Most people when they hear the words “football magazine” will automatically think of the modern day versions such as Match Of The Day, 442, Match etc, however football magazines have been around for a very long time.
In fact as way back the late 1870’s there were football publications, these were of course black and white editions and the football magazine as we know it today didn’t really take off until 1951 when Charles Buchan released his Football Monthly. Since then there has been several releases which provide a brilliant area of football memorabilia for the collector.
The only problem is of course the room your going to need to keep them, for instance Soccer Star ran for nearly 1000 issues which is a lot of magazines !!
So what you first need to do is decide on which of the magazines your going to collect, to help you out we have listed a few of the more prominent releases.
First issued in September 1951, it ran for an amzing 274 issues until 1974 when it was closed due to the “high cost of publishing” .. the sum it was selling for at the time of closure – 20p !!
It had 3 titles during its life, Charles Buchan Football Monthly, Football Monthly and finally Football Monthly Digest, from the beginning the magazine contained black and white pictures of the eras players with colour versions appearing in 1953. In 1957 the magazine began featuring centre page spreads of team line ups. We actually have some of these pictures for sale on our main Footybits site.
Launched as Raich Carters Soccer Star in 1952 it dropped the Raich Carter in 1955 and ran for an amazing 936 issues until 1970 !!
Was obviously around at the same sort of time as Charles Buchans magazine but was never as colourful with only minimal colour pictures on the front and later on the rear, never had the same sort of appeal as the aformentioned but still a great collectable with some real collectable front cover pictures showing full team line ups.
Jimmy Hills Football Weekly
Launched in 1967 this was another weekly magazine that ran alongside Charles Buchan and Soccer Star till around about 1970, unlike Soccer Star JHFW’s format included several pictures of the eras top players and is yet another brilliant collectable football magazine.
Each issue featured loads of articles and news stories and they are well worth reading just to see how much football has changed since those heady days.
This is one of my favourites and I think Ive read every single issue, it was launched August 1968 and ran for 296 weekly issues till June 1974. Goal magazine featured numerous player pictures and also some great team line ups, both single and double page spreads. Sadly its run came to an end as a separate entity in 1974 when IPC decided to incorporate it into Shoot..
Book of Football
Produced in 1971 by Marshall Cavendish this was the first “part works” football publication, the idea being that you bought all 75 weekly parts and it built up into a form of encyclopedia. There were binders available for it and each issue contained features such as rising stars, team focus, skills and tactics etc.
Still fairly easy to get hold of as full sets including the binders, a good read as well and very interesting to look back on some of the rising stars who subsequently did make it big.
What football fan hasnt heard of Shoot ?
Probably one of the most well known football magazines, it was launched in 1969 and grew into one of the most colourful and informative football magazines ever. One of its more famous features was the “You Are The Ref” feature which recreated several scenarios and challenged you to correctly identify what the decision should be.
Shoot was also full of colour player pictures and in its later years usually had at least 2 full colour team pictures as well.
There are several other more recent football magazines of course, such as Match, 90 Minutes, When Saturday Comes, 442 etc but the few listed above are probably the main target for football memorabilia collectors who want to focus on football magazines