I’ve been a fan and regular season ticket holder of my ‘local team’ (despite relocating 30 miles away) for at least 14 years. Given this, I feel I just about qualify enough to be able to give my perspective of the wonderful game.
Now please don’t mistake me for a fan of all football. Unless hubby is playing or its my beloved team then I am more or less clueless. Or rather I don’t give a shit! I’m happy to also admit that despite spending almost every Saturday for the past 14 years watching the mighty Daggers, I am still often none the wiser as to what is going on. Often spending most of the games unashamedly admiring the players and not for their footwork. But my favourite football match pastime is to actually watch the fans. I love nothing more than a bit of people watching. Something my son seems to have inherited, the telltale sign being we regularly frequent toddler play places only for him to want to sit and watch what everyone else is doing and comment on it, rather than participating himself.
Please don’t get the impression I’m some pathetic woman that doesn’t know what she’s talking about when it comes to football. I don’t always feel confident enough to argue my case with hubby, but I like to think (and many silently agree I’m sure) that I view the game clearer than most of my fellow fans of the male variety. And why is this? Well for starters I refuse to accept the pair of rose tinted glasses invisibly offered to me at the entrance gate. I see the game for what it is and not what I believe it is.
Week after week I listen to these silly boys…… yes boys, as soon as they enter those gates they checkout from manhood and revert to being eleven year old boys again! …..So I listen to these silly boys goading the lino and the referee….
Sorry let’s pause for a moment. If you are reading this and have no clue what these terms are then sorry this is not a “How to understand what happens at a football match” post. Maybe you should opt out of reading this post if that’s the case.
(Fellow bloggers shudder in horror!)
“Did you see? She just told readers to stop reading her post!”
Anyways getting back to what I was saying….these silly boys, wearing their rose tinted glasses, standing there telling the lino’s and the ref and the bloody players how to do their jobs! Yeah, yeah I get that because you paid your entrance fee you feel it gives you the right to do this but no! You are paying to spectate! You wouldn’t pay for a plumber and then stand there screaming that he’s unplugging your blocked drain incorrectly. Or pay to watch a show where you don’t think much of the acting so you decide to start screaming that they should be acting in a different manner! So who agreed this is what should be acceptable at a football match? And it’s not just friendly advice, you actually believe you are experts on the matter. Though your fickleness fails you as I am there watching you taunting a player….
“You’re supposed to jump! That’s why it’s called a header” “Shoot!” “Chase it!” “Oh your crap!”
Only for me to find you minutes later clapping and cheering the same player as he celebrates the goal he just scored! I have no words (places head in hands).
I actually wanted to be a female footballer but my body let me down. Despite knowing what I should be doing and understanding the game, I couldn’t get my body to be any good at it. I remember trying out for the after school girls football club. The tutor, exasperated by my lack of skill, decided to try me in goal. I was pretty good in that I saved the goals, but usually with my face. Ending up laying flat on my back with everyone cheering around me, my face throbbing from the ball I’d just saved. No I’m much safer in the terraces sadly.
My beloved George was equally content in his first year at football matches. Snoozing, having his milk and clapping along whilst people watching during the 90 minutes. This was when we paid extra to be in the seated area of course. As the new season approached along with George’s impending second birthday, we decided to take advantage of the special offer for standing terrace tickets. Taking George to his first terrace game, we stood at the far end so he had his own play space and escape from the crowds if he so wished. Within 5 minutes the first chants and goads began. I hadn’t quite realised how aggressive these men can sound to a young toddler and being a hot day we thought his ear defenders would make him too sweaty so had left those at home. After 10 minutes of trying to move him away from the noise and him still being completely inconsolable, I left and haven’t returned with George since. Hence why he now stays at Nanny’s house whilst me and hubby have some quality couple time, at a grubby football ground, surrounded by smelly shouty men (rolls eyes, yes I’m an easy to please date). George’s preference of sitting in the quieter, pricier seated area of the stadium just goes to prove he has inherited mummy’s expensive taste.
So getting back to he wonderful game, if you are one of the poor souls I get chatting to over there (mainly because my husband doesn’t talk during the game, fabulous date I know) then you will know that players tend to become my favourite if they have an obvious haircut/colour. This allows me to identify them easier. I knew our team backwards and forward years ago but having missed a few seasons due to George’s arrival I now struggle to get to grip with who’s who. Why won’t they just stand still for 5 minutes! (Laughs whilst all the ‘fans’ shake their heads in dismay). Football matches are great places to learn about Geographical facts too. For instance, I recently discovered that Wrexham is in fact in Wales! I mean I would have never have guessed. Places like Maesteg, Caernarfon, Aberystwyth….they all sound Welsh. Wrexham! Well it just doesn’t does it! Sorry.
There’s no knowing how much longer I’ll continue to be a season ticket holder but what is always a given is that I shall always be a Dagger. I’ve been there through promotions, relagations, cup ties and end of season fancy dress piss ups. It’s a part of mine and hubbies history together and something we will always speak fondly of together no matter who plays for us, who owns us, who stands next to us or puts us down. They are our team and nothing will ever change that.
What love do you and your partner share? Are you footie fans? Would love to hear.
Until next time…….