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Confessions of a Chelsea Headhunter Interview March 22, 2011

An interview with an ex Chelsea Headhunter, giving an outline of his personal views, opinions and experiences on violence and aggression in sport. ed. editor has used original transcript

“Our behaviour toward each other is the strangest, most unpredictable, and most unaccountable of all the phenomena with which we are obliged to live. In all of nature, there is

nothing so threatening to humanity as humanity itself�

L. Thomas, 1981

Key Chelsea Headhunters Football hooligan firm linked to the London football club Chelsea Chelsea youths Hooligan group for junior members of Chelsea Headhunters A slap Conducting severe physical pain to an opponent Row (‘To have a row’) To have a fight Spotter Chelsea Headhunters set in the football grounds looking for fans to fight from opposing teams

Interview Colour Key Me Chelsea Headhunter Ex Police Officer

Headhunting What is a headhunter? This is how it works right, what we did was the ‘eadhunters would let people exit the game, fans who leave early, people like yourselves who aint gonna cause no trouble and wont get involved. We would then have people in the ground, the ‘spotters’. And how we used to do it was we had people in the football ground, the ‘spotter’ right. So say now you are an away fan and your giving it a load of ‘that’ (Imitates chatter with his hand) And we say you see her there, white top, blue bottoms (Picking out the colours of the tracksuit I was wearing) We give a full description; there would then be people outside, wearing no colours at all so that when you come out the ground they would then walk alongside you, pick you up and take you round the corner and giva you a slap. And that’s where the Headhunters come into it, cus they only pick on the people who they been picked on by. And people are always like “ah so how do you know who’s who when they aint wearing no colours?” But you just do. In 1000 Chelsea fans you could always pick em out.

“We would then have people in the ground, the ‘spotters’”

“In 1000 Chelsea fans you could always pick em out.”

Chelsea Youth

“Dildo’s…prepare to invade the pitch”

Now this lot here; (Pointing at images of young boys saluting with a Chelsea flag) This is a new firm now it’s the Chelsea Youth. So before the Head’unter’s you’re in the Chelsea Youth.

Before they had started the game. So we all went down like this wiv it all strapped on ur head (Placing hands on his forehead) We all ran down, there were coppers there and they said “you ain’t going no where” but they were laughing cus they don’t know what to do. And there it was again…

And they progress into the senior Headhunter groups? Yea they will progress into the senior ranks. Fans & the Police Most of the Chelsea main crew have left and moved away abroad, that’s one of them there…he comes back very rarely. (pointing at a man on the screen holding a Chelsea flag) To avoid getting in trouble with the police? Well nah they just banned them that’s it, if they come back to the country and are caught near a football game they will be arrested. So your relationship with the police is generally good? Yea, (laughs) Yea going back to the young days, we was playing Cheffield which is a hard, hard club. Yea on boxing day, the boxing day trips were always good, we all went to local sex shop and bought a load of dildo’s. We all walked down to the front and Nikko said;

”dildo’s… prepare to invade the pitch” So we jumped over and got to the other end and all ran off and the coppers thought it was funny, took us back round and put us back in saying “look lads, just behave”. Over time there was another; “dildo’s invade the pitch” But this time they was onto us and wiv me being someone this big… (laughs) With all these dildo’s of all colours, it did look great mind, we said charge, so we went and this time they let the dogs off and it was just one massive big punch up. And what they used to do back then, they used to take you into a holding room till enough were there to fill the coach, load the coach up and drive you 10 miles out of the city and dump ya and you had to make your own way home. Now Sheffield to where I was living in maidenhead was a long way, and when your 16yrs to 17yrs and you got no money…? And did this violence ever effect the players? Yea they used to have the goalie, through darts at him, coins and so on, and at the police too but you would always get the ones who took it all a little bit too far. If there were no police do you think the violence would still occur or is it perhaps the rebellious nature of human beings

that keeps the conflict alive regardless of the authorities? If there was no police it would be a riot, every single day. The government knows its coming back again from the 70’s and 80’s, hand in hand with the recession, and its coming back with a vengeance, but if it weren’t for the football outlet, there would be more crime in the streets.

