Tag Archives: isthmian

Don"t be a Twit on Twitter, Premier League stars warned

Premier League stars offered advice on how to avoid falling foul on Twitter



21:44 GMT, 7 August 2012

Controversy: Rio Ferdinand

Controversy: Rio Ferdinand

Footballers are being prepared for the
new season with expert advice on avoiding the pitfalls of drugs,
gambling and social networking.

FA disciplinary chiefs will have
visited more than 60 professional clubs before the end of this month,
focusing mainly on the perils of Twitter.

Rio Ferdinand and Emmanuel Frimpong
are two Barclays Premier League players already caught up in the FA's
new vigilant stance on tweeting.

The pair are charged with misconduct. Frimpong used an insulting term
in reply to Tottenham fans and Ferdinand retweeted an offensive comment
about Ashley Cole.

A player
from the Women's Super League was banned for 70 days for racist abuse
aimed at a rival on Twitter, even though the target gave evidence to
insist it was only 'banter'.

Fantasy football 2012

Isthmian League player was also fined last season for attaching the
hash-tag phrase 'cheating b*****d' to a Tweet about the referee.

The FA have been anxious to remind
players that Twitter is a public forum, 'banter' is best exchanged
privately and that they are responsible for retweets because it is, in
effect, republishing.

Advice to those who tweet in the heat of the moment is to 'delete and apologise' as soon as possible, although that does not avert disciplinary action.

Players have been especially reminded of the dangers of supplements after Barnet's Mark Marshall was banned for two years in May for testing positive for a substance consumed in a supplement called Jack3d.

This has proved to be more of a problem for clubs in the lower leagues because they cannot afford sports science departments to closely monitor players' diets.

London Olympics 2012: Dwain Chambers and Adam Gemili are in wonderland after sparkling sprint performances

Chambers and Gemili are in wonderland after sparkling sprint performances



21:29 GMT, 4 August 2012

Together they represent the potential future of the sport and its tainted past.

Olympics 2012

But both the fresh innocence of the
smiling 19-year-old Adam Gemili and the more hardened face of Dwain
Chambers received generous welcomes and produced superb performances at
the Olympic Stadium.

Chambers, who received the all-clear
to resume his Olympic career only in April after the British Olympic
Association's lifetime ban on drugs cheats was overturned, made the most
of his reprieve, producing one of his greatest performances since a
two-year ban for using steroids, winning his heat while easing up in

Promising: Adam Gemili impressed for Team GB

Promising: Adam Gemili impressed for Team GB

Gemili, who was still hoping for a footballing contract at Dagenham and Redbridge in League Two and was on loan at Thurrock in the Isthmian League last autumn, also trod an unlikely route to these Games.

Yesterday he chased home former world record holder Asafa Powell in his heat, the Jamaican running 10.04sec to Gemili's 10.09sec, the Briton qualifying in second.

Neither might have imagined being here in today's semi-finals, where they will be joined by compatriot James Dasaolu, who qualified alongside Usain Bolt, finishing third in 10.13sec.

Warm reception: Dwain Chambers produced one of his best performances

Warm reception: Dwain Chambers produced one of his best performances

Chambers was fourth the last time he stepped on an Olympic track to run in the 100m in Sydney 2000, a result that began to plant the seeds of doubt in his mind and led him down a route that would end up in him taking designer steroids.

He has acknowledged his guilt and is contrite, unlike Americans Justin Gatlin, competing here in the 100m, and LaShawn Merritt, who limped off after 150m of his heat, thus sparing us the indignity of an unrepentant drug cheat winning the 400m.

Chambers said: 'I wasn't worried about the reception. I was more worried about my performance, coming this far and not doing it. The welcome was, “Wow! What's that” I wanted to make sure I did my team, my family and supporters proud.'

London 2012 Olympics: What Team GB football was like at 1960 Games

Work at 4.30am, Wembley at 3pm: A 1960 Team GB footballer recalls last time out

Mike Dickson


17:55 GMT, 20 July 2012



18:09 GMT, 20 July 2012

The footballers representing Britain in these Olympics might struggle to comprehend the sporting life of someone like Terry Howard, one of those who represented a GB football team the last time they entered the Games, in 1960.

The idea of clocking on at 4.30am for work at Billingsgate fish market before being let off early to go to play a cup final at Wembley, for example, would stretch the imagination of anyone from our gilded generation.

Yet one thing the modern-day hopefuls do share with him is a desire to experience what Howard calls the ‘privilege’ of being an Olympian, however different it will all be to what he and his fellow amateurs went through together in Rome 52 years ago.

