Last night I attended the Football Blogging Awards in Manchester, and out of nowhere, I won.

I don’t really how this has happened. For a blog that started as a personal crusade to annoy a selection of friends, to now have it acknowledged nationally – well that is something really special.

Clearly I wasn’t expecting it. There were nine other high class blogs I was up against in the Best Football Club Blog category, and while I believe in my content, stories about Steven Pressley looking angry while pushing a shopping trolley will only really resonate with a Sky Blue-coloured group of fans. I won the judges vote which in short means that a panel of writers and industry supporters gave the blog a look and deemed it to be the best out of the lot. Unbelievable stuff.

The moment itself was your classic awards ceremony blur. My name was read out, CCFC compatriots Joey Crone and Gavin Horsfall swivelled around in their seats in shock, before I let out a wonderfully poignant “fucking hell”.

Fortunately the potty mouth was left at the table, but I also left my coherence and the big speech consisted of a joke about Coventry City never winning anything, followed by a sub-joke which was essentially the first one all over again. Fortunately I got in the crucial “thank you”. It’s the highlight of my writing career to date and a moment I will treasure, however hazy the recollection.

The one problem with wilting under the lights of a stage is that you forget to thank people who deserve your recognition. Now I know this isn’t a Nobel prize, but in the context of my life it’s a huge deal and I’d like to place on record a few thanks for supporting and contributing to the success of the blog over the last five years:

  • Joey Crone for his boundless support for the work I do and for allowing me to be a part of the Nii Lamptey Show, a project I’m sure is the main reason many of you are here.
  • Paul Knowles for being a worthy adversary on the podcast. Big respect.
  • Ed Wilson for his work (and anarchic wit) during the debut season of the podcast. We miss him.
  • Gavin Horsfall for being my blogging inspiration in the early days of Twitter.
  • Tom Furnival-Adams for offering his talents and crafting some stunning articles to help get the site into the public conscience.
  • Additional columnists Jim Lee, Richard Montague, Mark Woods, Barney Pell and Shaun Clifton for some awesome contributions to the site over the years.
  • Anthony Cooper and the rest of the guys behind the Football Blogging Awards. It’s grown beyond all recognition and gives something for every blogger to aim for.
  • Everyone who has ever voted for me.
  • My family for retweeting the flip out of everything I’ve ever done and doing their best to give me a Humpty Dumpty sized head.
  • And last but absolutely not least, Laura. For endless patience with my impetuous blogging needs. Be that waking up at 6am to find me frantically outlining an epiphany about Adam Barton’s haircut, or the outrageously late nights drawing up niche photoshops that will never see the light of day.

Basically, thanks everyone. This is great.

Now let’s never speak of it again.

P.s. I will speak of it again.


  1. Well done Neil. I am sure your award is well deserved and I am so pleased for you. Now maybe the Sky Blues could win something other than the “wooden spoon”!

  2. Congratulations, and well done to the judges for recognizing quality when they see it. The hard work and time in writing, sorting out the website as well as whingeing on the Lamptey show has been appreciated by the public, rather than just by the likes of me, an exile in China, for giving the true spirit of being a supporter in a blog. Cheers, and I’ll buy you a pint next time im in Cov (could be a long wait though).

  3. Congrats on your award, it was good to see a strong showing of Midlands winners in the judges awards. With Villa, Coventry and Wolves blogs all coming up trumps.

    I didn’t attend the awards out of protest to the ‘fan’s choice’ public voting and how corporate entities/companies are passing themselves off as ‘football blogs’. There was an advertising agency in my category that has a network of 100 blogs, it’s no surprise they won the ‘fan’s choice vote’ (although they are far from that). Paddy Power & Unibet are hardly ‘football blogs’, plus all it does is reward those with the biggest social media accounts.

    I mentioned to the Birmingham Mail you’d won after the awards and they said they’d give the Coventry Telegraph the heads-up (I saw they ran something).

    Good luck for the future and for the improvement of fortunes for Coventry!

    David @ MOMS

    1. Cheers Dave – certainly was pleasing to see the judges recognising the work we’re doing. Well done on your success.

      I know what you’re saying about the fans vote. The judges choice was a good introduction in an attempt to remedy that – will be interesting to how much further they go to address it next year. The PP and Unibet awards were particular disappointing for some of the one-man bands who are going great working in the Betting category. Let’s hope there’s a way of refining the process some more.

      Thanks again.

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