Arranging fights I remember for the away games sometimes there would be bats, racquets, and baseball bats, hockey sticks all in the back of the bus, and there be 20 to 30 of us in the back of this bus, and we pulled up to this pub outside London with some arsenal fans, I was about 16yrs and he said right you can have this one and handed me the racquet. And I said “well what am I gonna do wiv this?” and he just said “that’s what you got”, your not old enough to use one of these. And I said “im not havin tha” and I chucked it on the floor, so he smacked me in the face and said “pick it up, that’s yours”. So I pick it up, walk out and they are all there laughing at ya, thinking well ‘what you gonna do with that?’ But that’s what it is you know, its banter. I read in quite a few cases that fans arranged to meet before games, is there a website for that or is it organised through other means? All on mobile, nothing gets publicised until the police get hold of it. The communicating is all done last minute. I still got called up until about 3 or 4 years ago on a Friday night late going “would we arrange to meet Saturday morning” Does someone from each side communicate or are others involved? The main guy normally, whoever is running the firm and say bring down 300 of your top blokes. I will give you an example of when Birmingham came down for the premiership last year, they had a phone call to bring down 300 of their top guys, and to meet up on Parsons Green, which is round the corner from the back of Chelsea. We turned up with 300 and they turned up wiv about 120. We walked up to em and said: “Look, go home. Because if you start now you’ll never go home” And that’s the sort of code of ethics within the violence, there is no point taking them on, it has got to be…a challenge. You’d very rarely, unless its kids just messing

around, you’d very rarely get a group of 20 picking on 5, its got to be equal numbers. When Bristol City were in the play off, they (firms) received a phone call from Chelsea sayin’ “we hope you get into the premiership because we is looking forward to coming down there and having a row wiv ya cus we hear you got a good firm so lets put it to the test” So the 3 or 4 clubs that come up from the championship into the premiership were already being contacted. Were you ever involved in the organisation of the fights? Nah nah, I just go the phone calls you know? Up until about four years ago. Steve Lambert once called me up and said I “gotta be ere by half past nine in the morning”, and I said to him that “I just cant do it”, and this would all be at six o’clock on the Saturday evening, and I said “I cant go” And that’s when you stopped? yea that’s when I stopped doin’ all this (Pointing at image of riot police still up on the computer screen) And plus, look at what I do as a job and wiv my son too. On pitch violence So what about on the pitch violence with referees and players? I think that is more passion and adrenaline, cus if your in a cup game and your playing Man united in the quarter finals of the championship league and we get brought down when there is a blatant penalty. One you feel cheated and two you would have a bit of a go at the official, the ref and you’d say, “What happened then?” And then the Man united players might get involvedand their sole intention to get involved is to get you sent off. And if you look at rugby say; do you see this in rugby? Nah they never argue with the official… and why not?

With the players yes you will see them scrap from time to time but never with the ref and the reason for that is the level of punishment… in football if you shout at the ref you get a yellow card, the level of punishment is smaller than in rugby where a player goes to the sin bin for 10 minuets, and that could cost his team the match. Say you had a penalty 40meters from the post and you gave the ref some backchat the ball gets moved down for 10m, then another 10m until its gone so far down the pitch when you then get a penalty fine so you get penalized. Now if they introduced the sin bin and sideline rules to football, I recon the on pitch aggression would stop, and the reason why they don’t, well I dunno. In my opinion if you wanna fight then fight properly, none of this messing about, all this on pitch violence is just a weak force if you ask me, yea its heated, loads of pushin’ and shovin’ but at the end of the day its all about the fan violence when your club is playing. All this ‘we hate them, they hate you’. But all the on pitch aggression is all push-shove ‘tap, tap, tap’ to get the ref’s attention and make him make a decision in their favour… “oh look he got kicked, look at that ohhh” It’s a way of cheatin’. And when you see the foreigners come over and they get tapped on the leg, roll over 60 times and cry for a minute… as soon as the referee has sent the bloke off then they jump up and they is fine again. Now if I was a player and someone tapped my leg, next tackle I would break their leg. But they don’t. What are they on 250 grand a week, they don’t want no trouble. The only one who I can fink of as an exception was Wayne Rooney, he’s just an absolute ‘fruit bat’, he elbowed a bloke in the neck the other day and that’s cus he lost his temper, he had a go at the fan.

