Sunday, 11 April 2010

Play on Pompey...

Many years ago, my Grandad took me to my first football match. The two teams involved were playing in what was the old second division. I was probably too young to know who I was supporting in that game or why but I supported the away team on that day.
Recent circumstances have changed their fortunes dramatically. One is now one of the richest clubs in the world and one has recently gone into administration and been relegated from the premiership.
When I was at primary school I supported Chelsea but never went to a match. Then my Godparents started taking me to Plough Lane to watch Wimbledon when I was about 12 or 13 years old and I was hooked, I signed up as a member of The Crazy Gang. Now as a 30 something AFC Wimbledon fan (Milton Keynes Dons are traitors to football!) I follow The Dons from their position in the Conference.
Now that I have grown up and know what it is to support a team but I found myself gripped to the tellybox this afternoon watching Portsmouth play Tottenham Hotspur in the Semi-Final of the FA Cup hoping like hell Pompey could pull off the seemingly only imaginable. They did, 2-0, the result is one that people will talk about for a while with the romance of the cup once again making the FA Cup one of the best club competitions in the world. Portsmouth were relegated yesterday without kicking a ball and I was very disappointed for them and my now dead Grandad, they have also gone into administration which condemned them to the championship and will ultimately lead to the dismantling of a football team and again I was deeply saddened by this both for my Grandad and the Pompey fans who are some of the best in football. It's is a shame that financial mismanagement and the spiralling cost of players wages are bringing football to it's knees and not slowly any more either.
I only follow Portsmouth fondly now as it's with them that I had my first taste of real football and that first football memory is one of the best I will ever have, it's also a way of remembering my Grandad, one of the most gentle people I have ever met and I miss him a lot on days like today but I have chosen my colours, I have chosen my team and I have enjoyed nearly every minute of every game I've ever been to, whether we've won, lost or drawn, I am however, not ashamed to say there were tears of joy in my eyes when the final whistle went this afternoon.

8 comments:

Adrian Tierney-Jones said...

nice piece, that’s the joy of sport (I get lachrymose when Wales win the Triple Crown or when Arsenal win something, now that’s going back a bit), now can the lads of HMS Victory please go and stuff Chelsea (unlikely but you never know) — saw Wimbledon once at Highbury, Alan Smith got an off the ball elbow in the face andthe score was 2-2, but we went onto to win the league thanks to Micky Thomas.

Rabidbarfly said...

Thanks Adrian, I really hope they can turn Chelsea over.

Thomas said...

I too, was very happy to see Pompey win, clutching my fists in front of the lcdm waving like a looney. I'm an Arsenal fan due to the fact that my parents come from Barnet (reason why my accent is slightly removed from Essex) and as their reserves' games are at Underhill I thought why not? I remember when Arsenal were thrashing Pompey and their fans kept on singing whenever Arsenal players touched the ball. They appreciate how football should be played. They love their game and have more passion than most fans in the game. The Pompey contingent don't deserve to see their club die. Just as Newcastle should never have been miss-managed to the Championship. My grandfather played with a prominent footballer which I will tell you. I have experienced a truely remarkable and emotional classic English Cup tie which I haven't seen for a long time. I'm very happy for this is how the game should be about.

Sid Boggle said...

Football needs a slap in the face to bring it to its senses, or we'll face the loss of more clubs like Pompey. Their fans deserve better than to have the FA/Premier League give blessings to the assorted mysterious kebab-shop operators who have brought the club down.

The players have kept their heads up, Avram Grant has behaved with great dignity when he could have just walked away, and hopefully the fans will get something to cheer next month. And if it stops that cheat John Terry from lifting a trophy, then so much the better B-)

Rabidbarfly said...

Amen to that Brother Boggle!

Cooking Lager said...

Nice piece.

Rabidbarfly said...

Cheers Cookie

Leigh said...

nice post - i follow Leeds and I cannot even put into words the life of someone who genuinely loves thier club, and the game. Kudos for nailing your colours to the mast - and good luck for next season, too. I know you probably dont care what i think but relegation can often to good things for a club; a dead-wood clearing excercise. You'll be back. Don't let your head go down.