popular STAND’s Euro 2020 charity sweepstake

popular STAND’s Euro 2020 charity sweepstake

They’re here, they’re there, they’re every f***ing where! Yep, it’s finally time for the Covid-delayed and needlessly continent-scattered European Championships of 2020. And even though England, Wales and Scotland have all qualified, it’s nice to have a back up stream of disappointment handy. So, we decided to host a charity sweepstake

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popular STAND fanzine: issue 104

popular STAND fanzine: issue 104

Perhaps the greatest tribute Rovers could offer in a year of false dawns over lockdown-easing and returns to normality, was a season that got us all excited about what was coming, only to emphatically disappoint and then drag on longer than anyone really cared for it. I laid the groundwork for issue 103 by telling you how upbeat the contents were, ‘a true testament to the hope and excitement that Darren Moore’s Rovers have offered us’. Come this release of 104 and that statement has aged like a fine milk.

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popular STAND fanzine: issue 103

popular STAND fanzine: issue 103

When you’re producing four issues a season, you’d expect to have a reasonably clear picture of how that campaign is going to pan out by the time the third one reaches the hands of the reader. But this isn’t a regular season. It’s one that we’re increasingly unlikely to be present to see any of, and it’s one of such stop-startedness that when the bulk of this issue was written, even though we were bidding farewell to January, Rovers still had half of their league games yet to play.

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The Only Fan in The Valley

The Only Fan in The Valley

It’s 19 years since I left Doncaster but I’ve not lost the accent. Nor have I lost that ingrained sense of pragmatism that comes with growing up in the town. So before the fixtures had even been released for the current season I’d come to the terms with the fact I was unlikely to see Rovers play in it. I haven’t had a season ticket in a decade, I live 200 miles away. If there’s to be a pecking order I’m lower mid table at best. Continue reading “The Only Fan in The Valley”

Don’t call it a comeback

Don’t call it a comeback

Don’t call it a comeback. To be fair, when I elected to take a break from popular STAND 17 months ago, I didn’t expect the world as we know it to grind to a halt. It would be particularly pretentious to suggest these two things are directly connected, but we miss one season in 22 years and suddenly the final League One standings are being calculated on the back of a fag packet and the FA can’t bring themselves to let fans back into football grounds. So yeah, let’s not call it a comeback. It’s much more of an intervention. Continue reading “Don’t call it a comeback”

How I watched football: 2019-20

How I watched football: 2019-20

This felt like a season of 0-0 draws. Which is hard to explain given that in reality I saw only one. But stick with me, whilst I thrash this out. I saw 31 football matches and though all of them offered me something, none really stand out. All of them – even the six-goal thriller I saw at Penrhiwceiber, even Wales qualifying for a major tournament – felt less like games I’ll one day tell people I was there for, and more like matches I will be reminded I was at. Continue reading “How I watched football: 2019-20”