Video: A footballing legend - but not a donkey-kick in sight at Wells
- Credit: Archant
Those of a certain vintage might recognise this gentleman, who was behind one of the greatest free-kick routines of the 1970s.
His name is Willie Carr, a terrific servant for Coventry and then Wolves in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Why's he holding the ball here? He was staying with a friend in Wells and the pair of them wandered along to watch Wells Town play at the weekend. My man in Wells said: 'He thoroughly enjoyed himself and said he will be back – great bloke.'
And that free-kick routine? Carr gripped the ball between his ankles, flicked it and Coventry team-mate Ernie Hunt smashed in into the top right corner of the Everton net. It was a thing of beauty – although the technique was later banned! Got to pinkun.com, find my column and have a look for yourself.
Seems I am in a minority when it comes to Norwich City's pricing policy for their FA Cup third round tie at home to Southampton in the new year.
My first reaction was that £25 for an adult was fair enough – and then came the explosion of indignation around me. You pay more for a bang average Championship match, was my reasoning, although it was quickly pointed out that the price for the tie against Manchester City a year ago was £15.
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Then came the obvious connection.
The assumption by most people is that Southampton will do the Premier League thing and field a weakened side, even though their exit from the Europa League on Thursday night means that particular non-competition no longer interferes with their schedule.
The reason clubs do this is to ensure they don't miss out on the opportunity to grab a share of football's riches: jeopardise that if you dare. So make a quiet exit from the FA Cup, keep your best players fit and ready and safeguard not just your Premier League status but the riches that go with it.
Of course, when you get relegated, then you have to think a lot more seriously about your cash flows. Like at Carrow Road, where relegation may not necessarily be followed by the return of the key to the vault this season and where parachute payments don't last forever.
Somehow the wages have to be paid for the best players to get City back again. And that's probably why tickets are £25 and not £15.
It's a vicious circle and it has been kicked off by the clubs who have treated the FA Cup as a hindrance. Managers change their line-up from top to bottom and then wheel out the same old rubbish about putting out their strongest team.
Truth is, they don't give a monkey's and are being disrespectful to their opponents and to the fans who commit their money to watching a game between the strongest teams a manager can pick.
And there's that vicious circle again - the fans are not getting their money's worth, but a club charges £25 because it has to.
If that club then gets into the top flight with shed loads of money, then to stay there they will name a team of stiffs again.