This time we interviewed the “Top Boy” Colin Blaney, from here acknowledge the time you’ve taken to this interview.
Grafters, Hotshot, Undesirables and the upcoming film adaptation of Grafters. From all of this, what is it that makes you feel prouder?
It has to be Grafters see I had a plan which was simple write a page every day so then after 12mths I’d have enough for a book, anyway wasn’t going to work out that simple as it took 5 yrs but still saying that my last two books have only took one year and it I did a page every day so mayb others who want to try writing may take my tip and pen a page daily. The most satisfied feeling from the last 13 yrs being involved in writing has to be the feeling when seeing my 1st pages in the book Red Army Years! I must of read them over and over again for weeks then it hit home fuck me if its good enough for that book why not just write my own and the rest is history.
To the local people, the Spanish who did not read your books, and you want to show them that they will not disappoint them, explain to them, briefly, their plot.
To people who have never read any of my books i´d have to say they are football related with true storys about the Thugs, Fighting, Fashion;s, Pickpocketing, Prison and True compelling sex stories.
We know, you met your ex-wife when you were in prison in Germany, because she worked there as a prison warden (as you tell it in The Undesirables). Can you tell our readers any story that is not so well known of your stay in prison?
I wrote in the Grafters book how I meet Jana at a beer festival, that’s not true at all, see she worked high up in the prison system in charge of the Aulander group meetings in the prison, which were to try and get us all the Aulander to mix and speak about our problems with other races , example mine was the Turks who i hated with passion still do ,, but I had big problems with the stinking fuckers as my cell mate was Greek and they all wanted to beat the shite out of him daily,, so i did finally speak my feelings on the group meeting and in the end Kosta made a huge Greek salad every Friday and I made huge bowl of English chips the Turks made kebabs so we’d all sit down eat well and play backgammon and things improved not as many fights etc so, Janna was impressed and that’s how I got into her knickers. She lost her job because of me but still married me in the jail and waited 18mths for me to get free,, after I was released we lived to-gether 7 years I still love her to death but its well over, around the year 2,000 I lost my driving job because of drink and soon after I then needed to start getting help coming off drink took me at least 7 years been sober now many years and that’s why I write so much to keep away from the demon drink.
You had an intense life: alcohol, theft, drug trafficking, being a hooligan, stay in prison…Do you regret anything?
I have to say the life on the road was full of drink drugs and football thugs, it meant illness would come to us all and many of the Grafters ended up 6feet under under, or locked up for long terms im very lucky to have made it to my late 50’s so to regret any of the past times with the Jibbers would be like spitting on my friends graves, saying that I did have a great chance to go grafting in America and turned it down mayb that would have been the closest to a regret.
Currently, you write, you appear on TV, etc. Would you exchange your youth for what you are doing now?
Nowdays I film at the Man Uniteds fanzone better know as the warehouse project, you can see my films via Red Square’s website Link here mayb??? and I also work for the new clothing company Your Own maybe a link here ???, were just designing and range of football clothing, with Inter-City Jibbers, Hot Shot, Undesirables and Grafters thymes or logos etc.
What was the best fight you got involved during your years of hooligan?
The 2 biggest mob fight’s I was ever involved have to be Cardiff in 75 and Feyenoord 1997.
1st was when the Red Army took it to Cardiff and believe you me every true Welsh Hooligan made there way to the stadium looking for aggro even if they hated Cardiff people and its supporters, still it meant fuck all as it was time for the Taffs to team up, 2hrs before the game we marched up to the ground about 1,500 of us boot-boys, skinheads and Barmies, see the new look was baggy pants, polo necks sported with long hair and hairy side-burns! a coolio look at that time, yet when we came to clash with a Cardiffs mob outside the ground they all looked like they’d just come from working down the coal pits and building sites,, we destroyed them and the pics were plastered all over the papers next day ( u can get these pics of net),, inside the stadium united away support was about 10,000 after the game in went wild in the streets mob fights all the way back to town centre and we gave them welsh sheep- shaggers the biggest shock of there lives kicking the shite out of them, it was even reported how the English Bulldogs had taken over the valleys!
1997 Man utds Men in Black, The Inter-City Jibbers and the Young Munich’s all meet the night before the game in Amsterdam and made arrangements to get the double decker train to Rotterdam about 3 in the afternoon, it stopped few times and picked up couple of Dutch thugs who hated Feyenoord and took us the back way out the train st and round the back streets that lead out to 2 main pubs that well full of Feyenoord fans all singing and in merry moods ,, well they say Utds mob done more damage that day in ten mints than any other Dutch firm have done in ten years, we also won the game in style and had a great night out back in Amsterdam paying the African late night hookers all in false English pounds, there was at least 300 lads all needing to get there Hot Rods polished happy days Mufc on Tour!
