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Dan Walker | 10:59 UK time, Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Hello people. I trust all is well out there. I got a letter last week. It was a rather angry one. Thankfully I don't get too many furious letters but this was a good one. It was from a Blackpool fan who was a little bit miffed that I said on Focus that his team played in orange.

In truth I should have known better. I used to work in the north-west of England and I am well aware that a) they play in tangerine and b) their supporters get very moody if you describe it as "orange".

The letter was about 7/10 on the rage scale - sections of capital letters also take you into the 7-10 bracket. The phrase "HAVE YOU GOT IT?" was repeated several times and the answer is, yes, I have got it and I aim to avoid any colour-based confusion over the rest of the season.

Blackpool fans

Blackpool fans have been quick to point out that they wear tangerine coloured shirts, not orange ones

Anyway, normally the letters and emails I get are at least a little friendlier so I thought I would take the opportunity to answer some of the regular questions that we get sent through.

What was the first game you ever commentated on?

That one is locked away in the memory banks. I went to a game at Chesterfield as a reporter in 1998 but my first commentary involved a trip to Oakwell for a game between Barnsley and Stockport in 1999.

I was working for Piccadilly Radio in Manchester and the game ended in a 2-1 win for Barnsley with the mighty Mike Sheron bagging a brace.

I remember it was freezing cold and I needed the toilet for almost the entire match. There were a few minutes of added time at the end and it almost sent me over the edge.

What has been the highlight of your career so far?

The answer to this changes depending on when I get asked it but if you are looking at sheer euphoria it would be commentating on England against Greece at Old Trafford in 2001.

It was the World Cup qualifier where David Beckham was out of this world and England needed a point to go through after Germany had drawn their match (which I seem to remember was against Finland).

Teddy Sheringham bagged to make it 1-1 but Greece scored almost immediately and then - deep into added time - Beckham placed the ball down and this was my commentary...

"Well. What a finish this could be. David Beckham lines up one of the most important free kicks of his career. If ever you needed to hit one, well, right now would do very nicely.

"It's finished nil-nil in Germany... all we [I'd lost all objectivity by this point] need is a goal. Can David Beckham supply it?


I went a bit Bob the Builder with the 'YES HE CAN' bit but it was a wonderful moment to be part of. I was getting hugged by the co-commentator, things were going crazy and the mixture of relief and hysteria will be hard to match.

How many people work on Focus?

It doesn't matter - it's all about me! (I'm kidding) About 25 is the answer to that. We have an editor and a director, who are the top dogs, and then there are six or seven producers who put the pieces together, four or five cameramen and six or so video editors, who cut the items you see on the TV.

The on air sign outside a radio studio

Want a career in the media? Read my tips below

We have a production assistant who times the program, sorts out all the scripts and tells you when to shut up at the end. There is someone on autocue, sound, lighting and a floor manager who is the boss in the studio.

During the program there are also a stack of people in a place called VT where all the pieces are played out from. The person in charge down there is called the "sweeper" - a bit like Ronald Koeman but without the range of passing. They are ably assisted by a set of nice blokes who do technical things which make my head hurt.

If you could give one piece of advice to someone wanting to work in the media what would it be?

I would split that one piece of advice up into three sections:

1) Try and have an idea of what area you want to go into. Get some work experience if you can and if you like radio - concentrate on that. If telly gets your juices flowing then make that your focus. Once you've decided move to 2.

2) Practice. There is an element of broadcasting which is natural but a large percentage of it is either learnt of taught and a lot of that can be done in the comfort of your own home. If you want to be on TV get in front of a mirror and present - and be harsh on what you see. If it's radio, then listen to the people you like and try and emulate their best bits in your own style.

Try and imagine what you would say if someone came to you for a report right now. If you see yourself as more of a print journalist then get your quill out! Start a blog, send articles to everyone you can think of or write a match report and compare it to the ones on the back pages.

Once you are as good as you can be it's time for step 3.

3) Take the opportunity. "The media" is more competitive than ever so when you get a chance take it and work your butt off to make yourself indispensible in the shortest period of time. Don't annoy people, leave your attitude at the door and show them that, when a bigger opportunity comes along, you are worth taking a chance on.

Right comrades - if you've got any more questions then fire them down and I will either deal with them in the comments section or return to them in a later blog. Thanks again for reading this entry and if you want to follow the progress of this week's show the best way to do it is at

P.S. I am wearing orange socks - not a hint of tangerine!


Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    Hi Dan.
    Great Blog. Can't believe I am the first to respond.
    Have a child maintenance problem to address.
    Be right back

  • Comment number 2.

    OK, Back to it!
    I would like to respond to the Blackpool 'tangerine' farce with all the objectivity, balance and poise that a man born and raised in Cardiff City can muster.

    DEAR LUCKY UNDESERVING BLACKPOOL FAN: Tangerine is a subset of the broader category orange, according the to rules of logic it is a 'species' of the 'genus' orange.
    No matter how you spell or pronounce a word dogz are always dogs and duckz always ducks, and tangerine is always orange AND Blackpool is going to be relegated..... even if you do have better finances than we do.

    Dan, just out of interest your orange socks, do they match any other item of clothing you are wearing, visible item of clothing that is?

  • Comment number 3.

    Hahahahah!! Dan, your blog is brilliant! I think the bit about the england v greece commentary had me in stitches! Keep it up mate

  • Comment number 4.

    Good blog, Daniel San. Top read!

    Robert Fleck.

  • Comment number 5.

    Hi Dan,

    Who were you commentating for on the Greece game back in 2001? It's interesting how what you said about the most important free kick of his career turned out to be the set piece for the subsequent action.

    We all remember the famous ones, "They think it's all over..." "Man Utd have to score, they always score..." Martin Tylers commentary for that Greece 2001 moment at Old Trafford is good too

    I wonder how many commentators purposefully put these lines in, hoping to catch that moment it happens, and how many fall by the wayside? Shed any light?

    Zack Morris

  • Comment number 6.

    Love the 'Bob The Builder' commentary story...didn't realise you were a potential Motty in the making - ever fancy doing a few games with Lawro on the gantry, or do you prefer the comfy sofa?

