Football appoints new positivity czar to counter “overly negative” media and pay for football pitches in China

By Sir Brightly Plusfours; UK Government Czar of all the balls

I am delighted to have this opportunity to address the ensemble of readers who are known as the most positive, fervent and enthusiastic of Arsenal supporters this side (and indeed that side of) the Great Wall that divides us all.

My mission is to keep you informed (not that you need it of course, since it is well known that Untold readers know more about footballing matters than any other group of internet users, and not that I am licking up to you, oh no, but indeed speaking the plain truth) about some of the wonderful developments that are occurring in the world of soccer football today.

To begin, allow me, if I may, to report on the work by our brave team of lads in the “Premier Skills” corporation, part of the British Council’s international partnership operating across the globe from snowy Afghanistan to sunny Zambia.

We are utilising the Premier League’s global appeal to help the clubs that need a leg up, (from Darlington to Aldershot, from Chester to Kettering, from Scarborough to Portsmouth, from Rushden and Diamonds to Maidstone) with our expertise in delivering thriving local community football programmes to needy third and fourth world countries such as China.  It may have the second largest economy in the world, but that is no excuse for our not being involved.

Since we started out in 2007, 2,300 coaches and referees have been trained.  They have watched the work of the Painfully Grotesque Marketing Obstacles Ltd (PGMO) and decided that a new approach is needed – one not held back by the men who once upon a time were in black but no longer are.

Through Premier Skills, young people, including the most vulnerable in downtrodden principalities such as the second largest economy in the entire world (yes, just checked, that is still China), are given opportunities to become better integrated into their local communities, to develop their skills for employability, raise their self-esteem, and then overthrow the state.

Thus we have produced a revolutionary grassroots football programme in China, and we are giving their government £3,000,000 of UK tax payers money.   And I want you to know that if you work in the UK this is your money and you can be justly proud of how we are giving it away.  And just to show how much this means to me, I must tell you this money is in addition to the £710,000,000 of your UK tax payers money that we spent on the Olympic Stadium, and the £323,000,000 that we spent on changing it into a football stadium that we were able to give to West Ham United.

My close pal and buddy, the UK Chancellor, announced new funding to provide training for over 5,000 new football coaches, significantly increasing Chinese awareness of the thriving football sector in the UK.  Then will thus have more qualified coaches than England has.  Really.  Honest.  I am not kidding.

“Yes I know some whinging whining whatnots will say that China has the second largest economy in the world,” said George Osbourne (annual salary £134,565 paid for by the British tax payer) “but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t give them some more British tax payers money.

“Grassroots football plays an instrumental role in UK life, and it is brilliant to be able to spread that to China. This fantastic scheme which will bring new opportunities to young people across China will also help bring increased awareness and investment into the UK football sector.

“The deal we’ve been able to do here is just one example of the ways we can work together with China to benefit both our nations – and I look forward to seeing the results when China knocks England out of the world cup.

“Yes I know that the FA director for participation and development Kelly Simmons said on the BBC that there has been a “chronic problem” with poor pitches in England, and I am only too aware that the FA lost £1.6m of public funding after a drop in participation figures in 2014, and that it is now going to lose more.

“Yes I know that the FA spent loadsofmoney making one third of its staff redundant in 2016 and that Sport England withdrew funding from the FA because it found it was not spending the money it was given for community development on new pitches but using it to pay its mortgage payments on Wembley.

“Yes I know that each of the last five sports ministers in England has threatened to cut the funding of the FA by the tax payer.  But let me tell you this.  None of them had the balls to do it.  (“Balls” – geddit?)

“Yes I know that a recent survey said 83% of amateur football matches in England take place on council-run pitches, which even the FA have declared to be in an abhorrent state.

“Yes I know that squeezes on council budgets by the government of which I am a member have seen costs rise for local teams, so that thousands of them have to pack up each year.

“Yes I know that in England we are about 20 years behind most of the rest of Europe in terms of  the number of all-weather 3G artificial surfaces we have per 1000 people, and 30 years behind in terms of the number of top coaches per 1000 players, which is why England are always so useless at international football.

“Yes I know that when he was FA chairman Greg Dyke said that grassroots football was in a ‘crisis’ and that things have got far, far worse since then.

“Yes I know that Dyke pledged a 50% increase in the total number of full-size, publicly accessible 3G artificial grass pitches across England, to more than 1,000 and that this never happened.

“But giving money to China, like giving money to West Ham (having spent all our sports budget for the next 20 years on the Olympics stadium, with not one single recognisable return in terms of increasing the number of people in the UK who are actively participating in sports), is the right thing to do.”

Thank you for allowing me to put my message across.

Untold Arsenal and the Arsenal History Society: 

Wenger ponders whether Yaya Sanogo will ever really be good enough for Arsenal. 

Arsenal in the 30s. December 1936: once more top of the league as the king steps down

2016-17 Season: The half time review of referees and players, and the top 6 table.

The nine health benefits of playing football, and what to do when you get too old.

Cohen Bramall the new Bellerin (inc film), Belloti and Griezmann on the way. Plus nicked copy – an outrage.

Do Arsenal players care about the club? Are they properly prepared for each game? Here’s how you can tell.

Could football learn a thing of two from the way games are refereed in rugby?

Elsewhere the index of all the major articles on the Arsenal History Society site about Arsenal players is now complete.  It comes in two parts:  A to K     L to Z

Of course there are many other sources of articles on Arsenal players but I do like to think that the articles here add a lot more detail, and have often found stories and issues that have been missed in other reports.  I do hope you will give us a try.



