The main problem with the photographers was where they needed to be placed - the traditional spot set back from the side of the goal to get that all-important 'hold the back page' picture for the Sunday paper.
This location meant they were forever needing to be replaced after getting clattered by the ball with a wayward shot, or a centre-forward on his enthusiastic follow-through.
The solution in the pic works quite well - all stuck onto a piece of spare cotton pitch.
It doesn't guarantee a clatter-free game for the photographers, but at least they stay together in their collective unit
The figures on the benches, the substitutes, the inured player and the trainers all needed fixing in place in the same way.
Also picture here is a Mini-Motty, a quality creation by Gullseye, who kindly supplied him on a free-transfer to spend the rest of his days commentating on the games played in the Stadium of Fingers... 😀
The subs benches represent the classic blue team v red team scenario, with a few substitutes warming up and a trainer and St John's Ambulanceman dealing with an injured player.
These gentlemen appeared one day (again generously supplied by Gullseye), and have been enjoying their own private bench ever since.
From 1692 until 1955, all Army pensions were administered by and paid from the Royal Hospital Chelsea, which is why all Army pensioners were often referred to as Chelsea Pensioners.
Nowadays, it's only those Pensioners who retire to and live within the Royal Hospital who are now offically known as Chelsea Pensioners. These eligible veterans of the British Army surrendered their Army Pension and were admitted as residents of the Royal Hospital Chelsea.
One more creation by Gullseye - who has been a prolific contributor to life in the Stadium of Fingers over the years!
These chaps are wearing their stewards attire (made of green stuff), and keep close order on fan behaviour during the matches.
So far they have needed to have a stern word with one spectator for singing "There's only one Ken Bailey' in order to wind up the 500 or so Kens in Ken Korner; and also threatened to evict another spectator for foul and abusive fashion sense.
Mostly however, they tend to join the supporters in watching the games.
This little chap should have been produced by Subbuteo!
Direct free kicks are great fun, with this 'mini kicker', which has been made by combining a corner kicker with a LW figure.
He has featured in tournament matches, the most infamous of which was the shoot-out between Spudski and Puffin on the Star Wars pitch in the 2019 SoS OSC tournament.
Where to put the original Ref C111 Half-Time Scoreboard? It came on two legs with holes for screws, but this made it totally block the sight lines of anyone seated in the front two rows. 😠 You can see why Subbuteo changes the design in the late 1960, so it could be incorporated into the fence surround.
Initially it was placed at the back of a piece of terracing, but this tended to get damaged as players in their enthusiasm would lean against it while attacking enthusiastically, or defending desperately.
So the legs were chopped off and it was placed over the first tier of terracing on the West Stand.
TV Screen Housing
This design looks a tad large and cumbersome to house a 7" screen, however it also house the Pan-Tilt-Zoom shop security camera that follows the action of the many games played in the Stadium of Fingers.
It was designed by 'Enlightened' someone who has never played Subbuteo, but has always actively supported the right of those with a Subbuteo problem to indulge in their hobby!
Over the years, this fixture has survived surprisingly well, considering the many players who have contorted themselves to reach around it to take that shot for goal...
Subbuteopia Camera Crew
While the Subbuteopia Crew were in England shooting for their documentary, they filmed a few scenes from the Stadium of Fingers.
After a pleasant evening meal together, they stayed the night at the Home of Fingers.
While everyone slept the Stadium Elves stayed up to create the Subbuteo Camera Crew model, and in the morning this is what greeted the happy guests (Pierr Nosari, Enrico Fontanelli, and Giusi Santoro)
After a trip to the 2007 Reggio-Emilia Old Subbuteo tournnament, on the trip back to the airport, some random conversations and wishful thinking ended up with the concept of having cameras around the pitch and filming the games.
As is often the case, it is these inspired suggestions from the Subbuteo community that breathe life into designing a stadium. A little while later, several micro-cameras there could be seen around the ground.
Arguably, these are not exactly 00-scale, and look to be a bit of a challenge to manoeuvre for the wee camera chappie. This is the point where we all need to use our imagination, and let it be what it is...
Another accessory that Subbuteo should have invented is the Throwing Keeper (with some associated rules being written to use them).