    In your defense: 'Blackpool first began wearing tangerine for the 1923–24 season, after a recommendation from referee Albert Hargreaves, who officiated a Holland–Belgium international match and was impressed by the Dutchmen's colours' (from wiki)..HUP ORANJE!

    Dennis Bergkamp.

  • Comment number 7.

    My favourite bit of commentary has to be Tim Lovejoy's "It's only Ray Parlour...." bit. Hilarious!

    Screech Powers

  • Comment number 8.

    Ahhh the old orange or tangerine.. I remember Rangers had an away top a few years back and they called it tangerine.. that was obviously to avoid different comparisons though..

    Dan.. I have a question for you... Reebok Pump or Nike Air Jordan's??

    Michael Tarnat

  • Comment number 9.

    I think Blackpool supporters would be a bit miffed to hear their promotion to the Premier League described as a 'fairy tale'.

    2010-11 is Blackpool's 28th season in the Top Flight of English Football, which puts them in a quite respectable 32nd place out of the 64 teams who have spent at one season or more in the Top Flight of English Football since 1888-89.

    Now if a team like Rochdale ever managed to get promoted to the Premier League, THAT would be a 'fairy tale'.

    Table showing the total number of seasons spent in the top flight of English football from 1888-89 to 2010-11:

  • Comment number 10.

    I notice you don't mention the pundits as part of the 25 working on the programme?

  • Comment number 11.

    #2 you do realised you're asking dan what he's wearing!!

    Not that sort of blog!!!

  • Comment number 12.

    I see. Andy Connor #11 suggests a poster is propositioning Dan, but my comment is awaiting moderation!

  • Comment number 13.

    Dan. About your job. What are the basic hours and do you have a desk or somewhere you can call 'home'? Also, have you had to work at removing any hints of a regional accent?

    John Chiedozie

  • Comment number 14.

    Dan - I have a question for you: who are you?

  • Comment number 15.

    Good blog Dan,
    What degree did you do at University and where did you go (if you did)?

    Jody Morris

  • Comment number 16.

    Perhaps #2 should send a personal email instead... although it might not get a reply!?

    Only problem with the blog this is week is that it is completely deficient in any food references... almost a collector's item. I fancy eating a bag of chips by the seaside right now as the sun is shining...

    Harold Faltermeyer

  • Comment number 17.

    I'm sure there would have been a pack of Jammy Dodgers involved in Dan's week somewhere. It's all about the Bourbon's and Custard Creams though, everyone knows that. :-)

    On the subject of commentary again, pretty much all "FanZone" commentaries are hilarious I reckon.

    Axel Foley

  • Comment number 18.

    Biscuit cream's are possibly the best biscuit's in the world.

    Victor Maitland

  • Comment number 19.

    Hello Danny Boy,

    I saw that Marcus Bent has yet again sealed a move in the transfer window, which got me thinking, who is the most transferred player on deadline day? And indeed, who is the most transferred player since the window has been introduced? And maybe a most active club stat too. He's got to be up there, with Greg Halford. I reckon that could be a good feature for your next blog!

    Also, if you're bored of reading all the comments and want a 7 minute 26 second break, check out my local team Douglas & District's Crossbar Challenge from last season.

    Dougie Hodgson

    P.S. The only slight mention of food was 'tangerine', not impressed.

  • Comment number 20.

    How aboout Double Chocolate Chip Boasters Cookies? Top drawer foodage!

    King Jaffe Joffer

  • Comment number 21.

    Afternoon. Just out and about at the mo so will address everything in a bit. In response to stevetreacle (#14) though... I owe a zoo outside Worksop. How about you?

    Keep them coming.

    Darren Anderton

  • Comment number 22.

    Re. #11
    You are completely misconstruing my question.
    As a Cardiff City supporter I have a certain antipathy to any man wearing orange, as our sea side victors of earlier this summer do.
    The question directed at Dan the man was one of incredulity the likes of... He is wearing orange! Please only the socks!

    Re. #12 See above.

    Dan, You havfe never told us what your all time snack food is. You've waxed lyrical about many different snacks but never told us your favourite. Next blog perhaps.

  • Comment number 23.

    David Beckham

    A major reason for England's epic failure at the World Cup. Football is a team game, not an individual game

  • Comment number 24.

    I can't understand why Blackpool fans would get upset about the orange/tangerine thing. Is it really such a good advert for your team to be compared to something that's like orange, only smaller, less popular, and less tasty?

    Holland look like they play in more of a shade of "satsuma" anyway.


  • Comment number 25.

    I did my own little classic commentary to David Beckham's goal against Greece in 2001, went something like this:

    "Well If David Beckham wants a knighthood, now's the time. . .
    . .

    Sadly, this was only to be for the benefit of my wife who was washing up at the time and probably couldn't give a toss anyway but I thought it was pretty good.

  • Comment number 26.

    . . and by the way, the only reason he scored in such dramatic fashion was because he'd given up on the game and decided to see if he could hit the Bury FC flag behind the goal.

  • Comment number 27.

    #21 Dan.

    Why do you owe a zoo?

    Did you put a monkey or a pony on a gee gee, but your horse came in last?

    Johnny Morris.

  • Comment number 28.

    By the way, I've checked and double checked and those Blackpool shirts still look orange to me.

    Willem van Oranje.

  • Comment number 29.

    I did my own little classic commentary to David Beckham's goal against Greece in 2001, went something like this:

    "Well If David Beckham wants a knighthood, now's the time. . .
    . .

    That's brilliant !

  • Comment number 30.

    doesnt it just sum up the sadness and tragic life of the average englishman in football that a goal in a home qualifying match is regarded by a great football nation like ours as a someones career "higlight". I bet you Italian media workers and French and Spanish commentators barely even recall goals that won them recent world cup and Euro championship semi-finals etc, the only ones that might stick in their minds are the moments that won them the world cup/European championship finals and even then they wouldnt deify an individual player just because he happened to be a major off-field "celebrity". Pitiful.

