Wednesday, August 18, 2021

"So Shaken As We Are, So Wan With Care"

Tinkerty-tonk, dearest bloggerisationisms readers and welcome you are, old fruits. to the latest From The North update in the area, like. It's going to be a right proper good'un, so it is. Hopefully.
A statue which featured in a groundbreaking TV performance by The Be-Atles is going under the hammer. The five foot fibreglass figure of Aphrodite was seen by up to seven hundred million viewers worldwide as The Be-Atles took part in the first live satellite TV broadcast in 1967. The Be-Atles (a popular beat combo of the 1960s, you might've heard of them) represented the UK as alcoholic, wife-beating Scouse junkie John Lennon wrote 'All You Need Is Love' just days before to reflect the event's Summer of Love and flower-power themes. The Greek goddess of love statue will be auctioned in Liverpool on 28 August. The statue, which is coated with a cement-like finish to simulate a stone appearance, is estimated to fetch between fifteen and twenty grand and will, probably, be sold to either an American or Japanese Be-Atles fan with far more money than sense. Artists representing nineteen countries took part in the Our World show, on 25 June 1967 and was screened in twenty five countries. Or, twenty six if you count Wales. The Beatles performance at Abbet Road - some parts were pre-recorded but the vocals and George Martin's superb orchestration were live - was broadcast by the BBC. The set was dressed with balloons, flowers and streamers draped around various bits of décor as Lennon (MBE), Sir Paul McCartney (MBE), George Harrison (MBE) and Sir Ringo Starr (MBE) perched on stools. The Aphrodite statue, believed to have been bought from a prop shop, was on the set directly behind Lennon. Sir Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Keith Moon, Marianne Faithfull and Graham Nash were in the audience as were Mike McCartney, Derek Taylor, Be-Atles biographer Hunter Davies and loads of other friends, acquaintances, general hangers-on and assorted riff-raff.
Sound engineer the late Geoff Emerick, who won two GRAMMY awards for his work with The Be-Atles, took the statue home after the recording and it took pride of place in his - somewhat overgrown - garden in Hornsey for the next forty five years. It was put into storage when Emerick moved to the United States where he later died in 2018, aged seventy two.
He had particularly close links with Sir Paul as he was appointed to oversee the building of Apple Studios in Savile Row in 1969 and then won another GRAMMY for his work on the Wings LP, Band on the Run. Other prized personal items released by Emerick's estate, including original plan documents for the conversion of Apple Studios, will feature in the sale along with Beatles memorabilia. News of which, needless to say, saw most long-term fans of The Be-Atles (a popular beat combo of the 1960s, you might've heard of them) getting their considerable knickers in a considerable twist (as illustrated below).
The climax of the recent Olympics was covered in the previous From The North bloggerisationism update - and very nice it was too - but a couple additions deserve highlighting. BBC Sports editor Dan Roan's excellent think-piece Tokyo Olympics: Sporting Drama Amid A State Of Emergency But How Will Games Be Remembered? covers most of the main talking-points, positive and negative whilst another BBC Sports article, Tokyo Olympics: A Look At How Team GB Fared Sport-By-Sport Compared To Their Funding broadly comes to the same conclusions as this blog last time around. That most of those representing Great Britain did a marvellous job. Except for the rowing squad - as previously noted, they were a fekking disgrace.
