Wednesday 16 September 2015

Sing when you're winning

Football chants: they're a bit like radio jingles. Throwaway yet informative, simple yet to the point. And funny; aimed at players, mostly, but often directed at the fans sitting in the opposite end to you. A prime example of the former: remember when Peter Crouch (6'-7") played for Liverpool? He's big, he's red, his feet stick out the bed, it's Peter crouch, Peter Crouch. And the latter: when the away fans inform the home fans that they don't think much of their ground and sung to the tune of When the Saints - My garden shed is bigger than this, my garden shed is bigger than this.

And like any catchy song that eventually becomes an earworm, it's the alchemy combining a turn of phrase and a memorable tune. In fact, and I'm probably going out on a limb here, but you'll probably find that 90% of all the best chants rely on just a handful of tunes. Think of a chant you heard last Saturday afternoon and I'll lay money on it being hung around one of these songs:

Knees Up Mother Brown
Sloop John B
Winter Wonderland
The Hokey Cokey
Son Of My Father (God Bless Giorgio Moroder)
This Old Man
She'll Be Coming Round The Mountain
Glory Glory
Go West
Kiss Him Goodbye

There are, obviously, notable exceptions. When Rio Ferdinand famously failed a drugs test, Fulham fans came up with His name is Rio and he's watching from the stand to *that* tune by Duran Duran.

But my personal favourite has got to be one from the seventies (of course) and was a rather succinct tribute laid at the door of Billy Bremner (587 appearances/ 91 goals for Leeds Utd 1960-1976).

Na na na na, na na na, na na na na na BILLY! BREMNER! to the opening bars of this:

* When Rangers keeper Andy Goram was diagnosed with mild schizophrenia, the chant Two Andy Gorams, there's only two Andy Gorams could often be heard at grounds north of the border.


  1. An old Everton chant I heard whilst I was down in London on the tube, to the tune of Andy Williams' You're Just Too Good To Be True, is probably the one that made me laugh the most

    "Marouane Fellaini, you are the love of my life, Marouane Fellaini I'll let you shag my wife, I want curly hair too"

  2. "WE WANT ONE" -

  3. My loathing of the beautiful game is well known, though t'was not always so. In the early 1960's my step-Grandad worked at the Leyton Orient (in those days just plain Orient) football ground and he'd often take me along to home games. The one chant I vividly remember from those long gone days began strongly enough, but completely (and hilariously) ran out of creative steam at the halfway point. 'O-R-I-E-N-T Orient are the team for la la la la la la la la la la la la la'.