Weekly football conversation since 2009, with Graham Sibley, Jan Bilton and Terry Duffelen. Listen on Apple, Google, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn or your podcatcher of choice.

End Of An Era (# 73)

Johnny P mourns the demise of Shoot! magazine

Johnny: Shoot, godammit!
Johnny: Shoot, godammit!
Fothergill: Got to start somewhere
Fothergill: Got to start somewhere
Linguini: String of great passes
Linguini: String of great passes
Funny old thing, Football. For instance, ends of eras. It was the end of an era again this week: you may have noticed?
Specialist trades
I was too old to feature in Shoot! as a player, and too young to have established myself as the top drawer pundit I now am, but my boys read it avidly. Funnily enough, my pal Fothergill - now Football Correspondent on The Light Programme — started his career there. It was his job to get the players' 'Favourite Food', 'Favourite Film' and 'Favourite Reading' answers for the half-page questionnaires they ran each issue (Fothers just did those three answers, and five or six other journalists did the rest. There were more specialist trades in 1969).
'Favourite food: Steak.'
Says Fothers: 'How I longed for a football star to triumphantly declare for nouveau cuisine, or a penchant for Ingmar Bergman, or James Joyce. But oh no. All we ever got was steak, 'The Godfather' and Wilbur bloody Smith. If you were really lucky, one of the boys was determined to seem continental and sophisticated (almost certainly a winger hoping to be linked with Inter), and you got 'Pasta' as favourite food. But even then, you knew he meant his wife's meatballs from Spar, and that he thought Linguini played outside right for Sampdoria.'
Fearsome old Auntie
It was dear old Auntie who started my commentating career, so I don't wish to spit in her G 'n' T; but nevertheless the burgeoning commerciality of the Beeb is partly to blame for the passing of an icon this week. After all, if you're up against as magazine with a TV programme behind it (in this case Match of the Day), well, it's a long walk back to the changing rooms.
Too big for its boots
In Euro 2008, as I write, three of the most attractive and skilful teams have gone out: farewell to Holland, Croatia and Portugal. In Publishing in 2008, the attractive, skilful team has gone out too. Defeated on penalties by the BBC's Germany — plodding, experienced, too big for its boots.

Shoot!: may the wheels of your Cortina keep on turnin'.
Johnny Pundit

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