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Football Memories – The Pride and the Passion

Well, it is just after lunchtime and I can now say that I have fully recovered from watching Scotland’s more than deserved victory over Spain last night, regarded as one of the top sides in Europe.

No one could have argued against the result last night, some Spanish Players and media tried, ranging from accusations of the opposition playing a “pretty rubbish” style of football, not knowing the difference between a Kilt and a Skirt to the grass last night being too long.

Unlike other countries, we do not have moments like this very often.  We certainly do not expect to win tournaments, we learned that lesson in the 1978 World Cup in Argentina.

Scotland might not match other teams when it comes to skill and ability, but they have a powerful weapon in their armoury that other sides would love to have in their armoury – pride, and passion. 

As a country, we are passionate about our football, whether it involves club or country. Especially when they were playing above their natural level.   It brings tremendous highs, lows and not forgetting the occasional near misses.   

Sports is all about storytelling – and we all have our own stories to tell. And not always at the international level.

My football memories go back to when I was a nipper, going to see my team, “Greenock Morton” being punted over the turnstile, watching the team “punch above their weight” on a regular basis. 

One of my most memorable was watching my team create a pools coupon bursting moment when they beat Celtic on their home turf at Cappielow Park.  It was an amazing performance, but it was one of my most testing moments as a football fan when I realised I was standing at the wrong end of the ground.

I had to make sure that I had to keep my emotions under control which was not easy as I was still at school at the time.   What did not help was when the Morton Keeper saved a penalty.  Thankfully for me, I was surrounded by Celtic fans who had a sense of humour.

Morton is a team with a proud history, who have had so many great players over the years, like Allan McGraw, Joe Harper, and Andy Ritchie, to name but a few.  

They are a sporting organisation that means so much to their local community.   You only have to look at when they almost when they almost went out of business a few years ago.   That was evident when the fans took to the streets in support and turning up en masse during those dark times.

Maybe that is one of the reasons why I am hooked on the story of Wrexham Football Club at the moment.  They have shown that despite the millions being spent in the “big leagues” football is still a working-class game and when the fans get behind their team, anything is possible.

I love watching Wrexham AFC play.  Their games are anything but dull.   

They may be doing preseason tours in America later this year,  but if the team ever contemplates going on a “Busman’s Holiday” in Scotland, especially down Greenock Way, I am there.

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