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SCHOLARS BIG-TIME CHARLIES? THE FINAL WORD.

CHARLIE Blakemore's Chase town FA Cup kings would be well within their rights to go 'big-time' in their dream second round clash at Port Vale this afternoon.

So it's quite ironic that the bubbly Scholars boss should have to spend the build up to the match at pains to point out that his heroic club are not 'Big-time Charlies'.

But that is precisely the position Blakemore found himself in earlier this week thanks to a shameless piece of bandwagonjumping by a public relations firm.

Anybody who has ever enjoyed a conversation with the Chasetown gaffer or his equally affable chairman, John Donnelly, will know that nobody could promote the club better than they do.

So it was with some surprise that the duo greeted news that a mystery PR firm purporting to be acting on their behalf had e-mailed Mercury Sport to bump up interest in today's Staffordshire showdown.

As if it needed hyping! - Chasetown are taking an army of more than 2,500 supporters for their big match with near neighbours almost 100 places above them in football's pyramid.

Blakemore and Donnelly had not given their permission to the company, who turned out to be representing the Southern League where, when they're not giant-killing, Chasetown usually ply their trade.

But not even the presence of uninvited PR luvvies trying to get in on the act could spoil a wonderful weekend for the modest Church Street club.

"We don't need a PR firm to tell the world about Chasetown, we've been doing it ourselves for long enough," said Charlie, before adding with a cheeky smile: "We don't want people thinking we're Big-time Charlies."

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KING: Charlie Blakemore
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Dec 2, 2007
Words:278
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