A football ode - 'The Manager' by Dick Sturch

PUBLISHED: 21:20 27 January 2020

Archant

Our regular contributor of all things Millwey Rise FC has penned a superb 'ode to football'

The ode runs under the heading 'The Manager'

The Manager

It's Saturday morning. He's on the 'phone.

Looking for someone to play in goal

His keeper had rung to say he'd a cold.

Hungover he thought if the truth was known.

Then from his striker there came a text

"Can't play today, I've got a stiff neck."

But several calls later he had a team.

No subs or a linesman - Only him.

He folded the shirts and counted the socks,

It appeared his wife had lost one in the wash.

And the bloodstains still had not come out.

Which made him flinch when he thought of the clout.

And the red card dismissal of his left wing back.

The third time this season - God what a prat.

He packed the kit in the back of his van

Thankful he'd found all the players he had.

He drove to the pub where they always met,

But found there were five who had not arrived yet.

Ten minutes later - all there except one.

Though now they were late - And had to be gone.

So to make up the numbers he wore number ten.

And even at sixty, felt the passion again.

They conceded ten goals. But they didn't dwell on it.

And returned to the pub where "Spurs" were the topic.

Several pints later and his wife on the phone,

He said he'd be late - and would have to walk home.

Returned to the bar and continued to tell

Of his days at Southampton. When he played at "The Dell."

But as he recalled all those glorious days

His words became slurred - and they drifted away.

Now sitting alone, with only his past,

He sipped at his pint to make it last,

With the crowds in his head still cheering his goals,

'til he fell off the stool - getting up to go home.

Dick Sturch 23-09-2017

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