    "It was the World Cup qualifier where David Beckham was out of this world"
    really Mr Walker? Would you care to elaborate and proffer your expert opinion as to just why beckham was "out of this world" rather than merely perpetuate a moronic chinese whisper in a nation starved of any genuine success? Ive watched that match and i was expecting a footballing masterclass of a God from what id heard. Nothing of the sort, Beckham scurries about a bit for about 10 minutes at the end and finallly gets one of his numerous free-kick efforts on target. Yes, it was the last minute, yes it mesnt england wouldnt have to just pass the ukraine to go to the world cup as Germany did-incredible moment i agree (sarcasm)-but hed done NOTHING all game. This supposed "sublime" performance actually constitue NO onfield service to our forward line in 90 minutes from the right flank which was MEANT TO BE HIS JOB. It showed how out of shape the team were and how wed got exposed DOWN THE FLANK BECKHAM was meant to be protecting which was left exposed by his child-like inability to keep his positon. It showed Beckham misplacing numerous passes. He didnt take on a single player. So at the end of the day i am expected to respect a fully grown adult football "expert" who describes 10-15 minutes of playground child-like scampering at the end of a game and a last-minute goal eventually got on target after practising all match as "out of this world". Im glad i dont take my football education from people like you, i want to read this game intelligently and with perception, not just be another moron in the masses who buys tabloid-style myths perpetuated by individuals who clealy understand the art of celebrity alot more than the art of Football.

  • Comment number 31.

    Mentioning Teddy Sheringham in the build up to the Becks freekick, if you watch a clip of the goal again, you will see Sheringham's darting mazy run across the sightline of the Greek goalie, putting him off his concentration. The goalie moves his weight slightly to peer around Teddy and thus all his weight is on the wrong foot. Becks hits the kick and the goalie only just doesn't make the save. IMHO no Sheringham run meant that the goalie had the Becks freekick covered and England would've gone to the playoffs...

    Stanley Menzo

  • Comment number 32.

    There were a number of matches Beckham played in for England where he did provide a dynamic performance. In his pomp for the national team he would be "all over the pitch" and would often be the main man when it came to trying to retrieve the ball and hassle the opposition.

    If he had been playing in a better team than England were then you can imagine him having even more of an impact with his crosses and the opportunities that would have been presented to the forwards.

    #30 comments about how Beckham left the flank exposed, but surely an attacking winger would have greater license to get forward while the right back would have to become more defensive as a result? It all depends on how the manager saw his role, and the instructions issued to Beckham as a result. Whilst criticising Beckham for being child-like, you might want to address your own child-like spelling and grammar as used in your diatribe.

    I agree with the general theme of your point that you might be trying to make about the over-hyped nature of some of England's footballers, but that's not really news to anybody after the recent World Cup and further back than that.

    Kevin Pietersen

  • Comment number 33.

    absolute Rubbish. NAME the games beckham provided a "dynamic" performance. Utter rot. Better team than England? Well we did have a half-decent striker you know durng beckhams career, namely Michael Owen. Go on, list me the occassions over the years that Beckham ever provided a cross onto Owens head. Surely being this "great crosser", there should be literally tens of them? Find them. Look hard now. As for how the manager saw his role, thats not something that ever bothered Beckham. While the liks of Ferguson would never have let him get away with roles he hadnt the weight for or his flagrant positional ill-discipline, he was just indulged and indulged further with England. Even when Eriksson realised late in te day that Beckham was killing his side, his plan to put beckham in a deeper role in wc06 was vetoed by the "captain".

  • Comment number 34.

    Dan, from comment 21,

    What exactly do you '"owe" to the zoo just outside Worksop ? Also, not in an overly agressive manner, but please realise we call them 'nightclubs' and not a zoo ! Have you got it ?

    Thanks, Nayim.

  • Comment number 35.

    "Dan, from comment 21,

    What exactly do you '"owe" to the zoo just outside Worksop ? "

    I think he meant to say 'own'

  • Comment number 36.

    Hello Dan, interesting blog as ever.

    Can I just say how good it was to see the gorgeous Charlie Webster on last week's show. I hope she will be a regular this season.

  • Comment number 37.

    PLEASE MARSMAN pick on someone else for a change. We have been subjected to your ridiculously biased diatribe for far too long. Surely in a career lasting fifteen years or so in the top flight, ANY player will have done something correct. If NOT; how in the name of anything holy would he last fifteen years????

  • Comment number 38.

    Spookily I watched the Beckham freekick yesterday for the first time in a while. Had to chuckle at the sight of Sheringham desperately wanting to place the ball. Step aside son.

    Tony Yeboah

  • Comment number 39.

    Hi Dan, just a quick question, who were you commenting for when you did England V Greece?

  • Comment number 40.

    Marsman: Owen was the recipient of a pass (albeit not a cross) from Beckham when he scored the goal against Argentina in the second round World Cup match. Here is an extract from the Englandcaps website that will also interest you...

    He (Owen) returned to the England side to play in a friendly against Brazil in June to open the new Wembley Stadium, and scored in a European Championship qualifier against Estonia five days later, with a clever flick past the keeper from a Beckham cross.

    Now I have neither the time nor inclination to look through every match the two of them participated in so that will have to do you. Put that spikiness back in its box and be a little more rational in your judgement. I'm not remotely a fan of the celebrity nonsense that comes with Beckham, but he wasn't half as bad as you would portray.

  • Comment number 41.

    Michael Thomas

  • Comment number 42.

    Martin Tyler's commentry in the legendary Liverpool vs Newcastle game back in the mid 90's will always stand out for me and just one word brings memories of that whole game back to me.....


    Now THAT was a match.

  • Comment number 43.

    Hello one and all

    First up... my witty retort (!) sent earlier should have read “own a zoo” not “owe a zoo”. Sorry – all.

    Blaenorynyclwyd (#2) first, could you please reduce the number of ‘y’s in your user name and no the socks do not match other said items. You are worrying quite a few others with your intimate questions.

    Tomefccam (#5) All commentators float things out there... “a goal now could make all the difference”, “he’s been a danger from set pieces all night... is this the moment?”

