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Championship: Doing the Double


The following list shows the number of times each club in the Championship won home and away against one of their rivals during the 2012/2013 Championship season. Every single one of the 24 clubs managed to achieve this feat against at least one of their opponents during the season.

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7

  • Cardiff City: Millwall, Blackburn Rovers, Leeds United, Blackpool, Birmingham City, Wolves and Sheffield Wednesday.

6

  • Hull City: Millwall, Derby County, Huddersfield Town, Ipswich Town, Leeds United and Birmingham City.

5

  • Watford: Huddersfield Town, Leicester City, Birmingham City, Sheffield Wednesday and Nottingham Forest.

4

  • Birmingham City: Bristol City, Peterborough United, Leeds United and Middlesbrough.
  • Crystal Palace: Peterborough United, Derby County, Wolves and Charlton Athletic.
  • Leicester City: Bristol City, Huddersfield Town, Burnley and Middlesbrough.
  • Nottingham Forest: Peterborough United, Wolves, Sheffield Wednesday and Charlton Athletic.

3

  • Burnley: Bristol City, Derby County and Wolves.
  • Charlton Athletic: Bristol City, Blackpool and Leicester City.
  • Huddersfield Town: Bristol City, Burnley and Wolves.
  • Sheffield Wednesday: Millwall, Barnsley and Charlton Athletic.

2

  • Barnsley: Millwall and Middlesbrough.
  • Blackburn Rovers: Bristol City and Barnsley.
  • Bolton Wanderers: Bristol City and Blackburn Rovers.
  • Brighton & Hove Albion: Huddersfield Town and Burnley.
  • Bristol City: Peterborough United and Middlesbrough.
  • Derby County: Bristol City and Leeds United.
  • Ipswich Town: Birmingham City and Bolton Wanderers.
  • Millwall: Leicester City and Middlesbrough.
  • Peterborough United: Barnsley and Cardiff City.
  • Wolves: Bristol City and Birmingham City.

1

  • Blackpool: Millwall.
  • Leeds United: Bristol City.
  • Middlesbrough: Blackburn Rovers.

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  • No side did the double over promoted Hull City or play-off finalists Crystal Palace and Watford.
  • Cardiff did the double over seven other sides but relegated Peterborough were the only side to do the double over the Dragons.
  • Ten sides did the double against Bristol City which may explain why the club finished bottom.
  • The three sides who did the double against only one other club finished in 13th (Leeds United), 15th (Blackpool) and 16th (Middlesbrough)
 
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Posted by on June 20, 2013 in Statistics

 

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CHAMPIONSHIP 2011/2012 SEASON REVIEW WORD CLOUDS

CHAMPIONSHIP 2011/2012 SEASON REVIEW WORD CLOUDS

With the new season upon us we at Spirit of Mirko are continuing our retrospective on the 2011/2012 season. Following on from our Premier League word-clouds we’ve now constructed twenty-four clouds that represent each Championship club’s season via the words used in their respective BBC match reports.

If you wish to use one of these images for your own site, then feel free. Just ensure you set up a link to this page and also give full credit to tagxedo (the wonderful site that these images were created in).

Barnsley

Barnsley

 
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Posted by on July 16, 2012 in Statistics

 

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Foreign players in the Championship 2011/2012


Of the 699 players who appeared for Championship clubs during the 2011/2012 season 387 were English. As you’d expect the other nations from the British Isles also featured heavily with (and no, this isn’t a joke) 52 Scotsmen, 50 Irishmen, 28 Welshmen and 19 Northern Irishmen.

The table below shows data on each of the twenty-four clubs in the Championship and the nationalities who played during the 2011/2012 season. The columns are as follows, Nats: number of nationalities used, Plyrs: total number of players used, Eng: Englishmen used (Sco, Wal, NI, Ire self-explanatory). %Eng is the percentage of the total number of players used who are English whilst %B&I is the percentage of players used who are from England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland. Whilst I understand that Ireland is a foreign country I feel that this metric is useful as players from the Republic of Ireland have been integral parts of squads in the football pyramid for many years.

Championship nationalities 2011/2012

Championship nationalities 2011/2012

Relegated Portsmouth are the side that can most adequately be labelled as the division’s “foreign-legion”, though it has to be said that the term “foreign legion” exited the football lexicon a few years ago. I think it dropped out of common usage at the same time that the goalkeepers union was finally disbanded.

Doncaster Rovers’ (Willie McKay inspired) policy of recruiting anything that moved during the second half of last season leaves them having used the most players in the division (41). Play-off semi finalists Birmingham City used the fewest players having only used 22 during the season. It’s a real credit to the Blues as they also had a gruelling (and very fun) sojourn in the Europa League to navigate.

Peterborough United fielded the highest percentage of English players (79%) but it was Barnsley who used the most (28). In fact the only player that Barnsley used who originated outside of the British Isles was Ricardo Vaz Te, and he signed for West Ham during the January transfer window.

Blackpool used the most Scottish players (7), Crystal Palace used the most Welshmen (4), Burnley were the club who fielded the most Northern Irish players (5) whilst Palace and Ipswich Town fielded the most Irishmen (5).

