Thursday, 29 December 2011

Top 10 songs of 2011

At Number 10 it's Ghostpoet, he was nominated for a Mercury Music Prize this year and rightly so, this song Liines is from his album Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam.

Number 9 is Swedish songstress Lykke Li, her album Wounded Rhymes was one of the albums of 2011 and this for is the best song on it, called Rich Kids Blues.

Loved Number 8 the second I heard it, it's called Goldstar and is by Belfast band Cashier No 9.

At Number 7 are Pete and the Pirates who released a super album in 2011 called One Thousand Pictures, this song called Half Moon Street.

The Strokes came back in 2011 with a new album called Angles and while it didn't set the world alight for me there were a few stand out songs.
and in at Number 6 pop pickers, is Call Me Back.

Metronomy had quite a few nice tunes out this year on their album The English Riviera, this for me was by far the best, The Look at Number 5.

Number 4 appeared quite late in the year but love this song,
Daughter and Home.

Heard Number 3 first when they played it at Glastonbury and while I wasn't a huge fan of them before this I thought this was amazing.
The Horrors and Still Life

Number 2 is The Drums and Money from their difficult second album Portamento.
The kids love this one and so do I.

and finally Number 1 tune for 2011 is The Vaccines and Post Break Up Sex.
One of the most beautiful songs I've heard in manys a year.

Friday, 9 December 2011

No time to write poetry

My favourite song this week by Daughter called Home.

Here's another super choon from Pete and the Pirates.
She doesn't belong to me.

Friday, 2 December 2011

This week I've been mostly listening to........

Nice little tune from DJ Shadow with Little Dragon.

and also this little ditty by I Break Horses, called Wired.

Saturday, 5 November 2011

You reap what you sow.

You reap what you sow.

We all kind of knew it would come to this day
We went in our thousands for Shelbourne away
A tremendous season, correct curtain call
The buses were filled up in no time at all
A convoy of sorts, support would be vital
We’d have taken promotion but wanted the title

Holy trinity guarded pub door command post
The father, the son and the clubs holy ghost
There redgav and dunnocks and tiktok ran rule
You can make up your own mind as to who was who
Slightly surreal but I just couldn’t tell
Would this be the gates of heaven or hell?

Into the ground, we joined our merry band
As we pretty much filled their Riverside Stand
The rest of the ground looked quite sparse to compare
As two thousand City fans gathered in prayer
Four minutes in and that roof it was lifted
Duffer slammed home, into dreamland we drifted

Then who came along and unloaded his cartridge
But that handsome young lad from the family Partridge
Though Shels were on top, we survived the critique
Chocolate wrists had been kept in the freezer all week
Them winning the league, it would sting like a thistle
We were secretly wishing “Blow the bloody whistle”

Derek ran in the corner, I couldn’t quite see
How would he cross, with his hands on his knees?
He traversed to perfection that spherical threat
 Which Graham directed right into the net
That was the point it all went to slow motion
Trepidation followed by frenzied commotion

Missing person announcement throughout the ground
The run of myself was nowhere to be found
Jumping and screaming we all did embrace
Elation as tears they just flowed down my face
The repetitive stadium announcer ignored
As onto the pitch the City fans poured

Wandering around hugging friends, hugging strangers
Despite my dear mother having warned of the dangers
Last time I hugged Moses twas in May ninety three
This time he ne’er squeezed all the life out of me
To stop off in Durrow, driver we did sweeten
For the nicest bag of chips I ever had eaten

The following morning slightly under the weather
Trying to piece the night before together
All the memories about my head they did roam
No idea of the hour or what time I got home
But I knew this is our club, that bit was vital
This Foras run club had just lifted the title

We did it, we went to Shelbourne and won 2-1 with a goal in the 94th minute.
A complete fairy tale, justification for all the hard work.

I hope this goes a little way to conveying how the evening went.
If not, then watch this.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Out of the Blue

This song came into my head this morning from absolutely nowhere.
A blast from the past and what a beautiful song.

and for my beloved Cork City as we bid to win the First Division title in Dublin tomorrow night.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

The Final Push

The Final Push

What a season this has been
Defeats for us were seldom seen
And while our sheets weren’t always clean
Victories numbering eighteen

What can I do? You might say
To help our club along the way
Buy the gear, watch City play
And join our Foras trust today

Sincerest thanks go to our BOM
Who keep things running with aplomb
To each and every volunteer
Who give each week and persevere

Such positivity we transmit
Premier door, us please admit
Promotion within our remit
We’ve got a job, now go do it

If we don’t quite lift that cup
And even if we don’t go up
Some the club will bid goodbye
We’ll see whose City till they die.

