left Aberdeen for Manchester United, and United striker Frank Stapleton uses his column to predict that Strachan will be an instant hit at Old Trafford.

Match’s preview of Euro 84 continues with Spain this week’s profiled team.

Ian Wallace has left Nottingham Forest for French side Brest, claiming Forest couldn’t afford to keep him.,

After an absence of 14 years, Sheffield Wednesday are back in the top flight, and midfielder Gary Shelton warning First Division sides not to underestimate them.

There is a double page picture special on York City, who won Division Four with more than 100 points.

England face Scotland at Hampden Park in the British Championship, and this match gets a full page profile.

Northern Ireland are also in action, heading to Finland in their first 1986 World Cup Qualifier.

The magazine ends with a poster of Costica Stefanescu of Romania ahead of the build-up to Euro 84.

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NORTHERN IRELAND 1-2 BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA 8.9.2018

They might not have went to the World Cup for the first time since 1986, but 2018 was still a year of firsts for Northern Ireland.

The first three games of the year, against South Korea, Panama and Costa Rica, were the first time they met those opponents.

The forth game of the year, against Bosnia-Herzegovina, was also a first meeting, but it was also Northern Ireland’s first ever game in the UEFA Nations League, a new competition devised by UEFA.

UEFA Nonsense League more like.

The spin that we are given, is that this will replace pointless friendlies. And yet, Northern Ireland are just one of many countries playing pointless friendlies on the nights that they are not involved in UEFA Nations League action.

A simple summary of the competition. Four Leagues, with four groups. Group winners get promoted and bottom team gets relegated, and these placings are used for Euro 2020 rankings.

The highest placed team in each group who doesn’t qualify for Euro 2020 will go into a Play-Off for a place in the finals.

Theoretically, Northern Ireland could lose all Nations League games, all of their Euro 2020 Qualifiers, and go into the Play-Offs because Bosnia and Austria qualified. That is wrong, and an affront to meritocracy.

This is simply an overcomplicated way of giving Azerbaijan a chance of qualifying for Euro 2020.

September 2018 should be the start of Euro 2020 Qualifiers. Top two qualify and third goes into a Play-Off. Just like the good ole days.

Another spin we get given is that it gives smaller or countries of lower standing a better chance of qualifying. Albania, Iceland, Northern Ireland and Wales were able to qualify for Euro 2016 without any assistance or goalposts being moved.

The winners of each group in League A go into a finals tournament for the trophy outright.

Why not have a finals tournament in Leagues B, C and D? That would make sense to give this “Tournament” more prestige.

Could you imagine winning League One, and then getting told you’re not getting a trophy because only the team that finished top of the Premier League gets one.

The main talking point in the build-up to this game regarding Northern Ireland’s starting eleven would be who would start in goal.

Of the three goalkeepers that went to Euro 2016, Michael McGovern, a month short of his 32nd birthday was the youngest. It was clear that Northern Ireland needed new young goalkeepers breaking through.

One of those, Bailey Peacock-Farrell, was in contention with Trevor Carson and Michael McGovern.

If Northern Ireland were playing a friendly first, and then a Nations League match, it would have given Peacock-Farrell an opportunity to get some more game time before featuring in a competitive match, but he was named as the first choice for this game, which wasn’t that surprising given Leeds start to the season.

This was a first competitive game for Bosnia manager Robert Prosinecki, who is no stranger to Windsor Park, having a mixed record in his two previous visits, scoring in a 2-0 win for Yugoslavia in 1990, but being on the end of a 4-0 defeat as manager of Azerbaijan in 2016.

Inside the first minute, Windsor Park was screaming for a penalty when George Saville was untidily taken down by a Bosnian defender, but no penalty was awarded.

What is it with penalty decisions at the Railway Stand?

Northern Ireland were the better team in the opening minutes, Bosnia couldn’t get the ball off them.

Stuart Dallas curled a shot just wide. Dallas had the beating of his man and Northern Ireland tried to get him on the ball every opportunity they could get. Dallas was forming an effective duo with Jamal Lewis, on his competitive debut, hoping to make the left-back spot his own following the retirement of Chris Brunt.

