Monday, November 29, 2021
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How to… write a football chant

What’s football without a good sing song? Absolutely nothing.

According to the media, footballers live like kings, cashing salary cheques the size of Neville Southall’s gut. But the real kings of the football ground are the terrace overlords who write the anthems that echo off the advertising hoardings like hymns off cathedral walls.

 

Now why should you sit there like a pauper when you know you’ve got blue blood coursing through your veins? Don’t you deserve to hear the home faithful repeating your every word as they beat each other senseless to touch the hem of your away shirt and scramble around your feet for the flakey manna from your pasty?

Of course you do.

Well, it’s a good job for you that having studied the excellent fanchants.com and attained a BA (Hons) in chanting from The Open University, I am suitably equipped to provide you with a simple guide to writing your own football chant, isn’t it?

1. Include plenty of repetition

The last thing a bunch of pissed up fat guys on a Saturday want to do is use their brains, so make your chant as repetitive as possible.  This Derby County chant is almost as close to repetitive perfection as is humanly possible, although in Heaven’s football matches against Hell, they apparently have chants consisting of only two words:

Could be worse,
We could be Leeds,
Could be worse,
We could be Leeds…

Did you know? Repetition has actually been clinically proven to reduce your IQ.

2. A simple rhyme is not only necessary but compulsory

Forget all those Nobel Prize winning poets with their half-rhyme, free verse and even terza rima. What we want is a straight AABB rhyme scheme, or even AAAA, as the Walsall massive demonstrate to deadly effect:

Fight, fight, whoever you may be,
Because we are the boys from the black country.
And we will fight you all, whoever you may be,
Because we are the boys from the black country…

3. Use words that aren’t actually words

If you can’t find a word to rhyme with useless, substitute or wanker, then just invent one. Or, if you’re a Middlesbrough fan and don’t know any words at all, just invent loads of little words and stick them all together. Southgate’s boys always feel inspired when they hear this piece, entitled Pigbag, at three o’clock on a Saturday:

De de de de,
de de de der,
De de de de,
de de de der,
De de de de,
de de de der,
De de de de,
de de de der...

4. Tell a story

While every bestseller has a page-turning plot, only about 52.67% of chants have one. If you choose to incorporate one into your chant, make sure it has a sting in the tail and has at least two characters in it that we can empathise with. Both techniques are exhibited in this Manchester United number:

I saw my mate the other day,
He said to me he saw the white Pele,
So I asked, who is he?
He goes by the name of Wayne Rooney,
Wayne Rooney, Wayne Rooney,
He goes by the name of Wayne Rooney.

5. Harness the power of animosity

There’s no easier way to rile up the terrace monkeys than by playing to their bigoted views. Barnsley do it like this:

Stand up if you hate Wednesday,
Stand up if you hate Wednesday...

Whereas Liverpool do it like this:

F*ck Off Chelsea FC,
You ain't got no history,
Five European Cup's and 18 leagues,
That's what we call history...

6. Or just say something totally random

If you’re too stupid to follow the five piss-easy steps above, then this sixth step is for you, if you’ve figured out how to scroll down this far.

Don’t worry that you’ve got nothing to say because you never went to school and lost most of your brain cells when someone drove a forklift truck over your skull as a practical joke. Just say the first thing that comes into your head. That’s what the Wolves fans do, to the tune of “Always look on the bright side of life” no less:

Always s**t on a Tesco carrier bag,
Always s**t on a Tesco carrier bag…

I hope that helps with your quest for glory and that it’ll soon be your inane patter that we hear coming through the TV microphones.

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