    There are some commentators who definitely script things. I went to one cup final when another bloke had a scripted goal commentary written out for every player. There is nothing wrong with that of course... as long as it doesn’t sound like it’s scripted.

    JoC (#6) I still commentary but I it’s been a long time! Good colour facts.

    Mikey (#8) Always Jordan’s big man.

    HarrysDisciple (#10) I also didn’t mention a presenter! A omission on my part... well spotted.

    Custodian (#13) I have an office I call home but I tend to hot desk! I’m in the office Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday and I normally go out filming on either the Thursday or Friday.

    Smurf-Wrong-Phillips SUFC (#15)
    I went to Sheffield big man and did history and then another degree in broadcast journalism.

    Surreybloke123 (#16)
    I did mention tangerines! I’ll bring back the food next week. Crisps + seaside = winner!

    Davemathieson (#19) you’re probably right about M Bent and thanks for the link.

    Bury are Fantastic (#25) I like it and so did Smurf-Wrong-Phillips SUFC (#29)

    Marsman (#30) I always find it interesting when people can’t make a point without losing it. I detect a deep hatred of all things Beckham and I agree that he has hardly ever beaten a man but in that game he was excellent.

    I will concede that out-of-this-world was a tad hyperbolic but he ran miles in that game and never gave up unlike the rest of the team. That in itself is worthy of praise.

    Also, while you are happy to point out the ‘morons’ who buy into the tabloid frenzy it seems there is also a ‘I hate David Beckham and will ignore everything good he has ever done’ faction that is equally myopic.

    Just read comment #33. The rage continues. You make some salient points but I would imagine that most readers gloss over them because you seem to like to bully people into agreeing with you. Slightly less froth and anger and people might start listening... in my humble & moronic opinion.

    Jeansey123 (#39) I was doing it for Piccadilly radio and a station in Ireland bro.

    Right. Work beckons. I will see you later. Keep the comments coming and I shall return later.

    Dick Van Dyke

    P.S. Wonderful mention of Tony Yeboah (JDilla)

  • Comment number 44.

    Fair do's, you did mention tangerine's although not in a food context so does it really count? ;-)

    What I would do for a hot sausage sandwich right now...

    Daniel Amokachi

  • Comment number 45.

    I LOVE IT how you call me big man :)

    Kevin Keegan (of course)

  • Comment number 46.

    Re Beckham rantings.
    Beckham was obviously a very good player for England at his best, not as good as the hype but that's hardly his fault and he is hardly the worst example of that by a long margin (one that springs to mind - Milner, good prem player but £26mil when Otzil was £12mil...???).
    If we had had stronger management (in terms of not letting him play pretty much how he wanted) and stronger CF's during his best years, Beckham could have been even more effective - Owen playing an odd game here and there between injuries and big Emile trying away didn't give him loads to aim at.
    Also, whatever people think about Beckham, you can't question his commitment and desire for England (as demonstrated in the Greece game) which I wish we'd have had a lot more of that in the recent World Cup.

  • Comment number 47.

    PS Julian Dicks

  • Comment number 48.

    Do you really not work on a Sunday, for religious reasons? Not many adhere to that now, especially when it hampers their career (Joanthan Edwards for example). Would imagine it is career limiting, given the amount of football played on Sunday now.

  • Comment number 49.

    back to one of the original points of the blog, and i'm sorry blackpool fans (and norwich fans, and any one else for the matter) but,

    tangerine is not a colour its a fruit
    lemon is not a colour, its a fruit
    lime is not a colour, its a fruit
    canary is not a colour, its a bird
    raspberry is not a colour, its a fruit
    chocolate is not a colour, its a confectionary item
    lavender is not a colour, its a flower, i think
    fuscia is not a colour, its a.... well i don't know but you see where i'm going.

    these are shades invented by women to convince all men that we are colour-blind and we're not

    and alot of food (albeit fruit) mentioned there to boot.

  • Comment number 50.

    I Love Lamp

    Steve Carell

  • Comment number 51.

    #49 don_eamo,
    You have hit the nail on the head don. What family are you heading up?

  • Comment number 52.


    I got goosebumps just reading you relay what you said when Beckham whipped home that free-kick in 2002. There's an iconic image of him alone leaping around 3 foot in the air, running towards the crows, one arm punching the air, and all you can see in the background is a wall of hysterical England fans absolutely elated.

    It's possibly the best moment I've ever experienced watching England on television.

  • Comment number 53.

    Obviously that should be crowd (52.). Don't recall any crows inside Old Trafford that day.

  • Comment number 54.

    #51 blaenorynyclwyd

    that would be the entire irish murphia!!

  • Comment number 55.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 56.

    David Beckham was a phenomenal player for England, and really produced the goods on a number of occasions. He was probably the most effective Enlgand performer since Gary Lineker.

    He didn't have to beat a man, he was a creative player in the sense that he always created chances, never gave the ball away and produced a number of crosses so accurate that I have an image of Andy Cole and Dwight York circa 1998-2001 trotting away to celebrate having scored from a Becks assist.

    Yes he made a silly mistake in France 98, but to bounce back from that witch hunt displays the character of the man. He is a great role model and a fantastic ambassador for our national game, having been a world class player himself.

    For those who don't recall England vs Germany in 2000, ahve a look. 10 players squandered around for 90mins accepting defeat. Except Beckahm who single handedly tried to drag us through that game. Subsequent goals and performances vs Greece (twice) finland, Germany away etc were fantastic and i'd argue between 2000-2001 he was one of the best players in the world. In 2001/2002 he seemed to have reached his peak to me and it was a disaster that he got the infamous metatarsal injury.

    AC Slater

  • Comment number 57.

    Hi Dan,

    I am an Arsenal Season Ticket Holder and I will never doubt Arsene Wenger, the mans work within the financial constraints he self imposes is nothing short of sensational. However he has his stubborn moments that frustrate us supporters and the passing of the deadline once again left us without (in my opinion) a top class keeper.

