On The Back Seat With Gabbie Cabbie – Karen Carney

Paul Collins A.K.A “Gabbie Cabbie” recently interviewed Karen Carney and has kindly sent us a copy.

I’m Karen Carney’s boot and I was sent flying through the sky,
And it was a minor miracle that I missed some poor ole sod’s left eye.
I was full of such excitement as I’d bagged the winner, then she chucked me in the crowd,
Well that’s gratitude I thought, as I hurtled towards those fans that screamed her name out loud.

Word quickly got round the boot world that Kaza didn’t like me, though I didn’t believe the rumour myself,
And now I know it wasn’t personal as she changed a pair recently at half time, and left the others on the shelf.
You see I got a bit paranoid,”why me” I thought, so when I found out I had a little laugh,
I was told the first pair wasn’t working, so she changed them for the second half.

Well I’m feeling much better now the truth is out, cuz I loved Kaz and served her with such pride,
And I can once again go out in public as I no longer feel the need to hide.
You see Kaz ain’t no normal player, she’s England’s wing sensation and she’s also the Queen of Brum,
And hopefully she’ll be gracing that right touchline for many years to come.

She’s also talented off the pitch, she goes to university ,had dancing lessons and attended pottery classes,
But to be fair she’s much better on it ,and how I miss making those 40 yard passes.
So best of luck without me mate, I hear you ladies at Birmingham City are now equal to their men,
And I look forward to the day that we come face to lace, and I can be with you again.


Joining me today for my ‘On the back seat’ interview is Birmingham City and England striker, and the Queen of Brum, Karen Carney.

Gabs: How are you mate and thanks for doing this. I wrote that poem when you bagged the winner against Finland in the Euro finals of 2005, happy days weren’t they?

Kaz : Yes they were. I got so excited and caught up in the moment I threw them (the boots) into the crowd. I believe a young girl up North has one of them, but I don’t know where the other one is. I do miss those boots coz they were so comfortable and I haven’t had any so comfy since.

Gabs: Fair play, and let’s hope that one day you will come face to lace again mate. Let’s fast forward to the final kick of the inaugural WSL season at Burton in the Continental final, when we got beaten 4-1 against Arsenal. Your losers medal went pretty much the same way as your boots did, didn’t it Kaz?

Kaz : Yes Gabs, once again I got caught up in the moment, we had just lost and I was gutted so I chucked ‘em into the crowd.

Gabs: Good job you ain’t a Javelin thrower then mate with your track record. You’re in good company though, Jose did that with one of his loser’s medals. You girls at Blues hate losing don’t you?

Kaz : Of course we do, who doesn’t? We’re not bad losers, we just care passionately and we want to win.

Gabs: So tell me about winning and your celebrations?

Kaz: Well getting three points is what we play for and when we achieve that, we’ve been known to burst into song.

Gabs: Tell me more mate?

Kaz: It was Decca, who is one of the management team. He brought it in from his playing days and it goes like this Gabs: Fight, Fight, wherever you may be, we are the girls from the Blues army !!!

Gabs: Gotta say Kaz, it’s a great team spirit you lot have got, and hearing that being sung at very close quarters, it does the trick doesn’t it? In fact, when you beat Arsenal away this season you almost destroyed the dressing room didn’t you?

Kaz : Better move on Gabs!!

Gabs: Tell me about the inaugural WSL season Kaz and did playing during the summer help?

Kaz: Definitely, all the girls who played have always been there and it’s just that the media have bought into it. The crowds have been bigger, and its been broadcast on E.S.P.N. For us, BBC WM have been brilliant and they did a whole Saturday afternoon show from the DCS Stadium in Stratford upon Avon where we play our home games. Birmingham City have also been tremendous with their support. Many members of their management team came along, as does Mike Wiseman, and along with family and friends, we really feel part of one club. On matchday’s we prepare professionally and we run out to Mr. Blue Sky and The Tamperer. We finished runners up in the League and the Cup, so all in all, its been a successful season. Although, I think we should have more R&B on while were warming up Gab and less Paul Weller!!

Karen and Gabbie!
Karen and Gabbie!

Gabs: Given your history mate I thought “In the Crowd” was quite appropriate!! Have Birmingham City always backed you?

Kaz: No, the current owners have been fantastic, even Peter Pannu attended a game last season. However when Gold and Sullivan owned the club we had no support at all and the team nearly folded. I won an award back then and all the other clubs invited their players, who had also won awards, to receive them on the pitch at a home game. Being a massive Blues fan I was so excited until I was told that for me to be able to do that, I would have to buy a ticket for the game.