Football fan culture in the UK is changing, with a more diverse make-up of fans following the beautiful game, according to a new report commissioned by Sky Sports at the start of the 2021-22 domestic football season. Which started last weekend, you might've noticed (as usual, this blogger's beloved though unsellable Magpies lost. Don't worry, he's well used to such malarkey by now, he's had fifty seven years of this sort of thing). Traditional one-club supporters made up almost a third of those surveyed - the fact that they didn't makes up all of them being the biggest crime identified by this nonsense - but research suggests the treasured die-hards are now joined by a host of different types of fans 'enjoying the game in new ways,' including some who have drawn to the sport through players' powerful voices off the pitch. Yes, dear blog reader, some people actually got paid to produce this shit. Nice work if you can get it. The Football Fandom In 2021 report finds an overwhelming seventy per cent of people feel footballers have 'helped the nation' get talking about discrimination, while sixty three per cent believe they have 'a better understanding of social and economic issues' because of their love of football. And not, seemingly, because they have eyes and a brain in their head. Possibly because, in the case of the latter, they are lacking in that particular department. The findings 'also reveal a number of football fans are now more dedicated to the game itself rather than to a particular team.' Yes, there have always been a few of those around - they're called twats. One in five of those who consider themselves 'football fans' but do not follow a specific team, will still watch football at least once a week and/or never miss a big game. Five 'distinct subcultures' of modern football fandom have emerged, according to the report. Considered the 'traditional' football fan, Lifers are often one-club lifelong fans who have had a football-orientated upbringing. Or, 'normal people' as they're also known. Ever crunching the numbers, the Stattos are more likely than the other subcultures to focus on the pre-match build-up. They will also infuriate their friends by dominating in Fantasy Football. They're mostly harmless but should be avoided if possible since they'll likely bore your tits off with a ream of stats about most passes completed or how many social media followers Richarlison of Everton has which they picked up off Sky Sports News. (Because, it's a little-known fact that Everton, by law, cannot be relegated from the Premier League even if they finish in the bottom three because of Richarlison's forty eight gazillion follower on Instagram. True story.) Modern football culture has seeped into fashion, music and how we connect with each other. Allegedly. Expressionists thrive off this merging of football and lifestyle. It might have been their favourite replica away shirt, or even David Beckham's hair. It was the style, the panache, the culture around football that drew them in, wanting to one-up their mates with the latest boots. These people are dangerous and, frankly, need a ruddy good punch up the bracket to show them of the considerable error of their ways and get them to settle down and behave themselves. Or, stick a bat up their nightdress, whichever is more applicable. Trust this blogger, it's for their own good in the long run. Socialisers focus on the way football brings people together. This subculture connects more with family and friends during the season and they are the first to make plans for big games. Socialisers are mostly into football for the way it makes the country tick - enjoying how big wins bring local community together. They likely follow footballers in the news and on socials simply to be part of the conversation. Again, like Stattos they're fairly harmless and, if you ignore them, hopefully they'll just go away. Finally, driven by the social impact of the football for the greater good, Game Changers are likely to have seen or experienced first hand the power the game has to change mindsets. The Game Changer may have fallen in love with football because of common causes. Marcus Rashford, Raheem Sterling and Hector Bellerin have used their voice to shine a light on important issues at home and abroad, winning them legions of new followers. Game Changers, in other words, are likely to be Middle Class quiche-eating, Gruniad Morning Star-reading hippy Communists who never liked football until it became fashionable amongst their Middle Class quiche-eating, Gruniad Morning Star-reading hippy Communist fiends. But who now think they know everything about everything. Death's too good for the lot of 'em. So, dear blog reader, to sum up them ... some tosser actually got paid to come up with this rank horseshit. As any fule kno. And, I'm not even lying.
The stars of Line Of Duty will go head-to-head for one of the main prizes at this year's National Television Awards. Vicky McClure, Adrian Dunbar and Martin Compston are among the five nominees for the best drama performance trophy. They will face competition from Olly Alexander and David Tennant, who delivered acclaimed performances in It's A Sin and Des respectively.
South Asian food bloggers have, reportedly, criticised the overuse of the word 'curry' over claims it is 'rooted in British colonialism.' Earlier this year, Chaheti Bansal (no, me neither) posted an Instagram video calling on people to 'cancel the word curry.' This blogger will admit he does somewhat overuse the word curry since he eats little else. Next ...