Why do it? Has it got much to do with the football or is the sport just the excuse? Yea, I’d say it’s more territorial, football is the place where you would congregate, you know u’d follow your club, and then erm yea you’d have a row… turf wars if you like. So you have Fulham which is only a mile from Chelsea, but there is no trouble between Chelsea and Fulham, because the reason why is that Chelsea don’t see Fulham as a threat so they wouldn’t ever go down there and have a row. Tottenham on the ova hand it’s a different story…now if I can just find this write up you can see why…. (Begins scrolling furiously again with the computer mouse to find the correct article, he finds it… See next page) Yea it surprises me that violence on this level is organised in what is said to be a nicer area of London. Yea it cus there are so many exits you see, that’s why they meet there. So all sport aside, Rugby, football and so on, do you still think people would challenge each other like this? Yes, especially with the kids who have got no money and shit lives, they will always need an outlet which is why football violence is on the increase, but it ain’t classed as football violence no more, its put as a ‘public order offence’, anything that happens outside the ground is not related to football violence. At one Cardiff battle there were 300 to 500 people involved in that but it weren’t put down as football violence it was a public order offence because it didn’t happen in the ground, if it were in the ground it would have been classed as ‘football violence’ so all those arrests go against many statistics.

12 March 2007

“At least 10 people were stabbed as hardcore soccer violence erupted on the streets of west London. Drinkers fled as running battles

broke out between about 40 thugs carrying knives, baseball bats, wooden clubs embedded with nails and hockey sticks. The riot began last night outside the White Horse pub in Parsons Green, known as the “Sloaney Pony”, following a dramatic FA Cup clash between Chelsea and Spurs. Police believe it was either a prearranged fight organised over mobile phones or the Internet or Tottenham hooligans had ambushed Chelsea fans “in their own backyard”. One witness said: “It was pandemonium, I’ve never seen scenes like it. It was a battlefield in the middle of Fulham’s smartest area on a Sunday evening. I was on Parsons Green itself having a quiet drink with friends - nothing to do with the football. “Suddenly there was a lot of loud shouting and screaming and we saw a huge mob fighting outside the Sloaney Pony, smashing each other with baseball bats and anything they could get their hands on. People were fleeing in all directions, it was chaos. “I ran off down a street but could hear the rioting going on from half a mile away. About five minutes later the police sirens started and carried on all night.” Dozens of officers, including vans of riot police on standby and a police helicopter, were scrambled to the scene. Police arrested 34 men, including seven who were taken to hospital suffering from stab wounds and head injuries. The injured men were taken to various west London hospitals. They included a 40-year-old from Plumstead who suffered head and chest injuries, a 52-yearold from Kentish Town, a 41-year-old from Chigwell and a 31-year-old from Bedfordshire. Three of them were kept in overnight and are said to be in a stable condition. The others were discharged after being treated and are being held in custody. Huge crowds had gathered outside the White Horse, a traditional drinking venue on Chelsea match days, in the afternoon after the match. The violence erupted at just after 8pm and took up to an hour to bring under control. Police recovered knives, baseball bats, wood laced with nails and hockey sticks. A police source said: “Clearly there was a degree of organisation. These guys had not turned up with sticks and bats to play a game of hockey or baseball. “We are trying to establish whether it was a pre-arranged setpiece fight or if it was one group of organised hooligans setting upon another. “We have a lot of people in custody and will be talking to them all to try to see what was behind this. “We will also be checking whether any of them were known hooligans.” Anyone with information is asked to call Hammersmith and Fulham police on 020 8246 2505. Earier the match ended in a 3-3 draw as Chelsea came back from being 3-1 down”