    What I would like your research team to inverstigate is, what was the last team to win the top division league title with a goalkeeper who was uncapped by their country?

    If anyone points out Fabianski has been capped and will be our number one, they should have their account removed for stupidity. At least I hope this is stupidity...

  • Comment number 58.

    Ah who can forget it indeed, we drew a qualifying match. at home. v greece. in 2001. which meant we didnt play the ukraine in a play-off. for a world cup we went out in the last 8 at. what a true moment of "legend" for this massive Football nation. How the likes of France, Spain, Brazil, Germany, Italy etc must "envy" us such epoch-making times. This is England. Beyond. parody.

    youve got 15 years and 115 matches to search through of this "amazin crosser" and youve found a match v estonia for a single goal, do carry on making my points for me please, Sir.

    Owen playing the "odd game"? Try touching on 90 caps, NINETY. More than most strikers ever play for any country and Beckham was with him every step of the way and delivered barely a bean. Fact. The myth of Beckham lives on long in many peoples minds it appears. Infact Beckham was so poor, so inept at not only merely doing his job from the flank but one that hed been hyped for by his fans and the media to be "incredible" and "relenless" at that it was almost perverse how little supply ever came from there and it was left to the likes of Heskey-how ironic you mention him-to supply Owen in our biggest matches such as against Brazil in 2002 when the world cup was there for the taking. Where on Earth was Beckham that day apart from gutlessly avoiding tackles in the middle of the park? Nowhere, and to think hed revelled in the "demi God" treatment hed received at that event by all and sundry. What a footballing fraud.

    Dan Walker
    So the likes of Sheringham "gave up" too did he and it was "only beckham" who could be "bothered" to try? Thats funny, i swear Sheringham scored one goal and also won that free-kick in the last minute from which our hero scored and has been said attempted to mislead the keeper. As ive said, ive seen the game and i really dont accept 10 minutes of playground-style scurrying on your own pitch v greece to be "out of this world. Its frankly embarassing when set against any truly heavyweight, intelligent, cultured and brilliant display ive seen. Like Zidane v Brazil in the 06 world cup for example. Find me an example of Beckham dictating a match and bamboozling a legendary national side like that in the way a great player like Zidane can do and did do and ill acknowledge an "out of this world" football performace. There arent any are there, not by a long shot.

  • Comment number 59.

    David Beckham was a phenomenal player for England, and really produced the goods on a number of occasions. He was probably the most effective Enlgand performer since Gary Lineker.
    5 major tournaments of the most negligble impact. 17 goals in 115 games as free-kick taker and penalty taker for several years. Just 5 free-kicks against pitiful opposition, not a solitary one v a top tier nation, not a single registered strike at the home of english footbal, Wembley Stadium despite "gracing" it since the mid 90s. No performance of ay note agains a major side. Germany 2000? Youve just made that up, theres nothing from open play in that match to back up your claim whatsoever. And if youre referring to Germany 2001 and 5-1, it was Gerrard, Owen an Barmby that turned that match from 0-1 to 2-1, and altered the flow-WATCH IT.
    Michael Owens record of standing up the top teams in tournaments and actually resembling a heavyweight player rather than a little boy hopelssly lost in the headlights like Beckham always was puts your laughable claim in context.

    What REALLY grates is that we had players of genuine technical ability that we could have built the side around had we been given intelligent management. Paul Scholes should have been our linchpin, he should have been our Zidane but Eriksson and Taylor before him were so desperate to be part of the "celebrity culture" that shouty man-child Beckham represented, they were so bamboozled by his fame that they sold the national side down the river. If only an Alex Ferguson had been in charge-Beckham would never have been an England captain, he would have been kicked where the sun dont shine as soon as hi ego went out of control which it patently did, he probably wouldnt even have got in the side after 2002 and who here dares to claim England woulnt have done alot better?

  • Comment number 60.

    #58 Marsman

    Are you trying to say that Zidane and Beckham are the same sort of player, and therefore Beckham is diminished as a result by not being as good as him? They're entirely different footballers performing a different function largely in that Zidane was an attacking midfielder which Beckham was usually posted on the wing.

    Another example (in isolation) of an excellent Beckham cross is from a match he played in for Real Madrid on the 17th April 2006 - its on YouTube if you doubt me.

    Anyway, as I said earlier, if you try taking a more rational viewpoint on this whole discussion you may find its not as black and white as you portray. You have however made me smile by your long reply disabusing those of us who replied to you with your myriad comments.

  • Comment number 61.

    59. At 3:13pm on 02 Sep 2010, marsman wrote:

    Germany 2000? Youve just made that up, theres nothing from open play in that match to back up your claim whatsoever. And if youre referring to Germany 2001 and 5-1, it was Gerrard, Owen an Barmby that turned that match from 0-1 to 2-1, and altered the flow-WATCH IT.

    No I mean Germany 2000, at Wembley, in one of the worst performances by an England team ever.

    In 2001, I believe it was Beckham foulded by Deisler, and his resulting free kick ended up with Barmbys Goal.

    Germany 2000, in the Euros, Shearer nods in a Beckahm free kick.

    Technically he was our best player throughout that period, including scholes who was often overrun in the international game

  • Comment number 62.

    Have Blackpool always played in orange?? What about Celtic playing in stripes?? Have they always done that??

  • Comment number 63.

    Strange how devisive Beckham is among England fans? He's mentioned in passing in a blog reply about commentary, and then this little spat breaks out.
    As always the truth is likely to be somewhere in between the two versions. Beckham certainly was not as great a player for England as his fan club would suggest, but by the same token most managers would have played him regularly for England during the past decade.
    What I always reflect on about the Greece game was that Beckham's final free kick was about his sixth attempt of the match and was the first one to trouble the keeper. In contrast Nigel Martyn made two one on one saves as England were pushing forward, but his contribution is always forgotten.Perhaps the modest pie eater from Cornwall was not enough of a media hound?

    Tony Currie

  • Comment number 64.

    John Lukic for both your team and Leeds (a rarity in that a keeper won the title with two clubs)

  • Comment number 65.