Gabs: So what happened Kaz?

Kaz: I bought the ticket and I got to go on the pitch and receive my award.

Gabs: Typical, I remember having a one to one with David Gold and I asked him whether they would back the Ladies’ side. His answer was that as they couldn’t make any money from it they wouldn’t be interested. This season was interrupted by the World Cup in Germany wasn’t it? Tell me about it Kaz?

Kaz: It was a bit strange as we had played the first seven games and then broke up to go to Germany for the tournament. We had a decent World Cup it was a great experience for me playing against the best players in the world but we got knocked out by France on penalties in the quarter finals.

Gabs: Next season you’ve got the Olympics haven’t you?

Kaz: Yes and Hope Powell is in charge. Unlike the men, ours is not an under 23 tournament, so fingers crossed, I’ll be involved. Some of the girls perceive it to be bigger than the World Cup you know.

Gabs: Who does Kaz?

Kaz: Certainly some of the American girls do. I played professionally in Chicago for a couple of seasons. The game is massive out there and hopefully we can achieve the same here one day.

Gabs: Well you’re on the right track mate and if and if there’s any justice, you ladies in England will be household names. You lot are a credit to your sport and I’ve never heard any of you moaning about warming up! How is the Qualification campaign for Sweden 2013 going?

Kaz : It could be better. We drew in both Serbia and Holland and beat Slovenia at home. We now play Serbia at The Keepmoat Stadium in Doncaster on 23rd of November. If we get three points it will move us nearer to qualifying.

Gabs: Well good luck with that Kaz. Tell me, away from football, what makes you tick?

Kaz: I guess I’m always doing something connected with the game. I train every day as part of my England programme, I do some coaching and a bit of media stuff as part of my obligation to my central contract with England. I also attend Gloucester University where I’m studying for a masters in Sports & Exercise Psychology.

Gabs: Blimey! No wonder you never answer your phone. Do you still have time for your dancing and pottery classes Kaz? I’ve been waiting since 2006 for that mug you and Maggsy promised me?

Kaz: Gabs, you were the mug for believing us! Only joking, but you know what we’re like and you believed it all, didn’t you?

Gabs: Hook, line and sinker mate. In fact the only truth in that interview was that you actually play for the Blues.

Kaz: Seriously though Gabs, I used to go to dancing lessons. I gave it up when I was 15 but I started when I was two years old.

Gabs: Yeah, course you did.

Kaz: Can’t you tell when a girl is telling you the truth Gabs?

Gabs: I can tell when you lot are telling me porkies, your lips move! If you could replay a game that you’ve played in, would you?

Kaz: No, I’m quite religious and I believe “things happen for a reason” I have that tattooed on my ribs.

Gabs: Oh hang on a bit mate, it’s Jimmy Franks from BBC WM. He’s after someone from Blues Ladies to ride a bike in the Mailbox for “Children in Need”. Are you up for it mate?

Kaz: Of course I am Gabs, tell him I’ll do it.

Gabs: Well done Kaz, let’s go back a bit. Where are you from and how did you get to Gloucester University?

Kaz: I’m from Hall Green. I went to St. Ambrose Barlow Junior School and then onto St. Peter’s comprehensive in Solihull. I passed ten GSCE’S, went onto 6th Form passing three ‘A’ Levels and from there to Loughborough University where I did a Degree in Sports Science, and now I’m doing a Masters at Gloucester.

Gabs: Have you still got the last shirt that Theo Walcott played in for Southampton?

Kaz: Yes I have. I met him at the BBC Sports Personality awards. We got on really well, both being young England players and then Marcus Bignot, our football consultant, played against him for QPR. After the game they exchanged shirts and Marcus then passed it on to me. Some years later when we were both playing for Arsenal we met up again. He is a really nice guy.

Gabs: So you’re a thrower, a comedian, an academic and a stalker then Kaz? So what’s next for The Queen of Brum?

Kaz: I don’t really know Gabs other than to be successful for Birmingham and England, studying hard and keeping fit I guess.

Gabs: Oh yes, keeping fit. That ride for Children in Need should fit into your training programme nicely mate. Good luck, good health and tell the boys I’ll pledge £20 if they play one from Weller for me.

Kaz: “You do Something to Me”, Gabs?

Gabs: You lot at Blues Ladies have always done that for me and always will do mate.
What a player and what a person Kaz is, definitely out of the top drawer.

Til next time, Keep Right On!

Thank you for doing that Paul. Paul also writes for other sites and Dave’s Made in Brum fanzine.

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