Another story of City Vs United

Two hours north of Manchester, sits one of the most northern outposts in England, Carlisle.

Most people will know Carlisle United, Football League club for many years, currently sat in League Two. Slightly fewer people however will know about Carlisle City, most recently plying their trade in the Northern League Division Two.

Formed in 1975, The Sky Blues for most of their history competed in the Northern Football Alliance Premier Division before the club was promoted to the North West Counties Division One, this was only for brief time however as somewhat controversially and despite appeals, the club was moved sideways to the Northern League Division Two, due to the FA restructuring Non-League football.

It’s an exciting time down at Gilford Park, as City are attempting to go through what (correct me if i’m wrong!) would be there first hopefully uninterrupted season of Northern League football. This will see new faces and new teams make the journey to Carlisle.

With the addition of Carlisle to the Northern League, this means that both divisions now feature a Cumbrian team, a nice away day for all involved!

Being a Cumbrian lad myself, hopefully I will get down to Gilford Park for a game or two this season, and we’d just like to wish everyone at the Sky Blues all the best for this season.

Have you seen my Nagoya Grampus shirt?

Retro football gear, from boots to shirts are being sold on a level that is unheard of before, so we took a look at well.. why?

The answer is that there a huge amount of factors that are part of it and they’ve all contributed to ensuring that this vintage renaissance isn’t simply a bubble that’s about to burst, but is something that is here to stay. Even today a huge number of new websites and businesses are set up by people looking to cash in on this boom.

The main and largest factor from what we can tell, is that people are sick of modern day shirts. With a few exceptions modern day shirts are usually based around a template, especially from the larger suppliers, and if you look at some of the older shirts the uniqueness and identity of the club is very clear to see. Some examples of this that instantly spring to mind are the 1991 Adidas Arsenal Bruised Banana shirt and the 1990 Aston Villa shirt made by Umbro.

Another reason for the popularity of vintage shirts is that it makes you feel more included by the other fans. Anybody can go down to any sports retailer and buy that seasons shirt, but if you have a retro shirt from your clubs glory days then to some fans it shows you at least have some kind of idea about the history of the club, even if your club didn’t have ‘glory days’ at least you can pick an iconic shirt.

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A Vintage shirt from J-League side Nagoya Grampus Eight

The third and final reason is not a reason we like to admit but it is a fact.. A lot of money is to be made from the reselling of old football boots, kits and training wear. Especially if they are from a successful period for the club, people can make a fortune from a kit or pair of boots they may have bought for a few quid when they were a lot younger. As much as nostalgia and memories will play a massive part for genuine fans of the club, pretty much everyone has a price, genuine fan or collector.

That’s it! We know that there’s a lot more to why the re-sale market of vintage football stuff is growing and growing and will continue to do so, but we could waffle on all day about it and who’s got the time for that!

Part two coming soon maybe?

Season Two: Episode 10 (The Finale)

A hit and miss final month with some nearly very costly draws in there. The draw against local rivals Morecambe was definitely a sickener as it could have cost us the league title. Luckily though, that point guaranteed us promotion and all we had to do on the final day thanks to our superior goal difference was not get hit for double figures by automatic promotion chasing Newport.

We played awfully on that final day, thank f*** it wasn’t a title decider or we would have been kicking ourselves. We go on a 12 game run without a loss to not turn up on the final day.

Thankfully though, we held on and that’s two promotions in two seasons!

WE ARE GOING UP!

Season Two: Episode 9 (March)

It’s every manager’s favourite time of the season.. Youth Intake Day! This was meant to be our golden generation, a few might make it but the vast amount of them I personally think won’t make our first team. The best player of the bunch by far is Dominic Towns, the young midfielder will likely play with our first team in cup games etc..

Just on the run in to the promotion play offs and Callum McManaman goes and gets injured and as our top assister since he joined hopefully we don’t miss him too much.

Finally our results have picked up! our second month unbeaten and we seem to be converting more and more chances. Quigley has found some form and our loanee striker/winger from Fulham Rasmus Weidesheim-Paul has finally found his feet and rescued us late on in the Carlisle and Tranmere games.

Results have gone our way! We are top of the League! Despite not winning all our games, somehow we are two points clear going into the final month of the season. We have the easiest run in, apart from a tight games against Newport on the final day of the season which could be decisive.

Season Two: Episode 8 (February)

A solid if not spectacular month, but most importantly we’ve maintained our title challenge and we aren’t out of touch with the title challengers.

Suddenly it seems our goalscoring has dried up, Quigley and Rooney who were our joint top goal-scorers now couldn’t hit a barn door and we are relying on goals from others to scrape though games. Its not like we aren’t creating the opportunities though, we are dominating games and creating so many chances just not converting.

There’s the league table, we are clinging onto an automatic promotion spot and while we aren’t losing games, we need to start scoring more.