What can you tell us about Omega operation? Is it anything that only affected to your neighbours Citizens, or indirectly splashed to the rest of firms of UK?
After Utd and West ham had the infamous fight on the Beatrix ferry high seas ferry going over the water to Holland there seemed to be a real effort from Maggie and the government for the next few years to stamp out the innercore of most football firms, the Operation Omega with Man Citys lads was maybe along with the headhunters from Chelsea the only court cases of note that gave out prison sentences, the Mars operation against uniteds firm was a joke, the CID undercover wanted to come in court wearing balaclava’s the Judge said ur not turning my court into a Pantomime and it soon collapsed.
Following with your city rivals they think the Red Army only earned them in number. What is your opinion about the Guvnors?
Man-Citys Guvs came good in the mid 80’s just when uniteds lads all got offside after the west ham ferry fight, see many united lads did end up in crown court and some got jail, like my mates Brunsie he got 8yrs just for grabbing a megaphone, then sang a short united song and then shouted to the lads” lets give it west ham”
So then from 86 to 90 Citys guvs had a grip on the town suppose the acid rave thing from 88 into the 90’s had a big effect on uniteds firm, when they regrouped in 91 and joined up with the younger utds lads they became the MEB ruthless as many were now early 40’s and running crime gangs, but truth is that lasted till 2,000 and its now very very rare to get the firms clashing even with the help from rivals phones and internet etc.
This blog is focused on the casual culture. You were one of the people who lived its beginnings in Manchester. How did it start? Was fast the transformation of the aesthetic in the stands?
The fashion thing started with Fred Perrys then we had our 1st travel away to France V Saint Ettienne 77 we came back with lacoste and soon was back on the rob with England playing Luxemburg were we found top quality lois jeans and jumbo cords, then every trip abroad we’d just keep finding better lables, Armarni, Burberry, Hugo Boss Paul-shark etc
The good thing of English Cup is that offers the possibility of confrontation among teams from different categories. Could you talk about any firm from lower categories that was characterized for making things difficult to firms of teams much bigger?
When u talk about a team from the lower division who´s a hand full its got to be Millwall every time, even my gran=dad told me about the time ? 20’s I think when utd had to play at the Old Den in millwall last game of season, its was a playoff who lost went down to the 2nd div united won but the 1,000 uniteds supprters were given a hard time, they are without a doubt mental I went in the 2nd div 74 or 75??? And I remember being shocked to see Millwalls main thugs in the late 30;s we were all teens and they kicked the shite out of any one who was sussed out as a Manc on the way back to the tube.
In the trips around Europe, when did the organized firms begin to face up to you? In what countries did you find more opposition
When it comes to Firms being organized from other countries I suppose it had to happen , mayb us Mancs were surprised it took so long but saying that when we went to Juve in the mid 80’s they and Roma had a big names and we clashed with Roma home and away many polish and german firms are big time nowdays,, also Ajax they came to Utd few years ago with home made bomb’s and thrown one at the police, and soon after the other bomb went into a bar full of United (u can get the article from the Manchester evening news) and caused somert like 30,000 worth of damage all the lads hair clothes and faces were burnt bad.
Even Feynoord who were only seen as dangerous on their own patch now travel away well-organized with top boys!
Of clothing brands of the beginnings of casual culture, what was the brand everybody wanted to get it? What clothing brands do you usually wear?
When it came to the casual scene on at the football and in the clubs etc evn through it started 78 onwards the hey days were from 82 to 88 when it peaked,, then it went dead as the Ecstasy and big baggie clothes were needed because of the heat and sweating everyone went through. Aslo the acid ideas were all printed on bootleg t shirts, the truth is it all went potty or mad etc till the dark clothing came in which had a few purposes with the Man utd lads, !st when you got back from away games late sat nites it was hard to get in clubs etc unless you looked smart and the lads dark clothing worked a treat so in big numbers they´d all get in the same clubs, the main clobber was Gio Goi, Stone island and North-face always dark coulors, its true the Men in Black knew when they mobbed and went hunting the other firms pack, it was very intermediating for the other firms when confronted by the MEB to see the inner-core of Uniteds crew all in slick or smooth etc? black clothing, also very hard for the police to pick out the main thugs after the damage had been done,, time and time again they done almost every firm they came up against for 4 to 5 yrs, but nowadays it´s only going to happen evry other year when Utd meet Liverpool or Man city,,, both sets try their best to get at each other even if its miles way from the stadiums on empty car parks etc and truefully its very rare there get away with it , Yet saying that only few weeks ago United’s Red Rats took it to City’s lads in there own back yard and gave a decent account of themselves being out-numbered and having to get right up to citys main pub with out police on there case anyway you can all see it on you tube just type in Man City v Man Utd fighting 2014.
Mufc all Day!