Saturday, 16 October 2010

Farewell, Big Mal

"A lot of hard work went into this defeat" declared the late, great Malcom Allison on one memorable occasion. He was one of the game's abiding characters, a King of Bling before the concept was invented, and rightly termed by Henry Winter "a coach of immense stature". As far as the quotable gem above goes, it's the almost perfect exemplar of what is now grindingly known as "taking the positives"... with tongue firmly in cheek.

Big Mal is best known for his time at Manchester City, of course, and Crystal Palace too. But he also had a strong relationship with lovable minnows Bath City, who have bravely fought their way into the Blue Square Premier Division this season, with the backing of one of my favourite film-makers, Ken Loach, among others.

Another City: A Week in the Life of Bath's Football Club was made in 1998 and features Allison. It is included in the DVD package that comes with Loach's thoroughly enjoyable recent movie, Looking for Eric. A must see, both of them, along with a good documentary about FC United of Manchester.

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