“Choose life. Choose a job. Choose a career. Choose a family. Choose an all-consuming football team…”
No one ever talks about the practicalities of being a football supporter.
It takes planning, additional finance and motivation to keep doing it.
It’s especially hard if like me; you no longer live in the city where your beloved team reside, you have to travel with a two-year-old, and you have a full-time job to fit in somewhere.
It’s been a stressful few weeks in those terms. Because of health reasons I had to forgo the Reading match because I couldn’t travel. £70 in train tickets down the drain and one less game to justify the reasonable cost of buying a season ticket.
It’s made me think of the hard decisions I have to make between being a loyal football fan and just trying to get on and live life.
It’s an even harder conclusion that I’ve come to about keeping my Sheffield Wednesday season ticket.
I’ve had my season ticket since the mid-nineties; the glorious heydays of the Premier League. Chris Waddle, David Hirst, John Sheridan; it was easy to walk the 15 minutes from my parent’s house to revel in the glory of these wonderful players.
Now to get to a match, it’s two tube journeys to St Pancras, a two-hour train journey and a car ride back to Mum and Dad’s. All this with a hyperactive toddler and hefty travel costs.
My three-year season ticket runs out at the end of next season, and I’ve made the difficult decision not to renew it.
My son will be starting school at the beginning of the 2019/2020 season, leaving me the only option to travel with him at peak times when the train fares are extortionate or on match day. Neither prospect fills me with feelings of joy.
It’s difficult to be a travelling football supporter, and you do it because you love your club, but sometimes you have to choose life.