Category: “Football

Patrice Evra deserves praise not abuse for his role in the fight against racism

Posted on 28 January 2012 | 11:01am

Even those who would never dream of watching a football match – they do exist, these sad souls – must surely be aware that there is added spice to the Manchester United-Liverpool rivalry when they meet today. The same said football-naysayers must have a vague sense of a row between Manchester United’s Patrice Evra and […]

25 reasons why Sir Alex Ferguson is the greatest manager of all time

Posted on 6 November 2011 | 4:11pm

Fiona and I are on the way to Manchester for a dinner to celebrate Alex Ferguson’s 25th anniversary as Manchester United manager. Partly in response to a few tweets and messages asking why I hadn’t blogged on this milestone, and partly because it will help the journey speed by, I thought I would give you […]

A welcome addition to the depression campaign library – this time from a top footballer

Posted on 25 July 2011 | 8:07am

A break from politics and the press today, and instead three of my other interests – football, mental illness and plugging books. No, not my own books, though these are available here here here here here and the latest one, Power and Responsibility, here. Oh, and you can pre-order the next one, The Burden of […]

FIFA needs the forces of the Arab spring to bring it into the modern world

Posted on 27 May 2011 | 4:05pm

I am slightly losing track of the allegations and counter allegations being made at the top of world football. But they are sufficiently numerous, and sufficiently confusing, that it can only be a matter of days before a gate is attached to Fifa. Fifagate – you read it here first. Maybe. One thing is for […]

Economic snapshot from Yorkshire; and the build up to Football Focus play-off v Alan Sugar

Posted on 20 May 2011 | 10:05am

To Leeds last night for a very enjoyable dinner with some of Yorkshire’s top business people, and publication by BDO of a report into the prospects for the county’s economy (strapline STRONGER, LEANER, FITTER). The diners had voting pads and could express instant views about their hopes for the future. It won’t surprise you to […]

Public want more variety and less monoprism than media gives them – a despatch from Fowey

Posted on 18 May 2011 | 1:05pm

To remind you of another Rule One of communications – never confuse media opinion with public opinion. And Rule 1a – always expect better, more interesting and more varied questions from the public. If ever I do a media interview these days there will usually come a point where the journalist shifts in his chair, […]

Strangeways documentary should strengthen not weaken Ken Clarke’s new approach on prisons

Posted on 17 May 2011 | 10:05am

Reshuffle stories are a bit of a nightmare to deal with. The press write whatever they want, the broadcasters blather away about it, the ministers get a bit jumpy, the ones being tipped for promotion get jumpy in a different sort of way, and all the Downing Street media operation can do is say nothing. […]

Great football managers don’t have to be great players – Alan Sugar and I are available

Posted on 16 May 2011 | 1:05pm

The last time I went out to Alan Sugar’s offices in Essex was in 1997, to persuade him to come out publicly for Labour. On the way there, his PR guy Nick Hewer (later to become his sidekick on The Apprentice) made the observation that Sugar didn’t like publicity, and I later made the point […]

Strauss-Kahn’s arrest re ‘sexual attack’ makes French elections even more complicated

Posted on 15 May 2011 | 7:05am

Last month I posted a piece on the French presidential elections, predicting that they were about as tough to call as they come. I reflected on the fact that so many supporters of the Parti Socialiste said two highly contradictory things during the same conversation – that President Sarkozy is so low in the polls […]

Help write my speech for the RCN conference with egs of frontline cuts to mental health services

Posted on 11 April 2011 | 2:04pm

Another fabulous day weather wise, spent so far sorting out a contract on an overseas speaking engagement; doing an interview with Andy Gray and Richard Keys on their new Talksport show; recording the voice over for a little film on Ian Botham’s charity exploits at Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research; going for a painfully slow run […]