This is now an edited version of the original blog… you can read the full one by downloading my Football Neutral 2013/14 season review on Kindle. Well over 300 pages of daftness. Less than £2! Thanks!
…I’ve noticed when choosing games so far this season that it always just geographical proximity to my weekend’s worth of work that has me gravitate towards one team in particular. Whilst much of this week’s choice was based around having to do a kids gig that finished at 2pm in Windsor (more on that in a bit), once I started looking at the fixtures it was easy to make a decision.
That said, picking Aldershot Town as my team of the day is fraught with issues. Firstly, one of my best friends (and business partner) Jon is a Woking supporter. He hates Aldershot with a burning passion, or as much of an incandescent rage that a polite man from Surrey can muster. Secondly, they were up against Wrexham who happen to now be my geographically local club.
OK, they’re not the closest club to my house in North Wales (that would be Airbus UK Broughton FC from the League of Wales) but I drive past their ground every time I have to head south and that makes them feel closer. Plus I’m of Welsh heritage, so living there means I should probably take at least a passing interest in my nearest club and I remember them knocking Arsenal out of the cup years ago when I had a paper round, the Sunday People on that cold January morning resplendent with a picture of Mickey Thomas’ toothy grin.
So why did I pick Aldershot Town? First off, it’s easy to want to go and support a club for the day that has risen from the ashes after financial disaster. Secondly, when I was 13 years old and really getting into football, my PE teacher (Mr Hayes) was a former Aldershot player and staunch supporter, and on the day they went bust he told a load of us about it and genuinely had a tear in his eye. At that stage in my life I had decided to support Leicester City, but still wasn’t at the point where I was that emotionally attached to my own club. I remembered that years later when I cried my eyes out as they turned off the floodlights at Filbert Street following our final game there, a friendly against Celtic.
As an aside, it is not acceptable to cry on the last day of the season when your team is relegated. Why? Because you’ve been awful all season, that’s why you’re in trouble. How is it a surprise? The only time it is acceptable is if you think you’re safe and then have the rug pulled from under you like those Sheffield United fans at Stamford Bridge years back. The rest of the time it’s just showing off for the cameras or being unnecessarily soft…