Two games left of our second season as a fan run club.
A win at home to Longford tomorrow night guarantees us at least a play off and means we'll be going into our last game away to Shels needing a win for automatic promotion.
Who knows , if results go our way a final day win might even take the title.

In other news this week, a Supporters Direct project (including FORAS, our supporters trust) has been chosen to receive funding by the European Commission.
The title of the project is Improving Football Governance through Supporter Involvement and Community Ownership, more details can be found here

Friday, 7 October 2011

This weekend we'll be mostly eating Custard Creams and listening to....

Lovely mellow tune from Metronomy
It's called Everything goes my way

Another mellow one from Lanterns on the Lake called "Keep On Trying"

and in case ye thought i was going soft in my old age

Monday, 3 October 2011

Stony Grey Rod

Stony Grey Rod

O stony grey Rod of Monaghan
Don’t make us hurt and aggrieved
Or take my childs football passion
And give us your Rod deceived.

You clogged the feet of my boyhood
With Dundalk in ninety one
Had the poise and stride of Apollo
And ended our unbeaten run

Don’t fling a ditch on my vision
My Premier dream don’t pollute
O stony grey Rod of Monaghan
With your Louis Copeland tin of fruit.

Lost the long hours of pleasure
Cork City, us women and men
O can I still bear First Division
Or write with unpoisoned pen

Brandywell, Dalymount, The Showgrounds
Wherever I turn I see
Not the stony grey Rod from Monaghan
But places we’re meant to be.

With thanks to Patrick Kavanagh.

Thursday, 29 September 2011

A Premier Spot

A Premier Spot
Two home defeats all in a row
More than matched our premier foe
Grand scheme of things not worth a jot
If we don’t get a premier spot

Cup Quarter Final, Pats again
Pete Mahon, the leagues comedian
Danny North, he turned and shot
But it’s all about a premier spot

Last Saturday night, scene was set
The game, few pints, our whistles wet
Whether Zayeds spotter scored or not
Our main concern, a premier spot

In Section A a crèche was made
As FOCCA Juniors learned their trade
My son mouth full of jelly tots
Shouts “Come on City, premier spot”

We've lost our last two home games, they were both cup games and both by one goal to nil against Premier Division opposition.
We were well on top for long periods in both games and have proven ourselves to be more than ready for a return.
In order to achieve this we have 5 Cup Finals left in the league and we need to win them all.
Starting with Finn Harps this Friday.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

The die is cast.

The die is cast

From the island’s opposite ends
We’re just like long lost friends
We’ve both had our ups and our downs
Shared stories in copious rounds

The Lodge in March of eighty six,
Hennesseys goal, a teenage kick
Three years later, haunts like a ghost
Dave Barrys shot, came off the post

November two thousand and five
The greatest night ever alive
The Shed packed to the end of its tether
As we laughed and we cried all together

Some have our City infiltrated
Still these folks must be translated
Whatever the Sit-she-a-shun
Text message might be need to be done.

Our moment of glory converging
Can you see the pattern emerging?
We’ve won it first in eighty seven
Kieran Myers showed us heaven

Twelve years later in ninety nine
Hargies finish was so sublime
Another twelve have now since passed
The cup is ours, the die is cast.

This poem was submitted to the FAI for the League Cup Final Programme on Saturday next.

We've always had great relations with our northern friends, in fact we've even taken in a few strays over the years. Mind you we still haven't a clue what they're saying.

The picture above was taken in Derry in 2006 after the last game of the season at a time when Derry owned the trophy, here's hoping for green ribbons on Saturday night.

P.S. I've taken poetic licence in forgetting our 1996 victory in Dundalk.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Lately we are mostly listening to.....

My kids and I love this song.
They know all the words

It's Pete and the Pirates - Half Moon Street.

Friday, 16 September 2011


I was out dancing at a disco last Friday night.
I know, I know, at my age.
But I was in the presence of some younger colleagues who said it would be a good idea.
And it was.
A fantastic night.
I haven't got home at three o'clock in the morning in a long long time.

And by God did we dance.
In fact one song had me so moved I had to ask the DJ what it was.