TV and radio services for more than a million people will remain off-air indefinitely after a transmitter fire. The blaze at the Bilsdale mast on Tuesday of last week disrupted Freeview, DAB and FM radio signals across North Yorkshire, Teesside and parts of County Durham. But not, thankfully, as far North as the Stately Telly Topping Manor Plague House otherwise there would have been a bit of bother. Operator Arqiva said that it would bring in temporary equipment but could not say when services would be restored. Witness Ron Needham reported seeing 'a huge black cloud of smoke come from the buildings at the bottom.' That'd be the fire, then, Ron. He had been hiking on the North York Moors with his wife, Sue, when they stopped for lunch at the base of the mast. They noticed 'nothing untoward' but after continuing for about a mile-and-a-half noticed smoke coming from the top 'like a chimney,' Needham claimed. One or two people even believed him. Despite the loss of transmission from the tower, BBC television remains available on iPlayer. Although, if you live in the area and haven't got a computer them, basically, you're screwed. Radio stations can still be listened to on BBC Sounds. Ditto. Firefighters were sent to the site after a call from an engineer working on the transmitter near Helmsley. North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said there were 'concerns about the structural integrity of the mast' and a three hundred metre exclusion zone was in place around the mast. It also said the cause of the blaze was 'being investigated' but did not believe it was as a result of 'a criminal act.' Unless, of course, Ron and Sue know different. Arqiva confirmed that no-one was injured in the fire and thanked emergency services 'for their swift action. We have started the process to gradually restore services using a combination of temporary structures and existing infrastructure elsewhere in the region, and will be moving through this process as quickly and safely as possible,' a spokesperson said. A spokeswoman for North Yorkshire Police said Airwave, the radio service used by all the emergency services, had 'not been affected' by the mast fire. The tower was built in 1969 and provides coverage for half-a-million homes across Northern England, from Tadcaster to Seaham. Arqiva said about two hundred thousand of those use Freeview as their main TV platform. Needless to say, people were soon contacting the BBC about how the loss of transmission has affected them, with one viewer saying they were 'stuck at home with severe disabilities.' Which, presumably, had been the situation before the fire so, really, there's not a whole heap anyone can do about that particular situation. The services affected include: Channels on the PSB1, 2, 3, COM4, 5, 6, 7 and LTV television multiplexes; BBC Radio Tees, BBC Radios 1-4 and BBC DAB; Commercial radio stations SDL, North Yorkshire DAB, BAUER Teesside, Digital 1, TFM, Capital, Heart and Classic FM. Sky, Freesat and cable services are not affected. Coverage of BBC Radio Tees on DAB is reduced but some reception should continue for most listeners and there is no need to retune. BBC Tees's coverage of Middlesbrough's match against Blackpool was affected, however - an utter tragedy for all Smoggies who couldn't get to Lancashire and watch their side receive a three-nil hiding. Although, if the The Football Fandom in 2021 report is correct, then the majority of Middlesbrough supporters are either Stattos or Expressionists anyway and, thus, were more concerned about how much possession they'd had, or how their hair was looking at the time.
Sky News Australia has removed dozens of videos from its websites, after YouTube suspended the channel for spreading Covid misinformation. The archly right-wing TV network, owned by billionaire tyrant Rupert Murdoch, has been criticised for promoting conspiracies and questioning public health orders in its broadcasts. In recent days it has taken down about thirty videos without explanation or making corrections. Sky News Australia has declined to comment. And, to paraphrase the late and much-lamented Mandy Rice-Davies, 'well, they would, wouldn't they?' But its parent company, News Corp Australia, told local media that the network had taken an 'editorial decision' to remove the videos. One or two people even believed them. Former Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd was among the first to accuse the channel last week of 'quietly scrubbing incriminating Covid-19 misinformation videos' from its platforms. The videos had showed network hosts - including Alan Jones, Andrew Bolt and Rowan Dean - expressing views that have been rejected by global medical authorities. One video showed Jones questioning the legitimacy of the pandemic, erroneously claiming it wasn't worse than the 'common cold.' Which, you know, it probably is. Given that it had now killed over four million people worldwide during the past eighteen months. By and large, the cold doesn't tend to do that. So it would, therefore, appear that this Jones individual is, how can we put this, taking crap. Another video since removed promoted an interview with a pathologist spreading misinformation that Covid was a hoax. According to Gruniad Morning Star Australia (some relation), most of the removed videos 'talked up the drugs ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine.' Both drugs have gained attention after being promoted by figures including former US president - and hairdo - Rump. But medical authorities, including the WHO, say the evidence for their effectiveness against Covid remains unproven and, you know, who you gonna believe, scientists or orange-faced former reality TV has-beens and currently full-time arsehole? Tough choice? No, not really. Rudd and other critics have described Sky News Australia's broadcasts as 'dangerous and irresponsible.' It comes as millions of Australians remain in lockdown to prevent the spread of Delta outbreaks in Sydney and Melbourne. Fewer than a quarter of Australians have got themselves vaccinated. Frustration over restrictions has also led to several large anti-lockdown protests. Mostly from the kind of beer-swilling Neanderthals who used to populate The Hill at the SCG and shout 'pooftah' at any hapless England cricketer who suffered the misfortune of being posted down to long leg. Sky News Australia executives are due to face a parliamentary inquiry on Friday, after YouTube on 1 August penalised the channel's Covid coverage. The network accused the tech giant of 'censorship', but lawmakers said the platform's decision 'reflected wider concerns.'
