And if you know your history…..


Last Wednesday marked the 50th anniversary of Shelbourne’s debut in European competition. On 19 September, 1962, under Gerry Doyle,a Reds side featuring such club legends as Eric Barber, Freddie Strahan, Ben Hannigan and Joey Wilson took on Portuguese giants, Sporting Lisbon (Sporting Clube de Portugal) in a European Cup Preliminary Round First leg tie here in Dublin. The game was played at Dalymount Park, in front a big crowd with the away side eventually running out 2-0 winners.


The away leg the following week in Lisbon saw the Irish champions bow out of Europe at the first hurdle. A 5-1 defeat on the night saw the Reds exit on a 7-1 aggregate scoreline, with the one silver lining of Jackie Hennessy having the honour of getting Shels off the mark in European goalscoring stakes. It was to be another 30 years before the Reds were back in Europe’s premier club competition. Sporting would go on to win the 1963/64 European Cup Winners’ Cup.


The 1960s were a halcyon period for Shels in Europe as the Reds went toe-to- toe against such heavyweights as Barcelona, Atlético Madrid and another Lisbon-based side, Belenenses. The latter were the Reds first every scalp in Europe, a 2-1 playoff victory over the Portuguese outfit in the 1964/65 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup setting Shelbourne up with a glamour tie against Atlético.

Exciting times. Lets hope we don’t have to wait too long before the next European chapter in our illustrious history is written.

We See Things They’ll Never See



This thing of ours. Mad, magical, magnificent night at Tolka last night. Written off in so many quarters, including our own, against the odds the Reds produced an incredible performance to comprehensively dump Rovers out of the cup, and end their season prematurely. Two great finishes from HEWHW did the damage, the first the result of great tenacity and liveliness from Casso; the second, a tremendous centre from Kav. If anything, the 2-1 scoreline flattered the hooped Neanderthals as Shels ran riot from start to finish. A great night for heroes in Red shirts, you couldn’t single out any of the players. In a season that has given us more lows than highs, the fight, desire and passion shown by everyone in Red in this cup tie was a welcome tonic, and head and shoulders above anything we’ve witnessed this term. Take a fucking bow. We don’t ask for anything more than heart, effort and graft, and to see these qualities in abundance yesterday was sensational. I’m struggling to find the right words here, but what an incredible, euphoric, life-affirming night.

Shelbourne v Shamrock Rovers - FAI Ford Cup Quarter-Final

Pic courtesy of Sportsfile.

From RI12 (May 2001)- Retort to the U2 Fanzine- Hot Press

When Hot Press was out of touch with what was happening with real people in Ireland. What do you mean which time??? Re-visit a classic polemic from the one and only Gnarled Führer from RI12, May 2001

By the Gnarled Führer


Recently an article in Hot Press was brought to my attention by Gerry RI. It concerned the protest by a few young LOI fans outside the official opening of the Man U Superstore. Boss Hogg, or whatever pseudonym that arsehole, Stokes, uses, accused the protesters of, wait for it, being Nationalistic and possibly even Fascist. Oh yeah, what a load of absolute shite. The young lads should have been congratulated for making a protest against this insidious form of sporting hegemony.

What other country in Europe would have a leader who fucks off to support teams in foreign countries? Good old Bertie, supporter of the Dubs, Man U and Celtic, that unholy trinity beloved of all Dub arseholes. Pity he missed out on Rovers though. In what other country would you get fans booing players from their own country in favour of players from teams from the country of their biggest historical enemy. “You’ll never beat the Irish” – my arse. Even English fans I have spoken to find this daft.


The “Suede Denim Street Police” (copyright Jello Biafra) of Hot Press should get their collective tongues out of Bono’s hole before they have the neck to slag other people. I have always hated that right-on rag and their poxy pseudo-left wing stance. Remember their slogan, “Keeping Ireland safe for rock and roll”, well it is my contention that the young protesters were in their own way making a point about “Keeping Ireland safe for live football”.