Bosnia were also racking up the yellow cards, unable to cope with Northern Ireland every time they attacked.

George Saville was one of several Northern Ireland players who would be frustrated when he couldn’t get his leg onto a cross, while Kyle Lafferty had a header go wide. The best attacking moment came when Niall McGinn created space for himself out wide, only to see his shot saved by the Bosnian keeper.

Northern Ireland were made to pay for that on 38 minutes when a poor clearance gave possession to Bosnia, Northern Ireland couldn’t get the ball off them, and a cross from Edin Dzecko in space the left was touched home by Haris Duljevic.

It was an undeserved lead for Bosnia, but a lesson for Northern Ireland of the importance of taking your chances.

Bosnia were now confident, but Northern Ireland were able to make sure no further damage was done, getting into the break to clear their heads and go again.

At the start of the second-half, Northern Ireland didn’t appear to be too downhearted by being 1-0 down, being straight on the attack, with Stuart Dallas forcing Bosnia’s keeper to tip over the bar from inside the six yard box.

It was a scuffed effort, but he really should have scored from that position.

Minutes later, a set piece saw Kyle Lafferty have an effort saved on the line by Bosnia’s keeper. It was looking set to be “One of those days”.

That was further confirmed when a poor header by Craig Cathcart saw Bailey Peacock-Farrell get beaten to the ball. by Elvis Saric, who put the ball into the empty net.

It was neither a glorious moment for Cathcart or Peacock-Farrell. They were caught in a trap and couldn’t get out.

If Saric doesn’t chase after the ball, they get away with it. Such are the fine margins at this level of football.

A few minutes later, Saric was subbed. Elvis has left the pitch.

Northern Ireland were now chasing the game, with Bosnia hitting the post on the break.

Michael O’Neill turned to his subs, with Liam Boyce and Will Grigg coming on for Kyle Lafferty and Conor McLaughlin.

The final sub was Jamie Ward coming on for Niall McGinn. Jordan Jones would have been a better option, or even Gavin Whyte, given his start to the season, in the hope that he might have the same impact that Paul Smyth had against South Korea.

Smyth unfortunately is in the Under 21s due to the misfortune of QPR having a manager who doesn’t rate him, despite their poor start to the season.

Boyce had a low shot saved by Bosnia’s keeper while Saville was denied by a last gasp tackle.

Northern Ireland had eighteen corners throughout the game but never really troubled Bosnia’s keeper, who got booked for timewasting as he took a goal kick, which was utterly pointless.

Due to stoppages, and Bosnia’s keeper getting an injury that was treated with a bottle of water being poured over him, there were six minutes of injury time.

After a series of short corners that came to nothing, far too often Northern Ireland were overlaying, trying to be too clever, much to the frustration of the crowd.

Eventually, one lumped into the box got rewarded when Liam Boyce scuffed the ball across goal for Will Grigg to finish from close range. Finally, a bit of luck for Northern Ireland.

There was still four minutes to go, the crowd roared their team forward for one last push.

An equaliser almost came when a header from Jamal Lewis almost found Will Grigg, who stretched, but just couldn’t get his foot onto it. If he did, he would have scored.

Will Grigg might be on fire, but he doesn’t have Carlton Palmer’s legs. Unfortunately.

The performance was there but the result wasn’t. All is not lost. If you can’t get promoted, don’t get relegated.

If Northern Ireland play like this, they will surely get rewarded.

Frustratingly, they aren’t in Nations League action in midweek, if would have been a perfect opportunity to remedy it and get back on track. They’ll be in friendly action while Bosnia host Austria.

A draw wouldn’t be the worst result but an Austrian win would be ideal, meaning that if Northern Ireland can win in Vienna, this result will have been cancelled out with all three teams level.

That friendly on Tuesday is against Israel.

I’ll be giving it a miss as it’s an underwhelming fixture and a team i’ve already seen before. I’ll be keeping an eye out for competitions and freebies, so I might still be there.