My legs didn't half hurt on Saturday morning.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

April 19th 1992 - Land Mark

Land Mark
It was April nineteenth of the year ninety two
Unbeaten at home since McNultys miscue
Biscuits on goal with Gunther to his right
Conroy and Bannon were keeping it tight
Our very first Frenchman pre Monsieur Candau
Stefan Napiér, up the left he did plough
Midfield saw the brawn and the brains of the side
The muscle was Cotter and big Deccie Hyde
 Davey had both, he caressed that football
Jinky Gerry cast wizardly spells on us all
Morley and Caulfield they lead the front line
Before they got notions and grander designs

The Shed was packed tight, no room to be found
Kick off three o’clock, the programme a pound.
Tight enough game, we were all on a sweat
Til the ball dropped to Bannon who rattled the net
The surge to the front took us down like the wave
That appeared in the ad for Old Spice aftershave
Half an hour later, Lansdowne Road beckoned
Joy tinged with sadness when you thought for a second
That this day was a milestone, green hills faraway
As we bade our farewells to the Cross on that day
Headed off to new westerly pastures Plonk found
To a Bishopstown bog and our spanking new ground

As we play St Pats this week in the FAI Cup Quarter Final my mind wandered back to the Semi Final of 1992 also against Pats which was a land mark day for Cork City Football Club.

It was our last home game of that season and we were unbeaten at home in all competitions.
It was also to be our last home game at Turners Cross as the following season we moved out to our new home in Bishopstown.

Paul Bannon scored on the hour as we beat St Pats by 1-0.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Unbowed Though Outclassed

Unbowed though Outclassed


Opened up at will
A matter of time.

Given full stretch
Dunne off the line
Andrews last ditch

White shirt
Blood Red
Yellow Card
Job Dunne

Three added minutes
“Blow it up Ref.”
My nerves shot
Whistle goes.
Heart pounding.

On my knees
Deep breaths then
Comedy texts
“Russia were awful”
“How did we not score?”
“Is that the same Arshavin that plays for Arsenal?”

The most fraught and tense 90 minutes of my life, we were battered by a vastly superior Russian side.
They opened us up at will and it seemed we'd be beaten by 5 or 6.

But through a mixture of bad finishing, luck, determination, blood and guts, we kept them out.
No one greater than Richard Dunne.

Doesn't every football fan yearn for a centre half that will put their body on the line, bleed for the cause, a true Irish legend.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Cup Finals?

Cup Finals

Cup Finals are nice
Cup Finals are fun
No one thinks twice
About a day in the sun

Our aims are not this
Our aims are quite clear
One thing we can’t miss
Is promotion this year.

Graveyards are vile
Graveyards debase
Make the season worthwhile
Get us out of this place

What do we seek?
What do we require?
Look at Rovers last week
For us to aspire

So here we are sitting in 2nd place with just one defeat in 22 league games, are in the quarter finals of the FAI Cup and host Derry City on Sep 24th in the League Cup Final, all very nice but without promotion it all means nothing.

Well done to Shamrock Rovers last Thursday, 5 years ago they were in the First Division finding their feet as a fan run club just like us.
If that's doesn't motivate our players then I don't know what will.

Friday, 12 August 2011

Last Friday Night

Last Friday night

Sat together
As always
 Jug of Tuborg
Going down

Smiling faces
All around
10 points adrift, we hosted the league leaders Shelbourne last Friday, they had a 100% away record and we went a goal down after 3 minutes.

Cue an amazing comeback to completely blow away Shelbourne 4-1, only for their keeper and the woodwork it would have been 8 or 9.

Picture the scene of a group of grumpy old men sitting in the pub afterwards, not speaking, cos they have nothing to be grumpy about, just drinking and above all else beaming from ear to ear.

This weeks choon

I heard this song on Paul McClunes show the other night and thought what a lovely tune.
Then he told me it was the new single from one of my favourite bands The Drums.
Top Class.

Friday, 5 August 2011

A Club Foras

A Club Foras

My annual reminder
Lads playing a blinder
There are lots still to do
With off the field too
Trojan work done already
To keep our ship steady
Some constants as we grow
Players come and they go
If you can volunteer, do
Pay your subs if they’re due
This is our club, for us
Make sure you’re on the bus
Don’t be left on the shelf
Club won’t run itself
Have a vote and your say
Join FORAS today

My annual reminder to all Cork City fans that as a fan run club we have to keep volunteering and keep supporting both vocally and financially.

