"Seven bums and fourteen legs,
a brazen ecstasy which begs
the question some of us are asking -
is Peter Goulding multi-tasking?"

Martin Parker, Editor, Lighten Up Online

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The other side of the coin

Okay, I've spent the past month writing about the European Championships being held in Poland and Ukraine (must have been one helluva pitch) It has been pointed out by an old friend, quite rightly too, that football can also be seen from a completely different angle and she suggested that I write about it from this point of view.
Okay, I had a go. Difficult to write. And this is the last on football. Normal service will be resumed shortly.

Football mothers football widows

You’re a ten year old boy with a ten o’clock kick-off,
so the alarm gives a six-thirty ring.
The list is too long for a young boy to tick off,
too much to remember to bring.
So she forces herself, half-asleep, from her bed
to make sure you have everything and you’re well-fed,
though she’d rather, for once, have a lie-in instead.
And she does it, not for love of football,
but for you.

And when you come home, all breathless and shaking
and give your account of the game,
tall tales about bangers and penalty taking,
and it was always the ref was to blame,
she’ll sit down and listen, her fingers tight crossed,
show joy if you’ve won, sympathise if you’ve lost,
smile at your red face, your hair madly tossed
and she does it, not for love of football,
but for you.

And your football kit’s dirty and left in the bag
and your boots are both caked in thick mud,
so she’ll sort out the washing, although it’s a drag
and lovingly scrape every stud.
And so, Tuesday evening, when you train with your team,
your kit looks brand new and your football boots gleam
and she smiles as you run out to follow your dream,
and she does it, not for love of football,
but for you.

And your Dad’s pulling off on the away-day express
and leaving his family behind;
an escape from the worry and workday duress,
an escape from the everyday grind.
And while he is joking and making half-plans
about pubs on the way with the rest of the fans,
she’s at home making beds, minding you, scrubbing pans,
and she does it, not for love of football,
but for you.

And when the World Cup comes round, her life’s put on hold
and the telly is soon commandeered.
So she’s out in the kitchen, left out in the cold,
for family life is two-tiered.
And she’ll bring Dad a beer, bring you 7Up,
for you can’t look at football without something to sup
and it’s thirsty old work now, the football World Cup.
And she does it, not for love of football,
but for you.


  1. Result! Nice to see the women behind the scenes get acknowledged.

    I had Italy as the winner in Kev's pool at work. Problem is, I had them playing England in the final.

    Not to mention the kicking that Spain dished out!


  2. Hi Kat. I had the Danes - suspected they wouldn't win it but was hoping for a surprise against Germany in the final group game. Sadly not to be.

  3. Thanks Peter. It brought me a pan of recognition: my old mom washing my baseball uniforms when I was a boy. I wish she was here now so I could thank her again.

    She had a great sense of humour, Pete, so who knows, maybe she's reading your blogs from above today. What the hell... THANKS MOM!