Would you melt it all down to being the product of raw human passion for a cause? yea cus when I was born I weren’t no Chelsea fan, my family are all mixed in teams they support, all London based min. but once you have chosen your… your allegiance if you like, then that’s it. I read that much of aggression is Hormone induced aggression; testosterone and it has been said “We could avoid two-thirds of all crime simply by putting all able-bodied young men in cryogenic sleep from the age of 12yrs through 28yrs.” (D. Lykken) Would you agree or do women play a key part in the violence too? Hmmm testosterone levels, some women are actively a part of it, but its how they been brought up and whever perhaps they been going out wiv someone who was a part of it. When we played Liverpool in the league cup in Cardiff, there were some away fans from Ireland, and a few mates and me chased em off. But Why do you think people get involved then when we came out they was there with firm violence? Is it the rush or waiting for us, 6 or seven of em. And simply something to do? there was only 4 of us mind, but we was It is the rush and the general buzz, big blokes. One of us came up and we but when ur there and ur in it its went ‘bang’, floored him, next one came completely different altogether. When up and we went ‘bang’ and then we told I was there, I weren’t a case of I was em to go home. Now why we had to be drunk erm….(looks puzzled)…erm how physical, I dunno, it the way it was. Its can you explain it, its like a family, I like when you is at school and you is feel more at home with football with fighting another school, why? Because my mates than I do at home with the its territorial. This is mine and this family. You become a part of it and its is yours type thing. Now if you break not about bragging rights or anything… down football violence and you take erm…. how could you put your finger on it back to school days with one school it? (Begins to firmly tap the table with taking on another school, its because his finger in frustration) I don’t think you’re a part of an organisation and a you ever will… part of something and you feel safe in (Silence) …never will be able to explain it, and it gives you security. the reason why. And you think that people fight You pledge you allegiance to the because they are protecting that firms, bit like you have pledged your security? allegiance to university rowing and Yea, so if you do this at school, once your racin’ Bristol or Newcastle… you progress onto adulthood, it will you wanna do your damd’est to beat span out into society. Even in the them, because that’s your game, that’s military, the hatred between the your family. regiments is phenomenal.

That’s another thing too, just look at the history of this country, how many wars have we fought? How many wars have we started? In your lifetime for example; what year was you born in?

we fought you was gonna kill ‘er, or wat you was gonna do… I ain’t never seen you pull that fight face” but in that split second you just loose it, no matter how fast you try to control your emotions.

Does he ever get involved with the violence from seeing what you do? Nah, no never.

