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Dave Cameron: Talking the talk


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Soccer Radio show here in Edmonton. A nice change


Talking the talk


Meet Soccer Steve. Batteries not included. In fact, batteries not needed.

Just mention soccer and he winds up on his own. Consider him self-propelled.

That's how Steve O'Boyle eventually became "Soccer Steve." And how he got to the point now of hosting his own soccer show on Team 1260 (debuting this Wednesday, live from Jox, 97 Street and 153 Avenue, at 7 p.m.).

Steve was listening to the radio at home and got wound up by something he heard.

"It was 1998 and I was listening to The Bear and the guys were talking about the World Cup and running the England fans badly," Steve said. "So I didn't like what I heard and I thought, 'I've got to defend these boys. There's more to this story than just one side.' "

A blast out of the blue, he impressed and was encouraged by the on-air hosts.

Steve had moved to Edmonton in 1993 after injuries ended his pro-playing days in Germany.

The economy of Alberta - Edmonton in particular - enticed him.

"Research, mate. I had looked it up. The guys said, 'We'll see you back in two weeks.' I'm still here."

Fast-forward a bit and the arrival of all-sports radio in Edmonton- and the recognition that there are soccer fans out there - provided an opportunity for Steve. His phone-in segments became regular spots with Bryn Griffiths and Jake Daniels in the morning, then with Tony Fiorillo's Sports Insider show on Saturday mornings (both of which Steve plans to continue.)

Then, with the support of station manager Marty Forbes, Steve got the chance for his own show.

"This is the breakthrough year," Steve said. "Now it's gotten to the stage where now it's getting serious. And now I can supply what the people out there want to hear about.

"And there are people out there that want to hear about it.

Is it timing? Yeah, definitely it's timing."

Steve says the show will be a mix of guests (Joe Petrone is up first on Wednesday), open-line and reviews of the European leagues, especially Italy's Serie A and, duh! the English Premier League.

"I'll always try to be controversial. Not rude. Controversial.

"And you don't have to agree with me. But I don't rip into people. I respect people's opinions ..." Still, "I might have to set you straight!"

- - -

STEVE ON HOOLIGANS: "The football hooligan, if you really go into it, sealed his fate in the biggest way around about 1988. And that was after many terrible, terrible situations, including, in Brussels, a game between Juventus and Liverpool where 39 people died.

"Shortly after that the FA (the Football Association, the sport's governing body in England) and the English police got serious.

"It's gotten to the stage where it's pretty rare to have the hooliganism you had back then."

"There were some really terrible things back in the day you can't even talk about, that's how bad they were."

"But nowadays (that kind of) hooliganism has died its death."

Racism. That's another issue.

But Steve thinks the same kind of hammer-down approach by authorites - fines, bans - will turn that tide as well.

- - -

ON HIS MORNING: "No word of a lie, I'm up at six in the morning every day. For the first three hours of the day I'm on websites from all around the world and I'm checking out stories and following up stories to getting a good cross-fix on what's going on.

"From there I sit down and read the paper."

- - -

ON THE AIR: "I stand when I talk. I get maximum power and passion when I'm standing.

"And just before I go on I will either be bouncing myself off a wall - slowly, It's not to hurt, it's just to get pumped - and then I'll punch the air and scream a little bit and get really fired up.

"But after that's happened, I want to be cool as a cucumber, articulate, elevated, but not out of control (on the air).

"You don't have to scream. But what you do say has to mean something."

- - -

ON SOCCER IN CANADA: "I was relatively surprised how far you were in this country with your youth programs. That impressed me. And still does to this day.

"Where we let ourselves down is we have nothing to back it up, to go to the next level. By the next level, I mean going to the pro leagues.

"You need a top-flight team close to your city. It's a must. You need to play high-level soccer to get noticed. Or to get you into the shape.

"You need a clean head where your mind is focused on one thing: making it in soccer.

"If you have that, you give yourself a chance to make it. And just a chance.

"There's a real fine line between making it and breaking it at the top level. But if you make it, it's probably one of the best lives you can lead, because it's all about fitness and enjoying the game you love.

"It's like, 'I'm getting PAID to do this?' "


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quote:Originally posted by Ed

Is Soccer Steve the guy who was wearing an England jersey at the Canada - Honduras match in Edmonton? Hand picked by the CSA I'm sure.

Hardly that he would be of the CSA since his show isn't being broadcast nationwide.

He just might as likely nail Kevin Pipe to wall by his balls.

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quote:Originally posted by Ed

Is Soccer Steve the guy who was wearing an England jersey at the Canada - Honduras match in Edmonton? Hand picked by the CSA I'm sure.

Yes, but he was wearing a Canada flag draped around it.

Even if some find him a bit over-the-wall, at least he is extremely enthusiastic, and he shows up at many of the local matches.

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Good first show. Loved the interview with Joe Petrone about the Aviators fiasco. Stated that Petrone had been shut out of much of the business decisions, such as the EMSA fiasco. Joe felt that the team could've been run on an $800K budget instead of the $2.2M budget. He also stated that the doubleheaders were done in orer to save costs.

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