Soccer Rebel

I must have bought hundreds of these little A5-ish sized comics over the years. I was always, and remain, fond of the artwork’s impression of movement, if not the writing – even at a tender age I knew no footballer would hear, acknowledge, and mentally respond to an individual cry from the crowd while in the process of launching an effort on goal. But still, they had to make the narrative work somehow.

I love the premise of this storyline: up-and-coming Divison 1 (in the days before Sky Sports invented football, this was) footballer goes off the rails a bit and is sent to an aspiring non-league team in a harsh mining community to be taught a lesson. While there he causes ructions with his Big Time Charlie attitude and is, somewhat unfairly, held morally accountable for a terrible mine collapse (shades of Germinal there. Or is that just me?) which results in the death of some of the team, before rallying his more illustrious contacts to the cause and single-handedly seeing the team to promotion to the football league, and completely restoring his reputation.

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