    Was Van Der Gouw the main number 1 for united in 2000? Certainly it wasn't Taibi and Bosnich only seemed to play in fits n starts.

    Peter Unwin George Wall

  • Comment number 66.

    Great blog Dan. Not really posted replies to these before..

    Glad i have on this one as Marsman the Terrible has made my last hour at work more enjoyable with his 'debate'

    Great replies back too from others..

    P.S Until England come up with someone better in delivering passion and quality into the box. Then there is only one Sir Beckham..


    Micky Quinn

  • Comment number 67.

    Buenos aires.

    Marsman (various Beckham related rants) you clearly didn't read my previous response to you. I conceded that describing Beckham's performance as 'out-of-this-world' was a little extravagant but he was good in that game and he has been a great player for England. Also, i never suggested that it was the finest game in history, it was rather a fantastic match to be at and the fact that I was commentating on it made it even more memorable.

    What concerns me more is not your opinion of Beckham - you are more than entitled to think what you like - but the way you seem desirous to headlock everyone else into your way of thinking. From the responses you have already had, collective opinion seems to be that one of the following statements must be correct...

    1). You are an unparelleled authority on all things football and the rest of us - as mere mortals - should fall at your feet in adoration and praise your insight
    2). You are not quite as brilliant as you think.

    Thanks for all the comments so far. See you soon.

    John Toshack

  • Comment number 68.

    By the way... here's how to make a point so that everyone thinks "you know what you might be right!"

    backinwhite (#64) in full flow...

    What I always reflect on about the Greece game was that Beckham's final free kick was about his sixth attempt of the match and was the first one to trouble the keeper. In contrast Nigel Martyn made two one on one saves as England were pushing forward, but his contribution is always forgotten.Perhaps the modest pie eater from Cornwall was not enough of a media hound?

    You know what... you might be right! Less rage + good point = the future.

    Nigel Martyn

  • Comment number 69.


    As a Leeds fan with a long memory (pre-requisite) Lukic did immediately spring to mind but fellow supporter #64 got in there first with the added impressive stat he'd managed this feat with two different clubs...

    I was going to say Tim Flowers for Blackburn, but a quick check of Wikipedia tells me he won 11 England Caps!! Clearly my memory isn't as good as i thought it was!

  • Comment number 70.

    Stats from Feb 2008, when Ronaldo was still at Manchester United.

    Beckham scored 24% of his league goals (15 out of 63) direct from free kicks while Ronaldo’s proportion is “just” 11% (six from 54) up to that point.

    March 2010

    In the 21 caps since his comeback under Steve McClaren in August 2007, he has contributed. He made nine assists in those games, including two crosses for goals against Estonia in June 2007; the ball for Peter Crouch's goal in the Wembley defeat to Croatia the same year and even a short corner for Shaun Wright-Phillips to score from in his last game against Belarus.

    June 2010

    Beckham, who played 18 times in Serie A for AC Milan last season, created 3.2 chances per 90 minutes played - more than 50 per cent more than his nearest England rival, Shaun Wright-Phillips.

    2008/9 statistics - League performances

    Beckham - 5
    Wright-Phillips - 3
    Walcott - 2
    Lennon - 4

    Chances created per 90 minutes

    Beckham - 3.2
    Wright-Phillips - 2.0
    Walcott - 1.8
    Lennon - 1.8

    Statistics never tell the whole story and I believe Beckham was indulged by some of the previous England managers but stats don't entirely lie - and of course these are only a few, from certain points in the past.

    Peter Bonetti

  • Comment number 71.

    Ouch, Dan sure taught you a lesson.

  • Comment number 72.

    Frank Sinclair

  • Comment number 73.

    Sorry to bang on about this "Do we play in Orange or Tangerine" question but it's like saying that Villa, Burnley and West Ham play in purple and light blue or that Man City and Coventry play in baby blue.

    I just thought it showed a lack of respect and/or research.

    I know it appears petty but it MATTERS to Blackpool fans!! You could say it's like an "Orange rag to a bull".

    Our official strip (regardless of the colour of the shirt" is TANGERINE!!!!

    Can we move on?

  • Comment number 74.

    er, right,so Germany 2000, a game we lost 1-0. A game in which we scored 0 and had a distinct lack of any tangible service to our forwardline. And the man responsible and hyped for that service, for you, was the "man of the mach". What was it that "topped" his "legendary" performance that day for you, was it the-yet more- missed free-kicks of his going all out for personal glory? Ab. surd.

    Are you trying to say that Zidane and Beckham are the same sort of player?
    Only in the sense id say Rembrandt and Rolf Harris are the same sort of artist. Good point. And yet, who was the more hyped, financially rewarded, constantly indulged and worshipped over figure by the general public? The same culture that would no doubt fawn over Robbie Williams and ignore the other guy should the ex-take thater find himself in a room with Amadeus Mozart. Ab. surd.

    You bring up a solitary "cross" in a 4 year spell at Europes most successful team and you think that proves something? God give me strength. Ill give you a stat worth reading if you like. In Beckhams final season at Madrid when-according to his fans and the "becks" obsessed media-he virtually "single handedly won" them the title, Rudd Van Nistelrooy was their goal getter and main strike man. He scored 25 league goals in that final season of 4 Beckham spent at the Bernabau to win them the league. Care to make a guess at how many the "legendary" Beckham assisted? Oh go on! Ill give you a clue, its more than -1 and less than 1 and looks fat and juicy when you type it.

    Please dont try and compare Beckham with Ronaldo or ill refer you to the Rembrandt/Harris analogy. Ronaldo scored nearly as many goals in 1 season at United as Beckham managed in a decade so i think we better stop that before it gets embarassing. As Alan Hansen said, Ronaldo was the man who won United trophies while Beckham was merely part of team led by much greater figures that won them. Ronaldos reached major tournament finals, hes proved he has the bottle to deliver in knockout penalty shoot-outs, there simply isnt a comparison with your Hello mag hero.

    In the qualifiers under Capello with Beckham out our first XI we scored mor goals AND more goals via CROSSES than in ANY campaign previously where Beckham was a fixture in the side. Indeed our two most crushing victories were won via the performances of the right side player on each occassion, 4-1 and 5-1 over Croatia, Beckham featured in neither.

