Category: International

Italia 90: Background & Qualification

Italy won the bid to host the 1990 World Cup at a FIFA vote in 1984, comfortably ahead of the Soviet Union. This meant they hosted the tournament for the second time after their victory in 1934, and only a decade after the European Championship finals were held in Italy. Twelve cities were chosen to…

By MisterPBLW July 25, 2020 0

1930 World Cup: Anniversary of the first finals

July 2020 sees the 90th anniversary of the 1930 World Cup finals, hosted in the Uruguayan capital, Montevideo. Instigated by FIFA President, Frenchman Jules Rimet, thirteen nations accepted the invitation to compete in the historic first tournament. Four of the squads made the arduous trans-Atlantic crossing from Europe. The opening two games kicked off simultaneously…

By MisterPBLW July 11, 2020 0

1980 European Championship finals

The 1980 European Championship finals took place in Italy between 11-22 June. It was the first edition of the tournament with eight teams, divided into two groups with the winners progressing straight to the final – semi-finals were introduced four years later. Panini celebrated the occasion with their first dedicated ‘Europa’ sticker album. Five nations…

By MisterPBLW June 26, 2020 2

Mexico 1970 World Cup: 50 years ago

Mexico 1970, the ninth World Cup, is widely regarded as the greatest in living memory, won by its finest team. Though before my time, it is referenced by a generation as the finals where ‘the beautiful game’ triumphed, and casts a shadow over the World Cups which followed. It is chiefly remembered for Brazil’s historic…

By MisterPBLW June 13, 2020 2

Jesse Carver & George Raynor: The British Abroad

Jesse Carver and George Raynor were post-War English coaches and managers who are regarded as pioneers in European football. Both men earned acclaim for successful spells in several countries during the 1950s, but remain largely unheralded in England. Born in Liverpool, Jesse Carver played for Blackburn and Newcastle in the 1920s and 30s, before coaching…

By MisterPBLW March 21, 2020 0

Béla Guttmann – The Greatest Comeback

The Greatest Comeback: From Genocide to Football Glory – The Story of Béla Guttmann is a compelling account of one of the great football managers, and a man whose life encompassed much of the tragedy and turbulence of the twentieth century. Charting the career of this Hungarian Jew and Holocaust survivor, author David Bolchover interweaves…

By MisterPBLW January 25, 2020 0

France in the 1980s: The British Abroad

The 1980s saw a number of high-profile transfers of players from the Football League to the wealthier Italian and Spanish sides, a trend which gathered pace when English clubs were banned from European competition after the Heysel Stadium tragedy of 1985. Among these were Liam Brady, Joe Jordan, Trevor Francis, Graeme Souness, Ray Wilkins, Steve…

By MisterPBLW August 10, 2019 0

Football in North America: The Background

Football in North America, or soccer as our trans-Atlantic cousins prefer to call it, has a longer history than many people imagine. Canada and the USA contested the first international fixture outside the British Isles, at Newark, New Jersey, in 1885, where a group of British expatriates had established the American Football Association, the world’s…

By MisterPBLW July 20, 2019 2