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A young man signs a piece of paper.  At sixteen years of age, this marks the point when his path through life begins to diverge from those around him. He has just become a professional footballer, and though still not permitted to vote, the opportunities that will be afforded to this novice mean he is to be saddled with a very adult responsibility. With the stroke of a pen, he has been unwittingly transformed from pubescent jock into a role model for rudderless teens, frustrated middle-aged men, and by extension, the rudderless teenage children of frustrated middle-aged men.
[added 27 September 2013, by Luke Ginnell. First published in LATE TACKLE MAGAZINE]
 [The Berlin-Dresden Rivalry]
Considered a poor cousin to its West German neighbour, with few of its clubs experiencing major success on the international scene, the 52-year history of the East German Oberliga nevertheless yielded some fascinating points of interest. Perhaps, the most notable story involves Dynamo Dresden and Dynamo Berlin, two clubs whose histories are intricately intertwined.
[added 09 September 2013, by Luke Ginnell]
 [The Prospect of a Serbian Jackie's Army]
[added 31 August 2013, by Luke Ginnell. First published in PICKLES MAGAZINE]
 [Predrag Pašić and the Bubamara football school]
Twenty-one years ago, Sarajevo began another chapter in its complex history. That year, its citizens found themselves besieged by armed forces stationed on the wooded hills that surrounded the city. One such citizen was Predrag Pašić, a former professional footballer and Yugoslavian international midfielder. Despite being at the mercy of the artillery on the hillsides and the numerous snipers that paralysed the city, Predrag established Bubamara (Ladybird), a school that brought together children from all sides under the unifying banner of football.
[added 20 August 2013, by Luke Ginnell]
 [Radnički Niš and Ideology]
The south of Serbia, with its rich and complicated past, is something of a historical and political melting pot. Niš, the region’s most populous city, is no different. Over the years, the city bore witness to the coming and going of a multitude of would-be conquerors, each of whom recognised the city’s importance as a gateway between East and West, a metaphorical confluence of cultures, ideologies, and nations...
[added  15 August 2013, by Luke Ginnell]
 [From Marakana to Maracana, the astonishing football journey of Dejan Petković]
Nestled picturesquely amidst the forested hills of Eastern Serbia is the small, industrialised town of Majdanpek. The region in which it lies – Bor – is known for its relatively extensive mineral wealth, particularly its rich deposits of copper, as well as that shiny metal most widely and greedily valued by the human race; gold. However, despite a long history of mining that saw the arrival of many aspiring prospectors and a 20th century industrial boom, it was not until 1972 that the town’s most cherished discovery first saw the light of day. That year, Dejan Petković was born.

[added  2013, by Luke Ginnell]

 [Deconstructing the Plovdiv Pistolero]

[added 2013, by Luke Ginnell]
There's plenty more where that came from. Click here to view a comprehensive list of all the articles to have appeared on the site, including more features, football fiction, galleries, Serbian football blog posts, and more.

thft | 2013