FORAS is the name of our supporters trust, its an Irish word meaning development or growth and is pronounced "for-us"

This poem will appear in the League Cup Semi Final programme versus Limerick next Monday night.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Shels spells.

Shels spells.
The call it came,
When’s our next game?
 A two week break?
For goodness sake
One defeat gleaned
From our nineteen
Still slightly miffed
Ten points adrift
This is our chance
To take a stance
We’ll cast some spells
On evil Shels
Let’s take no crap
And bridge that gap

The big one this Friday, Shelbourne at home.
It's not even so much about bridging the gap but we have to keep winning.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

When I Grow Up...

When I Grow Up
My sons inherent charm
Is a ball under his arm
He strikes it like a jet
Shouting “Back of the Net”
Energy we cannot shackle
He’s not afraid of a tackle
Like his dad it does enthral
Eats, sleeps and drinks football
He came up to me last week
With certainty did speak
“I know what I want to be
When I grow up you see”
I curiously inquired
At what the boy desired
"A football player" he said
Ball bouncing on his head
"Cos I’m very good you see
Although I’m only three"

My little lad bounded in from the back garden the other day and announced that when he grows up he would like to be a "football player" because "I'm very good at football"
My heart swelled with pride.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Desert Island Disciple

Desert Island Disciple
I heard about this chap last week
Got off his desert island
His fire spotted by a plane
He had started on the highland

 Joyous relief he did proclaim
Thankful but not withdrawn
When asked from whence he came
He simply uttered “Gurran”

Is there anyone you want to ring?
Asked those who had chanced upon
He inquired to just one thing
“How are City gettin’ on?”

Fifteen games without defeat
Promotion push on track
The lowly Blaahs came to compete
Took the monkey off our back

He smiled so awkward and clunky
Took a last look up at the dune
If I ever see another monkey
It’ll be a day too soon

All I've been listening to lately is Desert Island Disc podcasts from the BBC website
A fascinating show that gives an amazing insight into peoples lives.
People from every corner of every spectrum. Well worth a perusal.

Cork City had played the first 15 games of this season unbeaten until the visit of Waterford United last week when three defensive errors handed them a 3-2 victory.
To some supporters it's like the end of the world but imagine if you'd been on a desert island since the beginning of March and only just been discovered, things wouldn't look half as bad.

Gurran is short for Gurranabraher (pronounced Grawnabrawher) an area on the Northside of Cork City.

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Glastonbury 2011- highlights

This was the song of the Glastonbury weekend for me.
Excellent set from The Horrors, this is the first single from their new album to be called Skying, the choon is Still Life.

The stand out performance has to be Janelle Monae, so much energy, twould give you the heart to go on.

And of course I couldn't let the weekend go by without his masters voice.

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Weather Diversity

Cup Diversity
Gorgeous Friday night in June
Balmy evening, most opportune
Knockgriffin Park the scene is set
East Cork pining for Cup upset
Perfect football watching weather
The games fraternity drawn together
Jumper brought still waist entwined
Sixteen degrees at half past nine

Three days later more of the same
Another cup another game
Premier Dubs were coming down
A test to show how much we’d grown
The summer sun a distant friend
Showers, dark clouds, rain descends
Big coats and hats, umbrellas too
Fridays sun all gone, Atchoo!

We played Midleton FC below in Midleton last Friday night in the FAI Cup 3rd Round.
A glorious occassion for our East Cork neighbours and a glorious evening to boot.

We played St Patricks Athletic yesterday at Turners Cross in the League Cup Quarter Final, a mere 3 days later on what was a miserable day. Through the wind and rain.

We won both matches and progressed in both cups

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Let there be light

Let there be light

FAI bulb went on
Coffers thin like chiffon
Stadium loan to pay
Tournament we’ll play
A frenzied build up
Carling Nations Cup
Decree from the powers
Back twenty four hours
Gates badly affected
Natives disaffected

MFA bulb went out
Can they make do without?
Floodlight replacement
Old bulb displacement
Long finger it stayed
Til last weeks charade
Gale force winds began
Contingency plan?
Now six thirty start
You’re breaking my heart

So the FAI make us move our home match with Mervue United from our regular Friday night slot back to Thursday because a couple of hundred miles away Northern Ireland are playing Wales.