So you don’t think it is hereditary in that sense? 1988. Now this was the problem in Latvia, Nah its not hereditary no. Well in some We got the Falkland’s, Kosovo, Serbia, what happened was they (police) cases it is, I got a friend John who will Iraq, Afghanistan, and now in Libya; penned us in, and because of the fight his own shadow. We was playing you tell me in your whole lifetime we history of football violence in the 80’s, Tottenham in the league final, had a ain’t been at war… now for just a little European police think it still happens few beers and was walking down to the island we get involved and start many all the time. So we went over there wiv ground, and he had this hatred, how do major conflicts in the world. women and children, normal blokes and you say….erm…. like the Nazi’s and the so on and they penned us in this space Jews, it is bad! So you think that violence is embedded wiv no toilets or noffin’ and the police Anyway we got turned into the into the British culture? said to this one woman who needed the Tottenham supporters and John just Yea. Well Switzerland don’t do it and toilet, and told her to go squat on the turned around and started on this one Austria don’t do it. Its not as if we was floor, and that’s how you were treated, lad which of course means he didn’t just a big country like Canada, America you was treated like animals. And that start on one he was looking suddenly or Russia, yea at times they might get was before the game, so you go into at about 200 of em and there were only involved but there ain’t no country that the game and the away fans is there 5 of us. So I got my son put him behind we haven’t invaded at some point. So is throwin’ bottles and coins and ova stuff me wiv which the police ‘orses charged it in our nature and over the years it’s into the Chelsea area. But as soon as at them and took em all out. I turned to slowly coming out? Why have we got any Chelsea fan threw one back then John and said “ah wat u do that for” and involved in Libya? There was no reason the police steamed on in and gets one he just said “ah just don’t like em”. to do it but we gone and got involved or two of them to come out. So all of this with it. Afghanistan too, if you look at begins to build up and then once you Now John came from a bad family us as a nation its ingrained, the hatred get outside it blows up like anything. upbringin’ and is one of 8 brothers, he between Chelsea and Tottenham down was in the household cavalry and he at the pub after one bottle and then So would you say the police were got discharged for fighting. And this is you look at the hatred between Scots prejudice then? whre it goes back to childhood cus in guards and the welsh guards, the thing Oh abroad yea, but ere’ they are fine his world if someone said “I’m gonna that makes it totally different is when yea they’re really nice people, I got no get ya”, in his language that means “im these people have got to unite and problem wiv ‘em. gonna kill ya”, right so when he was fight the country together they will in the Houshold Cavalry, he was told do and with all the football fans who So you have been in trouble with the that this guy was gonna do ‘im and hate each other, but when they go to police before hand? in his brain that meant that some one support England they is always there as Oh yea, it was 5 years ago I was last was gonna kill him; so what did he do? one, now how does that look? arrested and spent 8 hours in the cell. He waited outside the mesh one day One minute you try and kill somebody, and wiv a pickaxe handle went “bash” but just because the team changes you So what was it that made you change as straight into the side of his head, and the best of buddies but the next minute a person from those days to no longer that’s why he was discharged after once your back into your ‘family team’ being involved in the violence anymore? being in Catterick for a few years first. your against each other’s throat again, Erm, it’s different as in I don’t look for But in his rules, if someone says those that’s one question to as a psychologist, it anymore. But believe me if someone words to you it means ur a dead man is why does this happen?? picked on me at the football I wouldn’t take a backwards step. Its something But where he comes from and the way I had this one student, and we was that I have found very hard, it’s ingrained he has been brought up, if someone training her with the paddle bags and in your blood. But what it was that says that they is gonna do ‘em, that wanted to see where her breaking point changed me was our son, I took him means putting a gun to their head. was. And I was pushin’ her and pushin’ when he was 4yrs old and he is sixteen (laughs) Yea he was kicked out, gone! her and pushin’ her, then she bent now, and he’s pulled me out of allot of And that’s the thing, it’s all to do with, “bam” and kicked me straight in the trouble over the years. He ain’t like it but in my opinion you’re influenced from head, and everyone went “oooh” and then he weren’t brought up through it. a very young age. Because everybody my mate said “your face changed and is born, and comes into the world as

fresh, new people and then its all down to what you learn in your upbringing. How many people who is mass murders, have family members who are mass murders too? Its not a trait as in if your dad was a mass murderer then you is going to be a mass murderer too or your sons or your grand sons. Nah something happens in life that makes it happen. So this thing about violence, something has to happen to trigger it. Wiv me, and when I had my parents in the royal forces and your living with that and living around that, guns and fighting becomes a part of your life, then when you go in the forces it more becomes a part of that everyday life, but what would make someone at university in America go out and buy a gun and shoot people, what makes that?? It something that, I dunno, this whole topic is a topic that is ludicrous, its vast! And if you could solve it (Pointing at me) You’d be very rich! Its culture, its backgrounds, and its religions you know. It’s like the Easton Europeans coming over here and knocking things, well if I came from their background then so would I, for them its like taking a walk in a sweet shop, they see it as they ain’t doing anything wrong! And then how do you bring in a load of people from different backgrounds in different countries and cultures and make them all see eye to eye? And the government have now, what after 30years or summing have only just realised it hasn’t worked but how do they turn back the time to realise this this?? They can’t its too ingrained. Future of firm violence Did you struggle to get a job after your life within the Headhunters? No, cus I ain’t ever been charged, my records are all clean. How did you manage that? Cus back from 70’s to 1989-in those years you weren’t ever arrested, but

