Saturday, 16 June 2012

Archbishops of Canterbury XI

It's the question they're all asking as the European Football Championships progress - what would your best all-time team made up of Archbishops of Canterbury be? Well, we've all got our opinions, and obviously it's impossible to test out - at least outside the bounds of Archbishop Manager 2012 - but this is my suggestion. I reckon it could take on any XI from Rome or Alexandria, no questions asked.

I realise that some might say that packing the midfield like this is quite un-English, but then to be fair so are a couple of the Archbishops. I justify it on the grounds that in the C of E it's always important to grab the central ground. Wherever you happen to think it lies.

In a shocking display of sexism, you will note there are no women in the team. That's because men and women aren't allowed to compete on a level playing field. If you think this situation should change, I suggest you contact Sepp Blatter. Or stand for the General Synod.

Beckett (GK)  
Carey                                                    Coggan
Berhtwald        Laud 

W Temple (C)         Augustine                Runcie     
      Lanfranc                                                           Williams


Notes: Becket is a shoo-in as goalkeeper - widely regarded as a safe pair of hands, and only going down under some particularly brutal challenges.

Williams is naturally lining up just left of Runcie (who in his turn was often well to the left of Thatcher in the 80s). Who can forgot that great midfield line-up in those days: Tebbit, Thatcher, Runcie, Scargill?

William Temple's dad was captain before him, so naturally he gets the job. Berhtwald was a great organiser, so will be a great central-defensive partner for  William Laud - a man whose vision and stubbornness are a great asset, though he has a tendency to lose his head.

Lanfranc, as a man appointed by William the Bastard, murderer of half of Yorkshire and all-round nasty get, is out on the right wing.

I'm going to suggest Stigand as manager. Like all such people his reign eventually ended in disgrace. But was Archbishop through the reigns of Cnut, Edward, Harold and William, while recovering from repeatedly being excommunicated. So I reckon he could handle today's press. 


  1. Amazed you left out Fisher who according to his own Biographer 'his archbishopric was most notable for its considerable and efficient administration' ah. but then maybe he is manager. :)

  2. Runcie out on the left? Don't be ridiculous!

  3. Berhtwald over Dunstan? That's a bold choice. But Stigand is an inspired appointment - that man could survive anything!

  4. Stigand was also the first celebrity manager, being featured in 'The Bayeux Tapestry'. It was in his time, when Harold was temporarily Captain, that the tradition of wild over-optimism about the team's chances, followed by ignominious defeat, first began.

    love Mags xx

  5. Beckett as goalie? You have to be joking; he lets things get to his head too easily.

  6. In defence of Beckett, he stands up better under pressure than Simon of Sudbury. Overall, some sound choices, but to get more balance between High and Low Church, I would nominate Archbishop Laud, who can always be relied on to put the Scots in their place - or perhaps Reginald Pole, who had valuable experience playing abroad in the Italian League. There is rather a shortage of hard men on the team. Perhaps Aethelhard would strike fear into the opposing team?


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