Engineers are, reportedly, trying to work out what went wrong when the US space agency's Perseverance rover tried to gather its first rock core on Mars. The robot's mechanisms seemed to work perfectly but when a metal tube expected to hold the sample was examined, it was found to be empty. The mission team think the particular properties of the target rock may have been to blame. Either that or, you know, The Ice Warriors snuck up and pinched it. One or the other. 'The initial thinking is that the empty tube is more likely a result of the rock target not reacting the way we expected during coring and less likely a hardware issue with the sampling and caching system,' said Jennifer Trosper, project manager for Perseverance at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California. When asked about the possibility of Ice Warrior interference, Jen claimed a prior appointment and left. 'Over the next few days, the team will be spending more time analysing the data we have, and also acquiring some additional diagnostic data to support understanding the root cause for the empty tube,' she added as she hurried through the door and headed for the nearest NASA bunker. Perseverance has a drilling and coring system on the end of its 2m-long robotic arm. This is capable of cutting and retrieving finger-sized samples of rock. These are then passed to a processing unit inside the rover's belly that packages and seals them in titanium cylinders. But before sealing, a camera and probe are used to assess the amount of material recovered and when this was done for Friday's coring attempt it became obvious the sample was missing. This would not be the first time the Red Planet's surface has played hard-to-get with robots' analytical tools. NASA's 2007 Phoenix lander found the local soils in Mars' 'Arctic' region to have a sticky consistency that made it difficult to get a sample into the robot's onboard laboratory. And the agency's 2018 InSight lander struggled - and ultimately failed - to drive a temperature instrument into the ground. The sub-surface was unexpectedly resistant. Take it from this blogger, those Ice Warriors can get like Somerset farmers when it comes to trespassing.
Deliveroo has said demand for its services has strengthened despite Covid restrictions easing. Which only goes to prove how lazy some people have got during lockdown. This blogger included - although, to be fair, he tends to use Just Eat instead. The food delivery firm saw orders double to over on hundred and forty eight million in the first half of this year, while the value of its transactions also doubled. At the same time, it narrowed its pre-tax losses to one hundred and four million knicker, as against one hundred and twenty eight million smackers a year earlier. It was the first set of results from the company since it floated on the stock market in March. Deliveroo initially listed on the London stock exchange at three hundred and ninety pence a share, but the price fell sharply on the opening day of trading, 31 March. On Monday, its shares rallied on the news that German rival Delivery Hero had bought a five per cent stake in the company. Cooped-up consumers flocked to order from Deliveroo during the earlier stages of the pandemic, when restaurants were closed and people switched to home deliveries. The firm said it expected customer behaviour to 'moderate' later in the year, but it remained 'excited about the opportunity ahead.' It added that its outlook for the remainder of the year continued to be 'optimistic but prudent, combining confidence in continued year-on-year growth in orders with an expectation that average order values revert towards pre-pandemic levels.'
