In 1945, near the modern town of Nag Hammadi in Upper Egypt, a party of Arab peasants digging for natural fertiliser around a huge boulder in the cave-dotted mountainside came across a large earthenware jar. Out tumbled a collection of thirteen leather-bound papyrus books that were to send shock waves through theological scholarly circles the world over.
These primitive books contained the writings of a first century gnostic group with secret knowledge of Jesus of Nazareth, and included a full version of the heretical Gospel of Thomas. Such a find remained unsurpassed until Tuesday 24th April 2001, when in a small bedroom in Blackpool, Lancashire, Simon Fielding stumbled across a late 20th century A5-sized blue booklet, bearing the words "Northern Allstars 1991-92" on its humble beer-stained cover.
Hardly daring to turn the pages, lest he harm the slender paperwork, and in fevered anticipation, the ginger warrior quickly realised he had in his possession the infamous lost writings of an obscure, yet legendary, University Sunday League football team. In echoes of the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, where Christian bishops from across the globe met to agree the final four-gospel composition of the New Testament, this blue booklet of the brotherhood known as the Northern Allstars also comprised writings by four different authors. It became apparent that the first four matches of the 1991-92 season in Nottingham had been immortally captured in print. However, whereas the Nicean get-together at the behest of Emperor Constantine had whittled numerous gospels down to the approved four, the available evidence suggests that the Allstar scriptures consisted of just four chapters because no one else had bothered writing any more match reports.
Biblical scholars generally attest that the monikers of the gospel evangelists were second century inventions, whilst basic textual and plot analysis of Allstar scribblings, and a cursory glance at handwriting style, provides compelling evidence for three of the authors, and a fair indication of the fourth Unknown Allstar. It may also be noted that certain characters in the narratives, such as Mince, are treated in a somewhat less-than-subtle pejorative style. This can be likened to the Christian portrayal of the Magdalene, whom Church tradition asserts was a prostitute, despite gospel evidence that if not the wife or lover of Jesus, she was certainly one of his most favoured and trusted followers. Similarly, one can detect (even at this early stage) major theological differences in match tactics and the relative merits of certain team members.
And so, to the adventures of the Messiah, Sid, and his 10 tangerine-clad apostles as they travailed the hallowed turf of Grove Farm, Nottingham...
The following match reports have been copied and translated verbatim from the original scrawl, with only the most grossly offensive spelling mistakes corrected. All infantile or inadequate use of the English language and grammar remains intact for historical authenticity. Square brackets indicate areas of textual uncertainty. In the beginning was The Sid, and he was pleased with what He had created....
|1. The Gospel According to the Unknown Allstar||2. The Gospel According to St. Shaggy|
3. The Gospel According to St. Jeremy
|4. The Gospel According to St. Conor|