When football was football, if your keeper can collect the ball (from a shot or backpass), he was allowed to pick it up and throw it to one of his team mates.
Subbuteo had thought of the need to replicate throw-ins, by producing the throw-in figures, and the figure pictured is the early style throw-in figures fixed into a LW goalkeeper rod. So in Subbuteo, if the goalie can collect the ball in the 6-yard box, then you can use the throw-in keeper to bowl the ball up the pitch to start your attack! 😀
Chattering Teeth Goalie
This bespoke accessory needs some explaining...(!)
There have been many discussions over the years in the world of Solo Subbuteo, in how to get a goalkeeper to do more than just sit there like a lemon, while you take your shot.
This solution constitutes one of the more tangential and bonkers ideas, however it also provides much fun and unpredictable moments for the solo player. 🤪😄
For some reason Subbuteo never produced a Rugby Lineout figure. This may arguably be an oversight, although this is quite a niche argument - very seldom argued by anyone!
Notwithstanding the lack or vehement protests by Subbuteo Rugby players over the decades for this oversight, here are a couple of suggestions.
Something else missed by Subbuteo was the Subbuteo Rugby passer...
Maybe they could have produced something like this, and then included a rule which explained when it could be used?
Here’s the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' - It’s made of balsa wood glued to a plastic base that was cut from a broken piece of the green and tan grandstand!
After a lineout the side that won the ball can opt to 'Maul' and they signify their intent to do this by saying "Maul!" 😃
This player then places the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' exactly where the ball ended up, with the ball behind the front middle player ('Hooker'), in the indent in the player's base. Then the following rules apply:
(i) The attacking player flicks the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' to advance the attack. If the Mauler travels more than one figure base width, it's a 'back'. If the ball stays on the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' then the maul continues.
(ii) If the ball falls off the back or side of the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' during the attacking 'Mauler-flick', then the attacking side maintain possession and are allowed to use the 'passer figure' to pass the ball.
(iii) If the ball falls off the front of the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler', then the defending side have 'turned the ball over'.
(iv) If the ball stays on the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler', then the defending player can flick any figure to disrupt the maul. This figure can hit the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler', any other figure or the ball. However, if following the flick, the player ends up more than 2 inches from the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' then the ball (if dislodged) can be placed back in its original position on the 'Hooker' by the attacking player.
(v) Before this flick, the defender is also allowed to have one positional flick to get a player in position to join the maul. That player cannot be immediately used for the next 'maul-defence' flick.
(vi) Once the ball falls off the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler', then it is removed from the field of play. The players that were in the 'Subbuteo Rugby Mauler' are placed back on the pitch in their 'maul' positions.
The 'Touch-o-Matic' lineout placer
A game of Subbuteo rugby involves a lot of set pieces, which means the players are forever needing to move figures about. This can be irritating when all you want to do is play!
Here are the instructions and the inspiration behind the design...
"Here is an accessory for those who own the old cloths without the 5 and 15 meter lines useful for the Touch (Lineout): The Touch-o-Matic allows you to create lineout formations in a few seconds, guaranteeing the right distances required by the rules"
The Mischia-Matic Scrum Placer
Another wonderful design from our Venetian Teddy Bear! 😃
This is called the Mischia-Matic. Mischia means Scrum, but is translated by Google-Translate as 'Melee' 😄
The thought processes from the mind of the inventor...
"The other day while reading the rules I came across the paragraph concerning the preparation of the scrum. I realised the industriousness of the thing that certainly wastes precious time to fix the men. For this reason I thought of creating a contraption to position the figures with the correct arrangement in a very short time."
"Just drill a piece of wood or other material following the holes in the drawing (the diameter of the hole is 20mm and it is tested with Rugby Subbuteo and Top Spin bases).
Once finished, just insert the figures into the holes and pull up the contraption to have the good scrum ready.
This ingenious 'contraption' was then lovingly created by fabio75ta from the Taranto Flickers.... ready for the games on the Ionian coast. 😀
The Friends of Old Subbuteo congratulate these Pazzo Olds from Italy, for their enthusiasm and commitment to increasing the enjoyment of the niche pursuit of playing a game of Subbuteo Rugby 😃