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Still got that feeling?

Cambridge 2, Waiheke 3 John Kerkhof Park, Cambridge, May 13 2018 I lost track of the number of people who asked me if I was going to the McLeod Road derby (HNK Auckland Croatia v Waitemata) for my Chatham Cup fix this weekend! As tempting as that intriguing little contest […]

The biggest game

Waiheke 2, Fencibles 2 Onetangi Sports Park, Waiheke Island, June 17 2017 Yesterday, before setting out for yet another epic adventure to Waiheke United, I tried to spark a bit of controversy by labelling this the biggest game of the year in New Zealand domestic football. And if the All […]

It’s a feeling

Takapuna 1, Waiheke United 2 Taharoto Park, Auckland, March 25 2017 NRFL opening weekend is right up there with childhood Christmases when it comes to the excitement stakes. The closest thing I can think of to the feeling I get when I see the draw for the first time is […]

¡Vamos Waiheke!

Ranui Swanson 1, Waiheke United 4 Starling Park, Auckland, April 23 2016 Well, now I’ve seen everything. A full on ultras group of maniacs drumming and singing at the top of their lungs through an entire AFF/NFF Conference game. Not the A-League, not the ASB Premiership, and not the Chatham […]

Pick A Side

Emigration brings a particular and very rare opportunity for the émigré, the chance to pick a team. When you’re young, you tend to be handed your team by your birthplace, or the team your parents supported. If you’re unlucky, you have to choose a side hurriedly when asked by another […]

Q and A

Roma Journal, a blog run by and for English speaking Romanisti around the world, kicked off its coverage of season 2013/14 last weekend with a Q and A session with many of its contributors, of which I’m one. I thought it was a really useful innovation. What I enjoyed most […]

He’s an odd Balo and he’s OK

It’s not always easy being a lefty-liberal football fan. Luckily in New Zealand when I see boorish behaviour associated with sport, I’m usually able to brush it off as ‘rugby culture’ and my conscience is clear. I can sleep soundly, safe in the knowledge that I’m not supporting something that […]

Scarves on Statues – I Ragazzi della Sud

[Previous instalments in the ‘Scarves on Statues’ series can be found here] The statue, on the North Island of New Zealand’s rugged West Coast, is part of a circle of four Maori sculptures on the cliff tops above Whaingaroa, or Raglan Harbour. Together, they represent the four points of the compass. North, South, […]

Forza Latina

The city of Latina in Southern Lazio is a ‘new town’, created by Mussolini’s government for the glory of fascism and ‘Il Duce’ is still a hero to many there. The municipal building is revered for its balcony from which he gave a famous speech and local architecture is typified […]

A brief tribute to the Ultras of Auckland

The dictionary definition of an ultra is an ‘extremist’. The more football oriented definition would be a ‘devoted fan’. There are only three hard and fast rules: Attend every game of your chosen club, stand for the duration and never stop singing. What they lack in numbers, the Ultras of Auckland City FC more […]