I had bad experiences of PE at school. Although I may see things differently if I actually went back in time, I would say my PE teacher was a bit of a bully. I wasn’t naturally sporty and I wasn’t, let’s say, positively encouraged to enjoy sports. There were some exceptions, but my emerging feelings about football certainly derive in part from the above. I also, in my early childhood, was quite aware of football hooliganism – and I remember feeling quite intimidated by football fans running through the streets of Moss Side when there was a big match on… so football, for me, seemed to be a game for thugs.
Over the next couple of decades or so, I had no incentive to “get into” football. This has recently changed…
I work in a school.
The class I support is comprised of five teenage boys.
Two of those boys are “into” football.
We are also often joined by another teenage boy who is “really into” football.
Since September I have been largely supporting the PE teacher (who is more calm, patient, intelligent and funny than I remember my school PE teacher being) and his assistant – both of whom are “into” football.
I have also been recently supporting (and enjoying doing so) the lunchtime football club.
And I like and respect and enjoy being around the aforementioned footbally folk.
So can you see why I now have incentive? As such, this past week, I have looked at a football league table, asked the footbally folk for my predictions of forthcoming fixtures (see how I used the word ‘fixtures’?) to be added to the ongoing spreadsheet, acquainted myself with the ‘Rules of Football’ and gained a basic understanding of the Offside Rule. Re the latter, it is essentially about stopping a player from hogging the opponent’s goal, so that your team mates can spend all their time taking long shots, upon which the ball can be just chipped into the net (see how I said, “chipped into the net”?) – which would of course make for a boring game. Please forgive me, football fans, if my understanding of this is ‘offside’ (sorry).