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Scooters, silent sidelines and Hoop Dreams: It's the week's best sportswriting

If it’s longreads you want, we’ve got just the thing.

Image: Joana Sousa/AP/Press Association Images

1.“If I had come over at the age of 15 or 16 I would have been homesick and I still was bad enough at 20, never mind 16.

“Playing League of Ireland week in, week out, playing for points, rather than playing in an Academy, I was really playing man’s games at a reasonably young age and that helped me.”

It’s more of a transcript than sportswriting, but we loved Seamus Coleman in conersation with Kevin Kilbane published by the Daily Mail.

2. “I remember some lads being given sponsored scooters by a local garage, scooters covered from front to back in club logos and emblems which was all very good when things are rosy.

“But it was not so clever when you nip down the road for some milk when you have just lost. Some of the guys were having their scooters tipped over while they were parked up. It’s not something you would see happening in Bath.”

The increased playing schedule ain’t the only downside to life in Toulon, read Tom May’s account of rugby on the Cote D’Azur for ESPN Scrum.

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3.“You could certainly understand if he had a Messi complex. He has to endure constant discussion of Messi’s apparent superiority, as a footballer and even as a human being. At times it seemed Ronaldo could not win. If he scored four, Messi would score five. If he cured the common cold, Messi would cure cancer. Ronaldo’s most impressive feat is not to usurp Messi; it is to believe he could do so in the first place.

The Guardian’s Rob Smyth hailed 2013′s best football player better than anybody else did.

4.
  • No Shouting Instructions.
  • No Shouting at the ref.
  • No Shouting at the opposition.
  • Absolutely No shouting when a player is about to receive to ball or pass it.
  • Silent at all times.
  • Kids voices heard everywhere.

Most agree that parents forcefully trying to live vicariously through their child’s sporting potential is a bad idea, The Coach Diary explains the best way to counter-act it.

5. “I talked to William after that on the phone, and he goes, “Yeah.” And I wasn’t pissed off, I was just surprised, and I asked, “Why haven’t we met Catherine?” ”He said, “I didn’t want to tell you guys, because I felt like for the film, I’d come off like I’m just another black teenage kid having babies out of wedlock, and that whole thing that people look down on.” So I asked him what his plan was, if he was going to marry Catherine. And he said yes. I told him, “You guys are actually defying the stereotype, and that’s something that should be in the film.”

Remember Hoop Dreams, as in one of the finest sports films ever made? Well then, 20 years on, you’ll find Jason Guerrasio’s oral history with the filmmakers and young stars enthralling. It’s on TheDissolve.com and it’s  a long read.

6. “It wasn’t until the spring of last year that they learned that the little house used to be one of Dallas’s most famous residences, known throughout the city as the McClamrock house. It was the home of Ann McClamrock and her son John, the boy who could not move.”

It’s an old one, but it’s a great one ; Long read from Texas Monthly by Skip Hollandsworth on the endless love of a mother for her son, paralysed by sport.

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About the author:

Sean Farrell

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