Top Six Football Podcasts

Ollie Irish

22nd, January 2010


By Ollie Irish


Football Weekly
The Guardian’s footie podcast offers the ideal mix of professional opinion (professionally recorded too, in a proper studio, with big headphones) and risky pub banter. It also boasts the best host of any footie podcast, in the small, hairless form of James Richardson. Jimbo taught me that it’s not sad to sit on your own in a café, as long as you’re sipping an espresso and reading several newspapers at once. All FW listeners have their favourite pundits. For me, as long as Barry Glendenning – a man who sounds uncannily like the Irish guy in Graham Linehan’s sitcom The IT Crowd – is in there, I’m content. LINK

The Spurs Show
If James Richardson is the slickest host out there, then The Spurs Show’s Phil Cornwell is by far the most entertaining. His Harry Redknapp impression, which usually starts each show, is as bonkers as you’d expect from the man who co-created – and starred in – the wonderful (and shockingly underrated) Stella Street:

Marvellous (and it appears that Russell Brand based his entire persona on John Sessions’ version of Keith Richards). Anyway, as a fan of the mighty Tottenham, The Spurs Show is essential listening. Co-host Mike Leigh, who really does know his stuff, keeps Cornwell grounded. Worth listening to even if you don’t support the Lilywhites. LINK

Having appeared on this podcast a couple of times now, I am naturally biased in favour of it; Gary and Chris’s taste in guests is impeccable. What shines through in each episode is a pure, old-school passion for football, which, in this Sky Sports era of hype and hate, is all too rare. You may hear several bad puns along the way, but the TFT pod is largely a cynicism-free zone (except when I’m on), and I love it for that. It’s especially good on non-Prem football, too – the lower leagues exist here. LINK

The Game
The Times’ footie podcast is way less charming and dangerous than The Guardian’s but it’s still very good at the basics. The ace up The Game’s sleeve, now that Phill Jupitus has gone, is Gabriele Marcotti, who is a proper, serious football journalist – there are a few out there. Marcotti really does know his stuff, and whilst I don’t always agree with him, or think he’s best served as a host, his brand of contrary annoyance – especially when anyone dares stereotype Italians – works for me. LINK

The Football Ramble
Ramble is the key word here. Listening to this is like being in a pub, chatting with your witty, football-loving mates – and not the sort of football-loving mates who like Kasabian and Tim Lovejoy. Don’t be mates with those people. LINK


It’s Up For Grabs Now
I really wanted to dislike Alan Davies’ new Arsenal podcast, which launched in November 2009. But Davies is good company indeed, bringing oodles of self-effacing wit – which you will recognise if you watch BBC comedy quiz QI – to the table. He’s also a genuine, diehard Arsenal fan, which helps. Comic Ian Stone – another massive Gooner – is a regular guest and his banter with Davies is frequently brilliant. LINK