Eurovision type individual James Newman has won a High Court case against an ex-Voice contestant who claimed he had, previously, copied one of her songs. Before representing the UK at the annual song contest, where he came extremely last with but nul points, Newman co-wrote Rudimental & Ella Eyre's 2013 number one hit 'Waiting All Night'. It won best British single at The Brit Awards the following year. Kelly-Marie Smith claimed the song was copied from a song which she allegedly wrote in 2006. But a judge has dismissed her claim and told her to stop being so silly. One half of The Voice duo Nu-Tarna, who appeared on the lack of talent show in 2013, Smith sued Newman along with co-writer, Jonny Harris and three members of Rudimental - Kesi Dryden, Piers Aggett and Amir Izadkhah. But by the end of the High Court trial, judge Mr Justice Zacaroli said 'the allegation of copying was pursued against Mister Newman alone.' He concluded, with the help of musicologists, that while there were 'some limited similarities' between the choruses of 'Waiting All Night' and Smith's 'Can You Tell Me?', there were also 'important differences.' Any similarities in the lyrics, he said, could be down to the fact they contained 'commonplace expressions.' The suggestion that Smith's little-known and commercially unreleased song had 'filtered through' to Newman was based on 'tenuous connections', he added. Smith's legal team argued there were 'too many similarities' between the songs to be explained away by 'mounting coincidence.' But Newman's barrister, Tom Weisselberg QC, said her case was a 'concocted claim that should never have been brought.' He said Newman had conceived his song in 2012 when he was working night shifts in a restaurant whilst trying to make it as a songwriter. Something which is still a work-in-progress, apparently.
Bright and bubbly, Una Stubbs, who died over the weekend aged eighty four, was a revue regular and a Palladium pantomime principal boy who parlayed her natural song-and-dance talent into a later, highly diverse career on the classical stage.
In earlier years she was best known for her roles alongside Cliff Richard in two well-remembered pop musical movies - Summer Holiday (1963) and Wonderful Life (1964) - and as Alf Garnett's spirited daughter, Rita Rawlins, married to a socialist layabout (Anthony Booth), in Johnny Speight's classic social document sitcom Till Death Us Do Part (1965 to 1975) and in episodes of its 1980s sequel, In Sickness & In Health. Both of these incarnations are unimaginable today: a docile, amenable dolly bird hanging around with Cliff and The Shadows and a tolerant but incipiently trendy daughter of a loud-mouthed racist bigot - the late Warren Mitchell's brilliant and relentless performance.
Una transcended, or at least sidestepped, these cultural contrasts by the simple expedient of always being herself, honest and translucent in all she did. She had the ability to shine in revues (at the Mermaid Theatre) based on the works of Noël Coward and Cole Porter, as well as in Shakespeare and Schiller directed by Michael Grandage - her latterday mentor - in Sheffield and the West End, or even Ibsen at the National Theatre. Wherever she went, she sparkled and the longevity of her career was remarkable. She started out as a sixteen-year-old dancer in a Folies Bergère-style musical revue, Pardon My French, with Frankie Howerd and the pianist Winifred Atwell at The Prince Of Wales in 1953 and finished as a touchingly endearing Mrs Hudson in the BBC's Sherlock, starring alongside Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. She was geared to be fast and funny. She was The Dairy Box Girl in an early TV advert in 1955, her breathy, adenoidal voice instantly memorable and she was soon starring in the West End revue On the Brighter Side (1959) at The Phoenix – with talents including Stanley Baxter, Betty Marsden and Ronnie Barker.
Una was born in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, where her mother, Angela, worked in the cutting room of Denham film studios nearby and her father, Clarence Stubbs, was a factory worker with Shredded Wheat. Her great-grandfather was Ebenezer Howard, the founder of Welwyn Garden City. The middle of three children - a sister, Claire, was two years older; a brother, Paul, two years younger - Una struggled to assert herself as they all grew up in Hinckley, Leicestershire. She trained at the La Roche dancing school in Slough ('There's posh,' she recalled) and made a debut at the Theatre Royal, Windsor, as the fairy Peaseblossom in A Midsummer Night's Dream. In 1955 she was dancing at the London Palladium and in 1956 appeared in both ITV's Cool For Cats, one of the first teen pop music shows, with The Dougie Squires Dancers and as 'a starlet' at the Venice film festival in Grab Me A Gondola, a somewhat unjustly forgotten British musical in which Joan Heal gave a celebrated performance as a wannabe film star. Una met her first husband, the actor Peter Gilmore (the star in the BBC's The Onedin Line in the 1970s), whom she married in 1958, on these gigs. The marriage ended in divorce in 1969. After the Cliff Richard films and during Till Death Us Do Part, there was a step-change when she joined The Young Vic and met Nicky Henson, whom she married in 1969. She appeared there in the Rita Tushingham role in The Knack and as the Princess in The Soldier's Tale (starring opposite her new husband). In 1975 Stubbs played the lead role in Irma La Douce, directed by Dougie Squires, at the Watford Palace, in which she exploded like a firecracker in the big set-piece number 'Dis Donc'.