as soon as you went into the 90’s into 2000, that’s when the policing changed. It was also too big back then, the police could not have ever begun to control it, in numbers Chelsea Headhunters today are top’s 500, back then you were talking 4000/5000 strong, and every meet that was arranged, well the biggest one I can fink of was around 300, but that was 300 of hard core, and that was the difference to now. And back then we didn’t pay for nothin’, there would be 3000 in the city centre on match day wiv your rags on and walk back out again with a brand new suit and no one ain’t gonna stop ya, so it was quite a lucrative business. Now the main guys in the Headhunters who be making money out of it, they are mostly now spending money on drugs to sell on, and now the drugs is not so lucrative and all, they are gonna be turning back to this, so its kind of a big circle. Because the violence got worse? Well you gotta look at what else is going on around at that time too because back in the day you had allot going on with the recession and the miners strikes, and I don’t care what anyone says, history does repeat itself and we are heading for a massive recession, its only just started, two years down the road what will happen is ‘we’ (Headhunters and early hooligans) will come back, because you cant suppress the youth of today, you just cant do it.. When they is in their youth clubs there ain’t no stopping them. But what changed me was the awareness of what I could do for other people. My life really from a young age was pretty shit, I had both my parents in the army, we used to go to boardin’ schools and stay in different camps, we was bullied most the time cus every time you went to a new school that’s just the way it was, so from 4yrs old I was fighting. There was one guy who was one of my best mates now, Garry Bird, he went into the RAF on RAF quarters

and I went in Army. I went round his ‘ouse, knocked on is door and beat ‘im up, so from that young age it was all violent. But what I have learnt in life is that its mostly best not to say what you fink and then you move on, but is it write then not to say what you think. And in training, lets go back a few years, I have trained British commonwealth European champions and world champions and that’s now what has given me that new lease of life so I must be good at somefin’ and I get people from londan who phone me up sayin’ will you give me some coachin’, which I don’t really do, I just keeps it localised.

“Then Shall we simply allow our children to listen to any story anyone happens to make up, and so recieve into their minds ideas often the very opposite of those we shall think they ought to have when they are grown up?�

Plato, The Republic, 360 B.C.E

Preventing the violence Do you ever see a way of preventing the violence or it dying out altogether? no never, not whilst you got people like this coming through (scrolling down pages of Chelsea fans on computer) So in a situation like this how would you go about stopping it? If I had to stop it, they done it at the grounds now very well, they sniff out the trouble fast. The only way they can stop it is if they do more house raids in the early mornings before games, find out who people are and ban them. And what they done in every club now, all down to a Bristol City boy they raided back in the 80’s, and he was called the general back then. And what they do is they build data up and keep their eye on people and once they get that information they’re sorted. What’s going on now in programs around the stadiums at the moment where there is violence or racism, you have the option to text or phone a number that is on every seat, then that person would get a ban through the post. But outside it will begin to build up out on the street so I dunno really. The other thing they successfully done today is priced it out the range of normal people. So the average lad who got a part time job back in the day would be able to turn up on a Saturday, get a ticket and go watch a game. But these days our now talking £50 quid a ticket, and they just cant afford to do it. Now I work in schools and colleges and teach kids defence and selfdefence, so am I a hypocrite? But then I teach the kids who don’t do what I done. The law of self-defence, well I would put it into 4 categories: 1. I would call your name and you cant do anyfin’ 2. I can grab a hold of ya and you can use appropriate force to throw back 3. You hit me I hit you back 4. Deadly force, if someone go to kill you then you can kill them right?

