Ask a man to sing and 99% of the time he'll look at you've like you've just killed his goldfish. Place him in a football stadium and opening up the lungs for a group warble becomes, oddly, compulsory. To celebrate the arrival of new book Who Are Ya? Football's Best Ever Chants, author Gershon Portnoi has handpicked his top 7 soccer terrace songs, ever.
7. Leyton Orient fans have taken to diminutive but rather small winger Dean Cox in a big way since his arrival at Brisbane Road. The 5ft 4 midfielder is nicknamed ‘Tiny’ and the O’s fans sing this song to the fittingly traditional East End tune of ‘Knees up Mother Brown’: “We’ve got Tiny Cox / We’ve got Tiny Cox / We’ve got Tiny / We’ve got Tiny / We’ve got Tiny Cox”
6. Former Forest and Birmingham striker Stern John was the recipient of this superbly-clever chant – it wouldn’t have sounded out of place at a chess match, such was its intellect. This was sung to the tune of ‘Quartermaster’s Store’: “He’s big / He's fast / His first name should come last / Stern John / Stern John”
5. Bury striker Lenny John Lewis became a cult hero with a couple of goals from the bench. The Shakers fans sung this to the Italian opera tune ‘La Donna e Mobile’: “His name’s a department store / You know he’s gonna score”
4. Huddersfield Town sing this about their free-scoring striker Lee Novak to the tune of Sloop John B: “We’ve got Novak / We’ve got Nova-ak / Our carpets are filthy / We’ve got Novak”
3. Olympiakos fans chant this tune to their manager, former Newcastle advertising-hoarding-kicker, Temuri Ketsbaia, to the tune of ‘Sex on Fire’ by Kings of Leon: “Wooooooaaaah Temuri Ketsbaia”
2. I like this Celtic chant because it’s wrong on so many levels. First of all, Shunsuke Nakamura is Japanese so is less likely to eat a traditional Chinese dish. And as for his likely political allegiances, well… This is to the tune of Winter Wonderland: “There’s only one Nakamura / One Nakamura / He eats Chow Mein / He votes Sinn Fein / Walking in a Nakamura wonderland”
1.When Rangers goalkeeper Andy Goram was revealed to be mildly schizophrenic, quick-witted fans chanted this to the tune of ‘Guantanamera’: “Two Andy Gorams / There’s only two Andy Gorams”