Memories: Ex-Team GB footballer Terry Howard pictured at Billigsgate Market

Memories: Ex-Team GB footballer Terry Howard pictured at Billigsgate Market

For him, it included seeing the then Cassius Clay parading around the athletes’ village with a gold medal round his neck, as well as testing himself against future Brazil World Cup star Gerson. And then it was straight back to Billingsgate, where he has worked as boy, man and pensioner for nearly 60 years.

‘It was brilliant, the whole thing,’ says Howard, now a sprightly 74 and still working a daily 12-hour shift running his own fish merchant’s stall. ‘I’m not surprised that someone like David Beckham is keen to play in the Olympics.’

Howard’s group of elite amateurs, drawn largely from the old Isthmian League and bolstered by some Scots and Northern Irish, did not do too badly either. Despite facing teams studded with professional experience, they narrowly lost to Brazil, held the hosts to a 2-2 draw and were eliminated only at the group stage on goal difference after beating China.

But then, as he points out, amateur football in this country was of a very high order back then, with not everyone of a certain quality immediately drawn to the professional game with the enormous wages on offer as now.

‘We were no mugs and could play a similar type of football to the Brazilians and Italians,’ says Howard, whose son, also Terry, played for Chelsea before enjoying a long career at Leyton Orient.

‘We were beating Brazil when our full back Tommy Thompson broke his leg in the first half, and there were no substitutes. We couldn’t hold them and went down 4-3.’

As a grammar-school boy who grew up in Stepney, east London, near the Redknapps — ‘lovely people’ — Howard was an England junior rugby triallist but developed his football when he went to work in the fish market at 15.

Team GB in 1960

BACK ROW: David Holt (Capped by Scotland five times), Roy Sleap (Played as an amateur for Barnet),
Ron McKinven (206 games for St Johnstone), Mike Pinner (Joined Man Utd in 1960), Tommy Thompson (Played for Blackpool), Paddy Hasty ()Played for Tooting and QPR)
FRONT ROW: Bobby Brown (Played as a Barnet amateur), Terry Howard (Made one GB appearance), Laurie Brown (Played for Arsenal and Spurs), Hugh Lindsay (Last Southampton amateur), Hugh Barr (Played for Northern Ireland B)

There was a vibrant sports culture there, and among his colleagues were boxers Billy and George Walker. In his early twenties he was playing for Hendon Town as a speedy left winger in the side that reached the Amateur Cup final at Wembley in 1960.

Before a capacity crowd — and the Olympic team selectors — he scored a dramatic last-minute winner that got him his ticket alongside players from the likes of Bishop Auckland, Evenwood Town, Dulwich Hamlet and Scotland’s Queen’s Park.

Granted two weeks’ leave ‘by my sympathetic guv’nor’, he and the team set off for Rome more in hope than expectation. ‘My one regret is that we missed walking round at the opening ceremony because we were playing Brazil in Livorno hundreds of miles away the next day,’ recalls Howard.

‘We settled into the athletes’ village after that. It was very comfortable with everything laid on for us, and it was great mixing with the other athletes. There was this big hall with music on and I remember Muhammad Ali (Clay as he was then) swaggering around with his medal round his neck,’ he adds.

‘We played well and drew 2-2 with the Italians. It was packed and they were literally hanging over the barriers.

‘We were a good team with some excellent players. I watch non-League football now, and most of them would struggle to get in the reserves of the amateur sides I played in. We beat China but missed out on goal difference. We stayed on for a couple of days and did a bit of sightseeing around Rome — then it was back home to work.’

All smiles: Howard experienced a far different Olympics from today's athletes

All smiles: Howard experienced a far different Olympics from today's athletes

Howard’s career took him to other top clubs of the era in Enfield and Sutton, playing in four Amateur Cup finals, on the day of which he would always go into work before taking the Tube to meet the team coach and head to Wembley.

‘When I was at Enfield, we drew 2-2 at Reading in the FA Cup and I played quite well. They offered to sign me on the spot, but I told the manager I wasn’t interested. I’ve always enjoyed working in the market and it was a good living, I had a young family and had bought a house (off Geoff Hurst, just after the 1966 World Cup).’

Howard missed out on the 1964 Olympics team with a broken leg, but Britain failed to qualify anyway. By 1968, the amateur game had seen most of its talent turn pro. ‘We were true amateurs and felt like genuine Olympians,’ says Howard. ‘I never got paid for playing. They’d cover your train fare and you’d get sandwiches afterwards but there wasn’t any money. The spirit was fantastic. There were no divisions — we still have the occasional get-together.’

So he recommends any modern-day player should grasp the chance to compete in the Olympics with both hands, and believes football belongs there.

Howard adds: ‘I’m not envious of today’s players — I’ve had a great footballing life and made loads of friends. The Olympics was probably best of all.’