So as the reactionary sections of Irish society, the poxy GAA, Fianna Fáil, and certain sections of the media (The Evening Herald, take a bow) continue to persecute all domestic football fans, now is the time to attack back at every opportunity. Whatever the rights and wrongs of the eircom Park debacle, it showed these revolutionary bastards at their bigoted worst. One of the great things about following Shels is that all the old-school brigade have a pathological hatred of the GAA Mafia and their fellow travellers in the Dáil.

P. S. Sick of Britball.
Next time you see someone getting Sky Digital in, go and ask them for their old analogue dish and get some sham to put it up for you. Then sit back and enjoy all the great German football on the dish. FREE TO AIR.

Saturday Morning Reflections- Rovers Away


Well, safe to say no one expected that. It was a bit of a weird sensation leaving the council house last night, proud but disappointed. Satisfied at the thought of ending the vermin’s 3-in-a-row hopes, gutted we didn’t finish them off and beat them to take the three points. No mistake, last night’s display was characterised by graft, heart, effort and commitment, the very attributes that have been missing far too long from Shels performances, and the only things we as supporters have been asking from the players. Credit where it is due, the players stood up and were counted and showed some pride in the shirt for once. Attitude and application in abundance, and those two traits can go a long way in this league, and it’s a pity we haven’t seen more of last nights fare recently. We could still be chasing a European place in the league if we had been producing those kind of displays on a regular basis since the midseason break.

Rovers are a mediocre side with one or two star players, it would have been a travesty if this lot of clowns were allowed get their grubby hooves on the league championship for a third successive time. It says an awful lot about how decidedly average they are, when they couldn’t beat our understrength side, missing arguably our two best and most influential starters in Daws and Shortall.

PaddyK was terrific, not just for his well-taken goal but for the general havoc he caused Rovers at the back with his menacing, winding runs. They couldn’t handle him. Smart finish to bring us level too.  If we can get him to show up like that every Friday we’ll have a very dangerous weapon in our arsenal. Well in. Should have buried that chance let on though, tried to be a bit too clever.

Gorman put in an excellent shift, his brilliant goal just reward for all the hassle he caused Hawkins and Sives throughout. And what a fucking finish. Was like slow motion from where I was, the ball seemed to hang in the air for eternity but nestling in the back of the net. Hysterical carnage. I haven’t celebrated a Reds goal like that in many a long year. Fucking chaotic scenes, what going to games should be all about.

Cronin was a rock in the centre, breaking up Rovers play time and time again. One of his better games in the Red. It was also very heartening to see a real crowd favourite, David Cassidy, turn it on and put in an impressive performance. Written off in some quarters, I’ll always have a lot of time for Casso for his sheer workrate alone- even when things are not going right for him on the ball, you’re guaranteed to see him break his bollocks off it. He had a very good game, his reverse pass for PaddyK was a thing of beauty, a perfectly weighted through ball that opened Rovers up. And it was his hard work and refusal to give up that created our second goal, harrying and closing down Sives, to deflect the ball into HSWHW’s path. Tremendous stuff.

They say your defence is only as good as its weakest element- I felt Ian Ryan was caught out a few times playing a bit deeper than the rest of the back line and was partly responsible for rovers opener by playing Kilduff on. He had a competent enough game apart from that. It really is time Reds fans gave Chris Bennion a bit of a break- yes, it might have been a bit nuts surging from his box like that for their first goal, but overall he had a decent game. His handling was good throughout, and made a few decent stops. Was completely faultless for their equaliser too.

Decent enough atmosphere from the reduced travelling support, were loud from early on. Lets not pretend everything is now suddenly hunky dory at the club and that the team is now on the verge of great things. There are still a lot of fundamental issues that need to be addressed on the playing side of things, and few Reds are under the illusion that the FAI Cup is within our grasp.  But after some truly depressing and dispiriting nights over the last few months, this was most definitely a small step in the right direction. I had almost forgotten what it was like to leave a game genuinely happy for once.

Roll on Monday and Friday.