While watching a football montage video on Youtube recently (that just so happened to have an excellent soundtrack) we got to thinking about the best songs that tie in to the beautiful game. After much debate, we settled on a top 8 & here it is...
(for the record, we're not including any songs specifically written for teams as football songs: eg New Order's World in Motion for England or Del Amitri's Don't Come Home too Soon for Scotland)
8. Curse Curse by James
The seemingly evergreen Manchester band James have belted out some of the most memorable songs of the last 25 years, particularly where Britpop was concerned. However, it's a more recent addition to their back catalogue that sneaks into our list.
With lyrics delivered with typical promiscuity, singer Tim Booth rattles off the line "I turn up the TV, Copa Del Rey, Messi shoots & scores, a hundred thousand came."
As far as we're aware, we can't think of another song out there that namechecks Barcelona's superstar forward, well certainly not any good ones anyway!
7. Theme FromSparta FC - The Fall
Another entry from Manchester, Theme From Sparta FC by the Fall is a throwback to post-punk, football hooliganism & passion for your club. There are several takes on who Sparta FC might be, with some saying it's Sparta Prague, some saying it's a Luton-based club called Brache Sparta C.FC & others simply saying it's a fictional club.
One thing's for sure, it's definitely about football & the whole vibe of the song encapsulates the feeling of getting yourself pumped up for the match.
6. Mas Que Nada - Sergio Mendes
Mention it by name & you're likely to receive confused looks & exclamations or "who" or "what"? However, as soon as the opening bars to this classic from the 1960s kick in, the penny drops for everyone.
The song gained global fame just before the 1998 World Cup, when Nike & Brazil used it in their iconic "airport" advert.
There has probably never been a song that encapsulates the free-flowing & joyful nature of Brazilian football that the world fell in love with better.
5. This Is The One - The Stone Roses
Diving back into Manchester once more (that city sure knows how to produce classic songs), This Is The One by The Stone Roses is arguably one of the best indie-pop songs of all time in its own right.
However, if you're of the red persuasion, then you'll be fully aware that Manchester United blast this number out of the speakers when the home team walks out at Old Trafford.
It also helps that singer Ian Brown is a massive United fan, even once demanding a member of United's treble-winning side of 1999 turned up to give him his NME award or he wouldn't accept it. For the curious among you, Teddy Sheringham did the honours.
4. Eat My Goal - Collapsed Lung
Coca Cola ran an advert during the mid-90s promoting their association with the beautiful game (they still sponsored the League Cup at this point) & they chose this nifty hip-hop number from Essex-based rappers Collapsed Lung.
It's another tune that isn't recognisable by name, but is instantly known once the opening guitar riff kicks in. Is it the greatest song of all time? Far from it! However its football-referencing lyrics & catchy guitar make it a must-have on any soundtrack for the beautiful game.
3. Club Foot - Kasabian
Club Foot is a stomping, marauding anthem of indie-rock aggression that made it absolutely perfect for countless highlights montages on Sky Sports, BBC & ITV from over the years. It also made it into the intro of Pro Evolution Soccer 5, arguably the best football video game of all time.
The band are die-hard Leicester City fans & as a result this song was played more than a few times at the King Power Stadium as the Foxes won the Premier League during their sensational 2015/16 campaign.
The song also appeared on the laughably bad Green Street movie, involving football hooliganism & how that bloke from Lord of the Rings tried to fight Millwall fans.
2. Round Are Way - Oasis
Manchester's at it again with this absolute belter from the ever-feuding brothers Liam & Noel Gallagher. Round Are Way was a b-side to Wonderwall & is ultimately the much better song. It's a rip-roaring rock 'n' roll number backed up with a brass section & witty lyrics delivered in arrogant fashion by Liam Gallagher at his absolute peak.
A song about the area they grew up in, the lines: "a game is kicking off in around the park, it's 25-a-side & before it's dark, there's gonna' be a loser & you know the next goal wins" perfectly sums up the shambolic nature of the kickabout games we all played as kids.
1. Carnival de Paris - Dario G
Yes we know we said we weren't including any songs written for teams, but technically this song was written for an entire tournament. Dario G came up with this absolute masterpiece for France '98 & it tried to incorporate as many instruments from as many of the participating nations as possible (yes it even has bagpipes for Scotland).
It's a song that captured world cup fever so well that it should arguably still be the official song for any World Cup that takes place. The Samba drums, the upbeat melody & the absolute joyful nature of this song make it a footballing classic & rightful owner of our number 1 spot.
Can you think of any songs we should have included on our list?
Flares & football have always been a controversial mixture. They're banned in UK grounds (and many other countries too) but they have always had a romantic haze they bring to proceedings. Watch any South American football match or some of the more heated Serie A games in Italy & you'll see the way flares can [...]
Since they were formed in 1949 after an acrimonious split involving the Dassler brothers, adidas have become world-renowned for not only their quality, but for their innovation when it comes to football boots. Founded by Adolf "Adi" Dassler, they maintain a fierce rivalry with Puma to this day, with the latter having been formed by [...]
On a misty Scottish summer evening with more than a touch of damp in the air, a first round tie for one of the country's oldest cup competitions was about to kick off. The Qualifying Cup (sponsored by Football Nation) was won last season by Edinburgh's very own Spartans FC, and their challenge tonight was [...]
Paris Saint Germain will take to the pitch in an all-yellow kit, celebrating the legacy of its Brazilian players.PSG’s new away shirt for the 2017/18 season sees a departure from its Parisian roots. The traditional French tricolour has been abolished, & a distinctly South American colourway has samba-ed its way into town: doing several step [...]
Gareth Bale models the new Real Madrid 17/18 home shirt.If you haven't seen it yet, Real Madrid have unveiled both their home & away kits simultaneously for the 2017/18 La Liga season. Having just completed a sensational campaign that saw Los Blancos lift the Spanish league title & become the first club to ever retain the [...]
New Balance have just unveiled Celtic's brand new kit for the 2017/18 season. It pays tribute to the 50th anniversary of the club's famous 1967 European Cup final win over Inter Milan. So we thought we'd take a step back into history & discuss just why Celtic's victory was so special. They won it firstCeltic were [...]
To celebrate the release of Liverpool's new 125th anniversary home kit for the 2017/18 season, we thought we'd take a look back at some of the greatest players to ever wear the liver bird on their chest.Ian Rush (1980-1987 & 1988-1996)Not only did Ian Rush have one of the best moustaches in world football, but [...]
If you haven't seen it already, you're bound to love the new Manchester United away shirt for the 2017/18 season (provided you're a United fan of course).Inspired by United's iconic "Class of '92" that featured the likes of Giggs, the Nevilles, Nicky Butt & David Beckham, the new away shirt uses the same pattern as [...]
If you're a fan of Italian style when it comes to choosing your team's new match kit, we've got a treat in store for you. Errea, one of the leading brands in teamwear, are bringing their spectacular mobile showroom to FN Teamwear in Edinburgh.Best of all, everybody that visits the Errea truck on the 26th [...]