I have been a football fan all my life.

I come from a working class background and football is in my blood.

Football is the sport of the working class and every working class kid dreams of being a football superstar, a ‘Roy of the Rovers’.

I exchanged picture cards with my friends in the school playground of the top teams players which came with bubble gum and sweets bought at the sweet shop.

I played Subbuteo long before Fantasy football and Fifa Soccer were ever invented as computer games.

I played goalkeeper for my school team and striker for the Sunday league team.

I was never spotted by a scout.  I was never good enough.  My dream never came true.

To be honest, I hated playing in the cold of winter.  I hated cleaning my mud-dirty boots.  I hated getting roughed up on the pitch by tougher kids than me.

I watched ‘Match of the Day’ presented by Jimmy Hill on a Saturday night.

Football is about allegiance and loyalty.

They say a football fan can change his sexual gender, his lifestyle, his nationality, everything else about him, but the one thing which cannot be changed is his allegiance to a football team.

Mine is to Coventry City.  The Sky Blues.

You can call me a fanatic if you like or just a fan.  You can call me a supporter, a follower or just an armchair viewer from ten thousand miles away, thanks to the wonders of cable televison.

Enough said.  You get my message, don’t you?

I won’t say thank you for asking you to listen to my presentation but I hope you dare to dream.

I still dare to dream that at an age approaching sixty years, I might still score a winning goal in an F.A. Cup final or manage a team to be successful.

A man can dream.  That’s football.  That’s football!



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