So how would you diffuse a situation? And the police have that clock that they split into 4, and how I would sum it up is if someone was vocal and they is shouting out abuse, look at their body language and then look at yours, if they is there abusing you but their body language is calm, and their facial expression is calm; your reaction is to speak softly, calm expression, relaxed and then you are diffusing their strong points because what causes allot of trouble is body language. Now the other thing is the 2 meter rule, because if they is 2 meters away they cant hit you or do nuffin’, but if someone is this close, (Holding hand out stretched from his body) you got about a second to react, two meters away you can see what’s coming and you can move away and not get involved

In combat sport if you train hard and beast a national champ, you gotta give him hugs and kisses to tell him well done in’it? Oh yea absolutely! It should be encouraged! Accept you gotta watch all the things you could catch! (laughs) Craig quick one for ya… Ah ya not havin’ a go are ya? Ha nah im not havin one! Violence in Sport… what do ya make of it? Violence in sport, yea it should be encouraged! There you go! And thats coming from a police officer mind. “And whats your quick opinion on why it’s there?”

Well otherwise it will be out in the streets wouldn’t it? Well its Just competitive instinct, as soon as your So if I were to sum it all up and put it in born your fighting for air, your fighting a nutshell, there would be 4 main area’s for water ya know its in ya for you to that sparked violence and aggression survive. Yea well that’s my opinion, in sport: whats your thoughts on it? My thoughts is exactly the same, he 1. Would be your upbringing. If you who fights ‘ardest lives longest! It’s a see domestic violence performed, survival instinct. Huh interesting. you are 9 times out of 10 gonna do Another one is street violence, why is it yourself because it is around ya there so much violence in the streets? all the time. 2. Would be religion. Violence on the streets is because we is 3. Politics. Politics and religion never in a pack culture still ever stops being confrontational, Pack culture, gangs… its what people believe in. 4. Territorial, parts of what you are Gangs yes and where you’re from. It’s down territorial to what you chose to believe in. You gotta bear all this in mind, Territorial yea, it’s a right of passage. Cus then you can ask well why is Allot of it is gangs because particularly Rooney more violent than Torres?? boys, i.e. young men, need to belong. If They is both centre forwards and you look at all the gangs they all have both play at big clubs, but Rooney a uniform, and it’s tthe belonging and is far more of an idiot right?, cus being respected within that. he comes from the working classes Which goes back to what we was sayin’ earlier about the army, what “Ey” “Craig”! you have got is a uniform, football you (Shouts to a man, once he was off the have got a uniform, Chelsea you have phone, who was sitting one chair down got a uniform, Tottenham you have the line from the fencing coach who was got a uniform sat next to me) In a nutshell

Yea basically I fink you have hit the nail on the ‘ead there then. So as you see once you got small topic and you open it up it becomes massive, so with violence in sport there is a reason for it and you keep going back to that reason, moving right back through history. Well you can categorise it, start a system in a pyramid, and at the bottom of the pyramid wwwyou can put conflicts that we have been involved in as a nation in your lifetime. So when was your birthday…88, when was the Fauklands? 89, no 82? So Fauklands was just outside your time. Yea so then when you expand that into society, which will be your next part. So that would be culture, background and upbringing cus that plays a big part of it. So whether its C of E or Catholic, protestant or whatever, you then develop what you is a part of, so that takes you on to being a headhunter or in the army or whatever, it doesn’t matter, you is still becoming part of a gang. That makes you a part of a gang. Now from the ages of 4-10yrs, if you lived in a violent area and all you saw was crime, shootings, muggin’s unless you moved out of that to make yourselves a new life that’s what you’re gonna become. But is you do break away, so it don’t matter if you go to Eaton or Sand Hurst, oxford or Cambridge, your still a member of a gang, it don’t matter what you call it! Oxford, they is still a gang, something to be part of. When they have the boat race, this weekend innit?

(Crap, not rhetorical questions; I was expected to answer this one) I suppose coming from a large family might be something to do with it, and perhaps something to do with a recent history of professional rugby players on my father’s side of the family? YES! So that’s there for ya, that’s your cultural background for ya, and it gave you that inspiration to be competitive and to take up a sport and win. So it don’t matter where you come from you will always tick that box.

