Archive for the Football Category

PRESS RELEASE: South London declares support for DPRK

Posted in Brixton, Change We Can Believe In, DPRK, Football, FreeSouthLondon, Media, Protest, Revolution, South London, Sport with tags , , , on June 8, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

Free South London today, in a blaze of publicity and with the authentic roar of the oppressed, pledges its support for our most glorious comrades, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea national association football team in the forthcoming imperialist pig-dog showcase of postmodern hypercapitalist slag-bitchery, the FIFA World Cup.

Free South London, being the true representative voice of the transpontine proletariat, is both humbled and inspired by the bravery and skill of the People’s Footballing Representatives as they prepare to do battle with: Brazil, the samba lackeyes of imperialism, sold out to the highest bidder (Nike) and red-raw from the subsequent rape. Ivory Coast, a nation born of European colonialism and founded on the exploitation of the elephant proletariat. And Portugal, the birthplace of vile colonial expansoploition, aka mindrape.

Our stupendously splendid comrades-in-feet have not even been put off by the hideous bourgeois imperialist prejudices & cheating of Überführer Sepp Blatter, of the monolithic ideological trans-state apparatus that is FIFAcapitalism.

We will laugh, howl, delight and stamp in joyous teleological unison as these counterrevolutionist whore-tarts succumb to the modernist supremely-planned tactical brilliance of the Democratic People’s Republic Korea, powered by a new superdrink.

With this in mind, comrades, then I heartily submerge you to join myself and the SLNK South London North Korea Supporters Club on Tuesday the15 th of June at Mango Landin’ in Brixton (twinned with Pyongyang) to witness the Brazilian national team be given a beating so profound both they and all international capitalists will taste the bitter tears of defeat and suckle on the plagueridden teat of shame.

To Victory!

War In My Heart: Childhood Memories of Sport #3

Posted in Art, British Empire, Change We Can Believe In, Croydon, Football, FreeSouthLondon, Indigenous Culture, South London with tags , , , on April 13, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

(Last week I started exploring how three separate and seemingly unimportant childhood experiences of sport went a long way to forging me, both politically and as a man. To complete the trilogy, it’s attending an especially profound game of football…)

Comrades. This is difficult for me to write. In today­­’s article I go back to the night I realized South London needed to change. The night I realized weeds needed purging. The night I realized the wonderment of an international influence. And the night I realized my love of the nocturnal flip of huimanity…

After this event, football was never the same for me. It expanded. It grew. It matured. It became erect. Glorious. Huge. Profound Multifaceted. Interesting!! Interesting enough to hold my interest, my fascination out of the simplicities of childhood and into the complexities of adulthood.

At the age of 13 I went to a football match in South London with my dear old mother and a few other children.

Crystal Palace v Manchester United. 25th January 1995.

I was at this game. Aged 13. My George Best-obsessed, United-supporting mother had managed to get hold of some tickets – amongst Palace fans, in their dreary hole of Selhurst Park. Their bitter jealousy of United electrified me, made me proud. I was only young but I knew resentment like that was a compliment. I was always slightly embarrassed by United being the best supported team in the land, but always exhilarated by them also being the most hated. Ridicule is nothing to be scared off, it’s a source of energy to nourish you soul’s most outlandish excesses.

I really feel the paranoid arrogance of that identity helped forge the person I’ve grown up to be, for better and for worse.

The Palace fans’ hostility towards United manifested itself most spectacularly, most venomously, most complimentary, in their seething jingoistic hatred of Eric Cantona – the figurehead and catalyst of United’s recent and long awaited success (strange to think nowadays in these times of absolute sporting hegemony, but they hadn’t won the English league championship for twenty-six years, between 1967 and 1993).

That was the night of the Cantona “incident”…

…the splendid kung-fu attack, the madness, the red mist, the Kicking Of Racism Out Of Football. It happened after he’d been sent off for what I believe was a second bookable offence – a nonchalant little kick out at some anonymous waste-of-cultural-space Palace player. He was walking off the pitch, Matthew Simmons, mouth bomber jacket wearing Palace fan, ran down the stand to hurl abuse at Cantona, who then landed not only the above flying kick but also this rather tasty jab to the face…

… This was followed a predictable moral panic, a lengthy ban (9 months), rumours of transfers to continental clubs or even retiring from football, and of course the brilliant “Seagulls” line:

My favourite experience of the night came after Cantona’s event. Myself and two similarly young friends stood on our seats amidst the increasingly hostile Palace fans and heartily sang “Oooh-Aaah, David May!” and then, “UNITED! *clap clap clap* UNITED! *clap clap clap” repeatedly. In response HUNDREDS of enraged Palace fans turned their backs on the game to respond “SHIT! SHIT! SHIT! SHIT!” A number of policemen rushed over to shut us up as we were on the verge of sparking a riot. To feel such hatred was an incredible buzz (an ecstatic feeling that I’m still yet to better).

