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I’m a Premier League cult hero nicknamed Mad Dog – but now I help old ladies and take my dog round in a scooter

, I’m a Premier League cult hero nicknamed Mad Dog – but now I help old ladies and take my dog round in a scooter

MARTIN ALLEN, the former Premier League cult hero known as "Mad Dog," has taken on a new role as a helper to old ladies and a devoted dog owner. Despite his successful football career, Allen spends three days a week assisting elderly women with their gardens and even does their shopping. But that's not all – he's also an ambassador for West Ham and works for the Premier League as a referee match assessor. Allen is using his expertise and experience to support the next generation of officials and improve understanding and education around refereeing.

From Football Star to Garden Helper

Allen, who played more than 400 games for four clubs and earned two England Under-21 caps, comes from a footballing family and has spent 15 years as a manager. However, he has now shifted his focus to helping others and enjoying life outside of the game. Allen spends his time making gardens tidy for old ladies and driving lorries and vans to help them move. He finds immense satisfaction in his new role and delights in telling the ladies about his footballing days when they ask.

Still Involved in the Beautiful Game

Although he may not be on the pitch anymore, Allen is still deeply involved in football. As a West Ham ambassador, he is part of the matchday experience at the London Stadium, alongside other former players. Additionally, he works for the Premier League as a referee match assessor, watching games and providing assessments to support the development of referees. Allen recently attended a training session at Loughborough University to learn about new rules and regulations and gain a better understanding of supporting referees. He believes that referees often face unfair criticism and advocates for tighter controls on player behavior and the technical area.

A Changing Game

Allen reflects on how the game has evolved since his playing days. He describes the shift from a standard 4-4-2 formation to a more varied and tactical approach. The emphasis on playing out from the back, the involvement of center-backs in passing, and the absence of traditional number 9 strikers are just some of the changes he has noticed. Allen attributes these changes to the influence of European and South American coaches and players in the Premier League. He acknowledges that the game has transformed over the years and highlights the need to adapt and embrace new concepts.

, I’m a Premier League cult hero nicknamed Mad Dog – but now I help old ladies and take my dog round in a scooter

Life with Dennis the Dog

Allen's loyal companion is Dennis, a laid-back black Labrador who accompanies him everywhere. In fact, Allen even bought Dennis a scooter for Christmas, adding a whimsical touch to their walks. The pair often attracts attention, with West Ham fans even asking about Dennis and his scooter.

Allen's transition from football star to helper and dog owner showcases the different paths life can take. He continues to make a positive impact both on and off the field, using his knowledge and experience to support others and find joy in the simple pleasures of life.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What role does a coach play in a football team’s success?

A coach can play a crucial role in the success or failure of a team by developing effective training programs, implementing tactical plans and managing players. The coach’s responsibilities include formulating effective training sessions, devising strategic game plans, and motivating players to perform at their best. The coach also makes crucial decisions on player selection and placement, and manages the dynamics of the team in order to maintain an environment that is positive and focused. They are the ones who guide teams through difficult situations and motivate them to succeed.

What is the rule of offside in football?

The offside rules are a part of the game that is meant to stop players from getting an unfair advantage. Offside is when a player’s head, body or feet are in the opposite team’s side of the field, closer to their opponent’s goal than the ball, and also the next-to-last player (typically, the last player on the outfield) at the time the ball is passed to them. Offside is not a crime in and of itself. However, it can become a criminal offense if he or she actively interferes in play, gains an unfair advantage, or gets in the way of an opponent.

How can we encourage teamwork?

Football is a game where teamwork and cooperation are essential. It can be fostered by developing a deep understanding of the team’s strategies and each team member’s role within them. Communication is crucial, both on and away from the field. Also, trust is essential between teammates. Team bonding events and collective goal setting can improve the team’s sense of unity. Teamwork is also fostered by a positive team culture that encourages respectful and supportive behaviors.

What are the best tactics to defend against a strong offensive team?

It is important to have a disciplined strategy when defending against an offensively strong team. A disciplined marking system and an organized defensive line are key tactics. Limiting the scoring chances of opposing players by forcing them to the sidelines instead of the middle can be done. Effective communication amongst defenders and quick transitions to defense when possession is lost are also vital. Counter-attacking can be used as a way to exploit any holes that might open when the offensive team commits their players forward.

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What is the best type of physical training for a professional football player?

A football player’s conditioning program should be well-rounded, focusing on all aspects. This includes aerobic exercises for endurance, sprint training for speed and agility, strength training to improve power, and flexibility routines to prevent injury and enhance recovery. In addition, sports-specific drills which simulate match situations are helpful in preparing the human body for the physical demands placed on it by football. The program can be tailored to the needs of each person by working with an accredited fitness professional or coach.


  • Studying match footage for at least 4 hours a week can lead to a 10% improvement in a player’s tactical awareness on the field.
  • Football players who follow a structured fitness regimen can see up to a 7% increase in their on-field speed and agility benchmarks.
  • Players with a balanced diet containing adequate macronutrients have a 30% lower injury rate than those with less balanced nutritional habits.
  • Goalkeepers who engage in specialized reaction-time training reduce their goals-conceded tally by an average of 25% over a season.
  • Teams that prioritize teamwork in training sessions increase their passing accuracy by an average of 15% in competitive matches.

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How To

How to improve your football tactical intelligence

To improve your tactical intelligence in football, begin by studying various formations and strategies employed by top teams. As you watch matches, pay attention to how players are positioned, when they run, and what transitional moves are being used. Regularly play small-sided matches that mimic match scenarios to sharpen your decision making skills. Work with a coach to discuss your game and adaptability. You can improve your game by reading books about football tactics, and attending regular tactical workshops.

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