Now with me, my background whever I like it or not was violent, my parents was both involved in violent fings and I was around it all the time. A death is around everything continually, so what Yea so any way, then you got gang and I do then was I went into gangs, young then you come up to what you said that gangs with Chelsea, then when I joined was violence in sport and ‘why’? and the army I joined a new gang but then everyfing below gives you that! But I was in 2 gangs, one massive big gang saying that then as a rower, where did and then another gang which was for u get you competitive edge? Cus you me a release from all the tension from got it, but where is it from? From what being in that bigger gang (the army) stage of your life did you form that, that Does that make sense? And then we you wanted to compete and that you get into violence in sport. wanted to win? So what do you fink, But allot of people go into sport where did it come from? because they don’t wanna fight, but

they got that competitive edge to wanna compete and win for that belonging feeling so they join a team Do you recon that if the whole world got involved in a competitive sport it would reduce crime significantly? The crime would come down yea, the violence element would drop yea because you got something else to let all your testosterone and your aggression out on. But then how would you explain cases like Rooney who is violent on and off the pitch? Why is he an exception? Rooney is just a an idiot, he has got so much potential, and so much money now, but he is just too hot headed to be a professional footballer. One moment of madness is gonna end his career, and if someone could get that and bottle it and surpress it on the football field, then well he would be unreal. But he needs an outlet, he needs to go and stand in the boxing gym and go punch seven bell out of a punch bag for 2 hours cus that’s his makeup to get all the aggression out of his system, it’s a release.

And it’s the same wiv business manages, bankers, it don’t matter what walk of life you was in, stress is there. And that’s why things are so bad at the moment, people is getting stressed out and they need a release and what do allot of people do after work to get rid of the stress, they go down the pub and drink wine, or go home and have a drink or before they gets on the tube, then when they gets home and have a few more and that’s their release! Just to drink and forget about everything, but it doesn’t go away, the next day the problem is still there. The thing with violence being a release is that you let it all out, and its gone. It could be gone for 2 to 3 months until it builds up again, and that’s the reason.

distance on a horse, as he goes he comes to the enemy lines where he fires his pistol and his horse gets shot down, so you got shooting and running. So then of course he comes to the river, and must cross the riverswimming! Gets out the other side, then there comes a time after when he must use his sword- fencing! Situation saved! So it’s the sporting discipline, particularly for combat, now tell me that’s not war on the sports field, now that might be a good quote for you Clauswitz-“war is politics by another means”

And you could easily argue that “Sport is war by another means” If you started with violence, sport came from that, its basically stylised war. Even with atheletics, the thigs you do, well you run- soldiers run and remember in acient Greece… what do you think a discus is? It’s a war weapon, you hurled it at your opponent in the hope to take their heads off. Javelin, Shot put… whats a shot? Why is it called shot putting? You load it into the mouth of a cannon, this is exactly it, why is it the person who throws it the furthest…what good is that? Well you need to be big and strong to keep shoving it down the mouth of the cannon! This is all war on the sports field and you have to keep practising all these things. Modern pentatalon, do you know the story of modern pentathalon? (shit another non-rhetorical question, I panic again) Erm its 8 isnt it, 8 sports?? (realising my mistake It was too late) No! its 5 5 yes of course (Idiot!) Running, swimming, diving, shooting and fencing. Ok? The general command to an officer would be lets say… Go and take this very important message to the body of troops way yonder and he gallops off into the

With thanks to: Mark Jones Craig (Ex- police force) David Kirby, Fencing, Filton Collage Adam Kenny, Social Psychologist Sophie Bolesworth, Illustration Tom Hughes, “Grower manager”

Olivia Bolesworth Š2011

Confessions of a Chelsea Headhunter  
Confessions of a Chelsea Headhunter  

Auto biographical account of an ex Chelsea Headhunter