If not, I might go out for a peaceful meal. I haven’t been to McDonald’s in ages. I hear the Kennedy Way branch is decent.

Photo Album

BANGOR IS AN ENERGY

AKA …… Bangor Street Art

Making the most of a football free Saturday a few weeks back, I headed to Bangor for the afternoon to Bangor Vintage Market, held as part of Open House Festival.

This gave me an excuse to check out some Street Art while I was in Bangor.

The one I was most looking for was one of John Lydon by Friz, with the caption “BANGOR IS AN ENERGY”, which if you need explained is a pun on the chant “ANGER IS AN ENERGY” heard during Public Image Limited’s hit Rise, which has recently had prominent airplay on the Top Of The Pops repeats on BBC Four.

Why John Lydon? His band, Public Image Limited, came to Bangor towards the end of the month to perform as part of the festival, and “Bangor is an energy” has become the slogan of the festival.

If you’re looking to see it, it’s beside the Marine Hotel. There was a crowd getting photos when I was there. I overheard a man telling his wife “Oh, it’s Malcolm McLaren”. Close enough.

I also took the opportunity to get a photo of a piece by Visual Waste at the entrance of Abbey Dance Studios.

They were the two main pieces I was looking for, but I did stumble upon two other pieces when walking around the town, in High Street, outside Terry Bradley’s Studio, and one just up the street at a Hair Salon called Georgeous.

Photo Album

PHOTO OF THE SEASON : 2017-2018

I hope you’ve enjoyed the month by month look back at the 2017-2018. The less said about what happened on the pitch, the better.

I took a lot of photos, so i’ve rounded up my favourites.

Feel free to vote for your favourite.

PLATT LANE

This was taken in June last year when The Oval was being used for filming a movie about Bert Trautmann, and was decorated to look like Maine Road. I went to get some photos.

I specifically wanted one with 1950s Maine Road and 2017 Oval both in the same shot, and this was my favourite from that day.

CLANDEBOYE

You have roadworks to thank for this photo.

I was held up heading to Ards v Linfield and missed the first couple of minutes.

This was the scene that greeted me as I entered, a crowd with their eyes fixated on the pitch on a warm summer evening.

GARRETT

I like the composition of this photo.

You may be surprised that Robert Garrett is attacking and not defending, he had just kept the ball in play and was now being surrounded by two Dungannon defenders.

PHOTOGRAPHER

I just like the composition of this shot. Taken during Spartans v Linfield in Scottish Challenge Cup.

RAINBOW

Me being arty farty. I love trying to get pictures of rainbows over football grounds. Taken at half-time during Ballinamallard v Linfield in November. A rare time that afternoon when it wasn’t raining.

HAUGHEY

Same match, everyone huddled in the stand to avoid the rain. I like the composition of this shot.

FLEGS

Taken during the Northern Ireland v Switzerland match in November, green and white flags were left out before the game for fans to wave. I decided to take a shot as they were being waved and got lucky.

CELEBRATION

Everything fell into place for this shot, the sky, a well worked goal, and the whole team coming together to celebrate.

GOAL

I like this shot because it captures the emotion of a last minute equaliser as part of a late comeback that never looked like coming.

TIPTON

I was heading to the exit for a quick getaway (in my defence, it was an away game on a weeknight) and stumbled upon this framing as Matthew Tipton looked on as Warrenpoint took on Linfield.

CAMPION

Taken during Cliftonville v Linfield in February, the guy in the red coat makes it makes it with his celebration as Linfield players celebrate in front of their fans.

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : MARCH

Football watching in March got off to a delayed start, due to Linfield’s Irish Cup tie against Cliftonville being postponed due to snow.

I had to wait a week to get to a match, Linfield’s home game against Carrick Rangers.

The following midweek, was that postponed Irish Cup tie against Cliftonville, resulting in a defeat for Linfield.

It didn’t get better the rest of the month as Linfield had to come from behind to get draws against Glentoran and Ballinamallard United.

At least the month ended on a high note, beaming with parental pride (sort of) as Paul Smyth came off he bench to score the winner for Northern Ireland against South Korea on his debut.