On top of this the Munster Football Associations floodlight maintenance, the day before our match, hits a wall as gale force winds suspend work on safety grounds, meaning our 7.45pm Thursday evening kick off becomes a 6.30pm start.

Despite all these obstacles put in our way we still manage a crowd of over 1200 people but its still down on our season average of over 2000. Northern Ireland v Wales on the other hand had an attendance of 529.

Monday, 23 May 2011

The Visit

The Visit
Lilibet came to visit last week
To the capital city of Cork
Ground breaking whatever your clique
House of Lancaster, Fraser or York
English Market she’ll first navigate
Fresh produce of the highest repute
Founded seventeen eighty eight
Then off to Tyndall Institute

It’s a pity we weren’t at home.
You could have stayed to see City, Nil Satis.
Rejigged Donie Forde with a throne
Entry and Programme free gratis

A half time Corners Boys escort
To Horseshoe Bar could be tricky
Transporting you and your consort
For a Gin and Dubonnet with Ricky

Full time then you’d be airport bound
Our taxi man Bickle’s a surety
Be sure though and take off the crown
To get fast tracked through airport security

And as you return home with glee
Having made some new friends out of strangers
Pledge allegiance, Cork City F.C.
And leave off your promoted Park Rangers

A poem to mark the visit to Cork by Queen Elizabeth on May 20th 2011.
If only we'd been at home.

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Howards Way

Howards Way
I think he knows I’m in the crowd
And not because I’ve screamed aloud
Most decisions seem bizarre
But he’s the shining star

I think he knows I’m in the crowd
Antagonistic and unbowed
Blame shouldered by Pienaar
But he’s the shining star

I think he knows I’m in the crowd
Maybe read my verse and vowed
My next foray he’d char
Cos he’s the shining star

I think he knows I’m in the crowd
My parade soaked by black rain cloud
Please take me to the bar
Cos he’s the shining star.

An excellent trip to Liverpool marred by 90 minutes of The Howard Webb Show.
A deflected Van der Vaart goal followed by an appalling penalty award did for Liverpool who didn't play particularly well, Dawson, King and Modric were excellent for Spurs.
However bad Liverpool were Mr Webb was worse. (See picture above)

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

The Wireless

The Wireless
Come out for a chat on Saturday
Was the invite thrown my way
A twenty four hour sports broadcast
For Simon Community, as well as fast
Mid afternoon, Ronie was the hero
Talking Italian like Robert de Niro
A tad apprehensive of wireless debut
And possible words that I need to eschew
What if we run out of things to say?
Pat Healy’ll be there so we’ll all be okay
Myself, Pat and Gerry we chatted away
About football and books, at the end of the day
Twas all very cultural, almost academic
A comfortable subject, for us twas endemic
Quite happy to do it, tis there for posterity
All to raise funds for a well worthy charity.

I was invited out to the LifeFM studios last week to take part in a football discussion and talk about my book. They were having a 24 hour Sportathon and had interviews with Dave Barry, Damien Richardson and Roy Keane amongst others. Myself and Cork City FC historian Gerry Desmond chatted about football and about the travails of printing a book. A podcast of the show can be found here.

Friday, 6 May 2011

This week my ears have been subjected to

The new single from Pete and the Pirates, not a great title but a nice song all the same.

The Beasties have put together a 30-minute short film, "Fight For Your Right Revisited" to launch their new album.
It's based on Fight for Your Right and has an all star cast.
Danny McBride, Elijah Wood and Seth Rogen star as the Beasties, with Will Ferrell, Jack Black and John C. Reilly mirroring them as their older selves. Watch out for other cameos too even the Beasties themselves.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011


Division One now has intrigue
Still unbeaten in the league
Fingers crossed for goodness sake
Refreshed after the two week break
Sometimes you have to face the strife
Change the habits of your life
Take some time out, relaxation
Recharge batteries, end frustration
Must keep winning to stay in touch
Shels and Mons won’t lose too much
It’s early days so let’s all wait
Try and keep from tempting fate
Hold off on promotion dramatics
Til we’re sure of the mathematics.

Eight games in and we're still unbeaten, we've scored 5 goals in each of our last 2 league games and currently stand second in the table, things are good.
But some of our fans have started singing "We're going up", such fate tempting sickens me to the core.
Call me cynical, call me sensible but i've been around long enough to know these things can come back to bite you and they bite hard.

So remember, keep the ball on the ground, stay in by the wall and mind the buses.