John Bull has always divided opinion. To our neighbours, he came to symbolise the best of British: A jovial, chubby, but solid and honest character of rural stock. For others (ie pretty much everyone else), this representation came to be viewed in very different terms. Just how different was apparent in a New York Times piece from 1861.
Brian Carey arrived for the interview at a Cork hotel with a ready-made intro: by sheer coincidence, the Tuesday on which we were meeting turned out to be 24 years ago to the very day since he’d left his hometown, Cork, for England to begin a career in professional football which would take him to Manchester United, Leicester City, Wrexham, Doncaster Rovers and Wolves and see him experience almost all aspects of the game – from the glorious to the grim – as, variously, player, skipper, coach, scout, assistant manager and manager.