    Beckham neither scored a goal nor directly assisted a single goal in his entire spell at Milan actually, thats probably why their new manager virtually threw-up at the question of his return and why their fans implored ther directors not to sign him and put commercial interests before fotballing ones. A lucky escape for them, anyone who witnessed Milan V United last year saw even when United were wobbling at the san siro, that Beckham neither had the weight, the nous nor the talent to hurt them. It was like watching a little boy lost amongst men, kinda like what it was like watching Beckham get caught in the headlights in those big quarter-finals with england, aww Bless, his hairs nice though.

    Dan Walker
    and he has been a great player for England.
    Yours and mine definitions of "greatness" probably lie several oceans apart, Sir. Nice to know your opinion though, it happens to be claptrap.

  • Comment number 75.

    Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit... and you certainly attain that level with flying colours. You seem capable of making your point only by being rude at the same time.

    I've tried to encourage you to be less coloured in the way you express yourself, but I'm clearly wasting my time. You're entitled to your opinioni, but someone with greater maturity would try to make it in a considerably less confrontational manner than you.

    If you are going to criticise me for the comparison between Zidane and Beckham, I'd have to ask why on earth you made the comparison yourself in the first place? You might want to construct a consistent thread through your comments as they might develop some sort of clarity as a result.

    I hope you conduct yourself with greater decorum in "real life". My final word of advice would be to reiterate a point I made to you earlier, and thats to run things through a spell/grammar checker. It may not matter here, but it will in other places and will only hold you back in life.

    I'm going to google who Rudd van Nistelrooy is... and Mozart had a Christian name... Wolfgang.

    Alf Garnett

  • Comment number 76.

    74. At 9:39pm on 02 Sep 2010, marsman wrote:
    er, right,so Germany 2000, a game we lost 1-0. A game in which we scored 0 and had a distinct lack of any tangible service to our forwardline. And the man responsible and hyped for that service, for you, was the "man of the mach". What was it that "topped" his "legendary" performance that day for you, was it the-yet more- missed free-kicks of his going all out for personal glory? Ab. surd.

    Hello there. I didn't mention the words Man of the Match at any point, off the top of my head I think that went to Jens Nowotny.

    His performance was the shining light in an all round terrible display, and it was a performance I believe that prompted Taylor, and subsequently Sven to choose him as captain. He showed he would lead a new generation of player by example, and displayed the transition of that team into the 21st century. A team that should have achieved more.

    Your "personal glory" statement is all about your hatred for Beckham and not justified in any way. Otherwise everytime Frank Lampard took a shot in World Cup 2006 (he had the most attempts on goal throughout the tournament) he was just going for personal glory!


    Or was he just playing to his strengths, to help the team, by scoring goals that win football matches!

    AC Slater

  • Comment number 77.

    for what its worth, withut the internet, no one would know any of these stats about crosses per season, goals to assists ratios and all that, so in the real world beckham, 50 years from now, will be remembered as an on-field great, an off-field idiot imo, and all round proper englishman. like it or not

  • Comment number 78.

    Just filming the opening to this week's Focus... In a cinema.

    GrumpyBlackpoolFan #73 you're right. Let's all move on... It was a mere slip of the forked tongue.

    Marsman (various) I think I've got you worked out. You're actually a nice bloke most of the time - fun in the office, bit of a laugh... real life and soul guy.

    It's just that when you sit in front of a computer you become MARSMAN... rude, intolerant and a little arrogance. Fighting against the twin evils of grammar and spelling your mission is to aggravate all those around you.

    I do admire your diligence and passion but you will always struggle to win people over if you keep telling them they are morons. So come, take the cape off MARSMAN and let's see the real you. I know you're in there.

    John Scales

  • Comment number 79.

    Sort of ruined my point by putting 'arrogance' instead of 'arrogant' but you get my drift.

    Prunella Scales

  • Comment number 80.

    East Humberside all


    ' It's just that when you sit in front of a computer you become MARSMAN... rude, intolerant and a little arrogance. Fighting against the twin evils of grammar and spelling your mission is to aggravate all those around you.'

    Anything to be a superhero hey dan!!

    I know you're game walker, and its really good, when you gonna release a travel version?

    Ruel Fox

  • Comment number 81.


    Not enough vowels in that name!! Still based on you argument your an idiot whichever way you choose to spell !

  • Comment number 82.

    Thanks Dan for acknowledging Blackpool's true colours.

    Anyone who claims we play in orange when they know we play in tangerine is arrogant.

    blaenorynyclwyd: You're comment is unjustified, and clearly proves you're a bitter Cardiff City fan. Enough Said.

    The future's bright... the future's tangerine!

  • Comment number 83.

    #81 olliesarmy wrote"Still based on YOU argument YOUR an idiot which ever way you choose to spell!"

    Ollie, thank you for your correction, which,
    in spite of your spelling of both pronouns & verbal contractions, and
    in spite of your punctuation,
    I will take on board and endeavor to improve both my spelling and argumentation.
    Dan #78 Like your synopsis of other comments. :-)

  • Comment number 84.

    There is a lot of love on this blog this week!!!!


  • Comment number 85.

    Ah! blaenorynyclwyd, so there is a difference about which way you spell a word? or only when someone else does it?
    Self righteous hypocrit, Duckz is good English but "your" instead of "you're" is not.
    Make your mind up man, and keep you argument consistant.
    Thats why your an idiot, not because of your superior or my lack of gramatical prowess.
    When people try to divert the argument, through picking anothers typo's or gramatical faux pas, it shows just how self absorbant and lacking in true argument they are.
    Being pedantic and a poor loser is not endearing whatever you mother tells you. It's just plain annoying to the rest of the world.

  • Comment number 86.

    Dan: Sorry, I wasn't being sarcastic and calling you arrogant if you thought that. You made a mistake, which I understand and my statement was intended for folk like blaenorynyclwyd.

  • Comment number 87.

    Steady on olliesarmy!