But I was disappointed at the role South London had played in this farcical but exhilarating spectacle. South London’s representatives on this knight-of-nights had been the cultural rump, the baying mob of great unwash’d and the frenzied village idiot – namely, Crystal Palace, their fans, and the high priest of provincial cuntness, Matthew “should’ve been aborted” Simmons. I wished South London had a big football club. Not even a United, but something bigger. Something that would dwarf even FC Barcelona. A monolithic mothership of a team.

Alas, no. But I have grown up, grown wiser. Realised there is more to life & death than football – well, perhaps not – but certainly there is more to life than having a huge hypercapitalist football club whoring its soul and other orifices out for loose millions in your patch..

But because of the pettiness of South London on 25th January 1995 – showcased lest we forget in what was probably the most famous match of the entire decade! – this was the night, ultimately, that I realized South London needed an El Salvador. A revolutionary, heroic figure, a lone warrior, a Cantona-esque je ne sais quoi embodiment to flying-kick the unacceptable face of South London, so that it’s many other faces – for it is a multifaced beast – can represent themselves

Ladies & Gentlemen. This was the night Wolfgang Moneypenny was born. Wrenched in a splatter of gore from the vagina of possibility.

Let us harness what is good about South London with what is great across the rest of the world. Whatever we choose, it will be inherently South London.

My position on international influence is a bipolar one. Reject – visciously, loudly – anything forced on us. Embrace – warmly, energetically – anything we so desire.

And when we do have our independence, I call on the as yet hypothetical Minister for Sport to make Eric Cantona the Republic of South London’s first national team manager.

NEXT GOAL WINS: Childhood Memories of Sport #2

Posted in Football, FreeSouthLondon, Indigenous Culture, Revolution, South London, Sport, Streatham with tags , on April 8, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

(Yesterday I started exploring how three separate and seemingly unimportant childhood experiences of sport went a long way to forging me, both politically and as a man. Today, the second in the series, I look at a vital game of playground football…)

When I was in Year 5 of my Streatham primary school, 9 or 10 years of age, we were challenged en masse by the cocky self-assured ONE YEAR OLDER Year 6 to an epic game of football that would episodically navigate many playtimes. Aside from the chaotic semi-selective interpretation of official Association Football, there was one rule: first to 100 goals wins.
Now, I was never an adept footballer. Too clumsy, lacking grace. Even my boundless enthusiasm couldn’t plug the gap. But this was Year 5 v Year 6. A year group rivalry. Like all good playground and park football, player numbers mattered not. If you were in the Year you were in the team.

Year 6 were The Favourites. Age, Strength, Cleverness. That was and still is the Natural Order of things. Phrases like “the Year Above” and “the Year Below” showcase a hierarchy so bluntly obvious – and ingrained – that it’s almost impossible to consciously notice! But still we indulgently imagined winning. I for one pleasurably fantasized the outraged faces of certain Undesirable Types in Year 6. The win would have been worth so much more presicely for its being unlikely, incorrect, unnatural.

And so, without pre-season training, without transfer window wheelerdealer-ing and agonised television contract negotiations, the game started almost immediately.

The “formation” would make a Opta Index machines explode. The self-defined star players of each side hovered ball-hungry up front, dreamingly certain of their starring role. Meanwhile a herd of lesser mortals camped in the background, a defensive crowd, a legitimized pitch invasion, or rather the medieval mob from the folk games of Association Football’s distant antiquarian origins.

Goals would be scored with almost basketball regularity, each team swarming into alternating counterattacks after the quickfire post-goal instant “keeper starts” restart of play. Goal. Goal. Goal. Goal. Miss. Goal. Goal. Goal. Miss. Goal. Miss. Goal. Goal. Goal. It was the failures to convert chances that were most noteworthy. Most memorable. If normal association football ritualises the heroic penetrative symbolism of The Goal, we children had built an alternative version that anti-celebrated the erectile dysfunction of The Miss. Playground embarrassment ritualised in real life real-time theatre. This had the potential to be A LOT worse than kiss chase…

Although the goals rattled in, the race to One Hundred spread out over more than a week of playtimes. Long enough in/a high enough proportion of our little short conscious lives to be well worthy of the obsession we had quickly lavished The Event with.

And so, about six school days later, we had finished playtime with the scores tantalisingly balanced at 98-98. The cockiness of Year 6 was rocked, their audacity reeling. Each side was two goals from a literally Vital victory. They desperately hoped to save themselves from profound shame. We were wild eyed in our eagerness to stick our snouts in the euphoric Champagne of this impossible victory.