9 Replies to “Football appoints new positivity czar to counter “overly negative” media and pay for football pitches in China”

  1. As a non-UK tax payer I find this very funny. (the article I mean)
    I probably wouldn’t if I paid taxes in the UK….

    Well, good to know that the FA and others help China to develop football so that they can… spend money like crazy and buy everyone and some more…
    I bet Infantino will love it. More money he will think… we want more money, much much much much more money….

  2. Someone had to say thanks & kowtow (hilarious I know!) for all that clean laundry funneling back forth. Scudamore & pals must’ve been panicking there for a while but ne’er fear; all is well that ends well.

    The contrast between the grovelling football hack dwarves reportage of the Millwall stadium story when compared to their coverage of the:

    Larcenous Wembley fiasco
    The Hilarious Olympian Boondoggle Stadium

    not forgetting:
    Big Boris’ Arena of Charity (in N17)


    the Gazprom West London Washing Room (To come! If like the Tinies they aren’t too burdened by a 15% post-brexit rise in construction costs…ha…ha…ha!)

    It is all quite a contrast!
    Given that list above, the punters should know where & how to spread their bets! 🙂

  3. Artificial 3G pitches, hmmn. Do I like it? I don’t think so. Why don’t I like it? Because it’s not real, it’s fake and makes playing football on it not the real thing but unreal. I don’t enjoy watching Nigeria’s GLO Premier League matches on TV. Why? Because the ball roles too fast on the slightest of a kick on the artificial pitches being used by clubs to play the League or Federation Cup matches. Unlike when the matches were played on the normal grass pitches which the clubs don’t maintain properly by leaving the pitches patches or grassless and ugly to watch professional football League matches played on them, thus there switching over to the cheap to maintain 3G pitches. But the football being played on those 3G pitches is natural football but artificial in nature since the pitches are artificially made one.

    To put my dislike for the artificial pitch for playing football to rest, I’ve no means or chance to ask footballers who have played on both the normal grass pitches and the artificially made ones to know from them which of the two pitches they enjoy and like playing on it. Otherwise., I Would have done so to know there opinions.

    For me, why not the authorities in England concerned with the provision of grassroots football pitches stick to providing the real normal grass football playing pitches for their grassroots football development project instead of to continue with the provision of artificially made pitches which are all weather pitches that makes to maintain the pitches far less costlier than to maintain the real normal grass football pitches.

    Yes, I can understand the financial burden implication the authorities concerned with the provision of pitches for grassroots football in England are trying to avoid in their preference for 3G football playing surfaces to the normal grass football field. But what is worth doing should be better done to get the maximum good result out of the doing.

    Can I imagine the Premier League matches which I watch on TV regularly being played on 3G pitches, and in this case if Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium is converted to a 3G surface to cut the cost of maintain the Stadium? Would the Premier League football watching fans across the globe accept such an idea if they have a choise?

  4. OT: Corruption

    FIFA has voted to increase WC 2016 to 48 teams.

    FIFA executives had noticed that increased pressure to not show signs of corruption, had led to a decrease in brown paper bags being left behind at important meetings. Careful analysis revealed that expanding the WC to 48 teams would fix this drop in brown bag being “found”.

    Now today, we see that the bulk of FIFA have been hoodwinked into believing that expanding the WC to 48 teams will help all football.

    The stock price of paper bag companies did not increase on the news. A spokesperson for the paper bag industry, Braun Krafttasche, said that even if this FIFA story were true, there wouldn’t be that many more brown paper bags being sold to be noticed by the major paper mills.

  5. But the football being played on those 3G pitches is ‘not’ natural. That’d what I ment to type. The ‘not’ was mistakenly omitted.

  6. Thank you , Sir Brightly Plusfours , I really needed that !

    @ Gord – Am sure that there will be a great need for said paper bags as it will be needed by those who are going to get hysterical with all these changes . And also those of ‘them’ prone to have Hyperventilation Syndrome .

    Hyperventilation syndrome is believed to be caused by psychological factors and by definition has no organic cause.

    While traditional intervention for an acute episode has been to have the patient breathe into a paper bag, causing rebreathing and restoration of CO₂ levels, this is not advised.
    The same benefits can be obtained more safely from deliberately slowing down the breathing rate by counting or looking at the second hand on a watch.

    Yeah , right , ask someone thrashing and screaming to look at his watch and to ‘Kalm down ‘! I’d still use the bag , as it has worked well in the past .

  7. Imagine one day in the (distant?) future when football is played every day of the year, because of the global league and the amount of nations playing football against one another worldwide.
    Travel will be instantaneous(well almost) so teams(and fans) can hop across the world to their (far) away matches and not be travel fatigued.

    Sadly some of us won’t get to see it. 🙁

  8. Para.

    Maybe we won’t see your future. But, if you can last out another 5 years or so, you will probably get to see a red nova.

    Two stars orbiting each other have decaying orbits. Current models suggest that in 5 years or so, they impact each other, and we get a nova. Should be visible to the naked eye, at least in the northern hemisphere.

    Or rather that is the time scale according to our point of view. The two stars are 1800 or so light years away, so they actually collided about 1800 years ago. The light just hasn’t got here yet.

  9. Another future thing (in my mind).

    I have pretty much given up on the idea that the English sports medja will ever be accurate or honest.

    I have started to read Marca, which has an English version (from Spain), and Al Jazeera. Not quite so much sports in Al Jazeera. 🙂

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