    I fear this is all getting a little out of hand. Let's all count to 10... 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.

    That's better. Right, who wants an arm wrestle?

    Lennox Lewis

  • Comment number 88.

    I'm a bit disappointed in the "I owe a zoo" comment. Because i thought that was your joke. That your a bit of a chimp and your parents aren't good looking, so you owe a zoo for your existence/being brought into the World! Of course i'm just pulling your leg Dan, stellar blog as ever mate.

  • Comment number 89.

    Look how quickly things turn around. Everyone is feeling the love now!

    TangerineAndProud (#86) very nice of you sir although I am sure blaenorynyclwyd was just being provocative and is probably a nice bloke as well.

    Phil (#88) although it was a mistake - technically I do owe a zoo. I was giving too much change on a school trip to London Zoo as a youngster when I bought a slush puppy. I only discovered the problem once I had left and have never been back since. So I do owe a zoo!!!

    Group hug anyone? You can come in too Marsman.

    Oliver Bierhoff

  • Comment number 90.

    Dan Walker, calm down you say..

    I was brought up to believe, if you can't say nowt good, say nowt. But also that you should be consistant and stand up for what you believe.

    That guy's comments were either from a cretin or a WUM and I presume the second. Well he got what he wanted, because it does wind me up, that such people exist.

    Well don't start something you cannot finish! We people at Blackpool are a friendly, unassuming down to earth bunch that know we are punching above our weight and have had the run of the green.
    But we won't come down to earth cause we never left it.

    Barring a few numpties all towns have, we do not profain or disrespect anothers colours or beliefs or team and expect the same in return.

    When we don't recieve that common courtesy, then we will make it known.

    Now we wear Tangerine and were are damn proud of it and take exceptional offence when people look to make cheap shots about it.

    Do you find us making cheap shots about Cardiff, the Welsh or the team and fans who were (at least 99% of them) fantastic last May at Wembley?

    No we don't, because we respect them , found them great representitives for their team and city, and know another day it would be them not us.

    If people don't understand that then they probably think people on the News burning the Union Flag is acceptable, and if that is the case then i am wasting my time.

  • Comment number 91.

    No, it was Beckhams celebrity that got him the captaincy. Taylor was mesmerised by being in and arund such "fame", handing Beckham the captaincy was just another step in the devaluing of the natonal team, the ramping up of the culture of celebrity within our game. Ferguson was Beckhams manager and he knew he was no leader of men. Beckham isnt a "captain" in this life or any other as he proved over 3 major tournaments of the most risible "leadership" imagineable, whether gutlessy jumping out the way of tackles and disappearing without trace when England needed drive v Brazil in 2002 to being the joke figure of the entire Euro2004 event through to sitting on a subs bench in Gemany sobbing his face off when "his" team were at 0-0 in a world cup quarter-final. But then unlike the likes of you, i always knew what it was all about for Beckham over and above anyting else, it was about him. It devastated him that HIS event was over in Germany, that HE wasnt ging to be this "figure of destiny" his tiny child-like mind had convinced himself he was going to be. The fact he then meandered through the rest of the players pre-penalties with a tear-ravaged face of despair and misery was perhaps about the most disgraceful and self-indulgent piece of "captaincy" ever witnessed in the national arena.

    There isnt a football scholar of any intelligence or worth on the planet that will ever label David flippin Beckham an "on-field great. Celebrity worshippers might do, the housewives brigade who simply adore their "Cliff Richard of Football", the new-age set, the home counties dwellers who think Football was invented some time in the mid 90s.

  • Comment number 92.

    MARSMAN!! Thats too far, leave my cliff out of this!! (I love you Cliff)

    Beckham wishes he was even close to Cliff in terms of greatness but he's not!

    However while I dont consider him an England great as such or even demi-god (you bought cliff into this not me remember!!) I certainly dont consider him the sole reason for England's lack of success.

    DO you not think he has been a good player for England?

    I think he is one of the very very few who give the same for their country as they do for their club.

  • Comment number 93.

    Andy Connor (#92) I don't give you much time before the volcano on Mars erupts again.

    Stand well back.

    Buzz Aldrin

  • Comment number 94.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 95.

    Dan, serious for a moment.

    Have you ever wanted to try doing the live text service for the football?

    You seem quick witted enough for it.

    Moment over.


  • Comment number 96.

    Hilarious, ive just watched the Walker/Taylor video and Taylor "revels" in having been the man that "made becks skipper". What a clown, what a joe-average, what dwarf amongst mountainous managers, what a gargantuan shock to the system that he finds himself managing in the basement division of english football. The man who made David "aint my hair pretty" Beckham "national captain" has found his level and experienced his rightful karma.

  • Comment number 97.

    Hi Dan

    I just love your photo of the Blackpool fans !! Supposed I am a bit biased as my son Jordan features in the middle of it - along with his mates. They were having a fab day at the match having been season ticket holders for a while now and have followed the fortunes of Blackpool through the leagues. They were all celebrating GCSE results so a good week all round.
    Your blog has now winged its way to Australia where my sister followes Blackpool from Sydney.
    Thanks for making me a proud Blackpool mum xx

    PS Jordan will kill me when he reads this lol !!!!

  • Comment number 98.

    If Darius Danesh ever visits this blog, I suspect he might have given it a miss this week due to the lack of love being felt this time round!

    Marsman certainly shows some focus as he studiously fails to address what anyone writes unless it involves David Beckham. Bet you have all his posters up in your bedroom being that you seem fairly obsessed by him.

    Gnasher the Dog

  • Comment number 99.

    You are a very funny man ............

    Some of your followers are even funnier, even caused a couple of belly laughs.

    Have you dyed your hair Dan or is there something going on with the lighting in that cinema???


  • Comment number 100.

    #77 i wrote "beckham, 50 years from now, will be remembered as an on-field great"

    #91 marsman wrote "There isnt a football scholar of any intelligence or worth on the planet that will ever label David flippin Beckham an "on-field great."

    Soothsayer now are we, who's winning the 1610 at haydock today, i could do with some extra income


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