As the clock ticked down teasingly to playtime it was obvious that the match would be decided there and then. Two goals. Only two goals.

It was to be decided there & then, in an anonymous South London arena of primary education, but to us a cathedral colleseum of unbearable drama…

We ran out to the concrete playing… er, field. We found Year 6 already there. Waiting for us. The episodic match started its final chapter with tangible intensity, both physical and emotional. Year 6 attacked immediately, but their play was broken up, and we counterattacked with the speed of Llewellyn, a kid who rumour had it was once run over playing football BUT HAD CARRIED ON. He skipped past The Year Above enemy and shot impressively… beyond the goalkeeper… GOAL! 99-98. One more goal! One more!

Glory on the streets of Streatham was within our grasp.

Year 6 surged forward like a wounded beast. I think I shouted at some still celebrating Yearmates “DEFEND! DEFEND!” But it was too late. Wham! They shot from (relative) distance to equalize. 99-99. You couldn’t write this script and all that bollocks. I was struck with horror at the delicateness of the situation, on a knife’s edge above ecstasy and misery. I dreamed immediate sorrowful hypernostalgia for the 99-98 comfort of only a few seconds previous.

With a mixture of luck and panic we broke forward. With zeal I galloped in front of the play. One kid was tackled hard in midfield and the ball rolled into my path. Thomas, a kid whose parents were involved in the local Labour Party, was (appropriately) on the left, SCREAMING for the ball. “PASS!! PASS!!” But I was in a better position, I was closing in on the goalkeeper. The goal was so big. So wide. So gaping. I realised we were going to win. I realised I was going to taste the pinnacle of rapture. I was going to score the 100th goal!

Glory on the streets of Streatham beckoned me.

I swung my foot at the ball with rare, beautiful certainty… a feeling of a such joyous conviction that I am still yet to re-experience such deep clarity. Every dance move I’ve ever pulled, every girl I’ve ever kissed, NEVER has it felt the way it did as I kicked the ball goalwards for number 100…

Ready to explode with roaring passion and throbbing self-worth, I looked ahead at the ball as it flew into the goal.

Erm… Except… it wasn’t there. Where the fuck was it?! My eyes darted in dread, up, left, right. Where’s the ball?!? To my left I began to hear Thomas erupt with the inaudible words of utter rage. And then I saw it. The ball. Still trickling along its path. I hadn’t just near-missed a shot. I had completely failed to connect. I had clumsily swiped my foot through thin air. The ball was collected by a grateful Year 6 before I could move. Thomas descended on me. “When I say ‘PASS!’ you FUCKING PASS!!!” His speckled scream-projected saliva shimmered wet on my hot shamed face. I turned to make amends, but within a second of running back to defend I saw Year 6 strike at our underbelly: our goal, so big, so wide, so gaping. Omar, the cricket-loving goalie, bravely saved one shot but was powerless as the rebound was scuffed into the top right corner. Year 6 had won. First to 100…

I can see it now, the way the football bounced off the brick wall inside the white paint right-angle of the goal “frame”. And the feeling. My heart dropping into my gut. The miasmatic air expelling from my lungs. The weakness overcoming my knees. The stooping of my back. The frantic wish for the ground to swallow me up and vomit me out anywhere else.

The aftermath was, frankly, vicious. Thomas didn’t stop screaming for ages. Everyone blamed me. I was the proverbial scapegoat, true. But I was also Judas The Clown who had utterly fucked up when heaven was before us (and most of all before Me.)

There was no glory for us on the streets of Streatham.

For what seemed like an eternity of cruellest purgatorial punishment (but in truth probably only lasted a few days) The Mob, my former teammates, banned me from playing football. I had to stand on the side and cheerlead with a bunch of proto-bitchy J17-aspiring girls.

What small confidence in the little footballing ability I had never ever recovered. I became a goalkeeper by choice. Well, “choice”…

But I’m not unhappy about this. This is Sport. I think. I was involved in a glorious drama. Exciting. Unpredictable. And, at the time, so very meaningful. Sure, I was the loser. I ended up as this drama’s Clown, Joker, Jester, Fool, Village Idiot, Comedy Villain, Unknowing Judas. And there are the famous Tears of a Clown, I can assure you. But… this is who I am. I’m not normal. I have been forged in the strangest but most exhilarating of furnaces. Why bother being sad? Live! (I try…)

The one sadness that I allow myself is political: the missed opportunity of the age-revolutionary upset using the cultural vehicle of Sport. Alas. Alas. Arse!

