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In the mag: 25th anniversary special! The 101 greatest players of our lifetime and more...

FourFourTwo 25th anniversary

Get your hands on the June 2019 issue of FourFourTwo (issue 300!) – available in print or on iPad and iPhone – from Wednesday, May 1

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First a note from our editor, James Brown.

Three hundred magazines is a hell of a lot to read, never mind create, but I know many of you have loyally been with us since issue 1 in 1994, with its Terry Venables cover, colour supplement-style layout and fixtures listings. As the new editor in 2019, who remembers its launch 25 years ago, I can say that from day one FourFourTwo has been a class act, delivering excellent features and quality football writing. We couldn’t have gone anywhere without the support of our readers, so thank you.

Thanks to everyone who has ever worked on the magazine editorial, in particular Karen Buchanan who came up with the idea for the magazine, and Paul Simpson who made it happen as launch editor. I want to thank all of the advertisers, distributors, licensing staff, retailers, sub editors and production staff who’ve helped to make FourFourTwo the leading football magazine in the world.

The world of football has changed a lot over the last 25 years, and we’ve used this anniversary issue to not only hail the greatest 101 players of that time, but also talk to two very different fans.

Pontus Jansson played in a World Cup quarter-final for Sweden last year, but is first and foremost a Malmo fan. He explains what it’s like going from teenage pitch invader to full international.

Manchester United vlogger Mark Goldbridge, meanwhile, is typical of a generation of fans who have defined their own media platforms and support. Whether you laugh with him or at him he’s part of a modern phenomenon, and in the words of Alan Partridge who he often sounds like, eat his goal!

Elsewhere, we’ve got an excellent piece on the cult of the Boca Juniors shirt by Neal Heard, and we are delighted to publish one of the great British football writers, Hunter Davies, on Gazza in the 101 Greatest Players Of Our Lifetime. We’ve really enjoyed putting this issue together and hope you have as much fun reading it. If you’re furious your favourite player didn’t make our list, let us know.

Thanks again for being the reason FourFourTwo exists.

The best players of our lifetime

Since our debut issue in 1994, FFT has got you up close and personal with football’s biggest stars. Now, from Aguero to Zidane, we present the 101 players we’ve been most privileged to watch.

Unseen Pele

FourFourTwo goes behind the scenes with the Brazilian great in this collection of never-before-seen photographs. Even better, the man himself took some time out to talk us through them.

Howe do you like me now?

A lot has changed for Eddie Howe since making his debut in FourFourTwo 25 years ago as a Bournemouth trainee, not least his hair. We chatted to the Cherries boss about their remarkable rise.

Pontus Jansson: pitch invader

Few footballers share a connection with a club’s fanbase as strong as Pontus Jansson’s with Malmo. The Leeds defender talks to FFT about being a fan first, a pro second, leading the chanting away at Chelsea, looking up to Zlatan, and his dream of lifting one more Swedish title when he returns home.

James Maddison: The Creator

Having set up more chances than Lionel Messi this season, it’s safe to say James Maddison has settled into Premier League life since completing his £20 million move from Norwich. Leicester’s fearless Fox reveals how getting clobbered in Scotland helped him earn an England call-up.

Knowing Me, Knowing YouTube

Aha! Whether you love him or laugh at him, Mark Goldbridge’s Manchester United rants are compulsive viewing, and he’s become the Alan Partridge of football fan vlogging.

Cult of the Boca shirt

Adored the world over – except in the red and white half of Buenos Aires – Boca Juniors’ strip is a thing of beauty. Our retro shirt specialist explains why people are willing to pay top dollar for one.

You Ask The Questions: Gaizka Mendieta

The former Valencia, Lazio and Middlesbrough midfielder on Champions League final heartache, being frozen out by Gareth Southgate on Teesside, and playing the guitar on stage at Benicassim.

Upfront

Omid Djalili talks Chelsea in My Football, Lucy Bronze lists the games that changed her life, Asamoah Gyan reveals his desire to launch an airline, Andy Cole describes his delicious chip for Manchester United against Coventry, and Dominic Calvert-Lewin answers silly questions about Game of Thrones.

The Mixer

This month’s must-have football clobber, including France’s one-off centenary kit, a classic 80s Casuals cagoule, a retro Barcelona jersey and some safari and cheetah-inspired boots.

The June 2019 issue of FourFourTwo is brought to you by Gaizka Mendieta, Lucy Bronze, Dominic Calvert-Lewin, Asamoah Gyan, Andy Cole, Eddie Howe, Henrik Larsson, Alan Shearer, Alessandro Del Piero, Philipp Lahm, Pontus Jansson, Pele, James Maddison, Mark Goldbridge and Deco.

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