n.b. I was very lucky as a child to be sent the Sports Mail each week by my grandfather (Grampy). At a young age and living a distance from Fratton Park this regular diet of football news, results and statistics sustained and fuelled my interest in Pompey.
Despite the thin content of the writing these days, I still enjoy spending time skipping through this publication, one of a few specialist, local football newspapers that remain in the country. No longer rushed out on a Saturday evening, but produced for Sunday morning distribution, it remains a rare treat at weekends.
Of course the back page with the match results, names of goal-scorers, ground attendances and league tables consumes most of my attention. I particularly like seeing how many goals were scored in the last minute (90th) of the games.
This week there were ten last minute goals, including two for Aveley that decided the FA Trophy match in their favour against Chelmsford, (attendance 811).
n.b. Jimmy Smith, my shipmate during my time working on cross-Channel ferries in 1980, spent some years as a cook on a boat, not unlike the ‘Vital Spark’, travelling from harbour to harbour around the north of Britain.
The cargo changed depending on what needed moving between quays; roads then were more difficult to negotiate, the sea was the main highway.