South Africa, Elephant & Castle, Concentration Camps and Postmodernity

Posted in Elephant & Castle, Football, FreeSouthLondon, Indigenous Culture, Postmodernity, Revolution, South Africa, South London with tags , , , on April 3, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

Bastards! That’s what I shouted as I picked up a copy of yesterday’s Guardian. A front page story about the removal of undesirables from World Cup venue cities in South Africa. They are being housed – or rather unhoused – in heavily/brutally policed Tin Can Towns. Concentration Camps!

This is the onward march of postmodernity, people. The fervoured and businesslike importancification of global events & the power/status-hungry desperate core-ization of cities. Fuck people. Adore staus.

On a lower level, this reminds me of Central London’s postmodern rape-encroachment of South London. First the Southbank. Now Elephant & Castle. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches. Bitches.

And this is why a central policy of my South London separatism is thus: In a world of increasing sterile – and even brutally dehumanizing – homogeneity let’s make South London the rebel heart of metropolitan heterodoxy.

¡Viva La Revolsplendidution!

Wolfgang Moneypenny’s Mothering Sunday Video

Posted in Clapham, Football, FreeSouthLondon, Garratt Lane, Indigenous Culture, London Underground, Revolution, South London, Streatham, Tooting, Video, Waterloo with tags , , , , on March 15, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

This one goes out to ALL the mums of South London… but most of all my own dear mum.

Peace, Respect, Revolutionary Love xxx

Wanderers FC: The Original FA Cup Winners

Posted in British Empire, Football, FreeSouthLondon, Indigenous Culture, South London on March 4, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

Wanderers FC were a South London based football club who won the first two FA Cups in 1872 & 1873, and again on another three occasions that decade. Indeed, the early FA Cup was entirely synonymous with South London. The vast majority of pre-Great War finals were held at either the Oval or Crystal Palace. To me, the FA Cup and therefore the entire history of competitive football is a South London tradition cruelly snatched away by the British establishment in the monolithic form of Wembley Stadium – a symbol of imperial oppression.

The good news is that Wanderers FC reformed last year. They currently play exhibition matches to raise money for UNICEF – a noble cause, helping people in need all over the world, from Sierra Leone to Streatham. Please visit their website.

Sport is vitally important to a locality’s sense of identity. Just look at FC Barcelona in Catalunya. South London has some interesting football clubs, not least the phoenix-from-the-flames of AFC Wimbledon and the proud-to-be-hated Millwall FC – both of which point to our great half-city’s vividly truculent heterodoxy – what I like to call our revolutionary spirit.

But what we really need is a South London club to rise to the top. To dominate domestically and put us on the proverbial map internationally. Or is it a literal map? Anyway. Some neo-Stalinists on the FreeSouthLondon Politburo have argued for the enforced collectivisation of all South London clubs, all the way down to Corinthians-Casuals and Dulwich Hamlet, to form a huge South London United. I instead still maintain hope that one team can grow organically. So, good luck to all South London clubs. Especially Wanderers FC.

(Note: I am also attempting to open dialogue with Arsenal FC to fascilitate a move back to their spiritual home, Woolwich. Talks have been, shall we say, a little one-sided thus far. I’ll keep you posted.)

UNTIL THE REVOLUTION!

Brazil v Ireland Holloway Road Protest

Posted in Football, FreeSouthLondon, North London, Revolution, South London on March 3, 2010 by Wolfgang Moneypenny

As I mentioned in my introductory post, I am moving from the shadowy world of extra-parliamentary activities and into the bright lights of the public sphere. I am campaigning. Utilizing the media to press home South London’s story. Most of all, I’m aiming for international exposure.

After much negotiation and the twinning arrangement between South London & West Belfast, we managed to secure the use of a first floor flat on the Holloway Road (Islington, heart of the British Empire) from a Northern Irish dissident. I then set about staging a rooftop protest late last night – whilst thousands of football fans filed past having left the Brazil v Ireland match, held at the Emirates Stadium, home of South London abandonists (Woolwich) Arsenal FC

The reaction was mixed, ranging from vile north London hooligans chanting “Jump! Jump! Jump!” to messages of support from my fellow South Londoners (full marks & representations to them for their bravery). I also got respect from the Brazilian & Irish fans, probably because of the lingering memory of their own imperialistic oppressions.

But the most disturbing thing was the sheer number of north London children hurling abuse at me. Sad to her their little voices so full of hatred. Sad to hear them swearing their traps off. Sad to see the blossoming of their ignorance. Sad…. sad to think of bludgeoning their faces off in the revolutionary War of Independence.

You have to break a few eggs to guillotine an omelette. Peace. Over & Out.