Linfield v Carrick Rangers

Linfield v Cliftonville

Linfield v Glentoran

Ballinamallard United v Linfield

Northern Ireland v South Korea

Northern Ireland v South Korea Photo Album

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : NOVEMBER

November’s football watching began with a long trip to Fermanagh to see Linfield beat Ballinamallard 6-0 in the pouring rain.

Up next, was Northern Ireland’s World Cup Play-Off against Switzerland. The following day, I headed to Ballymena to see Linfield take on Ballymena, giving me two disappointing results on successive days.

Results took an upturn in the final weeks of the month, as I headed to see Linfield beat the top two in the League, Coleraine and Glenavon, in successive weeks.

Ballinamallard United v Linfield

Northern Ireland v Switzerland

Northern Ireland v Switzerland Photo Album

Ballymena United v Linfield

Linfield v Coleraine

Glenavon v Linfield

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : OCTOBER

October’s football watching began with Northern Ireland taking on Germany in a World Cup Qualifier.

That was then followed by taking in Linfield’s defeats against Coleraine and Crusaders.

Thankfully, the month ended a bit better, as I went to see Linfield beat Ards

Northern Ireland v Germany

Northern Ireland v Germany Photo Album

Coleraine v Linfield

Linfield v Crusaders

Linfield v Ards

PHOTO DIARY OF A FOOTBALL SEASON : SEPTEMBER

September’s football watching began for me in Edinburgh, seeing Linfield take on Spartans in the Scottish Challenge Cup. That was followed two days later with World Cup action, as Northern Ireland took on Czech Republic at Windsor Park.

After that, it was all about Irish League action, taking in Linfield’s matches against Glentoran, Crusaders, Ballinamallard and Cliftonville.

Spartans v Linfield

Northern Ireland v Czech Republic

Northern Ireland v Czech Republic Photo Album

Linfield v Glentoran

Crusaders v Linfield

Linfield v Ballinamallard United

Cliftonville v Linfield

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : SHOOT 29.3.1986

Mark Wright is the cover star of Shoot as he wants to be part of the England squad that goes to Mexico 86 after being dropped for England’s recent friendly in Israel.

His determination to reach Mexico was in vain, as a broken leg sustained playing for Southampton would rule him out, though he would get to play for England in the 1990 World Cup.

The countdown to Mexico is in full swing, as Northern Ireland face fellow finalists Denmark in a friendly at Windsor Park, with Shoot doing a feature on 40 year old goalkeeper Pat Jennings, as Northern Ireland aim to keep a 7th successive clean sheet.

They wouldn’t get it as the match finished a 1-1 draw.

Another veteran hoping to go to Mexico was Kenny Dalglish, now player-manager at Liverpool, on the verge of winning his 100th cap in Scotland in the friendly against Romania. However, like the cover star Mark Wright, he would have the action at home after missing out through injury.

Not to be left out, Wales get a feature, as their recent friendly saw a changing on the guard, as Joey Jones retired as joint most capped player, while Malcolm Allen made his debut, and was already compared to Mark Hughes.

Wales are in Dublin for a friendly as the opposition in Jack Charlton’s first game as Republic of Ireland manager, and Charlton gets a full page feature.

BBC pundit Bob Wilson gets a double page column, where he states that Bruce Grobbelaar is the best goalkeeper in England.

Another Scotsman writing for Shoot is Charlie Nicholas, writing about his boyhood idol Kenny Dalglish, who scored six goals for Celtic against Kilmarnock in the first game Nicholas went to, and urges Alex Ferguson to select him for Scotland’s World Cup squad.

Bryan Robson uses his column to hit back at Kevin Keegan, who suggested that he should be playing a Sweeper role for England, stating that his best position is as an attacking midfielder.

This edition is all about the World Cup, as Hungary get a full page feature, looking at their chances in Mexico.

Hearts, billed as “The club that shocked Scottish soccer” get a double page spread looking at their success under Wallace Mercer.

