2008 Soccerlens Writing Competition

Update: The competition is now closed. Finalists are listed here, and the winner will be announced on Monday, 3rd November 2008. Thank you everyone for participating, most of the submissions were top-class.

Welcome to the 2008 Soccerlens Writing Competition, an annual football writing competition hosted by Soccerlens (here’s last year’s contest, won by Gerry McDonnell).

For the next two weeks (11th to 26th31st October), we’ll be accepting article submissions for the contest (details and rules below). Provided that your entry meets the minimum criteria, your article will be published on Soccerlens and considered part of the contest.

In the last week of the month we will evaluate all published entries and pick a winner, to be announced on Friday, 31 OctoberMonday, 3 November 2008.

Here’s how you can take part:

Studs-Up Soccerlens 08 Contest

Your Submissions:

Apart from basic English and writing skills, you’ll be judged on quality of writing, humor, analysis, ability to generate conversations and headline writing. Since your articles will be published on Soccerlens (and syndicated via NewsNow), we’ll have a great opportunity to test the last two elements in real time.

Article Length: Whatever length makes you achieve the best results for the criteria listed above. There’s a misconception that longer pieces do better – however a minimum of 500 words is expected, and because we don’t want book submissions, an upper limit of 2000 words will be enforced. Find your own space in between.

Topics: Write on what you’re passionate about. If it’s football history, do that. If it’s play by play for a live match, tell me and I’ll set it up for you (but you’d better be good). If it’s talking about your club, great. If there’s an issue you want to discuss, excellent.

If you’re interested in covering football celebrity gossip, or other non-playing matters, you’re welcome as well. The field is wide open (so talk about babes or technology or whatever) as long as there’s a footballing link. Be creative.


  • 1 submission per person.
  • All emails must be sent to contests(AT)soccerlens(dot)com with the subject ‘2008 Writing Competition’.
  • If you’re taking information from somewhere, mention your sources (in-context links).
  • Get your facts right, use a spell checker, double-check your grammar – in short pay attention to the basics.
  • Submissions must be sent before the deadline (midnight, October 26th31st) – This deadline will be ‘enforced without exceptions’, so stick to it.
  • There is no age, gender, geographical or religious criteria – everyone’s welcome as long as they write well and write about football.
  • Not so much a rule as a suggestion – articles that get linked to from other sites (link bait) and / or articles that generate a lot of conversation (conversation bait) are your best bet for winning, so keep that in mind. Good writing counts, but so does being able to write something that will attract the interest of a lot of people (regardless of whether they agree or disagree).
  • If you’ve written for Soccerlens before or even if you still write for SL, you can still take part in the competition.


  • $100 Amazon gift certificate
  • Free Football Shirt courtesy of Subside Sports
  • Free Authentic Signed Football Shirt courtesy of Icons

Alright then – send in your submissions at contests(AT)soccerlens(dot)com, and if you have any questions ask them here. Feel free to promote this contest on your blogs and forums as well – any mentions will be noticed and appreciated.


  1. Historic Free-Kick by El Jefe (Tom Clark)
  2. Another 42 years of hurt? (Christopher Warren)
  3. A Football Fan Am I Not (Aubrey Groves)
  4. “Respect” Campaign Should Be Respected (Penguinissimo)
  5. There’s Only One Roman Abramovich (Stefanie Müller)
  6. A Modest Proposal for the Resolution of Club versus Country (Fredorrarci)
  7. The Language We All Speak (Shaun Henderson)
  8. A-League: Jets shoot down Victory (Adam Axon)
  9. The Translation (L.E.Eisenmenger)
  10. Football will eat itself: why traditional supporters could walk away from the Premier League (Christopher Nee)
  11. A Night in Port of Spain (Andrew Sartorious)
  12. An American Werewolf (wishes he were) in London (Will Roche)
  13. Paul Robinson Crusoe (Gareth Endean)
  14. More Law Breaking from our good friends at FIFA (Greg Taylor)
  15. Respect, Honesty and the Big Bad Wolf (BD Connell)
  16. The Life and Times of a Modern Footballer (CLB)
  17. Rethinking Goals (Tyler Duffy)
  18. A Kieron Dying Breed? (Douglas Johnson)
  19. Redknapp and Patience can get Spurs back on top (Mark Tilley)
  20. The Beautifully Expensive Game (Steve Porter)
  21. What I Learned From Michael Ballack (Kailyn LeAnne Conner)
  22. Kinnear must stay on as Newcastle seek stability (Sam Dalton)
  23. A compelling argument for video referees (FF)
  24. F**K Football! (Aishah Hamza)
  25. What would it take for you to leave your dream club? (Luke Smith)
  26. Choosing Liverpool (Appanah Rowin)
  27. Football writing competition? Easy! Easy! Easy! Easy! (Martin Banks)
  28. The Greater Good (Alexandra Hofman)
  29. The Ugly Brazilians (Michael Roberts)
  30. A View From Across The Pond (Nick Redmond)
  31. Living The Dream (Shaun Murphy)
  32. Golbalisation (Mickey Hennessey)
  33. The Rise & Rise of Indian Football (Spiral Architect)
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