Her place in popular television culture was sealed in the next few years as she appeared in Fawlty Towers, as the ferocious Aunt Sally in Worzel Gummidge with Mister Pertwee and as team captain, opposite her great friend Lionel Blair, in the television game show Give Us A Clue.
Her second great phase as a stage actor began at The Royal Exchange in Manchester in the 1990s – Mrs Hardcastle in She Stoops To Conquer, Lady Markby in An Ideal Husband - culminating in a devastating and wholly unexpected performance as Terence Rattigan's confused and desperate heroine Hester Collyer in The Deep Blue Sea, in a production at The Mercury Theatre in Colchester in 1997 directed by Grandage. She began the new millennium as a hilarious sidekick to Penelope Keith in a touring (and West End) stage adaptation of the Noël Coward short story Star Quality and as the Nurse in Romeo & Juliet at Chichester in 2002 (with Emily Blunt was Juliet). In 2005 she joined the National Theatre, playing Mrs Holt in Ibsen's Pillars Of The Community, with Damian Lewis and Lesley Manville; two years later, her legit status increasing, she joined Peter Hall's summer season at The Theatre Royal, Bath, to play a delightful Mrs Pearce in Pygmalion, a revival that, with Tim Pigott-Smith as Higgins and Michelle Dockery as Eliza, later transferred to The Old Vic. When Grandage took over at The Sheffield Crucible, then succeeded Sam Mendes at The Donmar Warehouse, Una was a regular part of his team and a revelation, as a pert and fiery Maria in Twelfth Night, a starchy lady-in-waiting in Schiller's Don Carlos, with Derek Jacobi and a choric mainstay of a revival of TS Eliot's The Family Reunion, with Samuel West and Penelope Wilton, in 2008.
In the same year, she registered a beautiful comic cameo in the Menier Chocolate Factory revival of La Cage Aux Folles starring Douglas Hodge. She returned to The National in 2012 to feature strongly in Marianne Elliott's staging of The Curious Incident Of The Dog in the Night-Time as the neighbour who spills the beans about mother 'doing sex' with Mr Shears. Her television career remained eclectic, as she popped up in EastEnders as Caroline Bishop in 2006 and in various episodes of Benidorm, Midsomer Murders and The Durrells. Her screen CV also included appearances in Murder On The Blackpool Express, Call The Midwife, Starlings, The Bleak Old Shop Of Stuff, The Catherine Tate Show, The Worst Witch, Tricky Business, Happy Families, I'm Bob, He's Dickie, Life With Johnny, Boy Meets Girl, Hudd, The Dick Emery Show, The Strange World Of Gurney Slade and Rush Hour.
From 2010 onwards she was busy as Mrs Hudson in Sherlock, but managed one last movie outing in John Miller's Ealing Comedy-style pensioners' criminal caper Golden Years (2016). This blogger had the great good-fortune to meet Una in 2012 at a Sherlock publicity event in London. She was, as one would have wished for, every bit as charming, witty and pleasant as her onscreen persona, recalling aspects of her career with clarity and speaking with great fondness of former co-stars like Warren Mitchell ('he really was like another dad to me'), Tony Booth and Cliff.
She enjoyed embroidery and painting, writing two books on the former - Una Stubbs In Stitches (1984) and A Stitch In Time (1985), which expanded into a self-help volume on single motherhood - and indulging her well-trained eye for the latter in co-hosting (with Richard Bacon) the first series, in 2015, of BBC's The Big Painting Challenge. Her marriage to Henson ended in divorce in 1975. She is survived by their sons, Christian and Joe and by Jason, the son of her first marriage.
