TV Cream

TV: M is for...

Match of the Day

Jimmy promises a close one at Filbert StreetONCE A Saturday night-only appointment, now a franchise seemingly wheeled out at any time of the day (it’s World Cup Grandstand, dammit!). You know the drill:

1) Seminal theme tune which gets revamped every couple of years to a chorus of complaints then gets changed back again

2) Besuited pundit panel of varying form but always boating a “head boy” (i.e. JIMMY HILL, ALAN HANSEN)

3) “Coming up”, all the action from “the games that matter”, i.e. be thankful for what you’ve got

4) Occasional boring feature profiling struggling/plucky/wacky/foreign player/manager who is currently “causing an upset” in a lower league

5) Goal Of The Month with a prize of two tickets to an away fixture as close as possible to London to keep the BBC budget down

6) Delirious shouting from the likes of JOHN MOTSON, DAVID COLEMAN or BARRY DAVIES
7) Earnest analysis of “spot of bother” at this or that ground, inevitably ending with someone concluding “the authorities really need to crack down on this sort of thing”
8) Pithy sign-off from your host, either mastered by the majestic Lynam or muffed by the mithering Lineker.



  1. Rob Johnson

    September 9, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    In those days it was earnest and one- dimensional, but at least Garth Crooks wasnt around.

  2. Glenn Aylett

    March 13, 2022 at 1:41 pm

    MOTD in the seventies used to feature a re run of the Grand National for those who had missed it in the afternoon. Unusual as I never saw Julian Wilson talking about Arsenal’s prospects during the racing on Grandstand.
    As a programme, MOTD is one of those evergreen shows that will probably be around for as long as the BBC has some football rights and still attracts a respectable 4 million viewers.

  3. Richardpd

    March 13, 2022 at 10:07 pm

    My Dad normally found this a good way to round off a Saturday night, & lamented any time the BBC didn’t have the rights to top division football, especially if Sky or ITV were making a hash of the highlights.

  4. Glenn Aylett

    March 14, 2022 at 10:29 am

    @ Richardpd, ITV in London had the Big Match, which was passable and Brian Moore was a decent presenter, but living in Cumbria, we had the joys of Scotsport every Sunday afternoon, with Arthur Montfort trying to big up a 0-0 draw between Hamilton and Mothewrwell, ” an important Lanarkshire derby”. Also Geordieland had the long running Shoot, which might have inspire the name of a boys football magazine.

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