1986 was an agonising year for them, as they lost the league on the last day, then lost the Scottish Cup Final the following week.

Staying in Scotland, Dundee United manager Jim McLean hits out at stayaway fans, fearing that a lack of gate revenue will force the club to sell stars such as Maurice Malpas and Richard Gough.

Transfer Deadline Day isn’t a modern phenomenon, as Shoot features Colin West, who signed for Watford on Deadline Day the previous year, and Shoot looked at the changes he had to cope with, moving clubs at short notice.

One player who moved more recently was Peter Davenport, who left Nottingham Forest for Manchester United, tells Shoot that he had joined his dream club, having stood on the Stretford End as a lad.

It was the continent where English players might be moving to in the future, with PFA chief Gordon Taylor warning that English football could be losing it’s star players to clubs from Italy and Spain.

It’s derby say in Birmingham as Villa and City go head to head as both clubs are desperate for points to avoid relegation, with Andy Gray of Villa and Wayne Clarke of Birmingham both interviewed.

Going back to the World Cup, Chris Waddle tells Shoot that he fears getting axed from the England squad due to his poor form.

On the back page, there is a profile of Liam Brady.

MAGAZINE ARCHIVE : SHOOT – 19.10.1985

Glenn Hoddle of England is the cover star of this edition of Shoot. Or perhaps, not of England, if the headline is anything to go by.

This was also the week in Back To The Future II where Marty McFly visits 2015.

As you open the magazine, there is a double page spread on Steve McMahon, who has just joined Liverpool from Aston Villa, nearly three years after rejecting Liverpool to go to Villa Park.

Meanwhile, there are reports that England’s top clubs could be forming a breakaway Super League.

Cover star Glenn Hoddle is interviewed, finally becoming an England regular, and is confident of returning home from Mexico the following summer with the World Cup.

The cover headline “I’LL QUIT ENGLAND” refers to his club status, as he expresses his desire to play on the continent, which he did in 1987 when he signed for Monaco.

Bryan Robson uses his column to state that Peter Barnes is worthy of a place in the England squad to provide competition for John Barnes and Chris Waddle.

Northern Ireland’s vital World Cup Qualifier away to Romania gets previewed, with manager Billy Bingham confidently predicting that Northern Ireland will finish 2nd in their group and head to Mexico.

Republic Of Ireland also have ambitions of going to Mexico, and have blooded Tony Cascarino into their squad in time for their vital game away to the Soviet Union.

Portsmouth manager Alan Ball gets a photo collage, as he aims to lead the club back to the top flight of English football.

Peter Shilton gets a double page feature as he becomes England’s most capped goalkeeper, complete with a tribute from Gordon Banks, who he replaced at Leicester City, Stoke City and England, with the headline “PETER SHILTON – KING OF KEEPERS”

West Germany manager Franz Beckenabauer feels this season’s European club competitions have been devalued by the absence of English clubs, while Canada have qualified for the World Cup for the first time in their history.

Meanwhile, Napoli failed in their bid to sign Hugo Maradona from Argentinos Juniors, the younger brother of Diego Maradona.

A dispute between the governing body and broadcasters meant that there were no games on TV, so Shoot did a double page photo collage of the best strikes.

In Scotland, there is a full page profile and a poster of Celtic.

In Wales, Mark Hughes was set to miss the opening games of Euro 88 Qualifying, due to a red card in an underage Euro qualifier against Yugoslavia in 1983.

Steve Cowan gets a full page feature, having just signed for Hibs and is hoping to put his injury problems behind him.

Bradford City get featured, as the club tries to recover from the tragic fire at their ground five months earlier.

Peter Reid uses his column to talk about Everton’s problems conceding goals, especially in the early moments of games.

Reid’s Everton team-mate Gary Lineker is happy, having found a Snooker Club near his home in Southport, and has managed to convince Willie Thorne to start supporting Everton.

Meanwhile, Portsmouth are trying to sign Paul Mariner from Arsenal.

The magazine ends with a profile of Davie McPherson of Rangers. His favourite music is Dire Straits and Bruce Springsteen.