Fußball-Club Bayern München and West Germany legend Gerd Müller has died at the age of seventy five. One of the best strikers in history, Müller scored sixty eight goals in sixty two appearances for West Germany, including the winning goal in the 1974 World Cup final against The Netherlands. He also scored five hundred and forty seven goals in fine hundred and ninety four competitive games during fifteen years at Bundesliga giants Bayern, one of the finest goals-to-games ratio of any player in the modern socherball era. 'Today is a sad, black day for FC Bayern and all of its fans,' Bayern president Herbert Hainer said. 'Gerd Müller was the greatest striker there has ever been - and a fine person, a personality in world football. We are united in deep sorrow with his wife Uschi and his family. Without Gerd Müller, FC Bayern would not be the club we all love today. His name and the memory of him will live on forever.' Müller, a two times German footballer of the year, won the Golden Boot for netting ten goals at the 1970 World Cup - including the one that knocked England out in the Quarter Finals - and also won the Ballon d'Or that year. He helped West Germany win the European Championship two years later, scoring twice in a three-nil win against the Soviet Union in the final after, again, putting out in the Quarters. 'The news of Gerd Müller's death deeply saddens us all,' Bayern chief executive Mary Shelley's Oliver Kahn said. 'He's one of the greatest legends in the history of FC Bayern, his achievements are unrivalled to this day and will forever be a part of the great history of FC Bayern and all of German football. As a player and a person, Gerd Müller stands for FC Bayern and its development into one of the biggest clubs in the world like no other. Gerd will forever be in our hearts.' During his fifteen years at Fußball-Club Bayern München, Müller was the Bundesliga's top scorer seven times. He also held the record for the most goals in a calendar year after scoring eighty five in 1972 until Lionel Messi surpassed his total in 2012. His record of forty goals in a Bundesliga season - scored during 1971-72 - stood for forty nine years before it was broken by Robert Lewandowski in May. In total, Müller helped Bayern win four Bundesliga and DFB Cup titles, three European Cups, a European Cup Winners' Cup and an Intercontinental Cup. In 2015, the club announced he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. Born in November 1945, Muller joined Bayern in 1964. With his short stature and stocky build he was nicknamed 'short, fat Müller' by his first coach at the club, Zlatko Cajkovski. However, Müller quickly developed a reputation for being a clinical striker and his goals helped Bayern win the league title four times between 1969 and 1974. His prowess in the penalty box quickly made him one of the most feared forwards at club and international level, with another Bayern great - Karl-Heinz Rummenigge - describing Muller in 2015 as 'the best of all time, the Muhammad Ali of the penalty box.' To football fans worldwide he was Der Bomber. Müller retired from international football shortly after helping West Germany win the World Cup in 1974, aged just twenty eight, but continued to enjoy success at Bayern before leaving in 1979 to join Fort Lauderdale Strikers. He played three seasons in the United States before announcing his retirement in 1982.
And finally, dear blog reader, The International Cricket Council is bidding to have the sport included in the Olympic Games. The ICC says its 'primary target' is being added to the 2028 Games in Los Angeles. It would end a one hundred and twenty eight-year wait for the sport to be included, following its only previous appearance in the 1900 Games in Paris. The sport will feature as a women's event in the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. ICC chair Greg Barclay says the 'sport is united behind this bid' and that the Olympics are part of cricket's 'long-term future. We have more than a billion fans globally and almost ninety per cent of them want to see cricket at the Olympics,' said Barclay. Why the other ten per cent don't, he didn't elaborate. 'Clearly cricket has a strong and passionate fanbase, particularly in South Asia where ninety two er cent of our fans come from, whilst there are also thirty million cricket fans in the USA.' Where, exactly, that thirty million figure was derived from he, also, didn't say. 'The opportunity for those fans to see their heroes competing for an Olympic medal is tantalising.' Although, given the woeful current form of the England test team - if not the white ball variety side - one could argue it's unlikely to boost Britain's projected medal total too much.