In 2011/2012 an incredible sixty-seven different countries were represented in the Championship. They were Scotland, England, Northern Ireland, Wales, Iceland, Brazil, Netherlands, Denmark, Nigeria, Republic of Ireland, Norway, Spain, Senegal, Grenada, Zimbabwe, Portugal, Trinidad &Tobago, France, Mali, Slovakia, Malta, Jamaica, Slovenia, Serbia, Ghana, South Africa, DR Congo, Finland, Australia, Cote d’Ivoire, Bulgaria, Japan, Latvia, Poland, Israel, Burkina Faso, Colombia, Antigua and Barbuda, Curaoao, Czech Republic, Malawi, Morocco, Guadeloupe, Chile, Comoros, Argentina, Cameroon, Algeria, United States, Belgium, Estonia, Honduras, Hungary, Barbados, Switzerland, Fiji, Canada, Mexico, Croatia, Italy, New Zealand, Turkey, Austria, Sweden, Germany and Burundi.

 

 

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on May 17, 2012 in Statistics

 

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Lost nicknames of the Football League


Football has a habit of re-writing history. If it isn’t trotting out statistics with the prefix “since the Premier League began”, then it’s defining a relatively arbitrary cut-off point of “post-war”. Despite these handy devices it has not stopped Manchester United supporters claiming superiority over Liverpool with their 19 titles (first title won in 1908), one ahead of Liverpool’s 18 (first one won in 1921).

When Manchester United won their first league title over 100 years ago the landscape of the English game was very different. United had only been wearing their now famous red kit for six short years (having changed from white in 1902), whilst Liverpool’s regular home strip featured white shorts rather than the now familiar red (the club only changed to all red in the mid 60s). Whilst many of the kits that teams wore in the early part of the 20th Century would be familiar to many football fans today, a lot of the nicknames probably wouldn’t.

One of the most intriguing cases can be seen in Sheffield. Both Wednesday and United were known as “The Blades”, due to the city’s association with steel, United were often called the Cutlers in the early days. It was only when Wednesday made the move across the city to Hillsborough and the Owlerton district that the distinction between the Blades (United) and the Owls (Wednesday) was made.

Throughout the twentieth century clubs have changed, adapted or dumped altogether previous nicknames. The above set of cards was released as part of a set in 1933 by Ogden Cigarettes. It featured fifty different football clubs from the Football League, each card displaying a visual representation of the club’s nickname. This set of Ogden’s Cigarettes Football Nicknames can normally be bought on ebay for about a fiver. It’s likely to be a reproduction set but it’s well worth the outlay as it offers a marvellous insight into 1930s football.

Whilst many know Sunderland as the Black Cats these days it hasn’t always been like that. For much of the 20th Century Sunderland were known as the Rokerites (a reference to their home ground Roker Park) and it was only on moving to the Stadium of Light that they reverted back to their old nickname. Manchester City‘s recent rise to the higher echelons of the Premier League have almost made the requirement for a nickname redundant (in the same way that Alan Green feels everyone should know when he says ‘United’ that he means Manchester United, not Newcastle the same can almost be said for City). Say the word “City” to most football fans and they’ll almost certainly think you mean Manchester (City). However, look in any edition of the Rothmans Football Yearbook and you’ll see that Manchester City’s official nickame is the Citizens. In fact, most clubs with the appellation “City” have been called the Citizens in print at some point or another.

I thought it important to include New Brighton in this list, a club that sadly folded not many years after these cards were produced. They were a club from Merseyside and played their games at Sandheys Park in Rake Lane (which explains their nickname The Rakers). One of their neighbouring clubs Liverpool are also displayed above. They were once known as the Mariners due to the city’s maritime past, but that moniker has long been forgotten and the club are more likely to be referred to as “The Reds” these days. As for Birmingham City‘s nickname, well, the club were once called “Small Heath” and their nickname was the Heathens – and the less said about the depiction the better, I think…

What’s particularly interesting about this set of cigarette cards is that the narrative of each card often mentions that clubs are “depicted as” something rather than nicknames; clubs were often featured in newspapers as cartoons. Blackburn Rovers, according to the narrative on the back of the card, were depicted as a highwayman – indicating how they would often “hold up” their opponents. The Crystal Palace card shows a Glazier. Before the club took on the moniker of The Eagles they were known as the Glaziers, an obvious nod to “the big glass house”, Crystal Palace. Luton Town are known to many today as the Hatters, but in the 1930s they were widely referred to as the Straw Hatters in honour of one of the town’s major industries. They even featured a Straw Plaiter on their badge during this period. The Bristol City card depicts the club as a baby as the club were known as the “Bristol Babes” at the time, unfortunately as the years wore on they took on Robins as their name and in recent years have even toyed with the boorish Cydermen as a nickname.

Whilst many fans are currently bemoaning the money involved in the modern game, The Premier League, Carlos Tevez, EPPP and a variety of football ills there is one that remains in my mind as the greatest injustice and tragedy of them all. It is that in the 1970s Reading Football Club changed their nickname from the Biscuitmen (or Biscuiteers) to the Royals. This affront to decency took place when Huntley & Palmers closed their biscuit factory in Reading. The football club wasting no time in forgetting their history changed their nickname to the Royals due to some dubious link between Berkshire and the Royal family. This insult to football has led to an entire generation of headline writers to miss out on such beauties as “Reading crumble as opposition take the biscuit”. It is a loss that the football family has had to bare for over 40 years.

 

 
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Posted by on October 27, 2011 in Club

 

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